Red Cabbage Sauerkraut

Our homemade red cabbage sauerkraut gives grilled hot dogs a beautiful grown up twist. This is a fresh sauerkraut that only takes 15 minutes to make! This post is sponsored by Pompeian.

The Perfect Hot Dog Topping

There’s nothing like a hot dog from a street vendor on a hot summer day. It’s one of my favorite lunches when I’m on vacation in a city, especially places like New York and Montreal.

The last time I had a street hot dog I was thinking about why I like it so much. I realized that it’s all the toppings that you can add, and especially the sauerkraut. I seriously love sauerkraut. So, the next time that I was grilling hot dogs at home, I got to thinking about my sauerkraut-love and realized that, while I did not have any kraut on hand, I did have a head of red cabbage. I knew I had to whip up some kind of quick homemade red cabbage sauerkraut.

It was amazing!

It went so well with the hot dogs and really gave them a grown up twist. My kids loved their plain dogs with ketchup, but I loved my red sauerkraut topped hot diggity dogs even more!

What is Sauerkraut?

Before I get started on explaining how to make the quick sauerkraut I have to say that I know that this isn’t technically actually sauerkraut at all. Sauerkraut is fermented cabbage that takes days to weeks to make.

We’re making this in like 15 minutes so there is zero time for it to ferment. Instead, what we’re doing is salting it well and then adding fermented flavor in the form of cider vinegar to replicate the flavor of sauerkraut.

Why do this? It tastes great! Also, it has the flavor of sauerkraut but with a bit more texture. The cabbage isn’t cooked for very long so it isn’t mushy at all. It’s a great condiment for hot dogs but you can also serve it as a side dish (think of it as a bit like braised red cabbage. It’s very similar to that!).

How to Make Quick Homemade Red Cabbage Sauerkraut

Get a head of red cabbage and cut off the bottom stem end.

Cut it in half and cut out the core.

Slice it thinly.

You’ll have a big pile of sliced red cabbage like this.

Slice an onion thinly.

Put about a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until softened, 3 minutes.

Next, add the cabbage.

Add 1 and 1/2 cups of apple cider vinegar.

You’re adding a lot of vinegar here. I said earlier that this recipe doesn’t involve fermentation, but the vinegar is fermented so that’s where the fermentation flavor is coming from and it’s thus important to have a good quality vinegar.

You’ll also add 2 teaspoons of salt.

And 1 tablespoon of sugar as well as a cup of tap water.

And a teaspoon of caraway seeds if you like them. I LOVE them so I can even add as much as 2 teaspoons of them.

Use tongs to stir it all together and make sure that all of the cabbage has touched the liquid.

Increase heat to high and cook stirring often for 5 minutes. Add another teaspoon of salt. Cook and stir until cabbage is a bit wilted but still has some crunch, another 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir one last time and then drain off the liquid.

Serve on your favorite grilled hot dog. Yum!


Christine ;)



Red Cabbage Sauerkraut

  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 10 servings


Our homemade red cabbage sauerkraut gives grilled hot dogs a beautiful grown up twist. This is a fresh sauerkraut that only takes 15 minutes to make!


  • 1 medium head of red cabbage
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 and 1/2 cups cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 3 tsp. salt, divided
  • 1 tsp. caraway seeds (optional)


  1. Cut off the stem end of the cabbage. Cut the cabbage in half and cut out the core from each half.
  2. Thinly slice the remaining cabbage.
  3. Thinly slice the onion.
  4. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, 3 minutes.
  5. Add the cabbage, cider vinegar, water, 2 teaspoons of the salt, sugar, and caraway seeds (if using).
  6. Increase heat to high. Use tongs to stir well. Cook and stir for 5 minutes.
  7. Add the remaining teaspoon of salt. Stir. Cook and stir until cabbage is wilted a bit but still has some texture, another 3-4 minutes.
  8. Drain off liquid and serve hot or cold.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Pompeian. All opinions are my own.
This post originally appeared in May 2018 and was revised and republished in July 2020.