A Curated List of Authentic German Recipes – Made By Our Own German!
Looking to cook like a German? If you miss Oma’s cooking – or you’re looking to try our a new German recipe – you’re in the right place!
In case you’re new to RecipesfromEurope: Lisa is German and learned to cook loads of German dishes with her parents and grandparents when she was younger.
Now that we have moved to North America, she still likes baking and cooking German recipes frequently.
There are many different “German recipes” out there – and some of them are definitely more authentic than others.
Our list aims to keep include traditional and authentic recipes that we’re familiar with.
Depending on how well you know German cuisine, you might have even eaten some of these dishes before.
At the same time, it’s also important to remember that there are many different versions of the same dish. German potato salad is a good example of this. Regional differences make for many recipe variations (all of which are valid and authentic!).
Before you dive in, just an FYI: There are lots of classic German recipes – mainly meat-based recipes like roasts – that we have not made (yet). So, you’re not going to find many recipes like in this round-up.
Our point is, just because you can’t find a German recipe that you know of on this list, that does not mean that it’s not an authentic German recipe – it might be!
So, whether you’re looking for easy German recipes for a potluck or quick German recipes to whip together for dinner, our list is a fun mix of delicious German appetizers, main dishes, and includes loads of German desserts and some drinks!
We’ll update this round-up over time. So feel free to save it to your bookmarks or to your Pinterest account and come back to it when you want to make some German food!
German Potato Pancakes
We're starting off with a classic German recipe that you might know from Oktoberfest or visiting German Christmas markets – potato pancakes. These hearty, crispy fried potato pancakes are simple to make and delicious to eat! They can be served with a sweet, apple sauce, a savory garlic sauce, or a classic creamy quark!
With a golden brown outside and a soft inside, these authentic German Pretzels are just like you'd find in Germany! Known as Laugenbrezeln, it's easy to make this simple dough. Our recipe uses baking soda and water – not lye – to get the brown color so it's also a safer recipe to try out.These pretzels make a great snack – and don't forget to cover them in a little coarse!
These delicious German fried potatoes are a popular side dish. They are soft on the inside and perfectly golden brown on the outside giving them are nice crunch. You can serve them with a few fried onions and/or classic sauces like ketchup!
For those classic German egg dumplings, you've got to make homemade German Spaetzle.Spaetzle are so easy to make with a simple flour and egg batter. It also helps if you have a Spaetzle maker – but you can make them without!Spaetzle make a great side dish for meat-based dishes like German goulash (see below in this post) or Rouladen!
If you're making homemade spaetzle, you might go a few steps more and make Käsespätzle! German Cheese Spaetzle is also pretty easy to make – just add shredded Emmental cheese! It may not be the healthiest dish, but topped with some fried onion and a bit of chopped parsley? You can't go wrong.
To make classic German bread rolls, follow this recipe for Brötchen. German for "little bread", these delicious rolls are easy to make.With just a few ingredients usually on hand, you can have crusty rolls that are warm and bready on the inside and make a nice addition to breakfast, brunch, or even with your dinner!
German red cabbage – also known as Rotkraut – is served as a delicious side dish to meat-based dishes. Made from red cabbage, apples, onion, and a few key spices, it's a traditional colorful side dish – that's for sure!
There are many different kinds of German potato dumplings, but these authentic Franconian-style potato dumplings are what Lisa grew up eating. They're perfectly starchy and soft and serve well with meat dishes like Rouladen or Sauerbraten.
Ice cream coffee is a staple in German ice cream parlors. This sweet and cold drink is perfect on a hot summer day. Made from cold coffee and ice cream, this dessert is so much more than just "iced coffee". It's typically served in a tall glass and often topped with whipped cream and chocolate shavings!
For another fresh side salad made from cabbage, German Coleslaw is a great recipe option. Made fresh green cabbage, onion, and a touch of white wine vinegar and cumin, this authentic Krautsalat goes really, really well with heavier dishes that usually include meat!
Do you like pasta? Then you might enjoy this German pasta dish with ham and egg! Schinkennudeln is a delicious and hearty pasta dish that is sure to fill you up. It's easy to make and can be considered German comfort food.
To make classic German Crumb Cake, follow this recipe for Streuselkuchen. Germans love their yeasty cakes – and this crumb cake is no exception. Topped with lots of sweet and crumbly a classic German yeast cake, is soft on the inside and loaded with sweet and crumbly Streusel, it's the perfect cake for a hot drink like coffee or a tea!
This tasty German potato soup recipe is made with lots of delicious ingredients – from potatoes, carrots, and leeks to celery root, sausage, and lots of freshly chopped parsley. This classic soup can either be served as a tasty appetizer or as the main course itself!
Speaking of meat-based dishes, German Goulash is definitely one of those classic German dinners. This thickened beef stew is packed with carrots, celery, and onions in a red wine sauce. As we've mentioned above, it pairs really well with homemade Spaetzle or just with potatoes. Don't forget to add a little chopped parsley if you like the taste!
