Bratwurst and Sauerkraut

Juicy bratwurst simmering in tangy sauerkraut, sweet apples, onions, and broth is an easy and flavorful way to enjoy this German sausage.

The post Bratwurst and Sauerkraut appeared first on Budget Bytes.

I don’t know if I’ve told you yet, but I’m obsessed with bratwurst. Every time I eat it, it doesn’t matter how often I eat it, I swear it’s the best thing I’ve ever tasted. I also love sauerkraut. So I don’t know why it took me so long to make Bratwurst and Sauerkraut together. It’s a classic! But now that I have, I’m probably going to be making it constantly. It’s really easy, and the leftovers are so good, so it’s an instant winner in my book.

Bratwurst and Sauerkraut on two plates, one with buns and one with mashed potatoes

What is Bratwurst?

Bratwurst is a fresh, German-style sausage made with pork, and sometimes veal or beef. It’s incredibly juicy and flavorful, and tastes great whether cooked over an open grill, roasted in the oven, or cooked in a skillet.

In Germany, you’ll find several different types of bratwurst depending on the region, but in the U.S. you’ll usually either find regular bratwurst or beer bratwurst (or “beer brats” for short). Both types will work fine in this recipe.

You’ll find bratwurst in the fresh meat department of your grocery store, near Italian sausage. Johnsonville brats are pretty common in most major grocery stores, but I also enjoy ALDI’s store brand bratwurst.

What Kind of Sauerkraut Should I Use?

I used a German-style sauerkraut purchased in a jar (ALDI’s Deutsche Küche brand), but you could use fresh refrigerated sauerkraut as well. Flavored sauerkraut, like garlic or jalapeño, would also be really awesome in this dish. The only type of sauerkraut that I would suggest avoiding is red cabbage sauerkraut only because the color would likely bleed throughout and turn everything kind of blue-ish.

How to Serve Bratwurst and Sauerkraut

There are two main ways that I would serve bratwurst in sauerkraut. First, in toasted buns with a delicious grainy mustard, and maybe some German Potato Salad on the side. Second, on a plate with the sauerkraut as a bed and a side of either mashed potatoes or potato salad. And while you’re at it, grab a cold German Beer to go with the meal! :)

Bratwurst and sauerkraut in a skillet with beer, potatoes, and mustard on the sides
Bratwurst and sauerkraut in a skillet with beer, potatoes, and mustard on the sides

Bratwurst and Sauerkraut

Juicy bratwurst simmering in tangy sauerkraut, sweet apples, onions, and broth is an easy and flavorful way to enjoy this German sausage.
Total Cost $6.26 recipe / $1.25 serving
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 5
Calories 440kcal
Author Beth – Budget Bytes

Ingredients

  • 1 yellow onion $0.28
  • 1 apple* $0.41
  • 2 cloves garlic $0.16
  • 1 Tbsp cooking oil $0.04
  • 19 oz. bratwurst (5 links) $3.49
  • 24 oz. sauerkraut $1.69
  • 1/4 tsp caraway seeds (optional) $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp paprika $0.02
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked pepper $0.02
  • 1 cup chicken broth $0.13

Instructions

  • Slice the onion and the apple, and mince the garlic.
  • Add the cooking oil to a large deep skillet or wide pot. Heat over medium. When the pan and oil are hot, add the bratwurst. Cook on each side until well browned (it does not need to be cooked through at this point). Remove the browned bratwurst to a clean plate.
  • Add the sliced onions, apples, and garlic to the pan and sauté for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are soft.
  • Drain the sauerkraut and add it to the skillet, along with the caraway seeds, paprika, pepper, and chicken broth. Stir to combine with the apples and onions. Nestle the browned bratwurst down into the sauerkraut.
  • Place a lid on the pan and allow the broth to come up to a simmer. Lower the heat slightly and continue to simmer the bratwurst in the sauerkraut and broth for 20 minutes, or until the bratwurst is cooked through. Serve hot.

Notes

*Use a sweet variety of apples to compliment the sour sauerkraut. I used a Gala apple.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 440kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 35g | Sodium: 1984mg | Fiber: 5g
Bratwurst and sauerkraut on a plate with mashed potatoes and mustard

How to Make Bratwurst and Sauerkraut – Step by Step Photos

Sliced onion and apple on a cutting board

Slice one yellow onion and one apple, and mince two cloves of garlic. Use a sweet variety apple, like Gala or Fuji.

