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Favorite brand of sauerkraut?

As long as I've been thinking of all things sauerkraut ...

The Sauerkraut Site

Variations on the Reuben sandwich?

... I thought I'd ask what your favorite brand is.

Right now, nothing even comes close to a brand made only in the SF Bay Area called Alexander Valley sauerkraut. It is refrigerated and has a fresh cabbage taste to it and is very crunchy. I could (and do sometimes) eat this stuff straight.

However, if I'm not in the mood to spend big bucks, I like Libby's sauerkraut. There is nothing artificial in there, just saurkraut and salt. It is one of the most crisp of the shelf-stable canned krauts. In the past I liked Claussen refrigerated kraut when I wanted something a little fresher.

I'm not a fan of Hebrew National kraut which, IIRC, has 'stuff' in there like preservatives. Hate Bubbies sauerkraut ... mooshy and expensive.

Occasionally I'll buy a jar from Russia or Poland in an Eastern European store, don't remember which, but none merited a second try.

So do you have a favorite ... either a national or local brand?

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  1. Frank's in either the jar or the can are good. I know I can buy it in Houston, and I'm pretty sure I could buy it in Illinois when I lived there pre-2001. My dad drinks Frank's saurekraut juice. Swears it will cure any digestive problem.

    1 Reply
    1. re: cycloneillini

      I've only had Frank's in the can and I find it to mooshy even before cooking it. I prefer homemade, but have no source right now. I buy the bagged kind for textural purposes.

    2. I buy bagged Snow Floss the times I exhaust my supply of homemade kraut.

      1. Can't ever find this in NYC, so when I'm out of town, I like to pick up a few cans of Bavarian Kraut, which has caraway seeds in it. I don't know why they don't sell it around here, and I really don't care what brand I find; I just like it and wish it was available where I live.

          1. For what it worth, my favorites are usually German, made with white wine, kinda like the Kuhne brand;

            1. I like Frank's in the can- I go with the "Bavarian Style", flecked with Caraway and a slightly sweet and sour taste- Goes great with a Johnsonville Brat or Franks!!!

              1. I only buy bagged or jarred - never canned.

                5 Replies
                1. re: Karl S

                  So what jarred do you like? I've never found a bagged version that was decent. Mainly they always have preservatives and junk in them.

                  1. re: rworange

                    I've gotten German bagged and jarred varieties at a local German market - can't remember the brands, unfortunately. I don't like canned sauerkraut - tastes metallic (or have they finally switched to lined cans these days?)

                    1. re: Karl S

                      Any of these brands familiar to you? I enjoy kraut, but generally buy one of the grocery store brands - preferring jarred much above canned.

                      While not an actual deli (don't know why it's in its name) - it is a German market within a mile of my house. (Odd that they would locate in this area as I'm not aware of that great of a German population, but they do ship their products world wide.)

                      1. re: CocoaNut

                        I've enjoyed the Gundelsheimer Barrel Sauerkraut, Hengstenberg Mildessa in a Bag, and, I think (can't quite remember with certainty) Kühne Weinkraut. Now, I should note that I always cook my sauerkraut - with finely sliced onions in some pork or goose fat, some white wine, sometimes some apple or pear if in season, and some caraway seed (or, more rarely, juniper berry) and ground pepper.

                        1. re: CocoaNut

                          I love Gundelsheim sauerkraut! It tastes like the kraut we used to eat at the local restaurants when we lived in Germany.

                  2. in honor of my mom -- and her sauerkraut and meatballs dish -- i have to mention silver floss in a can. http://www.chow.com/recipes/13527

                    it is not crunchy, liked the bagged krauts, and has a mellowness, compared with the bagged varieties i've tried.

                    it's gotten some national recognition as a great tasting kraut: http://www.allbusiness.com/services/b...

                    1. Claussen's (sp?) Fresh Pack Sauerkraut is my favorite (in the fridge section by the pickles). Really really delcious and fresh cabbage-y taste.

                      1. My old neighbors and I make it ourselves ... yes fresh made from whole cabbage to shredding, pounding the salt in, letting it set 30 days, draining, and then baggie and sealing in freezer bags (sealed ones). We have been doing this for 15 years. There are 15 of us and we do 5-7 5 gallon buckets. It is an all day working party, brats and beer included. We actually do the same thing to make fresh brats, 1 month before the kraut. Then there is another party to scrape and bag the kraut 30 days after we make it. The best kraut ever. We each get about 30 bags.

                        If I don't have any, I buy Claussens or Boars Head, bagged or maybe a jar. NO can for the kraut. But when I bag our kraut, I usually take over smaller bags and make several 1/2 the size so I can use them just for our brats or on hot dogs.

                        We also get around 20 bags of brats. 15 per bag. They are so much fun to make, I love them. Better than Johnsonville :) I do cook mine in beer and then lightly grill, sauteed onions and red pepper, yellow mustard and kraut. The perfect brat!!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: kchurchill5

                          WOW! I'll bet your neighbors/neighborhood loves you - with that much on hand, I'm sure there are many summer grill-fest parties!

                        2. Our family favorite (and my mom's side is mostly German) was Meeter's, which is still about the best canned kraut I know of. Here in Los Angeles County we are blessed with the presence of the Krüegermann family and their plant in Atwater Village, where they've been making excellent kraut and pickles for many years. It's delicious stuff, not expensive, and has made my most memorable choucroute garni for the nine New Year's Days we've been here.

                          1. I see this thread has been resurrected so here's my not quite recent find.

                            Late last year I came upon the website of Thirty Acre Farm in Whitefield, Maine. It was the sauerkraut I was interested in but they have other products as well. Their sauerkrauts "are raw, lacto-fermented, no vinegar or sugar added, 100% MOFGA Certified Organic. Ingredients are Maine grown whenever possible and mixed with Celtic sea salt which is rich in trace minerals. " I ordered 3 jars immediately: Ruby Kraut, Sauerkraut, Sauerkraut w/caraway seed and juniper berry. Each is absolutely delicious. The most delicious sauerkraut I've ever eaten. I'm just about to order more and also their Kimchi and sour dill pickles.