A subtle blend of spices combined with zingy ginger gives this super healthy raw sauerkraut a nice crunch, a little heat, and plenty of flavor.
Making a small batch of this turmeric raw sauerkraut recipe will only take 15-20 minutes of hands-on. Mother nature will take over from there. An organic sauerkraut recipe like this is loaded with healthy probiotics. It is a fabulous addition to sandwiches, wraps, bowls, or a side dish, or make a dish like this cabbage casserole. I love it with some nicely cooked eggs for breakfast or lunch too, just like in the picture below!
When I was a kid my mum will always pickle whole cabbage heads, it was an autumn ritual in prep for the winter. Preserving was such a thing a few decades back. We used to eat it as the generic pickle but mainly used the leaves to make casserole or sarmale/cabbage rolls. Such a delicious dish.
🤩 What Is Sauerkraut?
Sauerkraut comes from the German word 'Sauer' and 'kraut' which means sour vegetable.
Raw sauerkraut goes through natural fermentation, a process that will produce minerals, antioxidants, vitamins, and probiotics which are essential in maintaining a healthy gut. This recipe adds even more health benefits with the star ingredient - the notorious turmeric making this turmeric sauerkraut a superb anti-inflammatory side dish.
💚 Benefits Of Sauerkraut And Fermented Turmeric
We all know prebiotics is amazing stuff and help fight bad gut bacteria.
This sauerkraut with turmeric and ginger recipe is amazing for boosting our gut health due to the lactic acid bacteria, vitamins, minerals, and anti-inflammatory qualities brought in by the fresh ginger and the turmeric combined with the black pepper.
Good for the gut, and good for our health in general.
Benefits of fermented turmeric
Yes, this recipe has immense benefits and it should be on your to-do list straight away for so many reasons - the benefits include the:
- improvement of liver function - it detoxifies it, it lowers liver inflammation;
- regulates the blood sugar - it balances hormones responsible for sugar imbalances;
- helps with digestion - by stimulating the gallbladder making digestion more efficient;
- reduces gas and therefore bloating
- it has amazing anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties helping to fight against free radicals responsible for damaging cells- particularly helpful with joint pains, inflammation, and arthritis;
- immunity booster - with its high content of lipopolysaccharide- an antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal substance that will help with boosting immunity against colds, infections, and viruses.
Convinced? I am!! So, 1 teaspoon of sauerkraut with turmeric a day will keep the doctor away!
This raw fermented sauerkraut recipe only requires 4 main ingredients to make plus some spices that you may like. I guarantee you the outcome will be a pleasant surprise. You will also be amazed by how easy this wonderful side dish is to make.
- white organic cabbage (see tips below on how to fully prepare this)
- spices ( cumin, fennel, fenugreek, mustard, coriander seeds)
- turmeric - use fresh root or powder, both are great
- fresh ginger root - I would not recommend using powdered ginger but fresh ginger use as much or as little as you like -this really adds flavor and goodness
- salt - only use non-iodized salt - very important so it does not spoil the fermentation
- black pepper
- other seeds and spices - I added mustard and fennel seeds
See the recipe card for quantities.
🔪 How To Make Raw Sauerkraut With Turmeric
Making this delicious and super healthy raw sauerkraut takes very little effort. The beauty of sauerkraut and any pickled dish is that we can make it as often as we like. It is an all-throughout-the-year affair if you ask me. I cannot live without two things, spice and pickles and I am a happy bunny.
You can make it in any size batch you wish or like. I personally go through a lot of this because I love it and I pair it with almost anything or at times I just snack on it. Too good!
Cleaning the equipment
This includes a knife, a chopping board, a knife, a large bowl, a spatula, and preserving jars. Wash all the equipment with hot soapy water and rinse with boiling water to remove any undesired bacteria.
- 1st step: involves preparing the cabbage by washing, coring, and shredding.
