Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls (Slow Cooker)

Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls, made in  a slow cooker,  are styled after the cabbage rolls made at the Waynesville Ohio Sauerkraut Festival.
Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls

Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls (Slow Cooker)

By Sue Lau | Palatable Pastime

Sauerkraut cabbage rolls are my recipe of the  day. They are made like the type served at the Waynesville Sauerkraut festival from  the  St. Augustine’s church.

They are filled  with a beef  and rice mixture, then placed in a slow cooker or  crock pot with a tomato and  sauerkraut mix and  simmered all day until   tender and perfect. Served with mashed potatoes or  noodles, they are fantastic.

Sauerkraut Cabbage RollsThis is a  pic of  the Waynesville Sauerkraut festival where they serve this type cabbage roll. As you can see, in most years it is really crowded, and lines to  get cabbage rolls at the church booth can be quite long.

While  it’s great to  get down the and enjoy the fun,  it’s a bit more convenient to make these at home.

Plus you can  get more kraut that way.
Waynesville Sauerkraut festival

Here the  cabbage rolls are placed into  the crockpot  with layers of  tomato  puree and  sauerkraut  between. I  put a .few of the extra outer leaves over the last ones to go in (after I top with kraut and sauce). It seems to help trap the heat and steam by the cabbage rolls.

These cook all day long until  they  are fork tender. Sometimes I find if I run the cooker on high, it will take longer than half the low temp time for some reason. Just test with a fork.

Placing cabbage rolls in the crock pot
Placing cabbage rolls in the crock pot, getting ready to cook.

Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls

Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls

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Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls

Sue Lau
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 10


  • Large oval 6-quart slow cooker, or two small slow cookers


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 cup cold cooked long-grain rice
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large head green cabbage
  • 2 pounds sauerkraut with brine
  • 29 ounces tomato puree
  • 1 cup water


  • Mix together ground beef, cold cooked rice, onion, milk, salt and pepper to taste, garlic, egg and paprika; set aside.
  • Cut out the core of a large green cabbage. Place cabbage core side down on a plate in the microwave and cook for about 5 minutes.
  • Gently peel off several leaves intact.
  • Microwave again, in one minute increments, peeling off additional cabbage leaves each time.
  • Place a half cup mixture of beef on the inside lower/thick part of the cabbage leaf and roll the thick part over the meat. Fold over the side parts of the leaf and then roll up like a burrito.
  • Place 6 of these seam-side-down in the bottom of the crockpot, then top those with about half of the sauerkraut and half the tomato puree.
  • Make 6 more rolls and add to the crockpot.
  • Top that with the remaining sauerkraut, tomato puree and an additional cup of water.
  • Top cabbage rolls with a few extra cabbage leaves if you have any.
  • Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or until cabbage rolls are tender.


From the kitchen of palatable
Keyword crock pot, slow cooker
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Sauerkraut Cabbage Rolls

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Post has been updated from 9.19.2013  to reflect  new photography.


14 responses

  1. Hi Betty! I use the milk to adjust the consistency of the meat filling. I use milk in my meat loaf recipes as well. It works! Try it. ~Sue

  2. Ha ha.. I live like 7 miles from Waynesville as the crow flies.. I was looking for a cabbage roll recipe and this was the first one I came across.. Will have to try the rolls next time I go to the fest.

  3. I have helped make the oh so famous St. Augustine cabbage rolls for years and you’ve got it pretty much right. Its amazing how simple it is! Of course when you’re making 30,000 cabbage rolls it has to be, right?

  4. I can’t believe that this is the first recipe that came up tonight when I keyed this in…we went to the Waynesville Sauerkraut Fest today for my first time and I had this cabbage roll and as soon as I saw this picture, I thought wow that looks just like theirs did and then I read where she said the Waynesville Fest….never seen them made with the sauerkraut and when I asked the man for the recipe he just laughed and said the ladies make them and I don’t know the recipe….after I got home, I remembered the ingredients were printed on the front of the bld…..this was a great find for me and I brought home a 3 pack for supper for my brother….They had a beautiful weekend with the weather being in the 70’s and sunny and the crowd was huge, at least I know that the food vendors did well, we also got a rueben and it was excellent, too…..


  6. I use to live in Ohio and have been to the Sauerkraut Festival many times. I live in NC now and have been craving these cabbage rolls! Thanks for the recipe I cannot wait to try it!

  7. This recipe sounds incredible! I’ve been wanting to explore the different options when it comes to using sauerkraut. I can’t wait to try. Thank you for sharing!

  8. These are just as good as I remember! I moved out of state over 25 years ago and have yet to have a cabbage roll as good as this one. My one critique is the ratios are off. If you make 12 cabbage rolls, you need to double this recipe. I will definitely make these again!

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