Holiday Ruby Sauerkraut

Posted by Bill Hettig on 26th Oct 2015

Holiday Ruby Sauerkraut

Make a red nose Reindeer batch of sauerkraut. The warm and hot spice combo fills the mouth with holiday magic. Great to ferment in the fall and have on hand through the holidays. Ferment for 6 or more days to reach full flavor. The spices will develop rich tones over several weeks. Make now and serve over the holidays. It will turn a bright fuchsia and smell of spice cookies. A perfect garnish on a holiday plate!

Prep Time: 45 mins
Jar Size: 1 quart/.9L


  • 2 ¾ lbs. red cabbage, shredded
  • 2 tsp. allspice powder
  • 1 Tbs. pepper (freshly ground is best)
  • 2 Tbs. ginger root, freshly grated
  • 4 bay leaves, crushed
  • 1 TBS. Celtic Sea Salt® or other premium brand

Fermentation Instructions for Holiday Ruby Sauerkraut

  1. Sprinkle salt over cabbage in bowl. Traditional sauerkraut is made by drawing out the liquid in the cabbage to create the brine - not by adding liquid to the recipe. Two easy methods are to pound the cabbage with a one-piece rolling pin held vertically or by massaging the cabbage with your hands. This is similar to kneading dough but is basically just squeezing the cabbage repeatedly. It should only take approximately 10-15 minutes but this depends on the freshness of your cabbage. NOTE: Red cabbage can sometimes be drier than green heads. If too little brine is formed after squeezing and pressing, add just enough filtered water to establish a brine.
  2. After a generous brine has formed, add in the allspice, pepper, ginger, crushed bay leaves.
  3. Load a clean 1 quart jar with the mixture, tamping and submerging the mixture after each addition. When well-packed with 2 inches of space remaining at the top, pour in any additional liquid left in bowl.
  4. Clean off any veggie/seasoning debris from jar rim to ensure good seal.
  5. Press brine overflow cup into jar.
  6. Seal with Perfect Pickler® lid and gasket until just hand snug. (TIP: you may want to do this with jar in your sink as some brine may spill over). Review our quick video if further instruction is needed.
  7. Pour tap water into airlock to the max line and gently twist into lid.
  8. Place in cool location (68-74 degrees) and wait patiently for 4 days! Test to see if sour enough for your liking or test with our pH strips; pH should be 4.7 or below. Sauerkraut can take 6-10 days to reach full flavor and this recipe will continue to develop deeper, richer flavors over the next several weeks (if you can wait that long!).