- 2nd step: get all other ingredients ready (spices, garlic, ginger, water, pickling salt, and turmeric)
- 3rd step: Mix the water, salt, and spices, chop the garlic and add all these to the shredded cabbage which is now in a jar.
Coring the cabbage
First clean the equipment – including a chopping board, knife, large mixing bowl, mixing spoon, 1ltr preserving jar, and teaspoon – with hot soapy water and rinse with boiling water to remove any unwanted bacteria.
Clean your hands by washing them with soap and tepid water, remove any damaged or wilted leaves from the cabbage, then cut into quarters and remove the tough core.
Use a sharp knife, cut the cabbage in half lengthwise through the base, then halve again making it into quarters. I leave the hardcore on as this helps with holding the cabbage together making it a lot easier when cutting it but even if you are using a mandolin this will be helpful to keep the leaves together.
Use a shredder if you are making larger batches, it will save you some time with the shredding and manual/knife shredding will never be as neat. It also depends if you like it super finely shredded or in bigger chunks. Chop or cut the cabbage any way you like or can. You need no special skills to make sauerkraut as there is no right or wrong here.
If you do not like the spices added to this, simply add just the garlic and some dry herbs such as dill or dried dill seeds.
This recipe is inspired by this wonderful Pickled Watermelon Recipe which I also adore and is always on my list to make especially when the watermelon is in full season.
This recipe offers a subtle blend of spices combined with zingy ginger to give this kraut a healthy crunch combined with a degree of heat
Out of the spices listed here you may or may not want to use all but I have tried all various combinations and this definitely stood out - it is absolutely incredible.
I occasionally add clove but that's quite overpowering so if you make this in a bigger pot or glass feel free to add one or two.
- Spicy sauerkraut - add one chili or red chili flakes
- Red cabbage sauerkraut - instead of white cabbage use red cabbage. All the rest should be done in the exact same way
- Bavarian Sauerkraut -normally contains sugar and caraway seeds and cabbage will be finely shredded
- Add other ingredients such as carrots, mushrooms, apples, or onions, or even add beetroot for wonderful color and an earthy flavor.
You may use absolutely any white or red cabbage for this recipe
This fascinating process of fermenting, creates vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and of course plenty of probiotics.
Sauerkraut can definitely be eaten raw. It is packed with vitamins and minerals. It also contains high amounts of lactobacilli (prebiotics as we know it or in even simpler terms, the good bacteria).
If you are not used to high levels of probiotics, raw sauerkraut might upset your stomach by producing bloating in which case it is best to cook it and make this delicious Cabbage Casserole With Mince Beef And Fresh Herbs
This is definitely not a requirement at all. This dish requires fermenting so sterilizing is definitely not necessary nor recommended as some bacterias are good and welcome. Remember to wash the utensils, the jar, and your hands accordingly though!
The time you need to leave the sauerkraut is closely dependent on a couple of factors, temperature, and saltiness. It also depends on how sour and/or crunchy you like it to be.
Taste after 7 days to check the flavor and texture. It really depends on how hot it is but it should not take any longer than 3-4 days for the fermentation process to start.
During hot summer days, it is a short process- 3-4 days for this to get into the fermenting stage or less if you add hot or lukewarm water.
During the winter period will take longer but to speed up the process you may add hot water and a dash of sugar.
Once it has reached the desired sourness, store it in the fridge in a mason jar or an air-tight container. Serve as desired. It is good food for up to 6 months but mine never lasts more than 1 month. And then, it's time to make another batch.
- Massage or crush the cabbage for extra taste. Once the salt was added, massage or crush with the help of a cabbage crusher.
- Always wash your hands before and after handling food. This is very important in general but in this recipe, since it is un-unpasteurized sauerkraut it is paramount that everything is as clean as it could be.
- If the sauerkraut is beginning to smell or it gets discoloration or it becomes slimy is indicative of this being contaminated and you will need to throw it away.
- The jar and the lid should not be fully sealed/ fastened as gas from fermenting will need to escape
- leave at least 5-6cm (2-2.5 in) between the cabbage and the lid, for the weight to be added but also to allow for expansion during the fermentation process.
