How to shred cabbage with a food processor

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Knowing how to shred cabbage with a food processor can make a difference in your holiday meals. Sure, chopping vegetables and slicing cabbages with a knife is possible but that would be time-consuming and messy!

Cabbages have always had a humble reputation. They’re served in hefty amounts during school dinners, salad-lunch days, and even as consistent sidedish soups. Sadly, cabbages can often be regarded as boring! But you surely wouldn’t think so when it’s giving that extra crunch in a taco, or that silky sweet taste in a coleslaw. Cabbage can be so much more exciting when shredded with a food processor! 

Food processors are kitchen wonders that can chop, mix, puree, shred, slice, and even knead! It’s a must-have kitchen powerhouse that can save time and save money while you cook. Shredding cabbage can be done in just 5 minutes or less!

How should I prepare cabbage before shredding it in my food processor?

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  1. Determine the yield

If you’re using the shredded cabbage immediately, it’s important that you determine how much you need based on the recipe you will be using. As a general rule, cooked cabbage will yield approximately half the serving size of shredded raw cabbages. Raw recipes such as Asian Cabbage Salad need 4 cups from shredding cabbage compared to 8 cups for Sauteed Cabbage to produce 5 servings.

  1. Store the cabbage

If you’re not going to use the cabbage immediately, seal the entire head of the cabbage in an airtight container or plastic and refrigerate. It can last up to a week when it remains unwashed, sealed, and refrigerated. Cold vegetables also shred better.

  1. Wash the cabbage and remove the outer leaves

If you’re going to use the cabbages already, wash them first with tap water to remove dirt. Gently scrub the leaves with your fingers or a cleaning brush. You may also remove the outer leaves of the head of the cabbage by pulling them off. 

Outer leaves are softer, leafier, and less crunchy which is not the best for shredded cabbage. 

  1. Cut the cabbage

After washing the cabbage, cut it into smaller chunks. Using a cutting board and a knife, slice the vegetable half vertically. You may also opt to quarter the sliced cabbage by placing the two halves on their flat side and chopping horizontally. This minimizes prep time because it can fit easier into your feed tube. 

  1. Remove the core

The cabbage core is tougher than the rest of the cabbage and would have a different crunch when mixed with the rest of the shredded cabbage. 

To remove it, place the cut cabbages on the cutting board side-down and slice at a slight angle creating a sort of triangle shape. At this point, your cabbage is ready to use for other recipes such as grilled cabbage, kimchi, and other cooked dishes.

What blade do you use to shred cabbage in a food processor?

Part of knowing how to shred cabbage with a food processor is knowing what blade to use. Food processors often include an array of blades for different types of shredding. Most food processor blades would have an S blade, a shredding disk, and a dough blade. While you can use an S blade, also known as the multipurpose blade or Sabatier blade, to shred cabbages, the best blade would be the shredding disk. 

The shredding disk, also known as the grating disk or shredding blade, differs from the other blades in that it sits on top of the food processor bowl. The food is pushed through the feed tube, meeting the shredding disk, before it falls onto the bowl sliced. Other high-end food processors would include additional disks such as the Julienne disk, slicing disk, and other variations of the shredding disk.

How to shred cabbage in a food processor

To shred cabbage, you’ll need

  • A Food Processor
  • A knife
  • A cutting board
  • Cabbages
  1. Ready the Food Processor

Prepare the food processor first. Make sure that it is wiped clean and the bowl is washed and dried. Attach the necessary food processor blade (shredding disk) on top of the bowl and lock it into place. Check if the shredding side is facing up.

  1. Ready the cabbages

To prep cabbages, wash and pat dry them. Retrieve your cut cabbages from the crisper drawer if you have prepared them beforehand. You can try fitting them into the feed tube first to check if you need to slice them further.

  1. Shred the cabbages

Before shredding cabbages, choose the desired intensity or speed of the food processor and then carefully insert your cabbage into the feed tube. Most food processors include a food pusher. This is safer to use and distances your hand from the food processor blades. The shredding process may take just about 3 to 5 minutes.

  1. Store the Cabbage

If you’re not going to use the shredded cabbage yet, soak them in cold water and place it in an airtight container. This helps preserve the cabbage for later use and allows it to stay perky. 

Include the cabbages in a crisper drawer to refrigerate them until you’re ready to use them for your favorite recipes.

Shredding different types of cabbages in a food processor

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Cabbages are cruciferous vegetables in the Brassica family. Included in this are bok choy, brown mustard, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, collard greens, kale, kohlrabi, napa cabbage, rutabaga, savoy cabbage, and turnip. 

Brassica family vegetables are highly nutritious with high amounts of vitamin K, vitamin C, several antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Eating cabbage raw can improve the digestive and immune systems.

We’ll look at shredding some of the common cabbage types used in home cooking:

Napa Cabbage

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Napa cabbage, also known as celery cabbage, is a type of Chinese cabbage often used in East Asian cuisine and recipes. It grows in an oblong shape with prominent white veins and light-green leaves which are tightly packed. 

Following the steps illustrated earlier in this article:

  1. Pick a napa cabbage with a firm stem and crisp leaves.
  2. Remove the soft cabbage leaves and leaves with black dots.
  3. Wash the soft cabbage leaves while rubbing your fingers to remove the dirt. 
  4. Place the napa cabbage horizontally and cut the bottom half of the napa cabbage where the leaves are attached. It is now ready to be shredded in a food processor!
  5.  Slice cabbage into smaller chunks if it does not fit the feed tube.

