Friday, March 28, 2014

Recipe for Sriracha Beef Cabbage Bowl

This Sriracha Beef Cabbage Bowl is just the right amount of spicy for me, but you can use less heat.

Sriracha Beef Cabbage Bowl found on

(For Phase One Fridays I feature Phase One Recipes from the past that have been my personal favorites, and this Sriracha Beef Cabbage Bowl that was inspired by my good friend Jeanne is something I've made over and over.  Cut up your own cabbage or use a coleslaw mix without carrots if you're making this for Phase one.)

I love it when I get a good cooking idea from one of my favorite people, and my friend Jeanne was the brains behind this Sriracha Beef Cabbage Bowl recipe, which I've already cooked and devoured several times.  Jeanne has already made an appearance on the blog, because one of my all-time favorite salad recipes was created in honor of her wedding.  Then last summer she came for lunch to check out the new house, and I made two of my favorite recipes for her.  Jeanne had the brilliant idea to pile the meat from Quick Sriracha Beef Lettuce Wraps on top of Spicy Mexican Slaw, and this recipe was born.  The creamy coolness of the cabbage slaw is the perfect partner to the spicy Sriracha beef in this recipe; hope you enjoy!

Of course, you know how I am.  I did change both components of this new recipe just a little from the originals.  One of the biggest changes was to use a package of coleslaw mix for the cabbage, which makes the recipe so quick and easy that I hope you'll make it often!  I also cut down on the spiciness in the cabbage part just a bit, so it's a cooling element for the spicy meat.  (If you're making this for kids, you might want to cut down the spice even more.)  This recipe is deliciously South Beach Diet friendly, and is also Low Carb, and Can be Paleo if you make your own mayo.

I rarely use this type of product, but it was perfect to make this recipe super quick to make.  Of course, you can cut up your own cabbage if you prefer.  When Jeanne came, I cut up the cabbage with the 3mm blade of my mandoline, which also made it easy.  (And in case anyone is wondering, Dole has no idea that I'm showing their coleslaw mix on my blog!)

You want the cabbage bowl part all ready when the meat is cooked.  I prepped 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced sugar snap peas and sliced up half of a red bell pepper.

Whisk together the mayo, fresh squeezed lime juice, Green Tabasco Sauce, and Vege-Sal (or salt) to make the dressing.

Combine the coleslaw mix, sliced sugar snap peas, and bell pepper strips in a bowl so it's ready to toss with the dressing when the meat is cooked.  (Save a little bit of the sliced sugar snap peas and pepper strips to garnish.)

Heat a tiny amount of grapeseed oil (or any neutral-flavored high-heat oil) and saute the beef until it's well-browned.

While the beef cooks, zest the lime, squeeze the lime juice, and mix the Sriracha, Fish Sauce, and water so they're ready to season the meat as soon as it's done.

Also chop a bunch of cilantro and slice some green onions.

When the beef is done, add the Sriracha mixture and stir to combine with the meat, cooking until the liquid has mostly evaporated from the pan.

Then turn off the stove and stir in the lime zest, lime juice, sliced green onions, and chopped cilantro.

Add the dressing to the cabbage mixture and toss to combine.

To make the cabbage bowls, put 1/4 of the slaw mixture into a bowl.

Top with 1/4 of the beef mixture and garnish with some of the veggies you saved.  Devour immediately.

Sriracha Beef Cabbage Bowl
(Makes 4 servings; recipe idea from Kalyn's long-time friend Jeanne, with refinements by Kalyn.)

Cabbage Bowl Ingredients:
1 pkg. (14 oz.) fresh coleslaw mix, or use thinly sliced fresh cabbage
1 1/2 cup thinly sliced sugar snap peas
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into short thin strips

Dressing Ingredients:
5 T mayo (can also use light mayo, but I used regular)
3 T fresh-squeezed lime juice (I used my fresh-frozen lime juice)
1 tsp. Green Tabasco Sauce
small amount of Vege-Sal (to taste, or use regular salt if you don't have Vege-Sal.)

