Pumpkin Cranberry Kraut

What You'll Need

  • 2 medium-large heads of green cabbage
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries, whole
  • 1/2 cup raw pie pumpkin, diced small
  • 1 inch fresh ginger root, cut into thin slivers
  • 1/2 inch fresh turmeric root, diced thin and fine
  • 1 tablespoon whole mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon white peppercorns
  • 1/2 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole coriander seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Muddler or Kraut Pounder
  • Fermenting Vessel such as a jar with fermentation kit or crock

This is a special kraut, perfect for the fall and winter. It’s delicious, and beautiful as well. I like to use whole spices when I ferment, because I enjoy the texture, but not everyone enjoys biting into a whole peppercorn, even a delicious one, softened and saturated with sauerkraut juice. So please, feel free to grind the peppercorns if you wish, or add more or less of them as you see fit. Likewise, the cinnamon stick could be replaced with a half-teaspoon of cinnamon…but the stick has a certain flair, don’t you think?

The subtle cinnamon flavor saturates the entire kraut with just a whisper of seasonal flavor. The nutmeg chimes in, the coriander adds another note, that steers the taste back to savory…and then there are the tiny slivers of turmeric, and the larger ginger slices, and the tiny mustard seeds, to shout their spicy news from the mountaintop of your taste buds. Yes, we’re mixing metaphors here, and perhaps we should calm down. After all, kraut is kraut, right?


You can be the judge, once you make it.

This recipe made 3 quarts of kraut.


pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

1. Prepare the Cabbage

pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

Finely chop the cabbage, removing the core and outer leaves.

2. Massage the Cabbage with Salt

pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

In a large mixing bowl, blend the salt with the shredded cabbage. Massage the kraut until the texture begins to change, and liquid begins to pool at the bottom of the bowl.

3. Add Remaining Ingredients

pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

Add the chopped pumpkin, cranberries, and spices. Toss to mix them well.

4. Pack the Fermentation Vessel

pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

Pack the kraut-to-be into the fermenting vessel. In this case, we used a 1/2 gallon Ball jar with the Ferment’n top for the bulk of it, and a one-and-a-half pint Ball jar for the rest. Use a muddler or kraut-pounder to pack it in firmly, with no trapped air spaces. Allow 1" of headspace, to allow for expansion as the kraut ferments. 

pumpkin cranberry sauerkraut

Place a weight on the top of the kraut, to ensure that the cabbage stays beneath the brine.

5. Secure the Airlock and Let That Kraut Ferment

Secure the lid and the airlock, and wait! Keep the ferment at cool room temperature for 2-3 weeks.

When the kraut has a flavor that you enjoy, it is ready to eat! Replace the airlock with a lid and store the kraut in the fridge, where it will keep up to 2 months; except of course if the kraut takes on an unpleasant odor or mold. When in doubt throw it out! Or, you know, put it on the compost pile.

Over to You

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