Brussels Sprouts

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While brussels sprouts are not a type of cabbage, they are however referred to sometimes as mini cabbage. It is named after Brussels, Belgium where it is believed to have been originally cultivated.

Brussels sprouts are smaller and easier to shred. Here’s how:

  1. Wash them first, removing any dirt or blemishes
  2. You may directly place them in the food processor. It’s that easy! 
  3. You can also split it into half just so you can check if it has any blemishes inside and for easier shredding.

Savoy Cabbage

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Savoy cabbages are winter vegetables considered to be milder and sweeter. They originate from the Savoy Region of France which is also called. 

The savoy cabbage is considered to be versatile due to the difference in texture between its outer leaves, which are frilly and green, and its inner leaves which are firm and pale yellow. This makes it a great ingredient for coleslaw and salads, providing two different textures while maintaining the same flavor.

Here’s how to shred a savoy cabbage: 

  1. Remove any thick woody stem from the outer leaves. 
  2. You may choose to soak it in water to remove any dirt or grit instead of rubbing it due to its delicate leaves. 
  3. Next, you may follow the steps illustrated earlier for any cabbage including slicing it in half and removing the core. 
  4. The remaining step is to shred cabbage in the food processor.

FAQ

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Aside from knowing how to shred cabbage in a food processor, here are some other questions that might pop up while you’re cooking:

How to pick a cabbage?

A head of cabbage should feel heavy relative to its size. Pick firm and compact cabbages with little to no blemished leaves. The firmer the cabbage leaves are, the more likely it is fresh! It’s normal to find the outer leaves wilted and that is okay since you’ll be removing them anyway.

Should you wash cabbage after shredding?

Cabbages are supposed to be washed after removing the tough outer leaves and before being shredded. But being the cautious cooker that you are, you may rinse it quickly so as to retain most of its nutritional value still.

How long does shredded cabbage last?

Cabbages usually last longer than most leafy vegetables due to their lower water content. Bacteria require moisture to thrive. That is why a full head of cabbage is best stored unwashed.

Shredded cabbage however exposes the leaves to oxidation which would quicken its decay. A freshly shredded cabbage should last 2 to 3 days when pat dried and stored in the refrigerator. 

To make it last longer, soak the shredded cabbage in an airtight container with lemon juice and cold water, and then place it in the coldest part of your refrigerator. An airtight container prevents oxidation while cold water helps it maintain its crisp texture. The acidity of lemon juice is known to prevent bacteria growth and prolong shelf life. This should make the shredded cabbage last up to 5 days or more. 

Lastly, freeze cabbage to make it last up to 6 months. To effectively freeze cabbage, you must first blanch it by boiling the cabbage wedges or quarters for 1.5 minutes before drenching it in cold water. Pat dry it afterward and place it in an airtight container before freezing it.

Can I shred cabbage with a blender?

Blenders and food processors have similar functions but due to the limited blade available to a blender, it is more likely to grind or mince than to shred cabbage into uniform slices. Food processors can easily shred cabbages due to their shredding disk.

If you don’t have a food processor at home, a blender can do the job still using other methods such as the wet chop method. After washing the cabbage, quartering it, and removing the core, you can place it in the blender. 

However, you should include water as well up to 2-3 inches. Without adding water, the blender will puree the cabbages instead of shredding them! Give the blender a quick pulse and repeat until you have the desired thickness.

Can you shred other vegetables in a food processor?

Most definitely! Most vegetables can be shredded with a box grater,  hand grater, or food processor but food processors are more versatile kitchen tools that can be used for different kinds of vegetables. The best food processors can do more than just shredding, they can, chop, mix, puree, slice, and knead to help you prepare the dishes you want.

Conclusion

Shredded cabbages unlock a lot of delicious recipes and food for home cooks everywhere to eat and try. Start your food processors and make that hearty cabbage soup or eat that delicious summer treat coleslaw! Mix it with other vegetables such as bok choy and mushrooms for some stir fry mixed veggies! 

We hope this article got you as excited about cabbages as we are and that it helps answer all your questions on how to shred cabbage with a food processor and more.

References

Bruno, Joey. “Can You Shred Cabbage in a Blender? (Explained).” Thrive Cuisine, 21 Aug. 2022, https://thrivecuisine.com/kitchen-appliances/blenders/can-you-shred-cabbage-in-a-blender/

Butler, Taesha. “How to Store Cabbage (Whole, Cut, or Shredded).” The Natural Nurturer, 13 Apr. 2022, https://thenaturalnurturer.com/how-to-store-cabbage-whole-cut-or-shredded/#how-to-store-shredded-cabbage

Johnson, Emily. “How to Cut Cabbage like a Total Pro.” Epicurious, Epicurious, 11 Aug. 2017, https://www.epicurious.com/expert-advice/how-to-cut-cabbage-step-by-step-article

Pietrzak, Kendall Nicole. “Can You Shred Cabbage in a Food Processor? [Here’s How to].” Kitchen Seer, 23 July 2021, https://kitchenseer.com/shred-cabbage-in-food-processor/#:~:text=The%20best%20food%20processor%20blade,it%20passes%20through%20the%20chute.

Tom. “How Long Does Shredded Cabbage Last? (Make It Last Longer).” Boss The Kitchen, 31 Aug. 2021, https://bossthekitchen.com/how-long-does-shredded-cabbage-last/

“Cabbage.” Bon Appétit, Bon Appétit, 17 July 2008, https://www.bonappetit.com/test-kitchen/tools-test-kitchen/article/cabbage

“How to Cook Cabbage.” Great British Chefs, 16 July 2021, https://www.greatbritishchefs.com/how-to-cook/how-to-cook-cabbage