Tempeh Sauerkraut Casserole

I’m getting good at making tempeh! Tonight I was wondering what I should do with my latest successful batch and decided to throw together a casserole. My father was proudly observing German-American Day yesterday, so although it’s a day late, I decided to give the casserole a German flair by adding sauerkraut. I don’t know how fair it is to just add sauerkraut to something and call it “German”, but that’s what I’m going to do in order to impress my father. And hey, the mashed potato topping can honor my Irish heritage. It’s the casserole that represents all my ancestors!

Tempeh Sauerkraut Casserole

2 Russet potatoes, chunked
1 onion, sliced into half-moons
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 cups water
1 Tbsp vegan margarine
3 Tbsp prepared horseradish (or to taste)
1 1/2 cups sauerkraut
1/2 tsp caraway seeds
2 carrots, chopped
1 pound tempeh, cubed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring a pot of water to a boil and add the potatoes. Cook until tender.

Meanwhile, whisk together the flour, nutritional yeast, salt, and garlic powder in a medium small pot.

Add the water and heat over medium heat until thickened, whisking often.

While the potatoes and sauce are cooking, heat a small amount of oil in a frying pan. When I was in San Francisco, I mentioned that I had purchased a little oil brush that I like to use to coat my cast iron pan with a thin layer of oil. This is what it looks like:

It’s overexposed, so you can’t see that the brush retracts. Then you store it in a little container that holds the oil so it’s always ready.

Anyway, get a little oil onto your frying pan in some fashion. Then add the onions.

When the sauce is thickened, remove from heat and stir in the margarine and horseradish. I finished up the freshly prepared horseradish my friend gave me, which I think was a bit mild, so you may want to taste the sauce before dumping in a full 3 Tbsp.

By the way, the sauce is just the Yeast Cheeze from Simply Heavenly! (or perhaps more accurately New Farm), substituting horseradish for the mustard.

Check that your onions are reducing nicely…

Meanwhile, when the potatoes are very tender, drain and put in a large bowl.

Mash the potatoes, adding salt, soy milk and/or Tofutti Better Than Sour Cream (my secret mashed potato ingredient) to gain the desired creamy consistency. I was fortunate enough that my husband wanted to help mash the potatoes.

While your husband is goofing off with the potatoes, check the the onions. When they are a deep golden color, remove them from the heat.

In a medium large bowl, mix together the sauerkraut, caraway seeds, onions, and 2 cups of the sauce.

Now take your tempeh, …

(okay, okay, this is a completely gratuitous shot of yet another successful batch of homemade tempeh!)

… chop it, and add it and the carrots to the sauerkraut mixture.

Place the sauerkraut/tempeh mixture into a 2.3 liter casserole dish and smooth into a nice layer.

Smooth the mashed potatoes over the sauerkraut/tempeh layer.

Finish with a layer of the remaining sauce. Sprinkle with paprika, or Creole seasoning if you are like me and get distracted by the Creole seasoning when reaching for the paprika.

Cover and bake for half an hour. Remove cover and bake for 15 more minutes.

Remove from oven.


Your Druid husband will love it!

Actually, he was worshipping it before he even tasted it, but after cleaning his plate, he announced it “excellent” and also “better than a lot of other things”.


  1. ...barbara... Said,

    October 8, 2008 @ 10:32 am

    this looks so good….
    it will fulfill so many of my craving in one dish….

  2. Jennifer Said,

    October 8, 2008 @ 12:00 pm

    I’m not the biggest sauerkraut fan, but I’m appreciating all of the thoughtfulness and creativity you put into this recipe! And mashed potatoes on top of anything is usually a sure thing…

  3. bex Said,

    October 8, 2008 @ 4:56 pm

    I never thought I’d like sauerkraut but I actually do, who would’a thunk it. And I think your husband might be sillier than mine. It’s a close race anyway.

  4. tofufreak Said,

    October 8, 2008 @ 8:26 pm

    wow, that looks great! i definitely think you are so fortunate to be able to make your own tempeh.

  5. evestirs Said,

    October 9, 2008 @ 1:54 pm

    homemade tempeh? im jealous! 😉

  6. renae Said,

    October 10, 2008 @ 4:25 pm

    Tofufreak and Evestirs, trust me, the homemade tempeh has not come easily! I messed up many a batch before I was able to hit the last 3 or 4 successes!

    Jennifer, baking the sauerkraut, especially in a “cheezy” sauce, reduces the sourness a little bit, if that’s your problem with it. But it is still probably more a recipe for sauerkraut fans.

    Bex, are there others like my husband?! Whew, glad I’m not alone! Life is certainly never dull with him, that’s for sure!

  7. Jes Said,

    October 10, 2008 @ 8:24 pm

    Your tempeh and caserole look delicious! I’ve only had sauerkraut once, but it was really tasty!

  8. Maureen Said,

    October 11, 2008 @ 5:44 am

    Thanks for the recipe! Tempeh is so versatile, I love it!

  9. Carolyn Said,

    October 12, 2008 @ 7:10 pm

    You make your own tempeh??? We are not worthy! I love sauerkraut (due to all those pesky German ancestors), but never would have thought of it with tempeh. I have a boatload in the fridge that was meant for burgers or something, so methinks we must give this a whirl.
    Looks like your husband has a knack for mashing. Even though I think Ted Nugent has been out in the woods too long, if he were vegan, I’ll bet that’s how he would mash potatoes. Take no prisoners!

  10. renae Said,

    October 14, 2008 @ 9:02 pm

    Yes, I make my own tempeh, but it’s been a long journey towards being successful at it! I’m sure both Mark and The Nuge could out-mash anyone when it comes to potatoes!

  11. mark Said,

    October 15, 2008 @ 9:52 am

    “Lets hurry this up, I gotta go huntin with the nuge!” – Happy Fun-Time Harry

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