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This is the easiest and most convenient side recipe ever!  Besides the fact that it is tasty-tasty!  You can enjoy it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  This makes use of 1 head of cabbage and leftover ham.  This easy crock-pot recipe could happily make your regular rotation when you try it.

It is cooked slowly in chicken stock or broth for a very flavorful result.  I use my homemade chicken stock, which I always have in the fridge or freezer.  I will include it in the Helpful Hints for you to see how easy it is to make in your crock-pot or slow-cooker.

Although such a simple recipe it is packed with flavor as the cabbage simply absorbs all those lovely umami flavors in the ham, etc.  I could not believe how tasty it was.  I must admit I was skeptical at first.  

Cabbage sides go far and are very economical.  Vegetables are a must on our low-carb and/or keto diets, and cabbage is one of those vegetables you can put in the vegetable drawer of your refrigerator and forget about it for weeks, and it will still be fine to use in a recipe like this.

It is easy to add other vegetables to this side dish.  I would think of adding chopped onions and peppers to add more nutrition and color to this dish.

Another vegetable you could add is grated carrots or sliced carrots.  Believe it or not the glycemic load of carrots is very low.  It is much more important than the glycemic index.  So, unless you plan on eating a boat load of carrots, carrots should have a place in a low-carb diet. In my opinion, carrots got a bad rap by the late Dr. Atkins, and undeservedly so.  Carrots are so good for our eye health.

This crock-pot or slow-cooker method for cooking cabbage and ham far outweighs doing it on the stove-top, as you just throw everything in the crock-pot, set to low, and walk away.

If you are sodium sensitive, you can leave out the salt and add a little no-salt seasoning instead.  The ham is already high in sodium, so you don't want to add any more salt. Paprika and black pepper are good spices to add, but in moderation.

When thinking about carbohydrates coming from vegetables such as cabbage, do not be spooked.  These are good carbohydrates, and I believe some good carbohydrates are necessary on a low-carb diet.  

After many years of low-carbing - since 1999 actually - I have discovered that I don't lose weight on Keto any better than I do on Low-Carb.  In fact long term Keto and I have problems with my bladder and peeing; not fun.  I think some people do fantastic on Keto, but my preference is moderate low-carbing in my older age.  It also allows for short vacations from the diet for one meal at a time - depending on the occasion.  Also, I think Low-carb versus Keto is so much more sustainable and enjoyable - again, in my own opinion.  Some people may have to do Keto and that is understandable, but since I have a choice, I choose moderate low-carbing.  Besides my goal is not to be super skinny, especially now going into my old age.  I am 66 years old.  I don't feel it, but that is the reality. I don't want to lose any more muscle or even fat if I can help it.  It is good to have a buffer, but since I am quite low enough (not skinny though) in weight for this age, I don't want to use up that buffer!  I never thought I would have this "problem" as it has always been my goal to be skinnier.  I was always 5 to 10 lbs more than I wanted to be from age 40 onward, and then I lost weight during an illness and now it is just staying off.  Be careful folks!  It happens!

If you like, you can add a couple of bay leaves to this dish.  I always have bay leaves on hand and typically rarely use them.  Here is a place you can use them, happily.  Just remember to remove them before serving this dish!


1 medium head cabbage

3 cups chopped ham, OR

  use spicy sausage

1 cup chicken broth (250 mL)

1/4 cup butter (60 mL)

1/2 tsp salt (2 mL)

1/4 tsp black pepper (1 mL) 


Shred cabbage and place in crock-pot along with ham, chicken broth, butter, salt and black pepper.  Set crock-pot to low and cook 4 to 5 hours.  Pour off excess liquid, give it a stir and serve.

Helpful Hints: *To make homemade chicken stock, place rotisserie chicken carcass in slow-cooker.  Add water to cover.  Add 1 tsp (5 mL) salt, 1 tsp parsley (1 mL), 1/2  tsp (2 mL) thyme (optional) and 1/tsp (2 mL) black pepper.  Place slow-cooker on low and cook overnight.  Strain and either refrigerate or freeze the chicken stock in an airtight container.  This chicken stock makes a wonderful base for soups and gravies.

Yield:  8 servings

1 serving

167.0 calories

10.7 g protein

10.8 g fat

2.7 g fiber

5.6 g net carbs


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