Sriracha Beef Ingredients:
1 lb. ground beef (use lean beef with less than 10% fat for South Beach Diet)
2 tsp. grapeseed oil (or use any neutral-flavored, high-heat oil)
1 T fish sauce (I always use Three Crabs Fish Sauce)
2 T Sriracha Sauce (replace some of this with more water if you want to cut down the spiciness)
1 T water
grated zest (grated lime skin) from 1 lime
1 1/2 T fresh squeezed lime juice (Zest the lime first, then squeeze the juice.)
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
1 cup chopped cilantro (or less if you're not a big cilantro fan)

If you're not using the coleslaw mix, use a mandoline or sharp knife to make 14 ounces thinly sliced green and red cabbage.  (I would skip the carrots if you don't use coleslaw mix.) Thinly slice sugar snap peas on the diagonal.  Cut the red bell pepper in half, remove seeds from the half you're using, cut that half lengthwise into two pieces, and then thinly slice crosswise to make short, thin strips.  (You can use all the red pepper if you prefer.)  Whisk together the mayo, lime juice, Green Tabasco Sauce, and Vege-Sal to make the dressing.  Put the cabbage mixture into a bowl so it's ready to toss with the dressing as soon as the beef is ready, saving a little bit of the sugar snap peas and peppers for garnish.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan, add the beef, and cook over medium-high heat until all the meat is nicely browned, breaking apart with a turner as it cooks.  While the beef is cooking, zest the lime skin and then squeeze the lime juice.  (You might need to squeeze another lime or use some fresh-frozen lime juice to get enough juice if your lime is small.)  Mix together the fish sauce, Sriracha Sauce, and water, replacing some of the Sriracha with an equal amount of water if you're making it less spicy.)  

When the beef is nicely browned, add the Sriracha mixture and cook while stirring until the liquid has mostly evaporated.  Turn off the stove and stir in the lime zest, lime juice, sliced green onion, and chopped cilantro.  Toss the cabbage mixture with the dressing.

To assemble the cabbage bowls, put 1/4 of the cabbage mixture into each bowl, top with 1/4 of the beef mixture, and garnish with some sliced sugar snap peas and red pepper strips.  Enjoy!

The beef mixture will keep in the fridge for a day or so, although it's best freshly made.  If you are going to be having leftovers, I would only add dressing to the amount of cabbage you'll use at that meal and refrigerate the leftover meat, leftover cabbage, and dressing separately.  Then re-heat the meat and combine the cabbage and dressing when you eat the leftovers.

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South Beach Suggestions:
This is a perfect low-glycemic recipe for the South Beach Diet, but most commercial coleslaw mix has carrots which aren't permitted for Phase One.  The amount of carrots is very small, so I wouldn't stress over it too much, but if you can find a coleslaw mix with no carrots (or cut your own cabbage) that would be best for Phase One.  Mayo is a limited food, but even if you use full-fat mayo, this recipe is within the allowed amounts.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.

More Spicy Deliciousness with Sriracha:
(Recipes from other blogs not always South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)

Grilled Salmon with Maple-Sriracha-Lime Glaze ~ Kalyn's Kitchen

Sriracha Roast Chicken with Sriracha Gravy ~ Kalyn's Kitchen

Slow Cooker Recipe for Sriracha-Pineapple Barbecued Chicken ~ Kalyn's Kitchen

Miso-Sriracha Glazed Salmon ~ The Perfect Pantry

Spicy Vegan Peanut Butter Tofu with Sriracha ~ Kalyn's Kitchen

(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)

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Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and this blog earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!

More to Chew On:


  1. WOW! This is gorgeous! And I'm sure, incredibly delicious!

  2. Thanks Valentina! So glad you like it.

  3. Awesome flavor combo Kalyn! I have to make this :)

  4. Sriracha and lime, one of nature's perfect combinations! I love using cole slaw mix from the grocery store; it's a great convenience food.

  5. Alyssa, so glad you like it. I can tell this one will become a regular at my house!

    Lydia, agreed. I think the coleslaw mix is perfect for this!

  6. Kalyn, I have been making recipes from your site for too long to have not commented before... Thank you for so many great meals!! When I saw this I felt compelled to make it immediately. It was fantastic. Anything that involves sriracha makes me happy :)

  7. Elizabeth, how fun that you made it right away. And thanks for letting me know that you're enjoying the recipes. That always makes my day!

  8. Kalyn, this looks delicious. However, I had to laugh when you said to use less cilantro if you are not a fan. If you were one of the unfortunate people like me who taste soap when they eat cilantro, you'd know that even a little bit of cilantro is enough to make a whole dish taste nasty. :-) I'm afraid I'll have to just leave it out entirely.

  9. KatesMom99, I know a few other people like that. I'm a big cilantro fan, but this will definitely still be great without it.

