Kielbasa and Cabbage – Polish Summer Hunter’s Stew

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Kielbasa and Cabbage come together to form a perfect Polish summer hunter’s stew. It’s made from young cabbage, that is at its peak at the begging of the summer, with the addition of smoky Polish sausage and fragrant dill. It makes for a delicious European treat. It is different from traditional Bigos also know as Hunter’s stew where you would use sauerkraut in addition to fresh cabbage and different cuts of meat in addition to kielbasa. This summer version is much lighter and it’s perfect for entertainment.

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Kielbasa and Cabbage in a skillet with a spoon

Kielbasa and Cabbage – Popular Summer Dish

Kielbasa and Cabbage pair together to form one of the most popular Polish dishes. It’s repeated often when the summer arrives with its abundance of young (new) cabbage. Almost every home cook will have their own particular spin on it. They may differ by types of meat, or spices, or other additions like wine or tomato paste.

And some other folks may skip the kielbasa altogether and make this summer hunter’s stew only with vegetables. For a vegan version, you may add mushrooms instead of sausage (like in this Kapusta (Sauerkraut with Mushrooms) recipe. ) 

Kielbasa and Cabbage (Hunter's stew) on a serving plate with spoon

What to Serve This Kielbasa and Cabbage Stew with

It’s best served with a side of New Dill Potatoes or Potato Pancakes. It can be featured as dinner or as a side dish. I love the smokiness of Polish kielbasa in this stew, so for me, this is the best version. Oh, and did I mentioned that my husband wouldn’t touch the cabbage without meat in it?

So when I was making this Kielbasa and Cabbage I asked my husband if I could challenge him. Cabbage is on his short list of excommunicated ingredients. I promised him that this dish was really good and he would like it (he just needs to give me a chance). I believe that he just never developed a taste for cooked cabbage, as it is not a popular dish in America. Every Polish kid likes it, and I certainly don’t think we have different tastes buds. Rather, we were just exposed to so often that we developed a taste for it.

It’s the same story with sauerkraut and beets. I love all of these veggies, while my husband doesn’t care for them. However, I think it’s all in the preparation. He claimed not to like spinach but he likes my Greek Spinach Rice. He claims to not like sauerkraut but he likes my Sauerkraut and Mushroom Pierogi.

And so I did challenge my hubby with this one too. He tasted it….looked at me….& said: “Not bad,” which is HUGE for him! He even took it to work for lunch the next day. If that’s not a good testimonial of how good it is, then I don’t know what would be 🙂

Summer hunter's stew with kielbasa and cabbage on a serving plate

How to Make Kielbasa and Cabbage (Summer Hunter’s Stew)

This Kielbasa and Cabbage skillet is pretty simple to make. You’ll need:

  • Young new cabbage (it’s the one that you can find from late spring to late summer with green outside leaves);
  • Carrot;
  • Onion;
  • Vegetable or chicken bullion ;
  • Tomato paste;
  • Polish Kielbasa (if you’re lucky to have a Polish store around then get the one from there; if not, Polish Kielbasa from a supermarket will do the trick).

The step by step instructions can be found below in a printable recipe card.

Kielbasa and Cabbage in a skillet with kitchen towel

I like to use a Pre Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet (12.5 inches)  for these kinds of dishes. I especially like to cook the kielbasa on it to give it a nice sear; that gives it an amazing golden brown color. If you like cabbage and the sausage then I am conferment that you will really like this Polish Kielbasa and Cabbage dish. And if you’re leery, then ‘I challenge you.’

Other Polish Recipes To Try:

Cabbage and Kielbasa come together to form a perfect Polish summer hunter's stew. It's made from young cabbage, that is at its peak at the begging of the summer, with the addition of a smoky Polish sausage and a fragrant dill. It makes for a delicious European treat.

