How To Make Homemade Sauerkraut

How To Make Homemade Sauerkraut

How To Make Homemade Sauerkraut in a one-quart Mason Jar


Sauerkraut is the German style of fermented cabbage.  Finely shredded cabbage is frequently mixed with other ingredients such as caraway seeds, carrots, and garlic. Red cabbage, napa cabbage, and other cabbages all make great sauerkraut, thus making it fun to create unique and enjoyable flavors all your own.


Although sauerkraut is a traditional German and Eastern European food, variations of it appear around the earth.  In the past sauerkraut was especially useful because it provided the vitamins and nutrients of fresh vegetables throughout long sea voyages and during the long winter.


Sauerkraut easily keeps for several months if refrigerated.  I have eaten sauerkraut well over six months old; it is fine although it begins to lose its crispness at the half-year mark.

How Is Sauerkraut Fermented?

The fermentation of sauerkraut has three phases.


  • In the beginning, anaerobic bacteria are dominant and make the sauerkraut acidic.


  • As the sauerkraut becomes sourer Leuconostoc bacteria become predominant.


  • Lactobacillus become the dominant form of bacteria in the final stage.


If you want to learn more about the science of fermentation and sauerkraut? Check out this article by


how to make homemade sauerkraut


Supplies for making Sauerkraut

1-quart Wide Mouth  Mason Jars  

Metal canning lids   

Meat tenderizer or another compacting tool which can fit inside the mouth of the jar  

A stone that fits inside the mouth of the jar. You can also use a ziplock bag with a little water in it to hold the cabbage below the liquid or fold a few cabbage leaves and place them on top of the sauerkraut mixture.


How To Make Homemade Sauerkraut

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Category: Fermented Food Recipe

Yield: 1 quart

How To Make Homemade Sauerkraut

Delicious homemade sauerkraut recipe.


  • 1 Medium Head of Cabbage (preferably fresh, local, and organic)
  • 1 Medium Carrot
  • Sea Salt 1 to 3 Tbsp. Per quart of water. The amount of salt used can vary according to personal taste preference.
  • Spices and additional vegetables of choice


  1. Chop up or shred the cabbage and any additional vegetables into small pieces.
  2. Mix the cabbage mixture by hand and sprinkle with sea salt and spices.
  3. Cover and let it sit for a half hour; this allows the salt to draw the fluid out of the cabbage. Do this two to three times until it produces enough liquid to cover the cabbage.
  4. Ladle the cabbage into the mason jars and compact with the meat tenderizer by pressing down firmly
  5. Place a stone on top of the cabbage to hold it underwater. If necessary, add a bit of water to ensure the cabbage is completely covered.
  6. Add more water if needed so that cabbage remains below the water line.
  7. Put covers on mason jars and close securely.
  8. Leave the jars in a dark place at room temperature (60-70°F is preferred) for at least three days until desired flavor and texture are achieved.
  9. However the longer you wait, the better it will taste. I like to wait at least four weeks before eating it.
  10. Check the sauerkraut every couple of days to see if it needs burping to release excess pressure.
  11. Once the sauerkraut has reached your desired flavor, you can store in the refrigerator. The sauerkraut flavor will continue to develop as it ages.