  10. This looks real good, will have to try with bison meat. I have a question about the picture versus the ingredients list. The picture clearly shows snow peas cut up on top of the salad, but they are not listed in the ingredients. Please advise why. tysm

  11. They are sugar snap peas and they are listed in the ingredients and mentioned in the instructions too.

  12. How could this not be a hit? I can't wait to try it... Just one more time that you have taken a bunch of ingredients that I love and combined them in a new way that I'd never have thought of. I definitely find the coleslaw mix a time saver. Wonder if ground turkey would work.
    Thanks for this, and all the others!

  13. Doren, thanks for that nice feedback. and I do think this would be great with turkey!

  14. We made it with ground chicken and didn't use the fish sauce. It was fantastic! Will definitely make it again. Thanks for helping us add great variety to our healthy meals. :)

  15. Lynne, so glad you enjoyed it. And I love hearing how people adapt the recipes; that's what cooking is all about!

  16. I made this for dinner tonight and it was a great light late summer meal. It was a break from more traditional salads and I loved all the crunch. I think it will hold up well as leftovers or for a work lunch. I look forward to trying a few variations. Asian flavored slaw + ginger chicken? Slaw with italian vinaigrette and some sautéed shrimps with sun-dried tomatoes? This is going to lead to a lot of great dinners/lunches.

  17. Shelby, so glad you enjoyed it! And I've already created a Mexican-flavored version that will be appearing on the blog soon!

  18. Made this last night! Yummy! I subbed Tapatio for the green tabasco, & worcestershire for the fish sauce (it's what I had on hand), and it was delicious! I'm excited for the leftovers tonight!

  19. You're very smart on those substitutions! Glad you enjoyed it.

  20. Delicious! I put a little bit of brown rice at the bottom of the bowls before adding the cabbage. Will definitely make this again. Thank you!!!

  21. Have tried lots of your recipes - they're all delicious, but my hubby raved about this one. Hope you don't mind, but I used what was on hand - my tweaks were thinly sliced top sirloin instead of the ground beef, organic tamari for the fish sauce, sliced radishes and avocado for the snow peas and red pepper (well, they were the same color!). It turned out just wonderful - thank you for the inspiration.

  22. Hollie, so glad you're enjoying the recipes. And I love hearing how people adapt them to their own taste, or what's on hand. No worries about that ever!

  23. This sounds great but I'm not a mayo fan. Any other suggestions?

  24. I know some people substitute Greek Yogurt for Mayo in coleslaw, but I haven't tried it with this recipe. I think it might work, but it might be a bit more watery.

  25. This recipe is DELICIOUS- and I love the idea of making a lot of different kinds of bowls like this one. We found a mix at two of our regular grocery chains called angel hair cole slaw- it's just finely shredded green cabbage. Worked perfectly for this recipe, because there's no carrots. For red cabbage lovers though, you'd have to add it in.

  26. Clare, so glad you liked it, and I am intrigued by the angel hair cabbage!

  27. This is the first recipe of yours I have made and we loved it! Thanks for blogging!

  28. Made this 2 days ago. Really loved it!! Did save the leftovers the way you suggested (separated) and plan to have them today for lunch! Thanks! I'm going to pull this into my own personal recipe database (it's not a blog, just a database for my own use, but it does have a place for crediting the recipe)

  29. Carol, so glad you enjoyed it so much!

  30. We absolutely love this recipe! I've made it probably 4 times in the last two months. Sometimes I saute the snow peas and red pepper just a little and add to the ground beef. This is so quick and easy to make.

  31. Raeanne, so glad you have been enjoying it!

  32. I also make this frequently and it's one of my (many) favorites from your postings. Thank you!

  33. My kind of recipe - get in, get it made and enjoy. Perfect! Thanks

  34. This was delicious! It's a good thing you added the comment that it was Phase 1 - hard to believe with the mayonnaise. When I'm South Beachin, I tend to find something I like, like your Sauerkraut Soup, and just eat it all the time. This will be my summer sauerkraut soup, along with the fish version! Yum!

  35. Hi Katy, so glad you enjoyed it. I'm probably pushing the limit a little on the mayo, that's one of my weaknesses. South Beach allows up to 2 tablespoons of low-fat mayo but personally I'd rather have less and have real mayo.

  36. I rarely comment on recipes, but had to on this one! The flavors were great on this - honestly way better than I expected! I left out the red pepper as it isn't my thing, and I added a couple slices of avocado on top. Absolutely love it though, and it's going in my regular rotation for sure!

  37. Jen, so glad you liked it. Love the sound of avocado with this.

  38. I make this with Napa Cabbage, thinly, very thinly, sliced radish, and paring knife carrots. Everything else the same. Big difference from the bagged slaw.


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