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Sauerbraten with Red Cabbage

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 200 minutes
Servings: 8

Sauerbraten is traditionally marinated for 1 or up to 2 days. To marinate the meat before cooking, boil the broth, vinegar and brown sugar, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Let cool to room temperature. Season the roast and place in a container. Pour the vinegar mixture over the top, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days, turning occasionally.


  • 1 boneless beef chuck roast, 3 1/2 to 4 lb.
  • 1 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 3/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 head red cabbage, halved lengthwise, cored and thinly shredded crosswise
  • 12 to 16 gingersnap cookies, finely crushed


Start the sauerbraten
Season the chuck roast on all sides with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with the ground ginger and pat the seasonings into the meat. Put the roast in a slow cooker and add the onions. In a small saucepan over high heat, combine the broth and vinegar and bring to a boil. Add the brown sugar and stir until it dissolves. Pour the liquid over the roast and add the bay leaf.

Cook the sauerbraten
Cover and cook on high for 3 hours or on low for 7 hours according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Add the cabbage, using a wooden spoon to press it down into the liquid all around the roast. Sprinkle the cabbage with the 1 tsp. salt. Cover and continue cooking for 1 hour more.

Finish the sauerbraten
Remove and discard the bay leaf. Transfer the roast to a cutting board, and transfer the braised cabbage to a serving bowl. Stir enough of the crushed gingersnaps into the liquid in the slow cooker to form a thick gravy. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. Slice the meat across the grain. Divide the meat and braised cabbage among individual plates. Spoon the gravy on top and serve immediately. Serves 8.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Slow Cooker, by Norman Kolpas (Oxmoor House, 2007).