Effortlessly Removing Cabbage Core: Tips and Tricks

If you are a fan of cabbage and use it frequently in your recipes or salads, then you know the struggle of removing the core. The hard core in the center of the cabbage head can often hinder your cooking process, and it’s crucial to remove it properly for the best results. This article will guide you through the easiest and most efficient ways to remove cabbage core with minimal wastage of the leaves and without the fear of overcutting.

Why Remove the Cabbage Core?

The core of the cabbage is the tough, central stem that runs the length of the vegetable. Removing the core is essential for a few reasons:

  • It can be unpleasant to eat: The core is quite thick and difficult to cook, which can lead to a tough and chewy texture in the middle of your dish.
  • Bitter: The core is especially bitter and may add unwanted flavor to your dish.
  • Safety: If left in, the core can make it challenging to cut through the cabbage, which can lead to accidental injuries while chopping.

Tools Needed to Remove the Cabbage Core

To remove the core properly, you will need a good quality knife and a cutting board. It’s best to use a large knife with a sharp blade that can easily cut through the cabbage. A pairing knife or steak knife might not suffice, as they are not sharp or substantial enough for this task.

Method 1: Quartering the Cabbage

One of the easiest ways to remove the cabbage core is by quartering the cabbage from top to bottom. This method ensures that you can remove the core while keeping as many leaves intact as possible. Follow these steps:

  1. Place the cabbage on a cutting board, stem side down.
  2. Using a sharp knife, cut the cabbage in half from top to bottom.
  3. Cut each half in half again, so you now have four wedges of cabbage.
  4. Using your knife, slice out the thick white core from each quarter.
  5. Discard the cores and chop the cabbage as needed.

Method 2: Using the Stem Method

The stem method is a popular way to remove the core of the cabbage. It involves slicing an upside-down V from the cabbage’s stem, which makes it easier to remove the core while keeping the cabbage intact. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Place the cabbage head on a cutting board, with the stem facing upwards.
  2. Using a sharp knife, insert the tip into the cabbage, about 1 inch away from the stem.
  3. Angle your knife towards the center of the cabbage and cut a V-shape around the stem, making sure to remove the toughest parts.
  4. Using both hands, gently twist the core to loosen it from the cabbage.
  5. Discard the core and chop the cabbage as needed.

Method 3: Spiralizing the Cabbage

If you have a spiralizer, you can remove the cabbage core without slicing it, saving more leaves for later use. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Peel off the outer leaves from the cabbage until you reach a clean layer.
  2. Trim the stem of the cabbage, making it flat so you can easily attach it to the spiralizer.
  3. Attach the cabbage to the spiralizer and turn it until the blade cuts through the cabbage completely.
  4. Snip the spirals into smaller strands.
  5. Discard the core and chop the cabbage as needed.

How to Use the Cabbage Core

While the cabbage core is often removed and discarded, it can still be used in a few ways. Here are some tips on how to use the core:

  • Add it to soups or stews: The core can lend a great flavor to your soup or stew.
  • Grate it: Grating the core and adding it to coleslaw or salads can give it a great crunch.
  • Roast it: If you roast the core, it will become soft and tender, making a great side dish.


The next time you need to remove the cabbage core, use the tips and methods mentioned above to do it efficiently and properly without wasting the leaves. Removing the core is a simple process that can drastically change the flavor and texture of your dish, so take the time to do it. And don’t forget to use the cabbage core and experiment with new recipes. Happy cooking!

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