Browned bratwurst in a skillet

Add a tablespoon of cooking oil to a deep skillet or wide pot and heat over medium. Once hot, add five links of bratwurst (about 19oz.) and cook on both sides until well browned. The bratwurst does not need to be cooked through at this point. Remove the sausage to a clean plate.

onions and apples added to the skillet

Add the onions, apples, and garlic to the skillet.

sautéed onion, apple, and garlic in the skillet

Sauté the onions, apples, and garlic over medium for about five minutes, or until the onions are soft.

sauerkraut, spices, and broth added to the skillet

Drain the sauerkraut and add it to the skillet along with ¼ tsp caraway seeds, ¼ tsp paprika, ¼ tsp pepper, and 1 cup chicken broth. Stir to combine and dissolve any browned bits off the bottom of the skillet.

bratwurst added back to the skillet

Add the Bratwurst back to the skillet and nestle it down into the sauerkraut. Place a lid on the skillet and allow the broth to come to a simmer. Once simmering, lower the heat slightly and continue to simmer the bratwurst for about 20 minutes, or until it is cooked through.

bratwurst and sauerkraut on plates with beer on the sides

Serve hot with a bun or without, with some grainy mustard and a cold beer!

The post Bratwurst and Sauerkraut appeared first on Budget Bytes.

Garlic & Herb Sweet Potato Nourish Bowl (30 Minutes!)

Lately, I can’t get enough of romaine lettuce, which is weird considering a few months ago it was my least favorite green (next to iceberg). However, with the creation of our Vegan Caesar Salad with BBQ Sweet Potato Croutons, my love affair began, and …

Garlic & Herb Sweet Potato Nourish Bowl (30 Minutes!)

Lately, I can’t get enough of romaine lettuce, which is weird considering a few months ago it was my least favorite green (next to iceberg). However, with the creation of our Vegan Caesar Salad with BBQ Sweet Potato Croutons, my love affair began, and it’s been going strong for months.

This is an iteration of that recipe, but with more decidedly Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean influences thanks to the addition of za’atar spice blend, hummus, and tahini (follow links for recipes and to learn about the origins of these ingredients).

Garlic & Herb Sweet Potato Nourish Bowl (30 Minutes!) from Minimalist Baker →

Vibrant Collard Green Wraps with Green Curry Tahini Sauce

This vibrant, colorful collard green wrap comes together in just 20 minutes and makes the perfect portable snack or meal. It’s great for making ahead for meal prep and keeps in the fridge for several days.
The star of the show is the tangy-cream…

Vibrant Collard Green Wraps with Green Curry Tahini Sauce

This vibrant, colorful collard green wrap comes together in just 20 minutes and makes the perfect portable snack or meal. It’s great for making ahead for meal prep and keeps in the fridge for several days.

The star of the show is the tangy-creamy green curry tahini sauce made with our go-to Green Curry Paste. This wrap is what plant-based dreams are made of!

It’s no secret that around here we’re big fans of cuisines and flavors from around the world (including the Middle East, Germany, and Thailand).

Vibrant Collard Green Wraps with Green Curry Tahini Sauce from Minimalist Baker →

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Hungarian stuffed cabbage rolls are hearty comfort food at its best! Cabbage leaves are stuffed with ground pork, onions, garlic, egg, rice, and spices, and braised in a tomato sauce. Continue reading “Stuffed Cabbage Rolls” »

Hungarian stuffed cabbage rolls are hearty comfort food at its best! Cabbage leaves are stuffed with ground pork, onions, garlic, egg, rice, and spices, and braised in a tomato sauce.

Continue reading "Stuffed Cabbage Rolls" »

How to Make Sauerkraut

Homemade sauerkraut is easier than you think! You’ll get probiotic benefits and a kitchen DIY project. Here’s how to make sauerkraut: a simplified guide. Oh, hi! Welcome to Fermentation 101. We’re your hosts, Sonja and Alex. And we can’t wait for you to experience the magic of fermentation through sauerkraut! After taking you through our simplified guide to sourdough bread, we wondered: what other DIY projects can we break down? Where we landed was homemade sauerkraut. It’s easy to make, simple to ferment, and a seriously healthy probiotic-filled addition to any meal. The best part: Alex and I have researched everything so that you don’t have to. Ready to get started? What is sauerkraut? OK, so what is sauerkraut? In a nutshell: thinly sliced, fermented raw cabbage. Sauerkraut is made by a process called lacto-fermentation. Lacto-fermentation is a process that also makes dill pickles and kimchi: and all you need is salt, vegetables, and water. How does it all work? Without getting too technical: lactic bacteria is present in the vegetables. And during fermentation, it goes to work turning sugars into lactic acid. Lactic acid is a natural preservative that inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria. Along with preserving, the […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, Vegetarian Recipes

Homemade sauerkraut is easier than you think! You’ll get probiotic benefits and a kitchen DIY project. Here’s how to make sauerkraut: a simplified guide.

