Sauerkraut Soup with Sausage

  • 1 pound smoked sausage, such as kielbasa, diced
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 rib celery, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • ¾ bottle Woodchuck Amber Hard Cider
  • 1 (32 ounce) jar sauerkraut, drained and rinsed briefly
  • 8 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup peeled and cubed potatoes
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Heat a large soup pot over medium-high heat and add the sausage. Cook until the sausage is caramelized and the fat is rendered, 4-6 minutes. Add the onions and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft and lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the Woodchuck Amber Hard Cider and cook until almost completely reduced. Add the sauerkraut, broth, potatoes, thyme and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a low simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until potatoes and sauerkraut are very tender and the brother is flavorful, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serve immediately, with hot, crusty bread on the side.

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