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What to Eat with Sauerkraut: 15 Easy Main and Side Dishes

Ever wonder what to eat with sauerkraut? It’s really up to you, but there are some foods that almost beg for this delicious fermented cabbage dish. Whether you buy it from the grocery store or make your own sauerkraut, it is a delicious probiotic food that you need to include in your diet.

sauerkraut, mustard, sausage, and hot sauce

Sauerkraut is a German word that means sour cabbage. But I don’t think that definition does this tasty dish justice. There’s a reason it’s such a popular food. It’s absolutely delicious! Even when you add just a little bit of it to any hearty dish, the flavor stands out.

Tangy Taste of Sauerkraut

Sauerkraut is one of those foods that people often enjoy for special occasions, such as New Year’s Day. The sour taste balances the flavor of so many main dishes that a lot of folks enjoy it more frequently.

This pantry dish tastes delicious on its own. But if you want even more flavor, add one or more of these condiments:

  • Mustard
  • Ketchup
  • Sriracha
  • Tabasco
  • Your favorite salad dressing
  • Sour cream
  • Cream cheese
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Brown sugar
  • Ginger 
  • Caraway seeds

There are a lot of different homemade sauerkraut recipes. But I like to keep it super simple.

mustard
sriracha and hot sauce

I have the most basic sauerkraut recipe at the bottom of this post in a printable recipe card. The only tools you need are a shredder and a mason jar.

You can use any kind of cabbage you want. I typically look for what’s on sale. If you want a colorful dish, go for the red cabbage.

Regardless of what type of cabbage you choose, you’ll still use the same simple recipe to make it. Then you can serve it in so many different ways.

head of cabbage

You can decide later if you want spicy, creamy, or fun ginger kraut. Sometimes all you need is a dollop of kraut on the plate to elevate the meal.

One reason I like to keep it simple with just fermented sauerkraut is that I can doctor it up to go with whatever I serve it with. 

sauerkraut and sausage on a plate

It’s an excellent addition to so many other foods that I like to keep some leftover sauerkraut in the fridge. I usually have a jar of sauerkraut from the grocery store for those times when I don’t have any of the homemade stuff.

What to Serve with Sauerkraut

This list of main dishes and sides that go with sauerkraut is by no means conclusive. In fact, you can serve this sour cabbage dish with whatever you like.

2 grilled pork chops

Grilled Pork Chops

Whether you cook pork chops outdoors or on your George Foreman grill, you’ll love the combination of flavors when you add sauerkraut as a side.

Chicken strips on a plate

Fried Chicken Strips

These delicious chicken strips are “fried” in the oven without any flour. They taste absolutely wonderful, and they’re gluten-free.

chicken thighs in an air fryer

Crispy Chicken Thighs

I cook these in my air fryer, and they come out so delicious, with a crispy skin and juicy meat! But you can cook them in the oven as well.

sliced pork tenderloin

Pork Tenderloin

This flavorful and succulent pork tenderloin is the perfect pairing with a side of sauerkraut. The cooking process I use for this is my air fryer. And that’s because it’s so easy.

hot dog with sauerkraut

Hot Dogs 

Try Southern Bite’s hot dog crosshatch method of cooking one of America’s favorite grilling foods. It looks cook, and it provides more areas for the sauerkraut and condiments to get into the meat.

grilled cheese sandwich with a side of pickles

Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Add a little bit of sauerkraut to this easy and delicious grilled cheese sandwich. This might become your favorite lunch.

Reuben Sandwiches

This classic reuben sandwich from Julia’s Simply Southern is one of the many delicious ways to eat sauerkraut.

honey roasted sweet potatoes

Honey Roasted Sweet Potatoes

The yummy sweetness of the honey and sweet potatoes balances the tart flavor of the sauerkraut, making these a great duo of side dishes for any meal.

serving of loaded baked potato casserole
Loaded Baked Potato

Loaded Baked Potato Casserole

Offer this loaded baked potato casserole to go with sauerkraut, and you might not need a main dish. 

mac and cheese casserole
Classic Mac and Cheese Casserole

Mac and Cheese Casserole

If you like comfort food, this Mac and cheese casserole is for you! The creamy goodness of this classic pairs so well with tart sauerkraut.

avocado halves

Avocado Toast

The smooth texture and flavor of avocado on toast combined with the tart and tangy taste of sauerkraut go so well together!

smothered potatoes and sausage on a plate and in a pan

Smothered Potatoes and Sausage

A favorite one-pan meal gets even better when you serve sauerkraut on the side. All of the flavors come together in such a delightful way!

