Making sauerkraut doesn’t have to be a big deal. Today, Rachel quickly demonstrates how to make sauerkraut in a mason jar. All you need is salt, water and cabbage – and if you’re like us, you’ll throw in some garlic too. This is the easy way to make sauerkraut and it doesn’t take long to prepare. The hardest part is waiting for your sauerkraut to be ready!
Here’s the video we just posted. I’ll give you more detailed instructions below:
How to Make Easy Sauerkraut in a Mason Jar
First, get some cabbages, sea salt or kosher salt (not iodized salt!), and a nice jar. Chop the cabbages up and stuff in the jar.
Cover with brine.
To make brine, mix non-chlorinated water (if available) with salt. We used a ratio of 4 tablespoons of salt per quart of water; however, if you are in a cooler climate that is excessive! You can often get away with just a tablespoon or two per quart.
Despite my best efforts, I have not had luck getting salt to “extract the juices from the cabbage” in enough quantity to work, despite that being related as the “proper” way to make sauerkraut in some recipes. Instead, we just dump in brine.
Note that we do not add vinegar. Just brine. Bacteria will proliferate in the mixture and make vinegar for you – and they’re the magic ingredient that makes sauerkraut an exceptionally healthy food.
Once you’ve filled your jar with cabbage and covered with brine (not to the top!), cover with cheesecloth or a towel or a loose jar lid. Shake a few times per day and taste now and again to see if the kraut is turning sour. In our climate it’s sour in three days, but in Tennessee it took a couple of weeks to really taste good. When it’s nice and sour, eat it! If you want it to stay at the level of tartness it’s currently at, put your kraut in the fridge.
You can use small or large jars, or big crocks. All will work. So long as you have salt and cabbage and the cabbage stays in the brine, you’ll get good sauerkraut.