Shuga' Mommas

Shuga’ Mommas: Thai Beef Cabbage Cups

I was in the mood for a bit of Thai food the other night, and I ran across this recipe from Cooking Light, so decided to try it. I’m not usually that adventurous when it comes to making Asian food (anything made with fish sauce tends to throw this Midwest Missouri girl), but since I really wanted to try this recipe, I forged on.

It was a huge hit in our house. The recipe is simple, inexpensive, and the leftovers were great!



  • 2 1/2 teaspoons dark sesame oil, divided
  • 2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground sirloin
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 cup vertically sliced red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 8 large green cabbage leaves
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts


  1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add ginger and garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add beef; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble.
  2. Combine remaining 1/2 teaspoon oil, sugar, and next 4 ingredients (through pepper) in a large bowl. Add beef mixture, onion, and cilantro; toss well. Place 2 cabbage leaves on each of 4 plates; divide beef mixture evenly among leaves. Top each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons peanuts.

A couple of notes:

  • If you don’t like cabbage leaves, you could substitute rice. I made both, and it was wonderful.
  • I sauteed the onion before mixing it with the beef.




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