You are currently viewing What to eat when in Germany – 15 Must Eats

15 Must Eats in Germany

Germany is a country with a rich culinary heritage that offers a wide range of delicious food. From hearty meat dishes to sweet treats, Germany has something for everyone. If you’re planning a trip to this beautiful country, be sure to sample its cuisine.
To help you navigate through the hundreds of dishes Germany has to offer, I’ve compiled a list of the 15 must-eat dishes in Germany.

These dishes are divided into three categories: The classics, something sweet and something unusual.

In the classics category, you will find the traditional dishes that Germany is famous for, such as the world-famous bratwurst and sauerkraut.
In the Sweet category we have some delicious desserts that will satisfy your sweet tooth.
In the Unusual category, you’ll find a dish that might seem a little strange.

Get ready to discover the flavors of Germany with the help of my list of must-eats.

The Classics

konigsberger klopse

Königsberger Klopse” by Mesq is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

1. Königsberger Klopse

Königsberger Klopse is a traditional German dish that originated in the city of Königsberg, which is now known as Kaliningrad. It consists of small meatballs, usually made from ground pork or veal, that are boiled in a tangy sauce made from capers, lemon juice, and a bit of cream.

They are usually served with boiled potatoes or mashed potatoes, and garnished with chopped parsley. It is a delicious and hearty meal that is popular throughout Germany. While the dish has Roman and Baltic roots, it has become an important part of the German cuisine.

Bavarian Weißwurst” by Noema Pérez is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.


Bratwurst BBQ” by ralpe is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

2. Sausages - Weißwurst, Bratwurst, Nürnberger, Leberwurst & Blutwurst

German sausage is a staple of German cuisine and has a long history dating back to the Middle Ages.
And this is also reflected in its variety. Particularly popular and well-known are, among others, Weißwurst, Bratwurst, Nürnberger Bratwurst, Leberwurst and Blutwurst.

Weisswurst is a Bavarian sausage made from veal and pork and is traditionally served with sweet mustard and a pretzel.

Bratwurst, another popular type of sausage, is made from pork and is often grilled or fried and served with sauerkraut or potato salad.

Nuremberg bratwurst, a smaller version of bratwurst, is made from pork and spices and is usually served with sauerkraut and mustard.

Liverwurst is a liver sausage made from pork liver, bacon and spices. It can be served as a spread or as a topping for crackers.

Blood sausage is made from pork blood, pork bacon and spices. It is often served with onions and is a popular snack or addition to a hearty meal.

With its variety of flavors and textures, German sausage is a popular part of German cuisine and culture.

Döner Kebab” by add1sun is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

Currywurst” by adactio is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Brötchen mit Leberkäse” by JaBB is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

3. German Streetfood - Döner, Currywurst & Leberkäse

Germany has a vibrant street food culture, with many options to choose from.

One of the most popular dishes is the Döner Kebab, which is made with seasoned meat cooked on a spit and served in a pita or thick flatbread, usually with vegetables and a flavorful sauce.

Another favorite is the Currywurst, a grilled or fried sausage topped with a tangy tomato-based sauce. Both dishes can be found in various street stalls and kiosks across the country.

Leberkäse, a traditional Bavarian dish, is also often served as street food. It’s a savory meatloaf made with pork and beef and served hot with mustard on a bread roll. Leberkäse is particularly popular in the southern region of Germany but can be found all over the country.

Overall, German street food offers a wide array of tasty and filling options that are perfect for a quick and satisfying meal on the go.


Brezel zum Oktoberfest” by Tim Reckmann | is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

4. Pretzel

German Pretzels, also known as Brezeln, are a popular baked good in Germany and around the world. They are a type of bread that is twisted into a distinctive knot shape, resembling a figure-eight. The traditional recipe includes flour, salt, yeast, water, and malt, which is what gives the pretzel its signature dark brown color.

Pretzels are often eaten as a snack or with a meal, and they pair well with a variety of dips and spreads. In Germany, they are often enjoyed with beer or wine, and are a common sight at beer gardens and Oktoberfest celebrations.

Pretzels are also popular in other parts of the world, with variations such as the soft pretzel and the pretzel bun. They can be found in bakeries, street vendors, and even in chain restaurants. So next time you’re looking for a delicious snack to go with your beverage of choice, consider trying a traditional German pretzel!