- During the fermentation process store, the jar should be in a dark place at temperatures of 18°C - max 23°C (65F- 74F) for approximately 4-7 days
- Remember, the more you open the jar, the more likely it is the sauerkraut will get spoiled.
- I always turn the jar upside down at least once a day (whenever I remember) at least for the first 3-4 days. It helps with the fermentation process.
- Remove all the air in the jar - an important step when making fermented food so to do this for this recipe you can use your fist if the jar has a big enough opening or you may use a cabbage crusher to push it well into the jar or even a clean wooden spoon would work well
Dishes that can be complemented with pickled cabbage:
Let's get some jars out and get started!!
Have you made this sauerkraut dish? Please leave a 5-star 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comment section further down the page. Thanks for stopping by!
📋 Raw Sauerkraut With Turmeric
- chopping board
- glass bowl
- jar or jars
- 1 medium cabbage head (approx 1kg) white or red
- 3 cloves garlic washed and crushed (pealed or unpealed)
- 1 knob fresh ginger *
- 1 knob fresh turmeric * see notes
- 15 g salt (pickling salt) * see notes
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 large carrot
- ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
- ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
- ¼ teaspoon fennel seeds optional
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
Initial and Cabbage Preparations
- Take the equipment out or clean it. This will include a chopping board, knife, large mixing bowl, mixing wooden spatula, 1ltr preserving jar, and a teaspoon. Wash all with hot soapy water and rinse with boiling water to remove any undesirable bacteria. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and rinse with hot water.
- Remove any damaged or wilted leaves from the cabbage. Reserve a leaf for later. Cut this into quarters and don't remove the hard core unless you chop the cabbage in a food processor.
Putting The Sauerkraut Together
- Transfer the shredded cabbage to a larger mixing bowl, add the salt and mix with clean hands to thoroughly combine. I personally like to massage the cabbage with salt so it's easier to handle it as it softens but it is somehow tastier too. Massaging the cabbage meaning to slightly rubbing it to get that crushed effect. Alternatively, use a cabbage crusher to do this.
- When the cabbage is ready, you will have a reduced by half amount of cabbage in the bowl. You will also end up with about 200ml (1 cup) brine in the bottom of the bowl.
- Add the chopped, shredded, or crushed pieces of carrot, sliced ginger and turmeric roots, and all the desired spices. Mix thoroughly with the mixing wooden spatula.
Jarring the sauerkraut
- Jar the unpasteurized sauerkraut by adding this into the jar and pressing it down tightly to remove any air bubbles. Also, make sure to scrape the inside of the jar with the spatula or a spoon so every shred of cabbage is submerged into the brine.
- The brine has to be sufficient to completely cover the cabbage so no oxygen will be present in the jar to help it spoil as it ferments. Add a little drizzle of previously boiled water if not enough brine was produced but mix prior to jarring. Remember that any extra water added needs the salt ratio too.
- Cover the top of the shredded cabbage with the retained cabbage leaf. Press down until fully submerged with about 1 cm or 1/2in brine above the cabbage, then fill a sandwich bag with water and place it on top to keep the cabbage in place but also to weigh it down.
- massaging the cabbage is an important step as it helps with the fermentation process. Squeezing the cabbage will help break its structure down and produce the much necessary moisture needed to preserve the sauerkraut.
- to speed this process up a little (by a day or so) add lukewarm or hot water and a pinch of sugar.
- it is amazing and packed with anti-inflammatory qualities - don't forget to pair this with black pepper for full benefits
- tweak the amount of salt accordingly - the amount of salt should be 1.5- 2g per 100g (3.3oz) of cabbage.
- the salt: cabbage ratio is key. If too little is added the cabbage will ferment too quickly and if too much, it will be too slow.
- it’s very important to use natural un-iodized salt because additives like iodine will inhibit good bacteria and ultimately will lead to undesirable over-salty sauerkraut.