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Beer-Simmered Bratwurst with Onions and Red Cabbage Sauerkraut

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 3 min
  • Prep: 15 min
  • Inactive: 10 min
  • Cook: 38 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
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3 large onions, peeled and thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, smashed

3 pounds precooked bratwurst, pricked with a fork

6 bottles dark beer

2 cups water

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

1 teaspoon caraway seeds

1 teaspoon mustard seeds

1 (1-inch) piece of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped

Hot dog buns, brown bread, or hoagie buns

Sweet and hot German mustard, optional, for garnish

Spicy brown mustard, optional, for garnish

Red Cabbage Sauerkraut, recipe follows

Pickles, optional, for garnish

Pickled beets, optional, for garnish

Pickled eggs, optional, for garnish

Red Cabbage Sauerkraut:

1/4 cup olive oil

2 cups red wine vinegar

1 cup water

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon whole mustard seeds

2 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced

1 large head red cabbage, thinly shredded

Salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Preheat the grill to high. Arrange the onion slices and garlic along the bottom of a medium stockpot. Place the bratwurst on top and then add the beer, water, coriander, caraway, mustard seeds, and ginger. Bring to a simmer over the grill grates or on a burner. Simmer the sausages in the mixture for about 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let the bratwurst sit in the liquid for 10 minutes.
  2. Remove the sausages with a pair of tongs onto a platter. Remove the onions with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl. Grill the sausages until the casings are crisp and golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Serve the bratwurst on the buns with the onions, mustard and sauerkraut, if desired. Garnish with pickles, pickled beets, and pickled eggs, if desired.

Red Cabbage Sauerkraut:

  1. Preheat grill to high. In a medium saucepan, combine the oil, vinegar, water, and sugar over medium heat, and cook until the sugar has melted. Add the mustard seeds, garlic, and cabbage, and cook until the cabbage is soft, about 15 to 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.