Learn how to make cooked sauerkraut recipe with beetroot and dates for a delicious, sweet result without refined sugars. It’s a perfect side dish for Christmas dinner or simply to be enjoyed on a regular weekday.
What I love about this sauerkraut recipe:
- Short prep time.
- Heavenly vegan festive side dish.
- All the cabbage goodness.
Table of contents
Sweet Cooked Sauerkraut Recipe with Beetroot
One of the main perks of this cooked sauerkraut recipe is that it’s extremely easy to prepare and is made of whole food plant-based ingredients.
Obviously, the main component is sauerkraut aka fermented cabbage.
Now, you can make homemade sauerkraut or alternatively, opt for store bought varieties. Be aware to look for raw additive-free sauerkraut though. To be more precise, choose a product that has nothing other than cabbage and salt in the ingredients’ list. At the very most, allow some herbs and spices as well as other vegetables. In Estonia, the most common additives are carrots and caraway seeds. In fact, I used raw sauerkraut with caraway seeds.
What is Sauerkraut?
To make sauerkraut, people finely cut raw cabbage ferment it with the help of various lactic acid bacteria. In other words, it’s fermented cabbage.
It’s noteworthy, that sauerkraut has a long shelf life and a distinctive sour flavour. It is one of the best-known national dishes in Germany and other European countries as well as Russia. Sauerkraut most probably originates from China from 4th century BC. Back then, fermentation process was one of the methods used to keep foods from spoiling quickly. [source]
Benefits of Sauerkraut
Sauerkraut is incredibly nutritious and healthy. It provides probiotics and vitamin K2, which are known for their health benefits, and many other nutrients.
Furthermore, eating sauerkraut may help strengthen your immune system, improve your digestion, reduce your risk of certain diseases, and even lose weight.
To sum it up, sauerkraut is rich in fibre, vitamins, and minerals. Its probiotics also help your body absorb these nutrients more easily, which is what makes sauerkraut more nutritious than raw cabbage or coleslaw.
However, to get the probiotic benefits, you must eat it in its raw form. That being said, my sweet, cooked sauerkraut recipe will not provide you with any probiotics, but you can still take advantage of cabbage’s virtues. For example, half a cup of cooked cabbage has about a third the vitamin C you need for the day. It also gives you doses of fibre, folate, potassium, magnesium, vitamins A and K, and more. [source]
The Sweet Ingredients
Next ingredient is raw beetroot, which gives our cooked sauerkraut recipe its knockout red colour and pleasant sweetness. I recommend buying organic beetroot which you can use in this recipe unpeeled.
Another component that adds sweetness and some caramel flavour is Medjool dates. I love how they dissolve into this cooked sauerkraut recipe complimenting the dish with their heavenly taste. Of course, instead of Medjool dates, you may choose other date varieties as well. However, use the same weight if your dates are smaller in size.
Alternatively, if you find it easier, utilize date sugar instead of whole dates. Add a few tablespoons to the recipe.
To add some extra flavour, I included Indian spice mix into this cooked sauerkraut recipe. My Indian spice mix contains dry roasted coriander seeds, caraway seeds, cumin, fennel seeds, and mustard seeds. Originally it also includes cardamom, but you don’t have to use it – I often don’t.
Optionally, if this is your preference, add some extra caraway seeds to allow their taste to dominate all the other favours a bit.
Bay leaves are almost always an excellent addition to savoury cooked meals. And this is exactly the case with this cooked sauerkraut recipe. You may add a larger or a few smaller ones into the pot.
Finally, when the sauerkraut is cooked and cooled a bit, sprinkle some horseradish powder on top to activate sulforaphane in cabbage.
What is Sulforaphane?
Sulforaphane is a sulphur-rich compound found in cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli, pak choi, and cabbage. It may protect our brain, eyesight, protect us against free radicals, induce our detoxification enzymes, help prevent cancer, as well as help treat it.
