When it comes to sauerkraut there are two types of people: those that love it and those that can’t stand the
sight smell of it. If you fall into the former category and love sauerkraut on brats, in reuben casserole, or just a pinch by itself while the rest of the food is cooking, you’ll love this homemade sauerkraut recipe!
How to Make Homemade Sauerkraut
Making homemade sauerkraut is much easier than it seems. First you’ll chop up some cabbage, then extract the natural juices, then let it ferment in a cool, dark place for a couple of weeks. One head of cabbage will suffice for your first batch.
(1) Head of Cabbage (or more depending on how much you’re wanting to make)
Salt – 1.5 tsp. per 1 lb. of cabbage
*pink Himalayan or pickling salt works best as regular table salt will give it a strong salty flavor
4-6 cloves of garlic (whole, crushed)
1 tsp. mustard seed per 3 lbs. of cabbage
1 tsp. caraway seed per 3 lbs. of cabbage
1 tsp. black peppercorns per 3 lbs. of cabbage (optional)
1 tbsp. white vinegar (optional)
1. Remove the outside layer (or two) of the cabbage.
2. Cut cabbage in half and then cut out the core.
3. Take your knife or mandolin and slice the cabbage into thin slices.
4. Add cabbage to a very large bowl and sprinkle with salt.
5. Gently massage/knead cabbage for a minute or two.
6. Set aside for 15 minutes and then repeat previous step.
7. Set aside for 15 more minutes and repeat the previous step one last time. All of this juice is naturally found in cabbage, and is extracted by the salt.
8. Add your garlic cloves, mustard seed, caraway seed, black peppercorns, and, if desired, vinegar.
9. Put into air-tight container and push cabbage down, attempting to submerge all of the cabbage into the brine.
10. Close lid and store in cool dry dark place. (cellars or mechanical rooms work well).
11. Let ferment for 2-3 weeks. The longer it ferments the more “German” it becomes. My favorite!
IMPORTANT: Burp (open the container) for a few seconds every couple of days to release any build up of gas. During the fermentation process, make sure all cabbage stays submerged in the liquid.
Recipes using Sauerkraut:
I hope you love your homemade sauerkraut. Play around with different seasonings if you’d like it spicy, or more sweet, or extra peppery. The possibilities are endless.