Sauerkraut is a 5 to 6 weeks fermented meal made from cabbages and lactic acid. Experts encourage the intake of Sauerkraut since it contains proteins, carbohydrates, calories, and fat. Sauerkraut is the only form of cabbage that my children find fascinating. Even though you could eat Sauerkraut raw, it is believed to be safer when heated.
But, can you microwave sauerkraut?
Yes, you can microwave sauerkraut. To microwave, wash and clean off acid or preservatives from the Sauerkraut, transfer them into a microwaveable bowl, and add some water. Microwave for 4 to 5 minutes or until it is soft to your liking. Allow it to rest for about 3 minutes before serving.
This article clarifies the possibility of microwaving Sauerkraut. Other discussed articles include Helpful Tips When Microwaving Sauerkraut, How to Store Microwaved Sauerkraut, How to Serve Sauerkraut, and Does Sauerkraut Improve Digestion.
Heating sauerkraut is highly encouraged, especially for those people that are new to it. Heating will reduce the acidity levels that may cause stomach upset. Consuming small amounts of Sauerkraut is advisable since too much of it could cause diarrhea. To minimize such stomach upset issues, consider washing the Sauerkraut and draining it to reduce acidity and salt levels to a milder level.
The step-to-step Procedure for Microwaving Sauerkraut
Below is a detailed procedure and requirements that will assist in microwaving Sauerkraut.
- 2 cups of Sauerkraut
- Microwavable bowl
- Beer (optional)
- Seasoning (optional )
1. Drain the sauerkraut
It is essential to drain excess preservatives or lactic acid from the Sauerkraut before microwaving it. The best way to drain is to ensure you thoroughly wash the fermented cabbage with cold tap water. The washing and draining will reduce the salt and the acidity level in the Sauerkraut to make it more friendly to your stomach.
2. Transfer the Sauerkraut to a microwavable bowl
Suppose you have bought canned Sauerkraut or you had fermented it yourself; it is always advisable to transfer it into a microwavable bowl before microwaving. That way, you will avoid using a container that is not safe to be microwaved, which might cause you harm.
3. Add some water to the bowl
Add a few spoons of water to the bowl to help with the cooking. The steam produced by the water while microwaving will ensure heat is evenly circulated and that Sauerkraut is cooked uniformly. Instead of water, others opt for beer for additional flavor. You could use a bit of beer to serve the same purpose as water.
At this point, you could add some seasoning of your choice to the bowl. Use a stirrer to gently stir the seasoning through the Sauerkraut to ensure it is well soaked. However, seasoning and beer are optional choices. You do not have to use them, as water is sufficient to ensure the Sauerkraut is appropriately cooked.
4. Microwave the sauerkraut
Place the sauerkraut bowl in the microwave and heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Ensure to stop the microwave midway and stir through for equal cooking.
5. Serve the sauerkraut
Once ready, remove the Sauerkraut from the microwave and allow it to sit for about 3 minutes to cool before serving.
Helpful Tips When Microwaving Sauerkraut
Ensure to wash and drain the Sauerkraut, do not use the container used to ferment the Sauerkraut to microwave; there is a high chance you will notice some sparks in the microwave when heating the Sauerkraut. The sparks are a normal occurrence when microwaving certain vegetables. They shouldn’t worry you.
Below is a clear explanation of the tips used when cooking Sauerkraut in the microwave.
Ensure to wash and drain the Sauerkraut
Water and salt are formed when fermenting Sauerkraut for six weeks. The water and salt could impact the taste of the Sauerkraut when microwaving it. It is, therefore, essential to wash the Sauerkraut and ensure it is completely drained before microwaving. That way, the salt will taste mild when you finally cook them.
Do not use the container used to ferment the Sauerkraut to microwave
Especially if you are microwaving canned Sauerkraut, when fermenting Sauerkraut, the most important thing is to ensure they are stored safely in a friendly environment where fermenting will occur without interference.
Using a microwavable container is not always a priority during the fermenting process. Therefore there is a high chance that the container is not microwave friendly. You are advised to transfer the Sauerkraut into a microwave-safe plate for microwaving after washing and draining it.
How to Store Microwaved Sauerkraut
The best way to store Microwaved Sauerkraut is in an airtight container or freezer bag and place it in the fridge or freezer.
Microwaved Sauerkraut that was stored in the refrigerator can last for five days. The next time you want to use it, ensure it is still in good condition before reheating. You can eat it the way it is or microwave it for 2 minutes.
For longer shelf life, freeze the Microwaved Sauerkraut. Place the Sauerkraut in a freezer bag, leaving some space. The water from the Sauerkraut tends to expand when frozen. Ensure there is no air in the bag before sealing it.
Label the bag with the storage date and that you do not allow it to stay in the freezer for longer without consumption. Place the freezer bag in a container before placing it in the fridge. When ready to use the Sauerkraut from the freezer, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight or defrost it in the microwave.
How to Serve Sauerkraut
You could serve your Sauerkraut either cooked or raw. Raw Sauerkraut could be used as part of the ingredients you use while making your vegetable salad. It has a perfect tangy flavor that will be fully compatible with other salad ingredients.
You could also add Sauerkraut to your favorite soup and make a Sauerkraut soup; its flavor will give the soup an extra delicious filling.
Sauerkraut can also be a side dish to other meals like Slow Cooked Pork Hocks, Brats, and Kasseler.
Common Concerns about Microwaving
Some concerns most people may have about microwaving Sauerkraut include that microwaving Sauerkraut will dry them, alter their nutritional value, and change their natural taste.
Below is a detailed explanation of the concerns.
Microwaving Sauerkraut will dry them
Often, people do not attempt heating Sauerkraut in the microwave because they fear the fermented cabbage will lose its moisture and become too dry. To deal with the issue, you could add a few spoons of water to the bowl before microwaving.
That way, the Sauerkraut will not lose its moisture. Instead, the added water will be heating and evaporating into steam that helps in the equal cooking of the Sauerkraut. Instead of using water, you could use beer to enhance the taste of the Sauerkraut and prevent drying.
Microwaving Sauerkraut alters their nutritional value
There is also the fear of the Sauerkraut losing its nutritional benefits when microwaved. This is not the case when cooking with a microwave. A microwave is believed to be the best method to retain a meal’s nutrition due to its ability to cook meals in a very short time.
Microwaving Sauerkraut may alter their taste and kill the probiotics
When the Sauerkraut is microwaved, the taste does not change; it even becomes enhanced. You can even use microwaved Sauerkraut due to its enhanced taste to add flavor to other dishes. Also, the heat from the microwave or any other cooking method is not enough to kill the probiotics in the Sauerkraut.
Does Sauerkraut Improve Digestion
According to experts, yes, Sauerkraut improves digestion. It contains probiotic bacteria that help digestion and is also very helpful to people suffering from constipation. However, it should be taken with caution, especially if you are yet to be used to the acid levels in the Sauerkraut.
It is advisable to take Sauerkraut in small amounts. The same bacteria helping constipation issues could cause diarrhea if taken in excess. The probiotic bacteria are found in excess in raw Sauerkraut. The other best way to ensure that it is reduced is to rinse the Sauerkraut and drain it. That way, the traces of probiotic bacteria will be mild. Heating the Sauerkraut will also assist in lowering the probiotic bacteria.
Microwaving is considered to be the best cooking method for Sauerkraut. It is fast and will retain the taste and nutrients in the Sauerkraut. The cooking process is more straightforward and safe as long as the Sauerkraut is rinsed, drained, and microwaved in a microwavable bowl for the correct duration.