I present 15 typical German Foods that you should try from German cuisine during your stay in Germany.
Gastronomy isn’t the Germans’ strong point. Although they obviously have some typical dishes beyond sausages and beer, which in turn depend very much on the region.
Although most traditional food is mainly based on meat, Germany is a very conscientious country with vegetarianism and veganism. So there will almost always be at least one vegetarian/vegan option to eat.
1- Sausages (Bratwurst)
German sausages are well known, but there are many types that almost always refer to the region from which they come. The most famous and consumed are: Thüringer Bratwurst, Wiener Würstchen, Nürnberger Wurst or Currywurst.
The most authentic are the Thüringer Bratwurst, from the region of Thuringia (Erfurt area), but are consumed nationally and even internationally.
The Thüringer Bratwurst when bought from the butcher (not packaged in the supermarket) are sold in a bucket or bag of whitish water (cheese mozzarella type). They are also flabby and deformed, but when they pass through the grill, they take shape and stay spectacular!
The Currywurst in the north (Berlin) and are usually served with chips (Pommes), a tomato sauce with curry sprinkled on top. Most of the time they pass the sausage through a rather curious machine, which cuts them up automatically.
The inside of this sausage is much more chopped and homogeneous than the Thrüringer Bratwurst. Although they are called “Curry Bratwurst”, the curry taste is barely noticeable.
Nürnberger Wurst are small, finite sausages the size of a finger. They are usually served on a plate on a bed of SauerKraut (sauerkraut or sauerkraut).
The Wiener Würstchen are the Frankfurt sausages we know. They are usually prepared boiled and served on bread with a little mustard or ketchupt. In this other article I explained the difference between “Wiener” and “Frankfurter” sausages.
2- The Schnitzel
Schnitzel with French fries is another German classic. After all, it is a typical “breaded steak” or escalope.
We can find different types:
- The Jägerschnitzel: Normal Schnitzel with mushroom sauce
- Wienerschnitzel is the version with lamb meat and very finite
- Schnitzel nach Wiener Art: it is like the Wienerschnitzel but with pork or chicken meat.
- Cordon Bleu: York Ham with cheese inside
3- The Brezel
Los Brezel is a bow of salty bread that can be eaten at any time.
The Maultaschen, it’s stuffed pasta, something like Italian ravioli. They are usually stuffed with meat, although they are also eaten with spinach or other things.
The Maultaschen are popularly known by a curious name: “deceived by God” in German Herrgottsbscheißerle, because by carrying the meat hidden inside and one could eat meat in “incognito mode” in times of religious fasts.
5- The Spätzle
It’s a kind of pasta made with eggs, flour and water. Spätzle are very original and very typical in the southern area (“Schwaben” around Stuttgart).
Gratin with some crispy onion and lots of cheese is how most are eaten. Also with salmon or as a garnish with some meat.
Schupfnudel is a type of potato paste with an elongated shape. The dough looks a lot (not to say almost the same) as the Italian Gnocchi. They can be cooked in many ways or combined with an infinite number of ingredients.
Some of the variations that I have seen more are with a sauce of mushrooms “Schupfnudel-Pilz-Pfanne”, gratin with cheese and Sauerkraut “Schupfnudel-Sauerkraut-Käseauflauf”, with vegetables such as spinach, tomatoes, zucchini, etc or as sidedish with a Schnitzel for example.
The Flammkuchen, is a type of white pizza and very fine dough (without yeast). They can be prepared with many variations, but the classic and basic has creme frêche, onion and bacon. Other variations are adding mushrooms, chives, garlic, salmon, cherry tomatoes, spinach or even Brie cheese.
They are originals from the Franco-German zone near Strassburg, which obviously the Germans say is theirs and so are the French. The French call them “Tarte flambée“. In my opinion, the French part prepares them much better!
They are balls of dough made mainly with potato, a little flour, an egg white and a little butter. These are eaten as a garnish or in soup. A very common variation is to stuff them with crispy bread, onion or bacon bits inside.
Translating literally is a “potato salad“, which could resemble Spanish Russian salad. Kartoffelsalat has mainly boiled potatoes (obviously) and then some onion, chives, pickles in vinegar, vinegar or oil.
It is very common throughout Germany, but in each area or in each family it is prepared differently according to “grandmother’s recipe”. In the north, for example, it is usually prepared with mayonnaise. In Bayern and Austria it is known as Erdäpfelsalat
White asparagus with Hollandaise sauce are very typical, but only during the season (spring and early summer). They are usually accompanied with “hollandaise” sauce, boiled potatoes and some more garnish to complete.
11- The Kroketen
A type of croquette made from potato dough. It’s crispy deep-fried thing with a kind of mashed potatoes inside. They are usually accompanied by a Schnitzel or similar. With a mushroom sauce, they go very well. They sell them in the supermarket frozen and you can buy almost a kilo for less than 1€.
It’s a mixture of spicy meat that’s eaten raw. Eat it with bread, raw onion, salt, pepper or parsley.
It’s traditional in rural areas, you see less and less. Some coworkers ate it occasionally for breakfast… and I struggled not to vomit! aggg, the smell and color is something unpleasant.
The scene from the movie Elsterglanz I think it looks really good that it’s the Mett:
A somewhat creepy form of presentation is when it is given the form of bodiespine and is known in German as “Mettigel”. True Story: Do a google search to see more photos.
Sauerkraut is not a dish as such, but a widely used ingredient, mainly as a complement or garnish. It’s sauerkraut and the Germans like it a lot.
It has a somewhat strange taste, and it’s not usually liked by Spaniards, but since they put a lot of it in their dishes, you get used to it in the end.
They are sweet doughnuts filled with strawberry jam or similar (raspberry, peach, plum, etc.). They are eaten in Germany and Austria, although in each region they are called differently, for example in Graz (Austria) “Krapfen”.
15- Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte
It is a cake originating in the Black Forest (Schwarz Wald) near the city of Freiburg. It is well known throughout Germany and I have even seen it in Spain under the same name.
It is a cake with cream, chocolate shavings and as its name suggests, cherries (normally confit). The characteristic taste is given by a cherry liqueur (Kirschwasser).
Extra ball: The Kebab
It is a somewhat strange story, similar to American hamburgers (“invented” by German immigrants in America). Yes, the Kebab began to be made (invented if you want to say) in Berlin in the 1970s by Turkish immigrants. So technically it’s a German meal.
What do you think of German food? What’s your favorite dish? Leave us your opinion in the comments 🙂Preparing a trip through Germany? Reed my Full Guide to Travel Germany with tricks, itineraries, transportations, destinations, German culture, food, etc.All for organize your trip to Germany