This easy recipe for German Pork Ribs and Sauerkraut for the slow cooker brings the family to the dinner table with a minimum of effort and maximum flavor!
**Please Note - The printable recipe card with detailed instructions, complete ingredient measurements, and nutritional information for making Crock Pot German Pork Ribs and Sauerkraut is available near the end of this post. OR click on the "jump to recipe" button (found above) to be taken directly to the recipe.
The ingredient list:
**Note - The following lists of ingredients plus kitchen tools and equipment contain affiliate links (highlighted in blue) for your consideration and shopping convenience. #CommissionsEarned
- pork country ribs
- prepared sauerkraut
- baby bella mushrooms
- canola oil
- apple cider
- brown sugar
- caraway seeds
- salt and pepper
Kitchen tools and equipment needed:
- large skillet
- measuring cups and spoons
- chef's knife or santoku knife
- cutting board
- wooden spoon
- 8-quart slow cooker
- large slotted spoon
How this recipe came to be:
As soon as the seasons change, my heart and taste buds travel to the flavors of Germany.
Although I've never been there, Germany is on my bucket list of places I dream of going.
However, with recipes like Slow Cooker German Pork Ribs with Sauerkraut, I like to imagine myself already there.
Why this recipe works:
Nothing speaks to the flavors of a German dinner more than pork and sauerkraut.
If you're familiar with country ribs, then you know that they tend to have a bit more fat on them than baby back ribs.
I like country ribs for the slow-cooker because the fat slowly melts into all the ingredients in the cooker, imparting everything with that great pork flavor.
If you're worried about this dish being greasy or fatty tasting, no worries. The acidic taste of the sauerkraut cuts through the fatty pork and balances all the flavors nicely.
Watch the entire YouTube video:
The following was one of my first attempts at making a YouTube "cooking show style" video.
Never mind that I was very nervous in front of the camera and check out how good this recipe looks when it's finished and ready to be eaten. 🙂
Is there a trick to getting the MOST flavor from this slow cooker meal?
To give these German pork ribs the most flavor possible, I encourage you to spend the time to brown the country ribs on all sides before adding them to the cooker.
Also, adding apple cider added to the skillet after browning the pork will deglaze the pan and pick up all the stuck-on brown bits (fond) from the bottom of the pan.
This technique will impart even more flavor to the sauce before adding it to the cooker.
What is sauerkraut, and is it good for you?
Sauerkraut is fermented cabbage.
During the fermentation process, beneficial probiotics are produced making sauerkraut great for gut health.
Sauerkraut is also a great source of fiber, vitamins C, K, potassium, calcium, and phosphorous.
What are some of the health benefits of sauerkraut?
The step-by-step photo instructions for making slow cooker pork ribs and sauerkraut:
- In a large skillet, brown the seasoned (salt and pepper) ribs on all sides in the oil over medium/high heat.
- Add the ribs to the slow cooker.
- In the same skillet, add the butter to the skillet and saute the mushrooms and onions, stirring occasionally, until the onions are limp and slightly golden (approximately 5 minutes).
- Season the mushrooms and onions lightly with salt and pepper. Stir.
- Add the sauteed mushrooms and onions to the slow cooker along with the browned ribs.
- Add the sliced carrots to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the apple cider, brown sugar, and the allspice to the skillet, making sure to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Carefully pour the contents of the skillet into the slow cooker.
- Add the prepared sauerkraut to the cooker and lightly stir to combine.
- Cover the cooker and set for 6 hours on low, or 4 hours on high.
- Spoon the German Pork Ribs with Sauerkraut onto a plate or bowl, and enjoy!
Additional German-inspired dishes you'll also love:
*German Knockwurst Sandwich (shown below)
This copycat German knockwurst sandwich is my version of a terrific sausage sandwich I’d had while on vacation in Northern Wisconsin.
Crispy on the outside and tender and fluffy on the inside. German Fried Potatoes are everything you want in a potato side dish…including the bacon!
*German Pork Schnitzel (shown below)
German Pork Schnitzel has a light lemony flavor and a crispy outside coating. When you want a memorable meal that can be made in minutes, this is the recipe to reach for.
*German Bee Sting Cake (not shown, but featured in the video)
German Bee Sting Cake is a yeasted cake with a beautiful texture, fantastic honey flavor (hence the name), a beautifully caramelized almond topping, not to mention a thick, creamy vanilla filling.
*German Pork Ribs and Sauerkraut for the Slow Cooker (shown below) THIS IS THE PLACE!!
Below is the printable recipe card along with the nutritional information for today's Crock Pot German Pork Ribs and Sauerkraut.
When you make this recipe, and I hope you do, I'd appreciate it if you'd take a moment to leave a star rating on the recipe card and briefly comment on why you rated it as you did. FYI - Google appreciates recipe ratings and, in turn, will share my recipes with more people. Thank you so much!!
Printable Recipe Card
SLOW-COOKER GERMAN PORK RIBS AND SAUERKRAUT
- 6 pounds pork country ribs cut into 5" pieces, seasoned with salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoon canola oil or other light-colored oil
- 1 large sweet onion roughly chopped
- 6 ounces baby Bella mushrooms halved or quartered
- 4 large carrots peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1½ teaspoon kosher salt divided
- ¾ teaspoon pepper divided
- 2 cups apple cider or apple juice
- 1½ teaspoon allspice
- 1 jar (32 ounces) sauerkraut with caraway seeds
- 1 teaspoon caraway seeds optional
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- In a large skillet over medium/high heat, brown the cut and seasoned pork ribs in 1 tablespoon canola oil on all sides. Once browned, transfer the ribs to an 8-quart slow cooker.
- Reduce the heat in the skillet to medium and add the remaining oil.
- Add the onions and carrots to the skillet along with the apple cider making sure to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Brink the mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
- Add the brown sugar, caraway, allspice, mushrooms, and sauerkraut to the skillet. Stir well. Bring the mixture to a low simmer.
- Carefully spoon the sauerkraut mixture over the pork ribs in the slow cooker.
- Cover the slow cooker and set the timer for 6 hours on low. or 4 hours on high.
- Remove the lid from the cooker for the last 30 minutes of cooking for the sauce to thicken slightly.
- Remove the ingredients with a slotted spoon and pour over mashed potatoes or spaetzle to serve.
I sincerely hope you've enjoyed today's recipe for German Pork Ribs for the Slow Cooker as much as I've enjoyed bringing it to you!