This beet sauerkraut with red cabbage is an easy recipe to ferment and it’s so good for you. Here’s how to make it with some of your garden fresh produce.
Or try this traditional sauerkraut recipe.
This is one of those “I can’t believe it’s so simple” recipes. Also one of those “why in the world didn’t I try this sooner?” recipes.
Fermented beet sauerkraut
Ever since my friend Zoe shared her beet kraut recipe at a potluck, I’ve been wanting to try to replicate it. (I seriously could have eaten the whole jar, but that would have been rude.) I had a small harvest of beets from my first (temporary) garden beds, so it was the perfect time to learn how to make beet sauerkraut. The only thing I’d do differently? I’d use coriander seeds, slightly crushed instead of the ground coriander I had on hand.
Making this fermented beet recipe
There’s no cooking involved in making this beet sauerkraut. It’s simply a matter of doing some shredding and grating and tossing. I used red cabbage, but you could certainly use green cabbage if that’s what you have on hand. Once the cabbage and beets are prepared, you’ll toss them with sea salt and seasonings and press the salted mixture into jars for fermentation. As I said: It’s really easy! (If you’re lucky enough to have a fermentation crock, you can use that.)
After sitting for just a few days, the beets and cabbage will begin to actively bubble as fermentation begins. Days two and three are often the most active, but it will continue to ferment as long as its sitting at room temperature. Once the beet sauerkraut is flavorful enough for you, cap the jar and store in the refrigerator or a cool cellar.
My son likes to use this as part of a healthy breakfast plate: Smear hummus on a plate, then top it with a couple of fried eggs and a spoonful of this beet sauerkraut.
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Beet Sauerkraut with Red Cabbage
Beet sauerkraut with red cabbage is an easy recipe to ferment and it's so good for you.
- 2 cups shredded cabbage (I used red, but use what you have)
- 2 cups shredded beets (and okay, I tossed in a couple of rogue carrots from the garden)
- 1 1/2 T. Himalayan salt
- 2 tsp. coriander
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Use your (clean) hands to really work the salt into the veggies. Don't be afraid to give it all a little squeeze; you want the salt to start to bring out the juices.
Once well mixed, begin transferring veggies tightly into a wide-mouth Mason jar.
Use a tamper to press the veggies tightly into the jar. There are specialty tampers or you could do as I do and use a large dowel.
As you press, you'll start to see the juices rise to the top. If your produce doesn't generate enough juice, add just a bit of distilled water to bring the level of liquid above the level of the veggies. (You could also use a bit of leftover brine, if you happen to have it.)
Place a glass weight on top of the sauerkraut, making sure to push out any air bubbles that are visibly trapped under it. It's critical that the vegetables are not in contact with air.
Place a fermentation airlock or lid on the jar to seal it. If you use a standard lid, you'll need to be sure to open the jar daily to let out any built up gasses.
Let sit at room temperature for a week or two, checking occasionally to make sure that the veggies remain covered with liquid.
Hot tip: Even with airlocks, my beet kraut went crazy and overflowed on about day two or three (called heaving, as you'll read here). You might want to set your jars in a tray to catch accidental spills. (And when this happens, remember that the liquid might need to be replenished.)
Days two and three are often the most active, but it will continue to ferment as long as its sitting at room temperature. Once the beet sauerkraut is flavorful enough for you, cap the jar and store in the refrigerator or a cool cellar.
Originally published in July 2015; this post has been updated.