Our Favorite Ways to Eat Sauerkraut

January 3, 2021

We get it; not everyone is as big a fan of sauerkraut as we are, and that’s ok! For many people, sauerkraut can be a strong flavor, and if you’ve never tried it before, it can take some getting used to. That being said, many people haven’t tried sauerkraut yet because they simply don’t know the best ways to try it!

Because sauerkraut isn’t an overly familiar topping, especially here in the United States, lots of people have never tried it before and have no clue where to start. We don’t blame you; it can be challenging to try new foods! However, if you’ve wanted to try sauerkraut for a while or have a hankering for some adventure on your tastebuds, you’re in the right place!

It might come as a surprise to many of you, but sauerkraut is a shockingly versatile food that can pair well with numerous dishes and flavors. From traditional recipes to exciting and experimental modern cuisine, sauerkraut has carved itself an excellent niche in the food world. All that’s left is for you to try it!

This article will break down some of our favorite ways to enjoy kraut, and hopefully, give you some ideas for your next family meal! So sit down, serve up, and get ready for some fermented goodness.

Image of someone serving themselves Cleveland Kitchen beet red sauerkraut

The “Traditional”

When most people picture sauerkraut, they’re usually thinking about it in one of two ways. If you happen to be from Germany, you’d probably associate sauerkraut with New Year’s Eve, or perhaps as a topping for Wienerschnitzel. However, for all of our American friends, you probably think of the barbeque legends; hot dogs and bratwurst.

From baseball stadiums to backyards around the country, sauerkraut is becoming an ever-more popular topping for smoked sausages, and Cleveland Kitchen is fully on board! Fermented sauerkraut is the perfect addition to any ballpark dog, as the tang and crunch of the shredded cabbage pairs perfectly with the sweet juices of the pork.

If you’re looking for some specific pork and sauerkraut recipes, look no further than these recipes!

  • Beer-Braised Crock Pot Sausages With Sauerkraut
  • Roasted Garlic Sauerkraut and Sausage Recipe

  • Of course, not everybody loves sausage, and plenty of people don’t like meat at all! Never fear; we have plenty of suggestions for the vegans and vegetarians among us!

    The “Veggies”

    At its heart, sauerkraut is simply cabbage and salt, with maybe a few caraway seeds or other flavors tossed in. This makes kraut extremely versatile across pretty much any type of cuisine. When it comes to vegan or vegetarian dishes, some sauerkraut might just be the kick in the pants your next meal needs!

    In particular, consider adding sauerkraut the next time your meal needs a splash of sour or tangy, as the lactic acid of the kraut can make it stand out from other flavors. Sauerkraut can also add texturally to your food, so if your sandwich is missing that little extra *crunch*, consider tossing a handful of kraut on top.

    Here are some simple vegetarian and vegan recipes to get you started.

  • Simple Vegetarian Deli Sandwich
  • Roasted Vegetable Winter Salad
  • So, we know kraut is a great topping to sandwiches and sausages alike, but how else can someone enjoy this tangy fermented treat?

    The “Thinking Outside the Pouch”

    People tend to think of sauerkraut as the “sideshow to the main attraction” or as the “backup dancers” to the more popular foods. We’re here to tell you that these people are simply, undoubtedly, wrong.

    Our next few ways to eat kraut are all a little unusual, but they are highly recommended! Just keep an open mind before turning up your nose.

    Straight Up

    For all the diehard sauerkraut fans out there, there’s always the option to simply eat sauerkraut straight from the packaging. If you’re using Cleveland Kitchen’s Kraut, merely choose your favorite flavor, pop open the pouch, grab a fork, and get eating!

    If you dare to think our flavors aren’t perfect on their own, you can also try your hand at homemade sauerkraut, although you might not want to wait through the fermentation process.

    Blend It In

    We know not everybody likes the taste of sauerkraut as much as us, but we’ve got a solution for that too! If you still want to get the amazing benefits of the probiotic goodness in sauerkraut, but can’t really get past the sourness, try adding some to a smoothie!

    Similar to a certain leafy green with a controversial taste (we’re looking at you, kale), you can still reap the benefits of sauerkraut in a smoothie. Just make sure you also add a healthy serving of ingredients that you enjoy, and voila!

    The “Hot Take”

    Our final entry to this list is not necessarily our first choice, but it can still be a pretty tasty way to eat sauerkraut. We say this because our final method involves cooking the sauerkraut itself, which we usually don’t recommend. Like all fermented foods, sauerkraut only has probiotic benefits when it is served raw. Once it is heated to a specific temperature, the good bacteria will be killed off.

    Cleveland kitchen sauerkraut over hotdogs

    That being said, this recipe is a doozy, and if you’re looking to impress some house guests while sneakily getting them hooked on sauerkraut, this might be the way to do it! Plus, who can say no to roasted pork? Just preheat your oven, slather your pork with kraut, brown sugar, and a whole mess of spices, put it all in a dutch oven, and let it cook!

  • Roasted Pork Recipe
  • Get In Cleveland’s Kitchen

    Clearly, we love our sauerkraut here at Cleveland Kitchen, and we hope you do too! It’s our mission to spread our love for fermented food all across America. From our specialty krauts to our kimchi and fermented dressings, we curate some of the best fermented food you can find!

    Check out more of our recipes here, or read up on the multitude of benefits you can get from adding probiotics to your life at our blog!

    Check out another article

    How to Properly Store Sauerkraut


    5 Interesting Facts about Sauerkraut


    Pasteurized vs. Raw Foods: What's The Difference?