Classic Southern Fried Cabbage with Bacon

Get ready to savor the comforting flavors of the South with this Classic Southern Fried Cabbage—a soul-warming dish that combines the rich smokiness of bacon with the hearty crunch of fresh green cabbage. Bursting with savory goodness and aromatic spices, this dish is a timeless favorite that’s perfect for any occasion. Whether served as a satisfying side dish or enjoyed as a flavorful main course, this recipe celebrates the simple joys of Southern cuisine. Let’s dive into creating this delicious dish that will transport you to the heart of the South with every bite!


  • 1 pound of high-quality bacon, finely chopped
  • 1 white onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced with precision
  • 1 head of fresh green cabbage, cored and meticulously chopped into uniform bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (optional but recommended for a mild heat profile)
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. In a large skillet or frying pan, cook the finely chopped bacon over medium heat until it becomes crispy and golden brown. This process may take about 8-10 minutes. Once cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer the crispy bacon to a plate lined with paper towels to drain excess grease. Set aside.
  2. In the same skillet with the rendered bacon fat, add the finely chopped white onion. Sauté the onion over medium heat until it becomes translucent and fragrant, stirring occasionally. This should take approximately 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add the minced garlic to the skillet with the sautéed onions. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, or until the garlic becomes aromatic and slightly golden.
  4. Carefully add the meticulously chopped green cabbage to the skillet, stirring to combine it with the sautéed onions and garlic.
  5. Season the cabbage mixture with paprika and cayenne pepper (if using), ensuring that the spices are evenly distributed throughout the skillet.
  6. Season the cabbage mixture with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, adjusting the seasoning according to your preferences.
  7. Continue to cook the cabbage mixture over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage becomes tender yet still retains a slight crunch. This process may take about 10-15 minutes.
  8. Once the cabbage is cooked to your desired texture, return the crispy bacon to the skillet. Stir the bacon into the cabbage mixture until it is evenly distributed.
  9. Taste the Southern Fried Cabbage and adjust the seasoning if necessary, adding more salt, pepper, or spices as desired.
  10. Once everything is well combined and seasoned to perfection, remove the skillet from the heat.
  11. Serve the Classic Southern Fried Cabbage hot as a flavorful side dish or a comforting main course, and enjoy the rich and hearty flavors of the South!

Conclusion: With its crispy bacon, tender cabbage, and aromatic spices, this Classic Southern Fried Cabbage is a true taste of Southern comfort that’s sure to satisfy your cravings. Whether enjoyed alongside your favorite meats or as a standalone dish, it’s a flavorful and wholesome option that celebrates the heart and soul of Southern cuisine. So, gather your ingredients and prepare to delight your taste buds with this timeless Southern favorite!