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Can you freeze sauerkraut. You can and it’s pretty simple to do. There are, however, some drawbacks to freezing it.
The easiest way to freeze sauerkraut is to simply drain out as much liquid as you can, bag it, and then freeze where it will stay fresh for up to 6 months. You can thaw it in the fridge, microwave, or just put it straight into your favorite recipe. However, be forewarned. Freezing sauerkraut will change the flavor and texture. The worst part is that it will also destroy the good bacteria that helps give you a healthy gut.
But, if you want to learn how to freeze it in the most efficient and long lasting way possible, keep on reading.
Can You Freeze Sauerkraut?
Yes, You can freeze sauerkraut very easily.
No. You certainly should not.
|Time To Freeze||12+ hours|
|Time to Thaw||overnight in fridge|
a few minutes under water
5 minutes in microwave
put in recipe without thawing
|Uses||snack, meal, smoothie, etc|
|Freezer Life||best within 2 months|
keeps for up to 12 months
Why you shouldn’t freeze it
Bacteria sometimes reacts to extreme cold in the same manner it reacts to extreme heat; it dies. So, the very thing that makes freezing food such a fantastic preservation technique is the very reason it ruins the nutritional benefits of sauerkraut.
Also, it’s bloody disgusting.
Freezing fruits and veggies, in this case fermented cabbage, almost always becomes a bit bloated with moisture and, once thawed, will become soggy and mushy. Instead of enjoying the crisp bite of homemade sauerkraut, you end up feeling like you have a mouth full of wet paper towels.
A much better idea is to freeze cabbage and then use that to make fresh sauerkraut. But, if you must, here is the way to get the best results.
You are going to need the following supplies:
How To Freeze Sauerkraut
This will work with both store bought and homemade.
You will want to drain as much liquid out as you can. The easiest way to do this is to dump all of your sauerkraut into a colander in the sink. Removing as much liquid as you can will help to cut down on some of the mushiness later on.
Decide on how large you want your portion sizes to be. If you are freezing just for yourself or one other person, we recommend sticking with portion sizes of a cup or two frozen in quart size freezer bag. Smaller portions are best when freezing as you only thaw what you need and usually nothing goes to waste.
If they are not already pre-labeled, label your freezer bags with the contents, freeze date, and best by date. Next, start scooping your servings into freezer bags.
Once the bags are all full, you will want to squeeze as much air out of them as you can to avoid frostbit later on. An easy way to do this is to zip all but one small corner of the zipper shut. Then, dip the bag into a bowl or sink of water and submerge up to the opening, without letting water into the bag.
The water pressure will do a much better job at squeezing the air out than you or I could ever hope to do.
Once your bags are all air tight start stacking them in the freezer. It is best to lay a cookie sheet or something flat down on the shelf first. Often when you have something that is not completely solid, it will push through the bars of the shelf and then freeze. When it freezes, it expands and then becomes stuck.
So, stack your bags as flat as you can in the freezer. They should freeze solid in about 12 hours or so.
How do you defrost it?
You can thaw overnight in the fridge and it can last just under a week. If you need it more quickly you can run the bag under cold water for a little while until it is thawed enough to work with. You can also stick it in the microwave or directly into whatever recipe is calling for it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the more common questions about freezing apple sauce.
Q1. Is it better to freeze or can sauerkraut?
It is much better to can sauerkraut than to freeze it. Canning may still hurt the probiotics but it will at least retain most of it’s texture and flavor.
Q2. Can you freeze pork and sauerkraut after it’s cooked?
You sure can. You will want to follow the same method we used for sauerkraut above. Make sure you have as little moisture as possible, then stick it in a labeled, freezer safe container and place it in the freezer. You can use that same method to freeze many popular (or unpopular) sauerkraut dishes, like pork and sauerkraut or sauerkraut and sausage.
Q3. Can you use frozen cabbage to make sauerkraut?
The general consensus is that you can make sauerkraut using frozen cabbage. The results may have a bit of a change in texture or possibly taste but you definitely can.
We’ve learned that you can freeze sauerkraut, you just shouldn’t. It will keep for up to a year but will never live up to the taste and texture of fresh sauerkraut. You are better off making smaller batches, canning, or making your own with frozen cabbage.