Comforting and exotic may not seem like two words you would hear together often. In the case of our hearty and tasty Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa, it totally fits. Fix up a big bowl of this on a wet dreary day or whenever you need a pick-me-up. Crockpot Kielbasa with Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce is what dinner dreams are made of!
The perky sweet and sour sauce transforms this homestyle sausage dish into a delightful meal inspired by popular Asian cuisine. If you love rice bowls, this recipe is for you. It’s easy to make and a great way to feed a family on a budget. Crockpot Kielbasa with Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce is a dinner we all crave!
There are all kinds of ways to cook a kielbasa (and no bad ones that I ever heard of), but the crockpot is the most ingenious. I love the way the flavors meld slowly over time to give the entire meal a rich deep pleasurable and satisfying taste. The sweet and sour component makes it distinct. For me, it really stands out ahead of other options when I am looking to make a meal that satisfies both my hunger and my desire for something a little bit different.
Building Your Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa
There is an order to building this delectable meal and it’s a little bit unusual if you are used to making these types of dishes using other methods. In most cases, you would saute the onions and pepper before adding the kielbasa and the other ingredients. Even with an Instant Pot, this is what you’d expect. This is different.
While I do recommend prepping the onions and peppers first. You should set them aside when you are done and dive right in with the kielbasa. You will gradually incorporate the rest of your ingredients as the kielbasa cooks. Although you will set the slow cooker to high, it will still take several hours for this meal to come together as planned.
You will build this sweet and sour crockpot kielbasa in layers and allow to cook for a while before string the rice and mixing everything up cooking the rice last not only keeps it from getting too soft, it also locks in the flavors and aromas around the kielbasa so you get the richest and most intense termination of sweet and sour.
Once it’s mixed you’ll get the texture of the pineapple and peppers in addition to the sausage, yet the sweet and sour flavor will be absorbed into everything, independent of the separate ingredients.
You will see this is a simple and easy meal to prepare. With just a few ingredients which are staples in our house this is a quick to put together meal. And always a winner for dinner! Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa is amazingly delicious!
- Orange Bell Pepper
- Yellow Bell Pepper
- Crushed Pineapple – in Heavy Syrup
- Yellow Onion
- Near East Rice Pilaf
- Garlic Powder
- Garlic Salt
- Brown Sugar
- Pineapple Juice
- Soy Sauce
**See the recipe card at the end of the post for quantities and cooking times.
Making this Crockpot Kielbasa with Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce is just as easy as the ingredient list. A little chopping and placing in the crockpot and you’ll be ready to set it and forget it!
Place the lid on the Crock Pot and turn the heat setting to High. Wash the Peppers, and slice them, and set aside. Cut the Onion, and slice the Kielbasa, and place the Kielbasa in the Crock pot. Add the Peppers and Onion.
In a large bowl, add the Crushed Pineapple, and Pineapple juice, and stir. Add the Garlic Powder, Garlic Salt, Brown Sugar, and Soy Sauce to the Pineapple, and stir well to blend. Pour the Pineapple mixture over the Peppers, and Kielbasa in the Crock Pot. Sprinkle the Rice over the Crock Pot, and stir Rice into Sauce.
Place the lid back on the Crock Pot, and cook on High for 4 to 5 hours, or until Rice and Vegetables are tender. Plate, serve, and Enjoy!
Prepping for Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa
Our sweet and sour crockpot kielbasa recipe calls for orange and yellow bell peppers. The color is not merely about appearance, but also flavor. Green bell peppers are more bitter/spicy (although the “spice” is not like other peppers). They aren’t as ripe as the more colorful alternatives. Likewise, while red is the most ripe, it is not as sweet as the yellow and orange bell peppers. The sweetness of the yellow and orange is what we want for the sweet and sour combo, even though red may be better for breaking up the visual monotony of all of the yellow from the pineapple. That mixing of color is actually the main reason you use a yellow and orange pepper instead of just yellow.
Trust me, the kielbasa will break it up enough and the fragrance and flavor far outweigh the slightest smattering of red color you would get from using the less sweet red peppers. Once you’ve rinsed your peppers in the sink, cut them lengthwise into halves and dig out the center with a paring knife. Slice it up into strips and then turn sideways to cut into bite sized chunks.
Cutting the Yellow Onion
Prepare the onion by cutting it in half and then press one half down against the cutting board. Between your palm and the cutting board, use a kitchen knife to cut two horizontal slices, leaving the bulb intact. Then slice vertical strips from top to bottom, getting close to the bulb but not cutting all the way through. Make these cuts about 1/2 inch apart. After cutting the strips in the onion, turn sideways and slice all the way through, cutting the strips into bite size pieces of onion.
Remember, these ingredients get set aside to be added to the kielbasa once it is already cooking in the Crockpot.
Creating the Sweet and Sour Base
Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa uses the pineapple as its base. Pineapple is such a beautiful representation of the complex blending sweet and sour and it makes up the backbone of the sauce’s flavor. It’s important that you use crushed pineapple so that your sauce has the desired consistency. The sweetened pineapple juice and the crushed pineapple are all you need to start this incredible, sweet and sour concoction. Then you will incorporate garlic salt and garlic powder as well as soy sauce and brown sugar for that amazing sweetness. This sauce tastes incredible and it binds the whole dish together wonderfully.
The sweet and sour sauce is something you make after you’ve already begun cooking the kielbasa, while the onion and pepper are sauteed. Mix all of the ingredients well until they are combined and then pour it over everything in the Crockpot. Top it off with your packaged rice mixture and give it a light stir so that the rice is coated in the sauce. That’s it. Four easy steps and then you get to cover it up for 4-5 hours and enjoy!
Serve and Enjoy!
You can also make this dish with plain jasmine or Basmati rice if you prefer. I enjoy the flavor and texture of the Near East Vegetable Rice Pilaf and I feel it adds more to the overall composition of the dish without including any unnecessary additional steps.
Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa works amazingly well on its own as a bowl meal or as a side to an entree, or an entree with sides. It all depends on your appetite and how much you want to make. This recipe works well with sesame chicken, or spicy shrimp.
MORE RECIPES YOU WILL LOVE:
Sweet and Sour Crockpot Kielbasa
- 1 Orange Bell Pepper – sliced
- 1 Yellow Bell Pepper – sliced
- 1 can of Crushed Pineapple – in Heavy Syrup
- 1 large Yellow Onion – Cut in bite size pieces
- 2 packages of Kielbasa – sliced in coins
- 1 package of Near East Rice Pilaf including flavor packet
- 1 teaspoon of Garlic Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of Garlic Salt
- 1/3 cup of Brown Sugar
- 6 ounces of Pineapple Juice – sweetened
- 3 tablespoons of Soy Sauce – plus more if preferred
- Place the lid on the Crock Pot and turn the heat setting to High.
- Wash the Peppers, and slice them, and set aside. Cut the Onion, and slice the Kielbasa, and place the Kielbasa in the Crock pot. Add the Peppers and Onion.
- In a large bowl, add the Crushed Pineapple, and Pineapple juice, and stir. Add the Garlic Powder, Garlic Salt, Brown Sugar, and Soy Sauce to the Pineapple, and stir well to blend.
- Pour the Pineapple mixture over the Peppers, and Kielbasa in the Crock Pot. Sprinkle the Rice over the Crock Pot, and stir Rice into Sauce.
- Place the lid back on the Crock Pot, and cook on High for 4 to 5 hours, or until Rice and Vegetables are tender.
- Plate, serve, and Enjoy!