However, the formation of this chemical requires the mixing of a precursor compound with an enzyme in cruciferous vegetables, which is destroyed by cooking.
An addition of horseradish powder, powdered mustard seeds or radishes to cooked cabbage-family vegetables provides a natural source of the enzyme and then it’s like you’re practically just eating it raw. Just a pinch on your plate will do the trick.
Making homemade sauerkraut is quite labour-intensive and it takes ages to have the product ready. However, this cooked sauerkraut recipe doesn’t require much of your time and is ready in a bit over an hour.
Start with draining the sauerkraut and transfer it into a medium-sized pot or a saucepan.
Then, wash and cube the beetroot and chop the dates. Now, add all the remaining ingredients (beetroot, dates, the spice mix, bay leaves, and water) to the sauerkraut and bring to boil.
Lower the heat to medium and let simmer for an entire hour. Stir occasionally and check the water level. In case there’s too little, add some more boiling water.
Finally, let cool from hot to warm before serving. In fact, it tastes the best when slightly warm.
How to Store
If you have any leftovers, store them in an airtight far or a container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
How to Serve This Cooked Sauerkraut Recipe
It’s a side dish, so serve it aside! This cooked sauerkraut recipe pairs well with my baked potatoes, lentil loaf, nori sausages, potato and barley sausages, black bean burgers, spelt sourdough bread, fermented buckwheat bread, buckwheat and quinoa bread, and savoury sorghum muffins.
Alternatively, it as is for a snack or as light meal.
My sweet sauerkraut recipe with beetroot is vegan and plant-based, oil-free and low fat, gluten-free and grain-free, soy-free, nut-free and peanut-free, low glycemic, and suitable on vegan Candida diet.
Attention – this recipe is very high in sodium. So, bear this it in mind, if this is something that you’re trying to avoid.
In case you’re a visual leaner, watch the below video, where I make this sweet cooked sauerkraut as well as oil-free baked potatoes with mustard dipping sauce:
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Sweet Cooked Sauerkraut Recipe with Beetroot
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 4–6 servings 1x
- Diet: Low Fat
Learn how to cook sauerkraut with beetroot and dates for a delicious, sweet result without refined sugars. It’s a perfect side dish for Christmas dinner or simply to be enjoyed on a regular weekday.
- 400g (14.11oz) raw sauerkraut
- 1 medium (about 180g, 6.35oz) raw beetroot
- 2 Medjool dates (40g, 1.41oz pitted)
- 1 tsp. Indian spice mix
- 1 large or 2 smaller bay leaves
- 320g (11.29oz) water
- ½ tsp. whole caraway seeds
- ½ tsp. horseradish powder
- Start with draining the sauerkraut and transfer it into a medium-sized pot or a saucepan.
- Then, wash and cube the beetroot. Chop the dates and remove the pits.
- Now, add all the remaining ingredients (beetroot, dates, the spice mix, caraway seeds, bay leaves, and water) to the sauerkraut and bring to boil.
- Lower the heat to medium and let simmer for an entire hour. Stir occasionally and check the water level. In case there’s too little, add some more boiling water.
- Finally, let cool from hot to warm before serving. In fact, it tastes the best when slightly warm.
- Optionally, sprinkle some horseradish powder on top.
Use additive-free raw sauerkraut.
Feel free to use other date varieties instead of Medjool dates. Measure the same weight, about 40 grams.
Instead on my Indian spice mix, you may use any preferred curry powder with similar ingredients i.e., caraway seeds, cumin, fennel seeds, mustard seeds, and coriander seeds.
Attention – this recipe is very high in sodium. So, bear this it in mind if this is something that you’re trying to avoid.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Method: Stovetop
- Serving Size: ¼ of the recipe
- Calories: 69 kcal
- Sodium: 835.45mg
- Fat: 0.2g
- Saturated Fat: 0.03g
- Carbohydrates: 14.7g
- Fiber: 4g
- Protein: 1g
Keywords: sauerkraut, vegan side dish
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