Classic German Cucumber Salad (Gurkensalat)

This German Cucumber Salad is Always a Dinner Favorite!

Searching for a simple yet oh-so-delicious cucumber salad recipe? Our German Cucumber Salad with dill is for you! With fresh dill and the perfect amount of creaminess, it’s a cucumber salad that is packed with flavor but doesn’t come off too strong.

To be fair, there are lots of different German cucumber salads. Some are made just with oil and vinegar, others have a little bit of sour cream, and others have a little more of a “fancy dressings”.

If you’re looking for other German salad recipes, also have a look at our German tomato salad, a classic potato salad, and Lisa’s Grandma’s carrot salad.

sliced cucumbers in german salad in bowl on white marble
This German cucumber salad is dill-icious!

This recipe is a classic version of a German cucumber salad that Lisa grew up eating and used to make with her dad. To be honest, it is not that different from the Hungarian cucumber salad we have on the website already.

The main difference is the use of dill and the exclusion of paprika. It’s like dill and paprika swapped jobs in these two recipes – but both are excellent in their own way.

If you don’t have fresh dill (which we would recommend) then you could also use dried salad herbs, for example. Another change you could make is adding garlic to give the salad a bit more “kick”.

bowl of green german cucumber salad with dill on white marble
We love the rich green colors of the German cucumber salad.. it looks pretty on the table.

Unlike other truly creamy cucumber salads, this salad is not supposed to be very creamy so that it doesn’t mask the dill flavor too much.

That’s why we only use a relatively small amount of sour cream. You could adjust the amount according to your personal preferences though.

The type of cucumber you use it also pretty important. We use English cucumbers when making the recipe and make sure that they are not too soft yet. The recipe just tastes better with firm cucumbers.

We would also recommend using a mandolin or a box grater when slicing the cucumbers as the slices could easily get too thick when slicing it with a knife by hand.

sliced cucumbers in white bowl on marble slab
Sliced, coated, chilled – this cucumber salad is ready to be eaten!

As we also mention in the recipe card below, we would recommend letting the cucumber slices and the salt sit for at least 20 minutes to draw some of the excess water out of the cucumbers.

However, if you are low on time and plan on eating the salad right away, you could skip this step. Just be aware that your salad dressing will most likely end up being slightly more watery. The taste will be fine but the presentation might be a little sloppy looking (if that matters to you).

When we make this recipe, we usually consume the salad right after making. However, you can store the salad in the fridge for a few hours if you want the flavors to mingle and have a more intense flavor.

As for how long this cucumber salad keeps in the refrigerator (if you don’t eat all of the salad), you can store it in a container with a sealed lid in the fridge for 1-2 days.

bowl of green german cucumber salad with dill on white marble

German Cucumber Salad (Gurkensalat)

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This German cucumber salad is the perfect cold side dish. With fresh dill, onion, and just the right amount of creaminess, this salad is deliciously good!

Ingredients

  • 2 English cucumbers
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 1/3 cup fresh dill, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Wash the cucumbers and peel, if desired (we usually don't peel the cucumbers when making the recipe). Thinly slice the cucumbers using a mandolin or the slicing side of a four-sided box grater. Add the cucumber slices to a bowl.
  2. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of salt over the cucumbers and let them sit for 20 minutes. This will remove excess moisture. After the 20 minutes, give the cucumber a squeeze to remove even more water. Be sure to drain any excess liquid from the bowl.
  3. While you're waiting for the cucumber slices, wash, dry, and finely chop the dill. Make sure to remove the hard stems first. Also, peel and finely chop a small onion. Add both (dill and onion) to the cucumber bowl after the 20 minutes are up and you have drained the liquid.
  4. Add the oil, vinegar, sour cream, sugar, and pepper to the bowl. Mix well. Add more salt (be careful here since you added quite a bit of salt earlier!) and/or pepper if desired. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • We definitely recommend letting the cucumbers rest to remove excess water, but it is not absolutely required. If you're short on time, you can skip this step but be aware that your salad will end up being more watery.
  • Make sure to use English cucumbers that are still firm. They taste better than cucumbers that are very soft/rubbery, especially if you leave the peel on.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 154Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 11mgSodium: 611mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 1gSugar: 4gProtein: 1g

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. The exact values can vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

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