cabbageBefore I took this job, I never really gave sauerkraut much thought. It continues to amaze us here at AnswerLine just how popular making it has become.

This method of preserving cabbage has been around for a very long time and it generally yields a delicious product. In spite of the ease of making sauerkraut, we do get a number of calls from folks when the process takes a wrong turn.

If you want to avoid problems with your sauerkraut, be sure to follow a tested recipe exactly. The National Center for Home food Preservation has an excellent recipe with tips and directions at this link. Check it out if you have some extra cabbage this season.

Commonly asked questions:

  • Why did my sauerkraut turn pink?
    • SauerkrautToo much acid was formed during fermentation.  SAFE to eat.
  • What temperature is best for fermentation
    • 70° to 75°F (3-4 weeks), 60° to 65°F (5-6 weeks), lower temperature may not ferment.
  • Do I have to can my sauerkraut?
    • Yes, this stops enzyme activity that can change the texture to soft and slimy.
  • Can I use quart jars for fermentation instead of a crock?
    • Not recommended—fermentation may not happen in this size container.
  • I don’t have a crock, what else can I use?
    • A large food-safe bucket.  You may be able to purchase from a grocery store bakery or fast food outlet.

Liz Meimann

I received both my undergraduate and graduate degrees in Food Science at Iowa State University. I love to quilt, sew, cook, and bake. I spent many years gardening, canning, and preserving food for my family when my children were at home.

More Posts - Website


Connect with us!

AnswerLine's Facebook page AnswerLine's Pinterest page
Phone: (Monday-Friday, 9 am-noon; 1-4 pm)
1-800-262-3804 (in Iowa)
1-800-854-1678 (in Minnesota)