Learn how easy it is to cook bratwurst in the oven with this 40-minute brat, red cabbage, and apple sheet pan dinner recipe.
My mom's side of the family was very proud of their German heritage. So, as you can imagine, bratwurst, knockwurst, schnitzel, cabbage, and potato salad with vinegar and mustard were all common staples. One whiff of sauerkraut, and I'm back in my childhood kitchen, peeking into my mom's electric skillet to find sausages sizzling in fermented cabbage.
This brat sheet pan dinner is my nod to those memories (and my German roots), updated with fresh red cabbage and apples, just a splash of vinegar, and a 30-minute roast in the oven. For extra goodness, grab the good rolls from the bakery section and serve the bratwurst with generous swipes of German whole-grain mustard.
What is Bratwurst?
Bratwurst (brat, for short) is a fresh German sausage that's usually made of pork and/or veal and seasoned with ginger, nutmeg, coriander, and/or caraway. Here in Philly, I can get locally made brats from my go-to sustainable meat source, Philly Foodworks, but all major grocery stores sell them, too.
Brat Sheet Pan Dinner FAQs
Nope. Somewhere along the line, we were all taught that sausage will explode if you don't prick it first, but I for one have never seen that happen in real life. Have you? Pricking fresh sausage before cooking does reduce the risk that the casing will rupture as the fat in the meat heats up. On the other hand, though, when you poke holes in the sausage, the fat and other things that make it taste delicious will drip out as it cooks. I'd rather keep that flavor, thank you very much.
Yep! Sweet or spicy Italian sausage and any other type of fresh German sausage are all great options.
Two reasons: 1) My mom made brats with cabbage and applesauce a lot when I was younger, and it was always one of my favorite meals. 2) Cabbage and apples are very common in German cuisine, and since brats are German, the trio just makes sense.
Bratwurst, Red Cabbage, and Apple Sheet Pan Dinner
- Cutting board and knife
- Large rimmed baking sheet
- 1 small head red cabbage (or ½ large head), cored and thinly sliced
- 2 medium Granny Smith apples (or any tart apples you like), quartered, cored, and thinly sliced
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1½ pounds uncooked bratwurst (6 large links)
- 6 hot dog / sausage buns
- German-style mustard
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Combine the sliced cabbage and apples in a large bowl. Add the thyme, vinegar, oil, salt, and a few grinds of black pepper and massage everything together with your hands or two wooden spoons.
- Spread the cabbage and apple mixture in an even layer on a large rimmed baking sheet and place the bratwurst on top. Sprinkle with a pinch or two of salt and a grind or two of black pepper.
- Transfer the baking sheet to the oven. Roast the brats, cabbage, and apples for 20 minutes, then stir the cabbage and apples, turn the bratwurst, and roast for another 8 to 10 minutes or until the bratwurst registers 165°F on an instant-read thermometer.
- Remove the baking sheet from the oven. Serve the brats in rolls with German mustard and roasted cabbage and apples on the side.