Sauerkraut Cake

My mother, Gail Lee Martin, used to make a lovely German chocolate cake. This was back in the day when you didn’t buy a container of pre-mixed icing, so she laboriously made that with the coconut and chopped pecans and other ingredients. It really was special to eat that cake. The cake’s name came from the German chocolate bar that you had to melt for making the cake.

My sister, Karen, found an easier chocolate cake to make that didn’t require melting baker’s chocolate but did have a strange ingredient (sauerkraut). Her recipe produced a very moist chocolate cake and it looked wonderful with the German chocolate icing on the top.


Karen made the cake during her teens and college years. I didn’t realize that she still made it until a picture appeared on her social media recently. That brought back memories, for sure.

sauerkraut cake and spice cabinet

You can tell from the range of spices in the cupboard behind the cake that my sister is a serious cook. She even made a recipe book for her daughter with all their favorites in it. Of course, it included the Sauerkraut Cake and the Coconut-Pecan Icing.

sauerkraut cake in KK cookbook

Just to tease you a bit more, here’s a slice of the cake on a plate ready to eat. I think a glass of milk would be perfect with this rich and moist cake.

sauerkraut cake on plate

I asked her where she had found such an off-beat recipe. She still had the original recipe booklet, so I’ll include that here. That recipe called for a mocha cream icing, but I think it was brilliant to use the coconut and pecan icing recipe from the older German Chocolate Cake.

sauerkraut cake sourcesauerkraut cake title pagesauerkraut cake recipe


One thought on “Sauerkraut Cake

  1. I’m actually planning to make sauerkraut cake again this week! A couple of corrections: it was my daughter who made the recipe book for us, using the TasteBooks platform. And my original recipe with the coconut-pecan cooked filling was clipped from the newspaper–yes, Frank Good’s “Hometown News” column in the Wichita Eagle, but not from one of his compilation booklets. Also, I wouldn’t necessarily say I’d call it an easier recipe! I do love to try offbeat recipes!


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