Caraway-Sauerkraut Beer Bread in the Slow Cooker

When I found this recipe in one of my slow cooker magazines I knew I had to make it.  I believe it was a Better Homes and Garden magazine. Actually, I made it twice!  This was a fun recipe for me, I guess they usually are, just to experiment using a slow cooker to “bake” bread.   This was some thing I have never done.  If you look at my blog of 750+ recipes I like to cook just about every thing, from meat to fish and veggies, and of course healthy recipes (I am a Lifetime Member of Weight Watcher’s).  I love my sweets  and I love new ideas 🙂

Not being a beer drinker I first “googled” wheat beer  before I went shopping.  I wanted to have some idea of what I was looking for.  There are two common varieties and the one I chose is witbier (Dutch- “white beer”) based on the Belgian tradition of using flavourings such as coriander and orange peel which was revived by Pierre Celis at the Hoegaarden Brewery.  It has a refreshing taste, naturally cloudy and brewed using a unique recipe of wheat, malted barley along with the flavourings.  Sounds good, doesn’t it with coriander and orange peel?

Like cereal boxes and everything else the containers are getting smaller but still the same price.  Each bottle only had 11.2 oz. of beer, so I had to open another to make up the difference and have 12 oz.  We all know when baking, you need to be precise.

DSC_4782  DSC_4793

I just love sauerkraut, which is one of the ingredients in this bread, and knew this recipe had the potential to be good.   I use to make my own sauerkraut back when I had a big garden and grew lots of cabbage.  Homemade sauerkraut does not compare to a  bag, bottle or can of sauerkraut.   Even though sauerkraut is German for “sour cabbage” the Chinese first ate it as standard fare while building the Great Wall of China over 2,000 years ago.  They used rice wine!

Yes, that is me below at the end of a long row of cabbages along with my hard-working family members.  This is an old picture from Manchester, our “farm” in the country.


The first time I made this bread I was not happy with the crust – it was too hard to eat, part of it was burnt even though the bread inside was delicious. So, I decided to make it again as I had plenty of ingredients but this time I made a foil collar to place inside the 3 quart slow cooker.  I also added a foil circle for the bottom.  This little tidbit comes from Cooks Illustrated.   See information below.

This delicious bread is going to Angie’s Fiesta Friday #50 party where her two co-hosts; Selma @Selma’s Table and Sue @Birgerbird are helping to get the celebration going.

Caraway-Sauerkraut Beer Bread in the Slow Cooker

  • nonstick cooking spray
  • heavy duty aluminum foil for a “collar”
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 2 tbsp. ground flaxseeds
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. caraway seed
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1  12-oz. bottle of room temperature wheat beer
  • 1/2 cup sauerkraut, drained and chopped (I did not rinse it or squeeze it dry)
  • 2 tbsp. Dijon mustard

Make your foil collar and round foil bottom and place in slow cooker.   Use heavy duty aluminum foil and fold it over 6 times.  Spray with nonstick cooking spray.

Combine all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl and make a well in the center.  Mix all of the wet ingredients and pour all at once into the dry ingredients.  Stir just until combined; add to the slow cooker.

Cook on high for 3-1/2 hours; it did take this long in my slow cooker.  Remove lid carefully so as not to let any condensation from the lid touch the bread  and place scott towels on top of the bread and tuck them in.  Put the lid back on, turn off the heat and leave for 10 minutes so the moisture can be absorbed.

I put it under the broiler to brown the top just a little more.

Recipe by 

My 3 quart round slow cooker and foil collar.

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39 thoughts on “Caraway-Sauerkraut Beer Bread in the Slow Cooker

  1. Pingback: Fiesta Friday #50 | The Novice Gardener

  2. This turned out perfect Judi – I like the shape that it held in the slow cooker. I once tried banana bread in the slow cooker, it turned out great, but I’ve yet to try real bread, this looks like a good recipe :). Thanks


  3. Whooooaa this is awesome! I have a HUGE tub of sauerkraut in my fridge because it was the only size they had at the store and I was making my hubby a Reuben! I was just thinking about how i have to find other ways to use it! This is awesomeeee!


