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German Carrot Salad (Grandma’s Recipe)

This Delicious German Carrot Salad Is A Family Favorite!

If you are looking for a great way to use up some carrots, a classic carrot salad is a great place to start.

Called “Rübchensalat” by her German grandma, this is a salad that Lisa actually grew up eating. Made from freshly boiled carrots, onion, and simple spices, this carrot salad makes a great side dish!

bowl of sliced carrot salad on white table with grey napkin behind
This simple carrot salad makes a great side dish!

There are many other variations of “carrot salad” from all over Europe. A popular variation to make carrot salad is to shred or grate the carrots using a grater.

Lisa’s grandmother used to make this version so that’s the one we went for – but you can certainly try a different version as well. If we make it, we will write it up for this site!

sliced carrots in bowl on plate with silver spoon

Carrot salad is a simple dish with a simple backstory. Carrots – like other root vegetables – are fairly cheap and easy to grow, packed with nutrients, last a pretty long time, and can be cooked, stewed, canned, preserved – you name it!

The versatility of carrots made it a popular choice for poorer regions across Europe way back in the day – sort of how potatoes also became a staple ingredient.

carrot salad in bowl with silver spoon lifting carrots away
Just need a serving spoon and you’re all set!

Whatever the occasion you are cooking for, this German carrot salad can be a great addition. The light and fresh flavor of the carrots pair well with hearty and heavier meals including meats (Schnitzel, perhaps?).

You can also change up the spices used – we like just simple salt and pepper with chives if we have them on hand. However, you could toss in some garlic powder or even chili powder for a bit of kick!

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bowl of german carrot salad on white table with cloth above

German Carrot Salad

This German carrot salad is a tasty addition to any meal. Super simple to make, the softened carrots and onions are slightly sweet and slightly savory to create a unique flavor that pairs well with hearty dishes!
4.80 from 5 votes
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 25 minutes
Servings: 5 Portions


  • 2 pounds carrots
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, more to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • chives or parsley to garnish, optional


  • Peel the carrots and cut into thin circles. You can use a mandoline if you have one or use the "slicing side" or a four-sided box grater. Alternatively, a knife works as well – just make sure your slices are very thin.
  • Peel and finely chop a small onion.
  • Bring water in a medium-sized pot to a boil, add the carrot slices and a pinch of salt. Boil them on medium heat for 7-8 minutes. The carrot slices should be still somewhat firm, but cooked.
  • Drain the carrots and set aside in a bowl.
  • In the same pot (or a pan), add 1 tablespoon of oil and sauté the onions for approximately 3 minutes until translucent.
  • Add the onions to the hot carrots. Add 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, 1 teaspoon of vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste. Mix everything together.
  • Let the salad sit for at least 2 hours to allow it to cool and the flavors to mingle. After approximately 30 minutes when the salad has cooled enough, you can put it in the fridge to chill the rest of the time.
  • After two hours, take the carrot salad out of the fridge and mix again. You can add more salt and/or pepper to taste. You can also garnish the salad with some chives or parsley.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 167kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 10g | Sodium: 339mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 7g

This nutritional information has been estimated by an online nutrition calculator. It should only be seen as a rough calculation and not a replacement for professional dietary advice.

Course Salad
Cuisine German
Author Recipes From Europe
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