Sauerkraut Salad

Is sauerkraut a dieter's friend? You bet. It's just cabbage with layers of flavor and virtually no calories. Enjoy it here in an old-fashioned salad updated -- yes, that's "new" fashioned -- to be lighter and brighter and more healthful and, naturally, more delicious too.

New-Fashioned Sauerkraut Salad

Modern cooks, read on! We love our convenience products, the ones that deliver supper to the table almost by themselves.

But for the label-readers among us, dismay sets in. Too often, the cost of convenience is long lists of scientific-sounding ingredients and unhealthful ingredients to avoid like trans fats and high-fructose corn syrup.

Meet sauerkraut, our new friend, simple cabbage that’s fermented. Rinsed, think of sauerkraut as naked coleslaw. Chopped, think of it as salad awaiting the fixings.

Church-style cookbooks list quick salads favored at family meals and potlucks. Their traditional sauerkraut salad recipes call for cups of oil and sugar. My contemporary sauerkraut salad is fresh and light with great crunch and adds beans for protein and fiber. I’m willing to bet you won’t miss the fat, the sugar and especially the unnecessary calories!

This recipe is perfect for outdoor summer meals and family gatherings, quick and inexpensive to prepare, easy to transport, no fuss to serve, a great foil for grilled burgers and ribs and all the traditional summer foods.

ALANNA's TIPS Worried about a sauerkraut-y taste? Don’t. Once rinsed and chopped, the sauerkraut almost fades into the background. Hominy is a popcorn-shaped whole-grain corn, dense, chewy and nutty. Look for it in the Mexican section of grocery stores or substitute corn or another canned bean. Rice vinegar is less harsh than white vinegar but really, any good clear vinegar will do. The brand I use is 4.3% acidic.
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. Follow Kitchen Parade on Facebook!


Still convenient, now contemporary
Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Time to table: 20 minutes
Makes 12 cups
  • 16 or 32 ounces sauerkraut, preferably from a bag or jar (not canned)
  • 15 ounces canned hominy, rinsed and drained (see TIPS)
  • 15 ounces canned black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar (see TIPS)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 tablespoons sugar (Splenda works fine)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seed (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 a red onion, diced small
  • 1/2 an English cucumber, diced small
  • 2 ribs celery, diced small
  • 2 carrots, diced small
  • 1 green pepper, diced small
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley (or cilantro or dill or another herb)
  • Optional: chopped tomato

Rinse, squeeze, drain and chop sauerkraut. Rinse and drain hominy and beans.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk vinegar, water, sugar, olive oil, mustard seed, salt and pepper.

Add remaining ingredients, stirring into liquid as added. Stir in sauerkraut and beans. Serve immediately or refrigerate and serve later. Keeps in fridge for several days.

NUTRITION ESTIMATE Per Cup: 113 Calories; 2g Tot Fat; 0g Sat Fat; 4g protein; 22g Carb; 6g Fiber; 628mg Sodium; 0mg Cholesterol; Weight Watchers 2 points This recipe has been 'Alanna-sized' with reductions in fat and sugar and additions of low-calorie and fiber-rich vegetables and additions of protein- and fiber-rich beans.

More Great Summer Salad Recipes

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Wild Rice Salad Bloody Mary Salad Confetti Potato Salad
Holy Slaw! Quinoa & Black Bean Salad Power Food Broccoli Salad
~ more salad recipes ~

This Week at A Veggie Venture

~ The recipe for a Pimm's Original, but really, the story and photos of a mother-daughter weekend, the OCHERs and the YaYas, nearly 60 years in the making ~

If you like Kitchen Parade's recipes, do visit A Veggie Venture, my food blog packed with vegetable recipes for every course.

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Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. I've never heard of sauerkraut in a salad, this sounds excellent. Add it to my list for the weekend -

  2. I've gotta say, Alanna, I'm not too familiar with sauerkraut. It wasn't popular in New England or North Carolina or here in SoCal. Perhaps I need to take a trip to Minnesota to appreciate it? :)

  3. S from Colorado5/22/2008

    I've seen sauerkraut salad recipes in cookbooks before but they always looked - just bad. YOURS looks - just great. From the picture, I can almost taste it. Guess I'll have to make it to know for sure.

  4. That looks really good...and I am not usually a sauerkraut fan. That is going to be my first summer potluck recipe.

  5. We love sauerkraut! and this looks fabulous!

  6. Since I love kraut I'll love this salad....Probably won't rinse quite as thoroughly as some... (But I always do rinse)
    I can get freshly made sauerkraut at the meat counter in my supermarket... fresh or cooked!

  7. We just tried the recipe and substituted small black lentils for the black beans. It made the salad even more crunchy! Delicious!


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna