Chinese pork and cabbage rolls

Crunchy water chestnuts are combined with minced (ground) pork, soy sauce, fresh ginger and Chinese five–spice to make a Chinese–style filling for fresh cabbage leaves. Serve with steamed white rice and a simple salad for a quick and easy family meal.

Chinese pork and cabbage rolls


  • 500 g (1 lb) lean minced (ground) pork
  • ¾ cup (140 g) finely chopped canned water chestnuts
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese five–spice
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 spring onions (scallions), finely chopped, plus extra, to garnish
  • 2 tablespoons salt–reduced soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 8 large green cabbage leaves
  • 2 cups (500 ml) salt–reduced chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons cornflour (cornstarch)
  • 1 teaspoon sweet chilli sauce, or to taste


  1. Put the pork in a bowl with the water chestnuts, Chinese five–spice, ginger, spring onions, soy sauce, garlic and egg.
  2. Mix thoroughly with your hands until the ingredients are well combined, then divide into 8 equal portions.
  3. Cut the tough stalk from the base of each cabbage leaf with a sharp knife.
  4. Place a portion of the pork mixture in the centre of each cabbage leaf, then wrap the leaf around the filling to enclose it.
  5. Pour the stock into a large saucepan and bring to a simmer.
  6. Set a steamer over the pan and arrange the cabbage rolls, join side down, in an even layer.
  7. Steam the cabbage rolls for 15 minutes, or until the cabbage is tender and the rolls are firm when pressed.
  8. Remove to a plate and keep warm.
  9. Add the cornflour and 2 tablespoons water to the stock and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened.
  10. Stir in the chilli sauce until well combined.
  11. Divide the cabbage rolls among serving bowls and spoon over some of the broth.
  12. Garnish with the extra spring onion and serve immediately with steamed rice.

Serves 4 (makes 8 rolls)
Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes


Low Fat No Fat Asian Cooking

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