Learn how to make mason jar sauerkraut with cabbage, salt, and a mason jar. This step by step tutorial will show you just how easy it is. Whether you grow your own cabbage or buy it from the store making your own sauerkraut is fun and rewarding.
Every year we eat pork and sauerkraut on New Year's day for good luck. I usually buy canned sauerkraut from the grocery store. This year I decided I would try to make my own, using fresh cabbage and a mason jar. It tastes delicious with a great fresh flavor. You also need a clean quart size mason jar, some kosher or sea salt, and if you'd like some caraway seeds.
Easy Mason Jar Sauerkraut
First, make sure you are working in a clean area and start with a large head of cabbage. Peel off some of the outer leaves, remove the core, and slice thinly.
Layer the cabbage with a couple of teaspoons of salt, and let it sit for about an hour in a large bowl.
Once it starts to break down start packing the cabbage in the jar and using a wooden spoon, really pack it in. Add the juices on top and make sure there's enough to cover. If not, make a brine, by dissolving a teaspoon of salt in a cup of water.
You need to make sure the cabbage stays below the liquid. Many fancy crocks have special ceramic plates for this purpose, but I used a plastic bag filled with a little brine and it did the trick.
Next, find a cool dark place to keep the jars for about three to four weeks. I placed mine in a loaf pan in a lower cabinet. After the first week, the jars had bubbled up and leaked into the loaf pan. Just loosen the lids slightly, and let a little air out, and then tighten them up again. Then wipe down the outside of the jars and clean the pan before setting the jars back in the cupboard.
Just a day or two shy of a month, and we had lovely fermented sauerkraut.
Mason jar sauerkraut, who knew it was so easy? The little seeds are caraway seeds, which we like, but are optional.
How Long Does Homemade Sauerkraut Last?
It should last in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 months. Be sure to keep it well sealed with a tight lid to prevent bacteria from entering the jar.
What Can You Do With Sauerkraut?
- Eat it as a simple side dish to any meal.
- Add it to sandwiches.
- Top a hotdog brat, sausage, or burger.
- Cook it with pork, kielbasa and serve it over mashed potatoes on New Year's Eve.
We cooked this yummy sauerkraut with some ribs and a small pork roast in the crockpot. It was really good. Now I think I'm going to have to make a few more to keep on hand. I may never go back to store-bought again.
Need another reason to make homemade sauerkraut?
Check out this article from Health Impact News about just how good sauerkraut is for your health.
Homemade Sauerkraut in Mason Jars
- 10 cups Cabagge 1 large head
- 1 tablespoon Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
- 1 tablespoon Caraway seeds optional
- Take a large head of cabbage. Peel off some of the outer leaves, remove the core.
- Using a sharp knife slice thinly or shred cabbage
- Layer the cabbage with a couple of teaspoons of salt in a large bowl and let it sit for about an hour.
- Once it starts to break down start packing the cabbage in a clean quart mason jar. Use a wooden spoon to really pack it in.
- Add the juices on top and make sure there's enough to cover. If not, make a brine, by dissolving a teaspoon of salt in a cup of water.
- To make sure the cabbage stays below the liquid use a plastic bag filled with a little brine to weigh it down.
- Place the jar(s) in a pan and find a cool dark place (away from direct sunlight) to keep the jar for about three to four weeks.
- If you notice that the jar has bubbled up and leaked into the pan, loosen the lid slightly, and let a little air out then tighten again.