How to make sauerkraut

Oh, hi! Welcome to Fermentation 101. We’re your hosts, Sonja and Alex. And we can’t wait for you to experience the magic of fermentation through sauerkraut! After taking you through our simplified guide to sourdough bread, we wondered: what other DIY projects can we break down? Where we landed was homemade sauerkraut. It’s easy to make, simple to ferment, and a seriously healthy probiotic-filled addition to any meal. The best part: Alex and I have researched everything so that you don’t have to. Ready to get started?

How to make sauerkraut

What is sauerkraut?

OK, so what is sauerkraut? In a nutshell: thinly sliced, fermented raw cabbage. Sauerkraut is made by a process called lacto-fermentation. Lacto-fermentation is a process that also makes dill pickles and kimchi: and all you need is salt, vegetables, and water.

How does it all work? Without getting too technical: lactic bacteria is present in the vegetables. And during fermentation, it goes to work turning sugars into lactic acid. Lactic acid is a natural preservative that inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria. Along with preserving, the fermentation process also increases vitamin levels and improves digestibility of whatever is being fermented.

Bowl of shredded cabbage
Massage the shredded cabbage to release the liquid

Is sauerkraut good for you?

In a word: Yes! Fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha have become the health craze of the moment. What’s all the fuss about? Fermented foods can give your body a dose of healthy probiotics, which are live microorganisms crucial to healthy digestion, says Dr. David S. Ludwig, a professor of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health. So eating sauerkraut can contribute to better gut health!

An interesting note: canned sauerkraut does not contain probiotics, because they’re killed in the canning process. So making this homemade sauerkraut recipe guarantees you’ll get those live cultures right into your jar! (If you’re worried about this when buying store bought, make sure to get refrigerated sauerkraut, not canned.)

Helix weight and fermentation lid
A helix weight is used to hold down the cabbage so it stays submerged and doesn’t grow mold.
The fermentation lid lets gases escape and doesn’t let bacteria in.

Tools for making homemade sauerkraut

OK, let’s get to how to make sauerkraut! Alex has combed through all the research to find exactly what you’ll need for your home fermentation experiments. Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. 1 quart wide mouth mason jar: A 1 quart jar holds enough for a 3 pound head of cabbage.
  2. Fermentation lid and helix weight: A helix weight is used to hold down the cabbage so that it stays submerged during fermentation. The fermentation lids have airlocks that let gases created during fermentation to escape but doesn’t allow bacteria in. As an alternative, you could use a fermentation stone to weigh down the cabbage; then place a cheesecloth on the mouth of the jar and secure it with a rubber band. But these lids and weights are so slick, we recommend using them if you’re serious about fermentation.
  3. Cocktail muddler or wooden spoon: This is used to pack the sauerkraut into the jar.

That’s it! For a kitchen DIY project, it’s a pretty low ask. Ready for the good part? Keep reading.

How to make sauerkraut
Pack in the cabbage with a cocktail muddler or wooden spoon

Tips for how to make sauerkraut

Before you get to the recipe below: let’s talk about a few tips! Here are a few things we learned along the way about how to make sauerkraut:

  • Cut the cabbage into shreds using our easy method. Have you had these problems with cabbage? Uneven pieces, the knife slipping, cabbage all over the counter? We did, until we learned this: how to cut cabbage…the right way!.
  • Use a room temperature cabbage. This might sound silly, but you’ll need to squeeze the shredded cabbage with your hands for about 10 minutes. And there’s nothing worse than putting your hands into freezing cold cabbage! The easiest way to do this is to have it at room temperature.
  • Squeeze a LOT. The squeezing part takes quite a long time, and your hands may get tired. Take a break if you need to! You’ll need to get the cabbage to the point where it is the texture of sauerkraut: the fermentation doesn’t do that. So squeeze away! You’ll be amazed by how 3 pounds of cabbage will reduce down into only a few cups.
  • Use fermentation lids and weights (shown above.) The weights keep the sauerkraut submerged in the jar so it doesn’t mold: they’re seriously slick and our new favorite trick. Throw the jar in a dark, room temperature place and let the fermenting begin.
  • Taste starting on Day 6. Every environment is different, so you’ll want to taste your sauerkraut until you find a flavor you enjoy. This can be between 6 and 12 days; we find it is usually good by Day 7.

