Best-Ever Sauerbraten Recipe

by Nancy Zaffaro
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sauerbraten recipe

Chef Joey Gibson of Parallel Food and Drink says, “Sauerbraten is one of those dishes you can’t rush. Prepare yourself to marinate the meat for days and to be cooking all day. It’s great for holidays and family events because then you have a lot to keep you entertained. As long as you have patience, this should come out amazing.”

At a recent Parallel Food and Drink event, a pop-up dinner at Teutonic Wine Company, Gibson said, “I chose to make the sauerbrauten with brisket. However, other cuts meant to be braised will also work. Talk to your trusted butcher and see what works for you. Also, the pink salt will improve the quality of the braised meat, but it is optional for those who don’t want to use it. Ask your local butcher if they have it.”

This recipe is truly the best I’ve sauerbraten–and the best way to prepare brisket or pot roast that I’ve ever enjoyed. The fact that you can get this good a result from a less expensive cut of meat is all the better. Just fabulous!

Joey and Stacey Gibson both began their food, wine and hospitality careers in New York City, where they met. Joey had done his chef’s training in Atlanta and had been working for a few years in New York restaurants, including Tribeca Grill, Char No. 4, Colonie, and The Dutch. Stacey, a Sommelier, worked at Momofuku Ma Peche and Corkbuzz Wine Studio. The two moved to Portland in 2013, with their eyes set on living in another great food city, being in close proximity to wine country and starting a family. In Portland, both worked at Olympic Provisions. Once their daughter was born early in 2016, the couple decided to start a pop-up event business, which they say allows them to be creative and follow their passions while also raising their young daughter.

“The process of coming up with a menu is so much fun–mostly Joey and I talking over a bottle of wine after our daughter goes to sleep. Often a chef makes a menu and the sommelier pairs the wine. We tend to pick the wine first and then build the menu around it.”  Stacey continues her work as Wine Director and GM at the Woodsman Tavern, while Joey concentrates the cooking for their events, preparing the meal at a commercial kitchen and transporting everything the day-of to the meal-site.

Best of luck and continued success, Parallel Food and Drink.

Thanks so much, Chef Joey Gibson!

-Recipe courtesy Joey Gibson, Parallel Food and Drink.

Sauerbraten Recipe:


  • 5lbs beef brisket, trim the fat if in excess
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 1 ½ cups red wine vinegar
  • 1 onion, sliced thin
  • 1 Tbs salt
  • 1 tsp pink salt #1, optional
  • 1 Tbs pickling spice
  • 10 cloves
  • 8 black peppercorns
  • 8 Juniper berries
  • 3  bay leaves
  • 2 cups beef or chicken stock



  • 4 Tbs unsalted butter
  • 4 slices bacon, small dice
  • 1 ea onion, sliced thin
  • 3 Tbs Flour
  • ½ cup golden raisins
  • 6 gingersnap cookies, crumbled
  • 2 Tbs parsley, chopped
  • TT (to taste) lemon juice
  • TT salt
  • TT pepper

To Prepare the Sauerbraten:

  1. Put all the ingredients for the marinade, except the brisket, into a pot and bring to boil to melt the salt. Pull the pot off the heat and let cool completely.
  2. Pour the marinade over the brisket into a large non- reactive container (pot, bowl, zip lock bag, etc.) and let sit in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Rotate or turn the brisket a couple times a day if necessary.
  3. Heat oven at 325F.
  4. Pull the brisket out of the marinade, strain the marinade through a fine mesh strainer and set aside. Take an 8 qt pot (preferably a Dutch oven) and render the bacon and 2 Tbs of butter.
  5. Cook on low until bacon is crisp. Remove bacon and set aside.
  6. Pat the brisket dry and season with salt and pepper.
  7. Sear the brisket on all sides in the butter/bacon fat. Remove the brisket and set aside.
  8. Add the onion to the pot and cook on medium-low heat and caramelize the onions for a about 10-15 minutes. Add a small amount of the marinade to deglaze the pot and scrape up all the bits.
  9. Put the brisket back into the pot.
  10. Pour the marinade into the pot until it reaches about ⅔ full.
  11. Turn the heat up to high to bring the liquid to a boil. Put a lid (or foil) over the top and place in the oven. Let the brisket go for 2-3 hours until it is nice and tender. I recommend checking it halfway through, through to make sure it’s maintaining a nice, low simmer.
  12. If you have the time, let the brisket cool in this liquid overnight. Remove the brisket and set aside.
  13. In a pot, melt the remaining 2 Tbs of butter on a low heat. Add the flour to make a roux and cook on low until the color turns a tan/caramel color. Whisk in about a cup of the braising liquid at a time to make sure the gravy is nice and smooth until you reach the desired consistency.
  14. Add raisins and gingersnaps and simmer until gingersnaps melt and raisins are nice and plump.
  15. Season with salt, pepper and lemon. Slice the brisket and put on a platter, spoon over the sauce and garnish with parsley.
  16. Enjoy!

Joey and Stacey Gibson, of Parallel Food and Drink.

For More:

-Photos by Nancy Zaffaro.

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