This ground beef and cabbage stir-fry is great for a quick meal. I usually eat it with rice, but you can omit the rice if you want a low-carb meal or you’re following Whole30, keto, or paleo.   

beef and cabbage stir fry

Cook the Veggies

I usually prefer to buy vegetables whole and cut or shred them myself. It’s generally cheaper and the veggies seem fresher to me that way. However, in the middle of a busy week, sometimes the convenience of pre-chopped vegetables can be the determining factor for whether you include vegetables in your dinner.

For this meal, I almost always use coleslaw mix with pre-shredded green and red cabbage and carrots. It’s a huge time saver and in this case it’s actually cheaper than buying a green cabbage, red cabbage, and bag of carrots. Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about not being able to use up the carrots and cabbage that you don’t need for the dish.

Make the Sauce & Cook the Ground Beef

Before you start cooking you want to make the sauce by whisking together the rice vinegar, soy sauce, red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper. Use tamari instead of soy sauce if you want to make it gluten-free. Use coconut aminos in place of soy sauce if you can’t have soy. 

Start by cooking the ground beef until it’s browned. Cooking it in a little sesame oil will give it some extra flavor that goes well with the rice vinegar and soy sauce mixture. Then add the aromatics: chopped garlic and ginger. I prefer to use fresh but you can use 1 tsp of garlic powder or ginger powder if you don’t have fresh.


beef and cabbage stir-fry

I love fresh ginger, but I find that when I buy it fresh I have a hard time using it all before it shrivels up and goes bad. However, during a recent grocery trip, I found single-serving sized frozen chunks of grated ginger in the frozen produce section. You can easily pop out one serving of ginger and not worry about the rest going bad. Just a suggestion in case you have the same issue when cooking with fresh ginger.   

Next, add the coleslaw mix and soy sauce mixture and cook until the veggies are softened. Garnish with some chopped scallions if you’d like and then you’re done!


More Quick and Easy Meals to Try

Yellow Curry with Vegetables & Potatoes

Gluten-Free Tuna Cakes

Ground Beef and Sweet Potato Skillet

Black Beans and Yellow Rice


beef and cabbage stir-fry
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5 from 2 votes

Ground Beef and Cabbage Stir-Fry Recipe

A quick and easy stir-fry meal with ground beef, shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, and scallions. Seasoned with sesame oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and red pepper flakes. Perfect for a busy weeknight dinner.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: asian-inspired
Keyword: stir-fry
Servings: 4
Author: Gabriella @ Nutritious Minimalist


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 12 ounce bag of coleslaw mix (shredded green cabbage, red cabbage, and carrots)
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce (use tamari if you can't have wheat; uses coconut aminos if you can't have soy)
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, more if you like it spicy
  • 1/2 tsp salt, more to taste
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper, more to taste
  • chopped scallions for garnish (optional)


  • In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, soy sauce, red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper. Set aside. 
  • Heat the sesame oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the ground beef and cook for 7-9 minutes until browned. 
  • Add the garlic and ginger, cook 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the coleslaw mix and soy sauce mixture to the skillet and cook 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently, until the cabbage is softened.
  • Garnish with chopped scallions.


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beef and cabbage stir fry