Pecan crusted fish with tartar sauce

Pecan Crusted Fish

Whenever you need a meal to impress, serve this delicious pecan crusted fish. No one has to know how easy it is.

Slice of cornbread on a plate

Southern Style Cornbread

If you’re like most people, you like to have some sort of bread on the side. This delicious cornbread is perfect for pushing your sauerkraut up onto your fork or eating it with a pat of butter. It’s even good dipped in olive oil!

plate of barbecued baked beef ribs

Baked Beef Ribs

Ribs and sauerkraut go together so well! Both of them are delicious on their own. Put them on the same plate, and you have out-of-this-world deliciousness!

Heath Benefits of Sauerkraut

Eating sauerkraut is a delicious way to take in the beneficial bacteria for digestive health. It contains many of the vitamins and minerals essential to keep your body running at maximum capacity without packing on the calories.

Here are some of the nutrients sauerkraut contains:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B6
  • Iron
  • Manganese
  • Folate
  • Copper
  • Vitamin K1
  • Vitamin K2

If you’re looking for an easy way to improve your gut health, try eating a small serving of sauerkraut every day. It is a probiotic food that enhances so many different types of meals. This makes it an excellent addition to your daily diet.

Listed below are some of the health benefits of sauerkraut:

  • Supports your immune system
  • Improves digestion
  • Contains quite a few essential nutrients
  • Has very few calories
  • Reduces risk of some types of cancer
  • Aids in heart health
  • Contributes to bone health

Frequently Asked Questions About Sauerkraut

Even after learning the basics of sauerkraut, you might still have some questions. Here are some common questions many people have about sauerkraut:

jar of store-bought sauerkraut

Is store-bought sauerkraut as good as homemade sauerkraut?

Homemade sauerkraut is usually much more nutritious and delicious than store-bought sauerkraut. However, you can find some good ready-made options in the grocery stores. Read the label and make sure it doesn’t have more than just a couple of ingredients: cabbage and salt.

What kind of salt is best to use in making sauerkraut?

Any kind of salt is fine. In fact, I prefer one that is loaded with minerals, such as Himalayan pink salt or sea salt. If you don’t have either of those, just use what’s in your pantry.

How do you know when sauerkraut is ready to eat?

The flavor of the sauerkraut is the best indication. After 7 to 10 days, you can open the jar and taste it. It should no longer taste like salted cabbage.

Do you have to wash the cabbage before shredding it?

No, you don’t kneed to wash the cabbage first. However, you should remove the outer leaves before shredding it.

Should you sterilize the jars before putting the cabbage and salt in them?

Yes, it’s important to provide a bacteria free environment for the cabbage to ferment. You can sterilize them in a hot water bath just like you would before canning fruits and vegetables. Submerge the jars in boiling water for 10 minutes to sterilize them.

How long does sauerkraut stay good in the refrigerator?

You can safely keep sauerkraut in the refrigerator for at least 4 months. After you scoop out what you need, put the lid back on and place it back in the refrigerator.

bowl of sauerkraut

Homemade Sauerkraut

Yield: 16 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 10 days
Total Time: 10 days 15 minutes

Sauerkraut is delicious, nutritious, and super easy to make. All you need are a few ingredients and a couple of weeks of waiting.

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head of raw cabbage, shredded
  • 2 tablespoons salt

Instructions

  1. Start with a head of cabbage. Remove the outer leaves and shred.
  2. Pack mason jars with as much cabbage as you can get in there. Sprinkle half of the salt over the cabbage.
  3. Press the cabbage down and then let it sit for 15-20 minutes or until some of the juice releases from the cabbage.
  4. Press the cabbage down into the juice and fill the jars to about 3/4 full with more shredded cabbage. Top off with the remaining salt.
  5. Cover the jars loosely with the lids. Don’t tighten them, or the lids might explode during the fermentation process. The main reason to place the lids on the jars is to prevent dust or bugs from getting into it. Or you can use a towel or cheesecloth and secure it with a rubber band.
  6. Every half hour, press the cabbage down to submerge it in the liquid. Do this until it stays down by itself.
  7. Store the loosely capped or fabric covered jars in a cool, dark place for 10 days or longer to complete the fermentation process.
  8. Once the cabbage has turned into sauerkraut, tighten the lids and store it in a cool place or in the refrigerator. It’s now ready to eat.
Nutrition Information
Yield 16 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 7Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 798mgCarbohydrates 2gFiber 1gSugar 1gProtein 0g

The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.

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