cabbage wrapped philly cheesesteak

Philly Cheesesteak Cabbage Wraps: All the Good Stuff, None of the Carbs

No one associates Philly cheesesteak with a low-carb diet, but why not start? In this recipe, we use cabbage leaves instead of bread to create Philly cheesesteak wraps with all of the delicious, savory flavors of the original. We’ve also included a vegan and dairy-free version, for those who want the taste of the cheesesteak without the cheese or the steak. Ordinarily, we’d add a gluten-free option as well, but the recipe is already free of gluten, low on carbs, and full of mouthwatering scrumptiousness. 

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The Philly cheesesteak sandwich originated in the 1930s by brothers Pat and Harry Olivieri. They worked at a hot dog stand, but in a stroke of genius, they sliced up a steak with onions and served them on a bread roll. This new dish became so popular, they opened a restaurant named after the popular sandwich. Then one of the staff members, a fellow called Tony Lorenzo, got bored making the same “Philly steak” and added cheese, creating the legendary American food we enjoy today. [1] 

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Of course, sometimes we prefer to opt for the lighter version of the sandwich, and replace the roll for a cabbage wrap. Cabbage is low in carbohydrates and calories, but rich in vitamin K, magnesium, folate, and antioxidants. The fiber and water content help maintain a healthy digestive system and regulate the immune system. [2] It’s often eaten in sauerkraut, kimchi, coleslaw, salads, soup, and now, in Philly cheesesteak wraps. 

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Philly Cheesesteak Cabbage Wraps 

Ingredients: 

  • 8 large green cabbage leaves 
  • ½ large onion, thinly sliced 
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil, divided 
  • 2 large bell peppers, thinly sliced 
  • 1 tsp oregano 
  • Kosher salt (to taste) 
  • Freshly ground black pepper (to taste) 
  • 1 lb. skirt steak, thinly sliced* 
  • 6 slices provolone** 

Directions: 

  1. Boil a large pot of water. Blanch cabbage by dipping leaves into the boiling water for 30 seconds and lifting them out with tongs. Place the leaves on a plate lined with a paper towel to dry. 
  1. Over medium heat, heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan. Add the sliced onion and bell peppers. Season to taste with oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir the pan until the onions and peppers soften before removing the veggies and placing them aside. 
  1. Pour the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan. Place the steak on the pan and season to taste with salt and pepper. Sear each side of the steak for about 2 minutes or until fully cooked. 
  1. Add onion and peppers back into the pan with the steak and mix them. Top the mixture with slices of provolone. Cover the pan until the cheese melts. 
  1. Place a scoop of the steak mixture into the center of a blanched cabbage leaf. Fold the leaf like a burrito to with an open end. 
  1. Serve the wraps immediately, and enjoy! 

For a vegan or dairy-free Philly Cheesesteak Cabbage Wraps: 

*Instead of skirt steak:  

  1. Heat a large cast-iron pan over medium-high heat. Add 1–2 tbsp avocado oil. 
  1. Add 32 oz de-stemmed oyster or shiitake mushrooms to the pan. Sear for two minutes on each side until they are browned, shrink to half their size, and the liquid dissolves in the pan.  
  1. Season with salt, pepper, and ½ tsp garlic powder. 
  1. Add to the above recipe in place of the meat, cooking the onion and peppers separately, then adding them to the mushrooms and topping the mixture with cheese**. 

**Instead of cheese: 

Either you can replace the provolone with slices of your favorite vegan cheese or make your own vegan cheese sauce.  

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Vegan Nacho Cheese 

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup of silken tofu 
  • 1 carrot, boiled 
  • 2 tsp lemon juice 
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar  
  • 1 tsp onion powder  
  • ½ tsp mustard powder 
  • 1 tsp garlic powder 
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast 
  • ½ tsp sea salt 
  • 1 tbsp vegan butter or olive oil 
  • 1 shallot, diced 
  • ½–1 jalapeño pepper (depending on the heat desired) 
  • Soy milk as needed to thin out the sauce 

Instructions 

  1. Add the silken tofu, carrot, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, garlic powder, onion powder, mustard powder, nutritional yeast, and sea salt into a blender and mix until smooth. 
  1. Place the vegan butter or olive oil in a medium-size pot over medium heat. 
  1. Add the diced shallots and jalapeño pepper and sauté for 3-4 minutes until fragrant and softened. 
  1. Combine cheese sauce mixture into the saucepan and stir to combine, until heated, roughly 2-4 minutes. Add soy sauce to thin the sauce if needed. 
  1. Use in the above recipe instead of the cheese by spreading the sauce over the steak/mushroom mixture. Then wrap the mixture into the cabbage leaves as directed. 

Try next: A Taste From Heaven: Crispy Zucchini Garlic Bites

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Julie Hambleton
Freelance Writer
Julie Hambleton has a BSc in Food and Nutrition from the Western University, Canada, is a former certified personal trainer and a competitive runner. Julie loves food, culture, and health, and enjoys sharing her knowledge to help others make positive changes and live healthier lives.
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