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German Chocolate Sauerkraut Cake

"People who compliment me on this chocolaty treat are surprised to learn it's a sauerkraut cake," reports Patricia Kile of Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania.
  • Total Time
    Prep: 25 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    14 servings


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sauerkraut, rinsed, drained, squeezed dry and finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut, divided
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans, divided


  • In a bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine dry ingredients; add to the creamed mixture alternately with water. Fold in sauerkraut, coconut and pecans. Pour into three greased and floured 9-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for 20-24 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks; cool completely.
  • In a bowl, combine melted chocolate and mayonnaise. Set aside 1-1/4 cups for frosting. To the remaining chocolate mixture, add half of the coconut and pecans; spread between cake layers. Spread reserved chocolate mixture over top and sides of cake. Combine remaining coconut and pecans; press onto sides of cake. Store in the refrigerator. Slice with a serrated knife.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 570 calories, 37g fat (15g saturated fat), 76mg cholesterol, 424mg sodium, 59g carbohydrate (38g sugars, 4g fiber), 6g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • lornak
    Feb 28, 2015

    Without the frosting, I found it had a slight cabbage taste. Once the frosting was on it was okay. would I make it again.. probably not. The cake was okay, but in all honesty, I have had better, for less fuss.

  • whitecitygranny
    Sep 29, 2014

    What can I substitute in place of the coconut? I don't know why but I just don't care for it at coconut milk is a different story love it...

  • delowenstein
    Mar 15, 2014

    I prepared this recipe for the first time 3/15/14-in fact, I made this recipe twice tonight! I used 1 tsp. salt in this recipe and instead of water, I used 1 cup whole milk which I soured with 1 Tbsp. vinegar. I did chop the sauerkraut after I rinsed, drained and squeezed it dry, using my food processor. I used one 12x8" greased and floured baking pan and an 8x8x2" square baking pan, greased and floured the first time around and I used one round 8" baking pan and a 12x8" baking pan, greased and floured the 2nd time around! For the icing: I just used 1 can of chocolate frosting (prepared) and added 2 Tbsp. milk and 1/3 cup each flaked coconut and finely chopped pecans. I actually used 2 cans of chocolate frosting, but I prepared the frosting with 1/2 the coconut and pecans twice! I used a medium bowl for the frosting, 1/2 of the coconut and pecans & 2 Tbsp. milk for each recipe! I combined the other half of the pecans and coconut (1/3 cup each) which I sprinkled over the top of the cakes which I'd iced. I baked the cakes for 40 minutes at 350o F. and they tested done! I found that I'd had to scrape the bottom and sides of bowl after adding eggs and vanilla to make sure that the mixture was blended well! I have found that I also have to evenly spread the batter in pans! All in all, this recipe is great! I purposely chose NOT to prepare this cake as a layer cake! Thank you, Patricia Kile, for sharing your recipe! I'm planning to share these cakes with my chapel/the hospital depts. where I volunteer! I also have a new use for sauerkraut! And it's on account of this cake! I'd made a similar recipe this past week and no one would even know that there was sauerkraut in the cake! I'd chopped the sauerkraut finely and I think that's the difference! delowenstein

  • chrissteve
    Sep 22, 2012

    Someone asked how long I baked the cake. I used Splenda brown sugar instead of the sugar called for, adding an equal amount of nonfat dry milk and extra baking soda as Splenda recommends. The cake bakes a little faster so 45-50 minutes was enough in my oven.

  • chrissteve
    Nov 6, 2011

    I baked the cake in a Bundt pan and made just half the frosting. We try to limit sweets so we prefer this cake with fewer carbs! But it's still delicious and no one ever thinks it might contain sauerkraut!

  • charlotte34
    Jun 8, 2011

    I haven't made it yet, but I am going to make one tomorrow. It just SOUNDS like a fabulous cake. Can't wait to taste it. !!!

  • gorbetz
    Mar 24, 2011

    I've made this 3 times. It is decadent. Foolproof. It's rich and delicious. Like a dessert you would get served at a posh restaurant. You can't go wrong with this one. And no one will believe that it has sauerkraut in it. EXCELLENT!

  • MaryLouJ
    Aug 16, 2010

    No comment left

  • Daphne
    Nov 2, 2007

    No comment left