Ways to eat sauerkraut

There are so many ways to eat sauerkraut: you can literally just toss it in a salad or grain bowl to liven it up! Here are a few of our favorite ways to eat sauerkraut:

  1. In a sandwich: In a Vegetarian Reuben Sandwich. Or just melt Swiss cheese onto bread with sauerkraut. Put it over the top with Russian dressing (oh wait, that’s a Reuben!).
  2. On a grain bowl: Try it on any makeshift main dish salad or grain bowl. A few we love: Roasted Vegetable Grain Bowl, Broccoli & Yellow Rice Bowl, Healthy Rice Bowl or Vegan Buddha Bowl.
  3. Top a cheese spread: Try this: toasted bread, slather on Paprika Goat Cheese Spread, top with sauerkraut. Mind blown!
  4. Stir it into pasta: Instead of pesto, why not swirl sauerkraut into this Havarti Mac and Cheese?
  5. Add it to a green salad: Chop some lettuce leaves, add some sauerkraut, then drizzle with olive oil, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, salt and black pepper.
  6. In potato salad or egg salad: Want to add a zing to potato or egg salad? Stir some into our Best No Mayo Potato Salad, Favorite Potato Salad, Dill Potato Salad, or French Potato Salad. Or this Egg Salad Sandwich.
  7. Throw it on avocado toast. Like our Avocado Toast with Turmeric Egg.
  8. In a quesadilla. This Superfood Veggie Quesadilla or Brie & Mushroom Quesadilla would be great with an added tang.
  9. On scrambled eggs. Toss a little over these Best Scrambled Eggs for a morning pick me up.
  10. On a veggie burger. It’s a fantastic tangy burger topping! Try it on this Best Veggie Burger, Chickpea Burger or Vegan Black Bean Burger.

This sauerkraut recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten-free, vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free.

Print
How to make sauerkraut

How to Make Sauerkraut


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 1 quart

Description

Homemade sauerkraut is easier than you think! You’ll get probiotic benefits and a kitchen DIY project. Here’s how to make sauerkraut: a simplified guide.


Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 1 medium-small head green cabbage (about 3 pounds), at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt (or 1 teaspoon per pound)
  • 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds

Tools


Instructions

  1. Shred the cabbage. Place it in a large bowl and mix in the salt.
  2. Get your hands ready! Here’s the fun part: Massage the cabbage with your hands for 8 to 10 minutes until cabbage is limp and large amount of liquid is released (the liquid will be used in the jar during fermenting). The fermenting doesn’t change the texture of the cabbage, so you’ll need to massage until it’s the texture of sauerkraut. Take a break if your hands tire out! You’ll be amazed at how a huge bowl of cabbage turns into just a few cups of sauerkraut.
  3. Stir in the caraway seeds. Then place the seasoned cabbage into a 1-quart mason jar, tamping down the cabbage to stuff it in (we use our cocktail muddler for tamping, but you can also use a wooden spoon). Leave the liquid in the bowl for now.
  4. Pour the liquid released from cabbage into the jar. Top it with the helix weight and the fermentation lid: this holds down the cabbage during fermentation to make sure it stays submerged. Alternatively, you can weigh down the cabbage with a fermentation stone and use a rubber band to secure cheesecloth over the lid to allow airflow.
  5. Place the jar in a dark, room temperature space for 6 to 12 days. Start tasting the sauerkraut on Day 6. Once you achieve a “sour” taste that you enjoy, move the jar to the refrigerator, where it keeps for several months. (We find ours is good around Day 7.) Note: If you notice mold on top of the sauerkraut, scrape it off and keep enjoying the rest of the jar! Make sure all of the cabbage is submerged to avoid the mold.

  • Category: DIY
  • Method: Fermented
  • Cuisine: German

Keywords: How to make sauerkraut, homemade sauerkraut, what is sauerkraut, fermented sauerkraut, is sauerkraut good for you

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, Vegetarian Recipes