This New Year’s pork & sauerkraut dish is an easy, traditional meal that you can make in the slow cooker or Instant Pot. Best way to start your New Year!
Do you eat pork & sauerkraut on New Year’s Day? We always have since I was little and even my husband was raised this way. Sauerkraut wasn’t something I loved so much as a kid but I really love it with pork and kielbasa as an adult. We eat this meal many times in the winter as it’s a family favorite. We keep it really simple and recently I decided to try it in the InstantPot. You can do the same thing in the slow cooker so don’t worry if you don’t have one. So here is our super easy New Year’s Pork & Sauerkraut recipe.
I was looking into why we eat pork & sauerkraut on New Year’s Day and there are various thoughts. Some say it’s a Pennsylvania Dutch tradition and some say it’s a German tradition. Some say the cabbage and pork represent wealth. Others say it’s all hogwash and just pure comfort food.
I’m just starting to use my Instant Pot more. I recently made a nourishing Paleo beef stew in it and the meat turned out so tender and delicious. I love that you can do everything from making rice or yogurt to sautéing and pressure cooking all in the same device. The ingredients I used were: sauerkraut, Polish kielbasa, country pork ribs or chops, salt, pepper and brown sugar. That’s all. For the Instant Pot version I first browned the ribs because that’s a nice feature this gadget has: the ability to saute and then pressure cook. I sprinkled a bit of salt and pepper and browned them using the saute setting. Then I added the rest of the ingredients with a little water and pressure cooked for about 15 minutes.
New Year’s Pork & Sauerkraut
We like to eat it with mashed potatoes because it goes well with the tangy sauerkraut and garlicky kielbasa. When I’m watching my carbs, I eat it without the potatoes and eliminate the brown sugar and it’s still very good. Actually my husband prefers it this way but my in laws like the sweetness of the brown sugar.
To make this in a slow cooker, you just add everything to the crock and cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high. Either method will give you this warm, comforting meal that just might bring you luck in the new year! Can’t hurt right? Enjoy! (PS Here’s a short video of how I made this in the Instant Pot. I shot this video using iPhone video platform made by wonderful husband. Check it out here.)
- 1 Tablespoon oil
- 1 lb country pork ribs
- 14 oz kielbasa, sliced
- 24 oz. sauerkraut
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
- ⅓ cup water
- Push the saute button on your Instant pot and let heat up.
- Add the oil and then place all the ribs in to brown. Sprinkle salt and pepper and brown on both sides.
- Then add the sauerkraut and sprinkle the brown sugar on top.
- Put the kielbasa slices on top and pour in the water.
- Close and lock the lid and switch the vent to the on position.
- Push the manual button for 15 minutes.
- When timer is down, either let vent naturally or turn vent with a quick release.
- Open the lid and mix the kraut around a bit.
- Serve as is or with mashed potatoes.
- If using a slow cooker, you can add everything into the crock and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours.
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