One food group that has a long tradition of consumption by a variety of human populations is
fermented food. Fermented products such as sauerkraut contains a large quantity of lactic acid;
vitamins A, B, C, and K; and minerals and fibre.
Sauerkraut is one of the most common and oldest forms of preserving cabbage and can be
traced back as a food source to the 4th century BC.It is beneficial for digestive health, cognitive wellbeing and weight loss, in addition to being a great side or accompaniment to a main meal.
It is simple and cheap to make, following a few basic instructions that we have carefully
Makes 6 – 8 x 500ml jars
- 2 red or white cabbages (roughly 3kg total)
- 2 tablespoons fine Celtic or Himalayan salt
- 2 tablespoons Caraway seeds
- 1 teaspoon juniper berries
Additional add ins:
- 1 inch of ginger root, grated
- 1 inch of turmeric root, grated
- 2 raw beetroots, grated
- 2 carrots, grated
- 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds
1. First sterilise your glass jars. I hand wash mine in hot soapy water & then pop them in
the oven at 100 degrees for 15 minutes. I boil the lids at the same time. Leave jars & lids
to cool completely & make sure they’re dry before using them.
2. Remove the outer leaves of the cabbage & put them to the side (you will use them
later). Cut out the tough cores & finely shred the cabbages with a knife.
3. Place all ingredients into a large bowl. Use a pestle or wooden pounder to pound the
ingredients to release the juices from the vegetables. This takes about 15 minutes of
hard (but rewarding!) work.
4. Spoon the mixture into your jars, packing it down as tightly as you can. Leave two inches
of space at the mouth of the jar, as the mixture will expand/bubble/fizz & you don’t
want kraut juice all over your lovely kitchen top. Place your discarded cabbage leaves at
the top & push the mixture down so that the liquid is covering the sauerkraut by about
5. Wipe down the glass with a clean cloth, and seal your jars. I recommend leaving them
somewhere you can see them, to ferment at room temperature.
6. Pop/burp your jars daily to release the build-up of gas. Taste it after 3 days, and then
pop into the fridge when you’re delighted with the flavour. I like to leave mine for 5 – 7
days to get them particularly zingy. They will last in the fridge for up to 6 months
(getting better over time, in my humble opinion).
The classic sauerkraut is great to start with, with a robust & traditional flavour. I always go back
to this basic recipe. However, if you’ve made it before & want to try something different, add 1 –
2 additional ingredients to keep life interesting. I recommend starting with consuming 1
tablespoon daily, gradually building up to ¼ cup as your gut adjusts. Enjoy!
Written by Jax Cave, Naturopath @ Halsa Health Surry Hills
If time isn't on your side, you can also find some delicious ready made sauerkraut such as Spiralz Fermented Foods which you can purchase from https://www.activatefoods.com.au/snacks. Spiralz Fermented Foods are made using local organic ingredients, they are also vegan & gluten free.