Choucroute Garnie

One of the many benefits of going to culinary school was that I got to bring a ton of food home with me. Anything that was leftover of our class work was divided up and put into containers. Thank goodness because I pretty much had no time to grocery shop and cook while I was going to school 14 hours a day and neither did Marc! When we were in our pastry module for a month I think we lived mostly on cakes, breads and puff pastry. Those were dark but delicious days. At least there was fruit in the fruit tarts I made and brought home, ha! Marc was only too happy to try out what I was learning, I even got to introduce him to foie gras. Of all of the dishes I brought home though, choucroute garnie was his favorite since my husband is definitely a meat and potatoes Polish man. Choucroute Garnie is the fancy French way of saying “dressed sauerkraut” and it is the signature dish of the Alsace region of France. Now you’re probably wondering what the heck sauerkraut is doing in a classic French dish, but Alsace shares a border with Germany and has a lot of German influence in its cuisine. I decided to make my take on it while keeping the traditional elements of this dish.

Mmmm....glorious diced up slab bacon for the choucroute garnie!
Mmmm….glorious diced up slab bacon for the choucroute garnie. It formed the whole flavor base for the dish with its salty goodness.
You can't have a good choucroute garnie without potatoes and onion!
You also can’t have a good choucroute garnie without potatoes and onion! I prepped a whole bunch and got them ready to go into the pot.
The herbs, bay leaves and peppercorns stacked on the square of cheesecloth.
A bouquet garni is also very important to this dish. It provides so much flavor. I stacked lots of herbs, bay leaves and peppercorns on a square of cheesecloth before I wrapped it up and tied it.
The choucroute garnie ready to go into the oven.
That sachet of herbs, the veggies, pork chops and TONS of sauerkraut went into my huge Dutch oven with the cooked slab bacon. Then I poured in lots of stock and white wine too. I made sure everything got coated in that bacon flavor and then covered the pot. The choucroute garnie was ready to go into the oven!
The garnie part of the choucroute garnie, lots of yummy sausages!
So what I put in the oven was actually the choucroute portion of the dish. The garni was next to tackle and it was simple. The garnie part of the choucroute garnie was made of lots of yummy sausages and I just browned them to perfection.

It was time to take the choucroute out of the oven and get ready to serve at this point. I removed the sachet and discarded it and also removed the pork chops. The pork chops and sausages went onto a big platter, and then the rest of the sauerkraut mixture went into a huge serving bowl. I like to serve the choucroute garnie family style like this, everyone can just take what they want! Oh my goodness, there was so much flavor and my hubby was a happy man. It brought me right back to my school days. Enjoy the goodness, the handy printable is just below!

Choucroute Garnie
Choucroute Garnie
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Choucroute Garnie
Choucroute Garnie
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
2 hrs
Total Time
2 hrs 15 mins
Course: Main Course
Servings: 10
Author: Jeanie and Lulu's Kitchen
  • 1 dash olive oil
  • 1 pound slab bacon diced into small cubes
  • 2 whole bone-in pork chops
  • 8 whole yukon gold potatoes quartered
  • 1 whole onion peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 pinches salt
  • 2 whole bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 10 whole black peppercorns
  • 5 pounds canned sauerkraut (yes you read that right. Trust me!)
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup dry riesling
  • 1/2 cup hard apple cider (or the non-alcoholic version)
  • 6 links Bratwurst
  • 4 links Knockwurst
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350. Heat the olive oil in a very large dutch oven over medium high heat. Get the slab bacon in and let it start to cook and render out. Then get the pork chops in to cook with the bacon in the bacon fat for about 2 minutes. Add the potatoes and onion and stir them into the bacon fat as well for a minute.
  2. While that all cooks, make a sachet of the herbs and peppercorns. Lay out a square of cheesecloth and stack the bay leaves, rosemary sprigs, thyme sprigs and peppercorns on it. Then roll it up tight into a bundle and tie it with kitchen twine.
  3. Get the sauerkraut into the pot along with the sachet you just made and give it a gentle stir. Then pour in the chicken stock, riesling and apple cider. Cover the dutch oven its lid and get it into the oven for 2 hours. Check on it periodically to make sure nothing is scorching and there is still liquid in it.
  4. About 30 minutes before the mixture in the oven is done, get a large rondeau pan on the stove filled halfway with water and bring it to a boil. Boil the bratwurst and knockwurst for 20 minutes. Drain the water out of the pan and sear the sausages to get some color on them for about a minute or two.
  5. Take the dutch oven out and uncover it. Remove the sachet and discard it. Remove the pork chops and put them on a big platter along with the sausages. Heap the rest of the sauerkraut mixture into a large serving bowl and serve everything family style. Enjoy!