  4. I love the idea of baking bread in a slow cooker, and these ingredients are also new to me in a bread. I must try it. I am hoping my use of dried corn husks will work just as well as foil – but we shall see.


  5. ALERT. ALARM, ALARM, ALARM. You have made something that has birgerbird written all over it. I am right now sending this to my friend Sarah who is a chef and having a pop up dinner that is PA Dutch (German food) in theme and I am helping her . . . we MUST have this bread. I love this and thank you so much for bringing the slow cooker into the situation!


    • That’s fantastic Sue as the bread is just delicious – all the flavors fit together perfectly. Simple to make and you do not tie up your oven. The foil collar is important and probably the wheat beer I used. It is always good to know when I am providing a “fun” recipe for people to use and a German meal is just perfect. I will be making it again 🙂


      • Yes, the not tying up the oven is always good. You know, this year after Christmas I had quite a bit of the Servietenknodel (bread dumpling) left over so I just smushed all the slices together, added my leftover sauerkraut, and baked it with a little egg and milk and voila, sauerkraut bread! I love it!


  6. I LOVE sauerkraut!!! Just had a long discussion how best to make it with my Bosnian friend’s mum – I’ve never attempted it myself but they are making it every year, without fail, with the fresh cabbage in November. And to use it for bread – what an ingenious idea!!


    • I knew you would like this bread Ginger. I made it once, see my recipe Homemade Sauerkraut and it was really special. Nothing like what you buy in the store. I always look for homemade sauerkraut – they usually have it at my Farmer’s Market. You just need a place for it to ferment and it does take awhile but definitely worth it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. This looks and sounds amazing! My husband can’t stand sauerkraut though so I’ll have to just drool over yours. I can’t believe that they changed the size of the beer! That is an outrage! Thank you for uncovering this travesty! I wish I could say that I would protest by not buying beer but lets get real!


    • Thanks Cheryl – I love the idea of using a slow cooker to bake bread especially when it turned out so good. I have a “sweet” version I want to make sometime. It is freezing up here – a sister keeps trying to get me to visit her near Orlando but it is cold there too 🙂


      • If your Sis is chilly in Orlando it is temporary. Normally it is in the high 60’s low 70’s there at this time of year.
        We are about 6-8 degrees cooler. Next week back to the norm! Yay. Keep safe and warm. Cheryl

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I’ve seen bread being baking in new ways all over the web but not with a slow cooker. Your tip about making a foil collar is much appreciated.


    • Thanks Naina – I read alot with all of my magazine subs and of course my many cookbooks and then there is the internet. I also try to watch a food channel now and then to keep up to date as much as possible. It is so much fun to discover new ways to cook and have the recipes turn out so good 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. As I was scrounging through my spice cabinet prior to this evening’s dinner I found caraway seeds. Never opened and no recollection of why I bought them…NOW I know… to make this bread! Looks like the perfect addition to a dinner of kielbasa. I’m soooo glad you posted this, Judi – I’ll never question whether bread can be made in a slow cooker again… your’s looks perfect. 🙂 Yummy!


  10. Will this work in a crockpot? Instead of slow cooker? I’m really interested to try it but has no slow cooker, only crockpot. I had pork tenderloin and sauerkraut for New Year’s but there was just so much sauerkraut left!


    • I’m pretty sure both words mean the same thing. I have one round 3 quart (which I used in this recipe and it says nothing on the front but Brentwood); I have one 6 quart Smartpot; I have 3 Rival Crockpots (2,3 and 4 quart) and they also say stoneware slow cooker; and lastly one more 6 quart which says crockpot and the orginal slow cooker. All you need is high and low and you are good to go 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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