How to Make Sauerkraut

Homemade sauerkraut is a healthy and delicious fermented dish that is full of good bacteria for your digestion. You can make this dish from scratch by following these steps.

Things You'll Need

  • Cabbage
  • Large jar or bowl
  • Cheesecloth
  • A bowl or jar that fits inside the large one
  • A weight
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    • 1

      Chop the cabbage finely, saving a few of the outer leaves. You can use a food processor to chop the cabbage, or you can use a blender to chop one quarter of the cabbage and hand-chop the rest.

    • 2

      Place cabbage in a large jar or bowl. It will be resting in this container for up to a week, so don't use a container you will need to use throughout the week. Add a little filtered water if the cabbage seems dry. It should be moist but not soggy.

    • 3

      Press the cabbage down heavily with your hands. Cover the chopped cabbage with the reserved cabbage leaves. Place the smaller bowl or jar on top of the cabbage leaves and weight it down, such as with a bag of rice or beans. Cover the entire bowl or jar with cheesecloth.

    • 4

      Ferment the cabbage, leaving it undisturbed for three days. Check the cabbage then. If it is ready, the cabbage will be translucent and the sauerkraut will have a vinegary smell. If it is not ready, let it ferment another 1 to 4 days.

    • 5

      Keep sauerkraut in the refrigerator for up to 2 months in a covered jar.

Tips & Warnings

  • The goal when chopping is to create very fine cabbage, but it should still have some texture rather than being reduced to a puree.

  • The cabbage will have a strong odor as it ferments, so you will want to keep it somewhere you don't frequent often, if possible.

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