Kielbasa and Cabbage - Summer Hunter's Stew

Kielbasa and Cabbage come together to form a perfect Polish summer hunter's stew. It's made from young cabbage, that is at its peak at the begging of the summer, with the addition of smoky Polish sausage and fragrant dill. It makes for a delicious European treat.
4.86 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner, Main Dish, Side Dish
Cuisine: Polish
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 361kcal
Author: Edyta


  • 1 cabbage young, cut into small pieces
  • 1 carrot medium, shredded
  • 1 onion yellow, medium, chopped
  • 2 cups kielbasa sliced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp dill fresh, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1 bay leave
  • 1,5 tbsp flour
  • 2 cups vegetable broth


  • In a large braising pan or cast iron skillet, add one tablespoon of olive oil and chopped onion. Cook for 3-4 minutes until translucent;
  • Add shredded carrot and chopped cabbage, broth, tomato paste, caraway seeds, and bay leave. Mix well, cover and cook for about 20 minutes. Make sure that all cabbage is covered. If not, add more broth or water;
  • Check if after 20 minutes the cabbage is soft. If not, cook for a little longer until all cabbage is cooked through and soft. Season with salt and pepper to your liking;
  • In the meantime, heat up another tablespoon of oil in the cast iron skillet, add sliced kielbasa and cook for a few minutes on each side until golden brown;
  • Once your cabbage is cooked, add cooked kielbasa;
  • In a separate pan add flour and cook for about 2 minutes, add the last tablespoon of oil and mix; Add about a cup of broth from cabbage pot, mix well; Add the mixture to the cabbage pot and combine; Let cook for two-3 minutes. Add dill and serve. 


Calories: 361kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 55mg | Sodium: 1060mg | Potassium: 530mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 2065IU | Vitamin C: 58.7mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 2.1mg
Tried this recipe?Show me @eatingeuropean or tag #eatingeuropean!

This post was originally published on June 18, 2017, and since then it was updated to provide additional information.

Read about the author Edyta here or follow Eating European on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter.





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  1. 5 stars
    Having a Russian background I can totally relate to loving cabbage and beets! They’re the best and frequently used in Russian cooking as well – my mom makes a dish similar to this too! Definitely not highly used ingredients in American cooking though.

  2. 5 stars
    Your cabbage is beautiful! I grew up int eh American South, so cabbage was common on our table and I like it. I cook it down for a while on the stove with lots of butter, salt, and beer 🙂 I love the look of this. I don’t eat kielbasa (pescetarian) but I will sub some spicy veggie sausage and try this. Cabbage is so comforting! 🙂

    1. 5 stars
      I had a store bought package of kielbasa and I googled recipes for it and found yours. It looked good and I had a head of regular cabbage so I went ahead and made it, using half of the large head. I didn’t have caraway seeds, so I used fennel instead; dried dill instead of fresh; and Better Than Bouillon (Chicken flavor) instead of vegetable broth. I saw a commenter mentiin sauteeing their cabbage in butter, so I did that before putting it in the big pot. I ended up using 3+ cups of liquid. My version made less than 4 servings but OH! did it taste yummy! This is definitely going in my recipe book and I look forward to making it again very soon!

  3. 4 stars
    I have a polish deli where I get fresh kielbasa and wedding kielbasa, I also stir fry a coleslaw blend ( it’s all ready shredded with carrots and cabbages) 1 tablespoon butter, garlic minced onions sliced peppers, baby bella mushrooms with a little balsamic vinegar.

  4. Can someone explain the flour part of this recipe? First, the amount is listed as “1,5 tbsp”. I’m not sure what that means. Then, do I brown the flour in a pan before adding the oil and broth? Finally, I guess I add that mixture back to the whole, but why? What does the flour mixture add to the dish? Any help is appreciated!

  5. 5 stars
    I just made this for dinner tonight and it turned out great! I served it with mashed potatoes and my husband and 2 picky 10 year old grandsons loved it. I used anise seeds instead of caraway. Instead of the flour I just used more tomato paste to thicken it a little more. I also added Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute. Thanks for the recipe!

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