Tomato Cabbage Soup

5 from 223 votes

This Tomato Cabbage Soup is vegan, easy to make and low in calories. It's a delicious, light & healthy lunch that is inspired by the detox cabbage soup diet

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Tomato cabbage soup is inspired by the popular cabbage soup diet. The essence of the diet was eating cabbage soup 2-3 times a day along with a lot of other fruits and vegetables and an allotted list of foods added each day, like brown rice and chicken. While I’m not a fan of the diet, the soup itself is such a flavorful healthy recipe that I would definitely recommend!

Tomato cabbage soup in a white bowl topped with fresh cabbage
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The tomato cabbage soup is low in protein, low in complex carbs and low in fats, so it may leave you craving something more satisfying. But I think it works wonderfully as a soup for lunch or an appetizer at dinner when you want something light or want to detox after a weekend of heavy eating. But you need to make sure to get key nutrients in the other foods you eat throughout the day.


How to make cabbage soup

  1. Start by cooking the aromatics: I include the usual onions, celery and carrots.
  2. Sauté them until they’re fragrant and fork tender but not too soft.
  3. Add in the seasoning you’re using. I keep it simple with salt, pepper, garlic and oregano.
  4. Then add the tomatoes. I use a combination of diced canned tomatoes and tomato paste. ionBut you can also use fresh tomatoes and tomato sauce or any other variation to get a tomato broth.
  5. Add vegetable broth, chicken broth or beef broth and bring to a boil.
  6. Finally add the cabbage and cook until the cabbage wilts, about 20 minutes.
Process shots for how to make the recipe showing step by step how to make the soup

When it’s done cooking, the cabbage will soften and the broth will thicken. The pot can easily feed 6 people and each serving is only about 130 calories. So it makes for a delicious appetizer or soup served with grilled cheese or any other sandwich or soup.

Large pot of the cabbage soup with a ladle side

Tips for making tomato cabbage soup

  1. Use water instead of broth. If you want to lower the sodium in the recipe or don’t have any broth on hand, you can easily make your own vegetable broth or use water. Just be sure to season it properly.
  2. Set the soup to simmer, not boil. You’re looking for a couple bubbles to rise to the surface, instead of big bubbles. As soon as the liquid comes to a boil, turn the heat to low. This will ensure that the vegetables are not overcooked an dry.
  3. Season every layer. Whenever you’re making soup, it’s important to season every layer you add to ensure the best flavor. While I include include one part of the instructions for seasoning (as not to sound redundant), it really helps flavor the soup if you season everytime you add new ingredients to the pot.
  4. Make it a complete meal by adding protein to it. You can add plant-based protein like quinoa or you can add shredded chicken or ground turkey to make it more satiating.
  5. Check out my quick and easy tutorial for how to cut cabbage.

Frequently asked questions

Can you freeze cabbage soup?

Yes, this soup is very freezer friendly, especially since it doesn’t include any grains. To freeze, make sure to cool it completely. Then transfer it to single serving portions and store in a freezer safe container for up to 3 months.

How do you cut cabbage for soup?

It’s important to make sure to cut the cabbage into bite sized pieces. Keep in mind though that the cabbage will shrink and wilt. My favorite way to cut it for soup is to shred it using a peeler. But you can also use a knife and run through it a few times.

For more vegetarian soup recipes:

Tomato soup with cabbage in a white bowl

I am generally not a fan of any diet that limits any food group. So I am not a proponent of the cabbage soup diet, but I am 100% proponent of this tomato cabbage soup, inspired by the diet. It leaves me feeling warm on the inside, satisfied and not weighed down by my meal. And it’s a great way to use up leftover vegetables you have at the end of the week!

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Tomato Cabbage Soup recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories! It’s

This Tomato Cabbage Soup recipe was originally published on April 25, 2017. I’m re-sharing it today with more step-by-step photos.

overhead shot of tomato cabbage soup in bowls

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Tomato Cabbage Soup

This Tomato Cabbage Soup is vegan, easy to make and low in calories. It's a delicious, light & healthy lunch that is inspired by the detox cabbage soup diet
5 from 223 votes
Servings 6 servings
Course Soup
Calories 132
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
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  • Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, celery and carrots and saute for a few minutes until fragrant and tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic, then season with salt and pepper, oregano and cayenne, and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Stir in the diced tomatoes and the tomato paste and mix well with the other ingredients. Add the vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Stir in the cabbage and simmer for 20 minutes until cabbage softens.
  • Taste the soup and adjust seasoning as needed or add more water/broth to adjust the consistency.


Storage:  Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last up to 5 days in the fridge. 
Freezing Instructions: Cool the tomato cabbage soup completely. Then transfer it to single serving portions and store in a freezer safe container for up to 3 months.


Calories: 132kcal, Carbohydrates: 24g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 956mg, Potassium: 759mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 6274IU, Vitamin C: 70mg, Calcium: 119mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Soup
5 from 223 votes (204 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. Jana says:

    Delicious! I added a bay leaf like another reviewer recommended. Otherwise made it as written. YUM!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      So glad you liked it!

  2. Romana says:

    Hi, Yumna- thank you for the many fabulous recipes you provide us with!
    Would red/purple cabbage be an acceptable substitute to the white? I almost always have purple on hand…
    THANK YOU, ya Yumna! I look forward to your future cookbook release!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      You are so welcome! I definitely think you could use red/ purple cabbage, but the flavor may vary slightly.

  3. Mr Doer says:

    It’s ‘vegan’…with chicken or beef broth….errrr, no!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      This recipe uses vegetable broth.

  4. K says:

    This was delicious! I used up so much produce from the fridge and threw in leftover chick peas and mustard greens.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you! That’s perfect!!