Typically made from half pork and half beef, these authentic German meatballs are not difficult to make at all. The egg and breadcrumbs hold it all together – while the onion adds some more flavor. You can serve them with mustard as a side dish or as a meal itself!
For a quick German dinner idea, you can always make Toast Hawaii.This unique invention is just a few common ingredients like toast, ham, cheese, and a ring of pineapple for sweetness. It's definitely a sweet and savory dish that deserves a try!
This rich no-bake chocolate cake is a classic German cake that was popular during the 1990s. It's made from crispy butter biscuits layered with sweet chocolate and served chilled. The combination of crunchy and smooth textures are sure to please!
This light butter cake made with yeast is a classic German recipe. Made from a simple dough – and lots of butter – the cake is then topped with sugar and sliced almonds that brown up to form a delicious sweet and crispy top!
These German apple pancakes are wonderfully sweet and fluffy. They are a great addition to brunch and can even be enjoyed as a dessert. Made with apple and cinnamon, these pancakes can be enjoyed on their own – or with a drizzle of syrup and powdered sugar!
For German bread dumplings, try out these Semmelknödel. Popular in the south of Germany, they make a nice dinner idea that pair nicely with saucy and/or meat-based dishes.Semmelknödel are also a great way to use up old bread you've got laying around the kitchen!
Ever seen a meatloaf with hard-boiled eggs inside? Well, then check out German Meatloaf!Also known as Falscher Hase, this tasty meatloaf recipe serves as an easy-to-make meat dish. Made from a seasoned meat blend (and those hard boiled eggs on the inside), German meatloaf pairs well with potatoes and mixed vegetables.
This classic German mulled wine recipe is similar to what you'd find at German Christmas markets. Made with red wine, sugar, fragrant spices like cinnamon, and fresh fruit like oranges, this classic holiday drink is always a crowd pleaser and perfect to sip on during the cold winter!
Dampfnudeln (German Yeast Dumplings)
If you are looking for a sweet and hearty dessert, try out German Yeast Dumplings. Known as Dampfnudeln in German, these bready, rising dumplings are made on the stovetop and served with a creamy, sweet vanilla sauce!
German Potato Noodles – also known as Schupfnudeln – are a versatile dish. Simple to make with a combination of a little mashed potato, egg, and flour, these long-shaped noodles can be served both sweet or savory. We like them pan-fried in butter with some chopped parsley.
German apple cake is a classic cake for "Kaffee und Kuchen" (coffee and cake). It's nice and sweet with a delicious crumble on top. Made from just a few simple ingredients like apples and cinnamon, this fancy looking crumble cake is actually fairly easy to make!
Cucumber salad is a popular salad in Germany and there are many different recipes for how to make it. Our Gurkensalat is made with fresh dill, onion, and just the right amount of creaminess, which makes the salad extra delicious! This German cucumber salad is the perfect cold side dish.
These German Rum Balls – known as Rumkugeln – are always a hit around the holidays. Loaded with rich chocolate, rum, and finished off with sprinkles or cocoa powder, this tiny sweet treat doesn't last long on the holiday plate!
This German tomato salad is another classic recipe that is so easy to make! With just a few ingredients such as fresh tomatoes, onion, and lots of fresh basil, this Tomatensalat has a wonderfully refreshing taste. It's best served chilled and makes a great side dish for a hearty main.
Looking for a classic German potato salad that is also suitable for vegans? This super easy potato salad is both delicious and flavorful. Made from a base of oil and vinegar – and not mayo – this potato salad makes a great side dish to a hearty main!
Marble cake is another classic German cake that is easy to make. It is perfectly sweet and fluffy to the touch. The chocolate and vanilla swirl inside make every slice artsy and unique – with a look that you'll want to serve up for guests.. or just devour on your own!
Strammer Max is an open-faced sandwich that is traditionally made with fresh German bread, thinly sliced cured ham, and a fried egg. It's a filling meal that is quick to prepare and always a crowd-pleaser. It can be enjoyed for lunch, dinner, or as a hearty snack throughout the day!
This German carrot salad recipe that Lisa's grandma used to make is a delicious addition to any meal.It's quite easy to make and the softened carrots and onions create a tasty flavor that pairs especially well with hearty dishes!
German Onion Pie – known as Zwiebelkuchen – is another one of those classic recipes to make. Made from lots of onion and a meat (like pancetta bacon), it's served up in slices on a crispy dough. You can eat it as a nice snack or serve it as an appetizer!
For a German-style Cheesecake, check out this classic recipe. Known as Käsekuchen in German, this cheesecake is light and fluffy and made from German Quark (see below).The delicious center has a hint of lemon zest to it – and is served on a light crust for a nice overall texture.
If you need to make German Quark (since it can be hard to buy in stores in North America), this is the recipe for you.With two ingredients and a bit of time, you can make this German diary product at home. Enjoy Quark on its own, with fruit, or as an ingredient in German Cheesecake.