The 10 Most Popular German Dishes You Have to Try
The German culture truly shines when it comes to both beer and food. If you’re looking for some food that will warm you to the soul try these popular German dishes.
It’s no secret that Germany is known for its beer. But the nation of boots and brews is also a haven for unique, traditional dishes not found anywhere else in the world.
Today, food in Germany is a mix of traditional favorites and new, trendy takes on old classics.
From hearty meat and potato dishes to sweet treats and salty snacks, there’s always something on the menu for every taste.
Keep reading to learn the top 10 most popular dishes that you have to try!
If you enjoy trying food from vendors or snacking at festivals, it’s likely you’ll see Rouladen on the menu when dining across Germany.
This dish starts with thin slices of meat, most often beef, though veal or pork are also popular. The meat is then layered with bacon or pork belly, pickles and onion, and usually mustard. The beef is rolled, locking the other ingredients inside.
The meat roll is then braised in broth until brown.
This traditional German food was once a low-cost staple for German families. Now, it’s also common at festivals and gatherings. It may be served with dumplings, gravy, cooked cabbage, or other traditional German sides.
This German dish is so popular that it’s a standard in restaurants serving German cuisine worldwide. But while restaurants might simply call this dish ‘wurst,’ the word is actually German for sausage, and there are more than 150 varieties of German sausage.
You’ll find varieties of wurst served up on buns from street stands, with traditional sides from restaurants, and grilled up in family homes across the country.
This popular German food is available in spicy flavors, recipes mixed with apples, and more. The most popular recipe is made with pork and spices.
While stir-fry might be seen as a purely healthy dish in other nations, its the ultimate comfort food in Germany.
Rather than featuring a lean meat or veggies on fried rice, these stir-fries are more like a stew.
They start with chicken, veal, or pork, cut into thin pieces. They may be served on rice like other stir-fries, or on potatoes or spaetzle noodles. Then, they are topped with a creamy, delicious sauce.
If you’ve ever enjoyed German meals, you know that potatoes are a popular side dish. Whether served mashed, fried, or as a salad, potatoes are a staple.
Kartoffelkndel is one of the most popular German potato dishes in the nation. These potato pancakes are made from ground or grated potatoes mixed with flour and eggs and seasoned.
They are then shallow pan-fried, and served salted alongside meat or fish dishes, or sweetened with applesauce, berries, or cinnamon and sugar and served as a dessert.
5. German Hamburgers
If you think hamburgers are a purely American dish, think again.
In fact, historians believe that the Mongols first introduced the idea of a tenderized beef patty, eaten raw. Later, traders traveling by sea would bring it to the port city of Hamburg, Germany. There, it was cooked and shaped, becoming a closer version of what we enjoy at BBQs and sports bars today.
Luckily, you don’t necessarily have to go all the way to Germany to enjoy a traditional Hamburg burger.
Hans Im Gl?ck serves up tasty burgers and more at two locations in Singapore.
This popular German dish has been imitated and spread throughout the world. But the original version is the ultimate side dish for enjoying alongside a mug of German beer (or non-alcoholic beer if that’s your thing)!
Brezel is a soft, fluffy white pretzel made with flour, yeast, and water. Usually salted, Brezels can be found in bakeries, at street stands, bars, and elsewhere throughout Germany.
They may also be found buttered and served with cold cut meat or cheeses for a simple lunch or hearty snack.
Another popular comfort food served in Southern Germany is Kasespatzle. This dish is Germany’s own signature pasta, made with egg noodles and often served with onions and cheese.
Kasespatzle is never topped with meat, though it is often served alongside meat dishes. Although it is tasty and filling enough to serve as a meal on its own, served hot straight from the pan!
While many of Germany’s signature dishes can be found in restaurants around the world, Sauerbraten is one meal that you usually have to go straight to the source to find.
Sauerbraten is made with one of a variety of types of meat, such as pork, beef, or veal. The meat is marinated in a mix of wine, spices, herbs, and vinegar for up to 10 days.
This dish is usually topped off with a side of sauerkraut, dumplings, or braised cabbage.
Another popular German dish not often found outside of the country is Labskaus.
This dish starts with salted meat or corned beef boiled in broth and minced with a mix of ingredients like potatoes, onions, and beetroot. Most recipes then call for it to be fried, and topped with an egg. It may also be served with fish or vegetables.
10. German Apple Pancakes
A second German pancake recipe makes the list of the top 10 most popular German food recipes, but this time its a sweet, potato-free recipe.
German Apple Pancakes are made with a very thin egg batter and filled with sliced apples. The pancakes are grilled until the apples carmelize. This delicious dish is served hot and often topped with whipped cream.
Sampling the Most Popular German Dishes
Sampling these popular German dishes is a great way to break free of your comfort zone and get a taste of the local culture.
Of course, when in Germany, do as the locals do and pair your snacks or meal with a mug of beer!
While you’re there, why not find your new favorite brew? To help narrow your search, check out this guide for finding your next favorite beer.