  5. Carl says:

    Too many words

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      If it’s easier, you can just scroll down to the recipe card! 🙂

  6. Karman Foods says:

    This Tomato Cabbage Soup recipe is so delicious! I used Little Sheep Tomato Based Flavor Hot Pot Soup Base for a more flavorful taste. Love it!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you so much! That’s amazing!

  7. Alex says:

    Definite keeper!
    Added bay leaves and cumin to the seasoning blend, omitted the tomato paste and instead used 16oz crushed canned tomatoes and 2 diced fresh tomatoes.
    Yum and good for the waistline, too.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Yay! That sounds lovely too.

  8. Ashlin says:

    I’ve made this cabbage soup twice now! If you don’t have vegetable stock chicken stock works too 🙂

    1. Yumna J. says:

      It’s a versatile recipe in that way! Yay!!

  9. Kate says:

    I love this soup! My family loves this soup! Even my extended family loves this soup! When I made it this past summer I also added ground venison to give it a lean protein and my mother has made it adding kidney beans. All ways have been delicious! Thank you for sharing this recipe!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      That makes me so happy to hear that you all enjoy it! You’re so welcome!

  10. Valentina says:

    Thank you for sharing all your recopies with us. Can I substitute the vegetable broth for water?

    1. Yumna J. says:

      You’re so welcome! Yes, you can!

  11. Daniela Luna says:

    This soup was delicious. Easy to make!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you! Happy to hear that!

  12. Andruta Ilie says:

    Made this today and it turned absolutely delicious! I’m not a big fan of cabbage-based dishes, but this soup has exceeded expectations. It’s perfect on a cold Finnish winter!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed this one! Hope you stay warm and cozy!

  13. Alistair says:

    Great recipe! I added extra fats, 2tbsp coconut oil, 2 Tbsp evoo, 1tbsp grapeseed oil, bay leaves, and better than boullion vegetable base and this was fantastic!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thanks so much for sharing your tweaks and so glad you loved it. Thank you!

  14. Lindsey says:

    This soup was by far the best ive ever made! My grandmother passed away last year and this smells and tastes just like soup she used to make, it makes me so happy. I love everything about it! And its super simple and very healthy especially for me since im pregnant and cabbage is like a pregnancy super food! Thanks for sharing this recipe!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Aww, that makes me so happy to hear. Thank you for sharing. Good luck with your pregnancy and eat those cabbages! Ohhh, have you tried roasting cabbage? You have to try it:

  15. Janet Bareiss says:

    Thank you. Needed a huge serving of vegetable soup to combat this illness coming. Soup is my favorite and vegetable soup is best.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      So glad to hear you liked it. Get well soon!

  16. Nicole says:

    This recipe was absolutely delicious! Our kiddos and hubbies loved it! My bestie and I made it and everyone gobbled it’s up!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Yay! I’m so happy to hear you two enjoyed it so much!! Thank you!

  17. Stephanie says:

    Saw you share this on Instagram the other day and had to try it! Of course I had to work with what I already had and what was in the grocery store since things have been a *little* hectic. I used pretty much all the same ingredients except I swapped out cabbage for kale (that was the only leafy green left!), and I ended up using smoked paprika instead of cayenne and adding red pepper flakes for a kick. I also threw in some quinoa for protein! You provided such a nice base and the soup was lovely. Thanks so much!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Oh I love how you improvised and made it with what you had on hand. That’s the best thinking right now. Thank you!!

  18. Farah says:

    i read it , it is looking yumy and ofcourse healthy. I will definetly try is soon. Thanks for sharing.

    a request can you tell how much calories it include.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      So glad to hear that. Hope you like it when you try it. The recipe makes 6 servings and each serving is about 130 calories 🙂

  19. Barbara Finkelstein says:

    I didn’t think this soup would work without a beef bone, but it’s delicious.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      I think the beef bone is an excellent idea for added flavor! I tried to keep it vegan but that works too!

  20. Linda Gandy says:

    i want to make this soup, but the sodium is so high for me.
    how can i cut the amount of sodium in half.
    thank you

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      That’s due to the vegetable broth. So you can use low-sodium vegetable broth, use a no-sodium bouillon cube or just use water. I hope that helps!

  21. Kimberly D Wilkovich says:

    So very good. Thank you.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      So glad to hear it! Thank you!!

  22. Matt says:

    This is the only useful thing that has ever come through in my Google trending list. Really great recipe! I made a double batch. Will try out some of the suggestions left by reviewers as well, and might add some caraway seed next time I make it. Thanks!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      That’s so great to hear! I’m happy you liked it and that you’ll be making it again!! Thank you for sharing!!

  23. ANnasssokol says:

    THis was so good! I added just a few mashrooms qs well and veggie meat balls in the end for adding some protein ( have to take protein with each meal). Great recipe!!! So happy to finally utilize cabbage

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      So glad to hear you enjoyed the soup! And love your ideas for how you added some protein!

  24. ZEPURE says:

    yumna i loved it shared it on my instagram and people went crazy over the recipe and i shared with 15 friends the recipe. YUM YUM YUM it was really good. im not a celery fan but after this im changed for good <3


    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you so much for your amazing review!! I’m so happy to hear that you loved it and you shared it with 15 of your friends!! SO cool!

      1. ZEPURE says:


  25. Kassandra says:

    This was so delicious. Thank you for a perfect recipe! I added chickpeas/garbanzo beans because I wanted to add more texture to chew, but I understand that then it no longer is a light, detox soup.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      I love the idea of adding chickpeas to the recipe! So glad you enjoyed it!! 🙂

  26. Amal mackie says:

    Yummy and filling