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Kapusnyak (Sauerkraut) Soup – Recipe

Saurkraut Soup - KapusnyakSauerkraut soup, also known as “Kapusnyak”- in Ukrainian, or “Kapusniak” – in Polish, is a very refreshing, zestful, and nutritious soup.

We enjoy Kapusnyak on a cold winter day, served with a nice piece of rye bread and a spoonful of sour cream mixed in just before serving.

I also like to cook Kapusnyak for Easter Sunday’s late afternoon meal, since in Ukrainian Easter tradition very special foods are served for brunch, hence Kapusnyak hits the spot later on in the day.

It also gives me a chance to use the leftover shank bone from the baked ham, and some of the pan juices, which add wonderful flavor to the Kapusnyak.

Kapusnyak (Sauerkraut) Soup – Recipe

Kapusnyak (Sauerkraut) Soup – Recipe


  • 1 ham shank bone, with some meat on it
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 whole onion
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 carrots, cubed
  • 2 stalk celery, cut to large pieces
  • 2 cups sauerkraut (drained, and rinsed out)
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 Tbs. Canola oil
  • 2 Tbs. flour
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbs dill weed, chopped
  • 2 dry Porcine mushrooms (optional)


  1. Fill a 6 quarts (or larger) soup pot with cold water.
  2. Add the shank bone, and bay leaves, and some of the pan juices (these may be quite salty), and bring to boil.
  3. Cook for 30 minutes.
  4. Add whole onion, chopped carrots, celery, and 2 dry Porcine mushrooms.
  5. Cook for 20 minutes.
  6. Remove the celery stalks, whole onion, and the bay leaves.
  7. Drain the sauerkraut, place on a colander, and rinse under a running, cold water, for about 2 minutes, continuously mixing it, to remove most of the sour juices.
  8. Squeeze out, to drain the water, add to the soup pot.
  9. Bring to boil, and cook for additional 30 minutes, or until kraut is tender.
  10. Remove the whole mushrooms, chopped them up, and add back to soup.
  11. Remove the shank bone, cut away the remaining meat, and add the meat back to soup.
  12. Heat Canola oil in a sauce pan, add the chopped onions, and saute until golden.
  13. Mix in 2 Tbs of flour to the onions, and brown lightly.
  14. Gradually add some soup stock to this mixture, and mix well to creamy consistency (not lumpy), while cooking it for a couple of minutes, so it thickens.
  15. Add to soup, and bring to boil.
  16. Season the soup with salt and pepper, to taste.
  17. Add chopped dill.
  18. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, and fresh rye bread.

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