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Sausage and Sauerkraut Soup

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A tart and savory, sausage and sauerkraut soup made with pinto beans, sour cream, beef broth, and other tasty ingredients.

Growing up, my grandmother would come to visit and make all sorts of Hungarian-inspired treats.

From cabbage rolls to walnut rolls, she loved to cook for the family. Now, I’m sharing those recipes with my family.

Today, we’re posting a sausage and sauerkraut soup. Of course, she called it something a little different.

Sausage and sauerkraut soup served in earthenware bowls.

She called it bean soup and would spend all day in the kitchen preparing it for our dinner.

Now, to cut down on the cook time, I made one slight change. I use canned beans instead of dried pintos.

Other than that, the recipe is pretty close to her homemade cabbage soup. So, shall we get cooking?

Top-down view of the finished soup in bowls.

How to make sausage and sauerkraut soup?

First, slice the sausage, dice the onions, drain the sauerkraut, and rinse and drain the canned beans.

After that, place a large stock pot or saucepan over medium heat. Pour in the oil and add in the Kielbasa and onions.

An aerial view of the Kielbasa sausage in a pan.

Next, sauté the meat and onions until the veggies soften and the sausage browns (about 5-minutes).

At this point, you can pour in the beef broth. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the bottom of the pan.

Sauerkraut, beans, and broth added to the pan.

Then, bring the broth to a simmer. Afterward, add the drained sauerkraut and pinto beans.

Allow the soup to simmer for about 30-minutes, then turn off the heat. Let the soup cool for about 15-20 minutes.

Heavy cream and sour cream added to the soup.

Last, stir in the milk and sour cream. Reheat the soup a little, if needed, and serve.

That’s it, your sausage and sauerkraut soup is done! Kim and I hope you enjoy it and wish you all the best 🙂

Two brown bowls filled with bean soup.

Recipe Tips:

  • To keep the soup from separating, you can always temper the milk and sour cream. Simply combine the dairy products in a separate bowl. Then, stir in a 1/4-cup of the warm broth. Continue adding small amounts of broth (while stirring) to slowly increase the temperature of the dairy. Once it’s no longer cold, add the tempered cream(s) to the soup (while stirring).
  • In regards to authenticity, I make no claims that this recipe is an, “authentic Hungarian soup.” In fact, I’ve never been able to locate a sauerkraut soup that uses beans, sauerkraut, and sausage.
  • You can prepare this recipe using dry beans. But, the legumes will need to be soaked overnight, drained, and then slow simmered in the sausage and onion broth for 4-6 hours (or until soft). The soup would need to cool drastically before adding the sauerkraut, sour cream, and milk.
  • This recipe can be frozen. My grandmother would make multiple pots of bean soup and then store leftovers in our freezer. It should hold, when properly stored in your freezer, for up to 2-months.
An aerial view of the finished soup in bowls.

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An aerial view of the finished soup in bowls.

Sausage and Sauerkraut Soup

4.1 from 15 votes
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Author: John
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 8 Servings


  • 1 teaspoon cooking oil, or butter
  • 14 ounces kielbasa sausage, sliced into ½ inch circles
  • 1 cup white onion, diced
  • 4 to 5 cups beef broth
  • 2 pounds sauerkraut, drained
  • 30 ounces pinto beans, two (15 ounce) cans, drained and rinsed
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 1 cup heavy cream, or whole milk
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  • Place a large stock pot over medium heat, add oil, sausage, and onions. Sauté for 4 to 6 minutes until the onions start to soften and the sausage is browned.
    1 teaspoon cooking oil
    14 ounces kielbasa sausage
    1 cup white onion
  • Add the broth, and deglaze the bottom of the pan if needed. Bring the liquid to a simmer. 
    4 to 5 cups beef broth
  • Add the sauerkraut and pinto beans. Stir to combine, and simmer for 30 minutes.
    2 pounds sauerkraut
    30 ounces pinto beans
  • Remove from heat, and allow the soup to cool for 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in sour cream and heavy cream. Taste, and season with salt and pepper.
    8 ounces sour cream
    1 cup heavy cream
  • Serve hot with bread, crackers, or dinner rolls! Leftovers can be stored in a sealed container, in your fridge, for up to 3-days.


*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of 1 cup of the sausage and sauerkraut soup. Actual calories will vary.
*For more tips and information, please refer to the post.


Serving: 1cupsCalories: 449kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 16gFat: 32gSaturated Fat: 15gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0.003gCholesterol: 85mgSodium: 1933mgPotassium: 761mgFiber: 9gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 635IUVitamin C: 20mgCalcium: 150mgIron: 4mg
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Recipe Rating


  1. 3 stars
    Interesting recipe, used it because I made a batch of kraut and wanted to find different ways to use it. Amended the recipe with no-salt stock, didn’t add any additional salt, was still very salty because of the kraut and kielbasa. I wonder if adding baby potatoes might mellow it.

    1. Good Morning Lisa, the soup can be salty for some. The sauerkraut and cured sausage are both high in salt/sodium. The baby potatoes should mellow it out a little. You could also try using 3 cups of sodium free broth and 1-2 cups of water. That should also help dull it down a little too. Thank you for commenting. Have a nice day.