Sauerkraut Soup with Meatballs

Here's a sauerkraut soup that's so quick to make. It's a family favourite that tastes great with some German rye bread on the side. Made with canned or jarred sauerkraut, some frozen meatballs to save time, and some other common items, this unusual soup will impress your family.

sauerkraut soup

Sauerkraut Soup


  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 2 small onions, diced
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 28-oz can or jar sauerkraut, well-drained
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 lb frozen cooked meatballs
  • 1 lb potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 - 3 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • salt and pepper


  • Heat the oil in a large pot. Sauté onions in oil until translucent. 
  • Add sugar and continu sautéing until golden brown.
  • Add drained sauerkraut and continue sautéing for a few minutes. 
  • Add paprika.
  • Add meatballs, potatoes, carrots, and beef broth.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer about 15 - 30 minutes or until the veggies are tender and the meatballs are heated through.
  • Season with salt and pepper if needed.
  • Makes 4 servings

A bit of this and a bit of that ...

  1. The quantities of veggies can easily be changed. Really doesn't need to be measured. Just be sure that the broth covers everything.
  2. Use beef bouillon cubes and water to make beef broth if desired. 

Looking for some other quick and delicious German soups? 

Here's a collection of some of my very favorite German soups, many passed down through the generations from my Oma to my Mutti to me.

My Quick Fix Soups ebook also teaches the basics of making soup, using traditional methods that have been modernized to make them quicker, easier, and often cheaper. 

Since I just love quick soup recipes, and this is really what this website is all about, this soup really fits well. 

If you have time, you can always make meat balls from scratch. You'll find a similar recipe on my sister site, Quick German Recipes.

Even though I grew up with German foods, this soup was not one I learned from my Mutti. It wasn't until I was asked about this just a few years ago, that I did some research. I had only a simple recipe for sauerkraut and that was as a side dish. 

I ended up finding a meatball soup recipe and it had sauerkraut. Then I checked some German cookbooks, and, low and behold, there they were. Soups of all kinds that used sauerkraut. 


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Here's what some of our readers say:

Christina H. says, “Oh, this looks so good!”


Anne C. says, “Nothing better than home made chicken soup. I use a lot of chives just before serving. We all love it at least once a week.” 


Andy F. says, “Hey guy -- this is MAN stuff ... work a bit harder around the house, then take 5 and stretch it to 15 with an extra helping.”


Beth F. says, “oo thank you for posting this ... I have been searching for a good recipe for years. This was my favorite when I was stationed in Frankfurt in the 80's.”


Lorrie B. says, “I had this @ Christmas dinner ... along with perogies .... brings back old days ...”


Doris S. says, "Das sieht lecker aus!”

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