5. Käsespätzle - The German version of Mac and Cheese.

Käsespätzle is a traditional German and Austrian dish that consists of soft egg noodles, often described as German dumplings, topped with a generous amount of melted cheese, caramelized onions and garnished with chives.

The dish is often served as a comfort food and is popularly found in Bavarian and Tyrolean cuisine. It is a perfect meal to warm you up on cold winter days and is commonly enjoyed with a beer.

Maultaschen mit Salat” by WordRidden is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

6. Maultaschen (German dumplings)

Maultaschen is a traditional German dish that originated in the south-western region of Swabia. Also known as “Swabian pockets”, these large, pasta-like dumplings are typically made with a filling of ground meat, spinach, onions, and bread crumbs, seasoned with herbs such as parsley and nutmeg. The dough used for the dumplings is made from flour, eggs, and water, and is rolled out thinly before being filled with the meat mixture and sealed.

They are often served in a clear beef broth or with a side of potato salad. Maultaschen have a rich history and are often associated with the Lenten season as a way for monks to secretly consume meat during fasting periods. Today, they remain a popular and delicious comfort food, enjoyed by many throughout Germany and beyond.

7. Schnitzel and German potato salad

Schnitzel is a traditional German dish that consists of breaded and fried meat, usually pork or veal.
The dish is popular not only in Germany but also in other countries around the world.

German potato salad, on the other hand, is a regional dish that varies in style depending on the region.
Generally, it consists of boiled potatoes and vinegar-based dressing mixed with ingredients such as onions, bacon, and herbs. The tangy and savory flavor of German potato salad perfectly complements the crispy and flavorful schnitzel.

Both dishes are often served together as a main course in German restaurants, but they are also easy to make at home. They represent German cuisine and showcase the country’s love of hearty and satisfying meals.

Flammkuchen” by adactio is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

8. Flammkuchen

Flammkuchen, meaning “flame cake”, is a delicious, savory dish with German/French origin, typically found in the regions of Alsace-Lorraine and Saarland. It resembles a thin, pizza-like crust covered in sour cream or crème fraîche and topped with bacon bits, onions, and sometimes cheese.
Flammkuchen is traditionally cooked in a wood-fired oven and served as an appetizer or main course.

The dish has a long history, dating back to the 16th century, where it was consumed by farmers during the harvest season. It was originally made with ingredients that were readily available, including flour, water, and bacon.
Over time, variations of Flammkuchen emerged, with different regions developing their unique styles and toppings.

9. Rinderroulade

Rinderroulade, also known as beef roulade, is a traditional German dish made by stuffing thinly sliced beef with a savory filling and rolling it up into a neat bundle before braising or roasting it.

The filling usually consists of bacon, onions, mustard, and pickles, although variations may also include mushrooms, cheese, or herbs.

Once rolled and tied with kitchen twine, the roulade is browned in a hot pan or oven before being cooked in beef broth until tender and juicy.

Rinderroulade is typically served with a rich gravy made from the cooking liquid and flour, along with a side of red cabbage, dumplings, or boiled potatoes.

This hearty and flavorful dish is a favorite for celebrations or special occasions, and is sure to satisfy any meat lover’s cravings.

Schweinshaxe” by Kent Wang is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

10. Pork knuckle with sauerkraut and potato dumplings (Knödel)

Pork knuckle with sauerkraut and potato dumplings, also known as Schweinshaxe mit Sauerkraut und Kartoffel Knödel in German cuisine, is a hearty and mouth-watering meal that is popular in Central Europe.

The pork knuckle is first roasted until the skin is crispy and the meat is tender and juicy. It is then served with a side of fermented sauerkraut, which adds a tangy flavor that perfectly complements the savory and meaty flavors of the pork.

The dish is completed with a serving of potato dumplings, which are made by boiling mashed potato dough and served sliced like pieces of bread. The resulting combination is a filling and satisfying meal, perfect for a cold winter evening.

Pork knuckle with sauerkraut and potato dumplings is a classic example of traditional cuisine that has been enjoyed for centuries, and continues to be a favorite in many households.

Sauerbraten mit Klößen” by Mesq is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

11. Sauerbraten

Sauerbraten is a traditional German pot roast made by marinating beef in a mixture of vinegar, water, and spices for up to ten days. The marinated beef is then seared and simmered with vegetables until tender. It is usually served with a gravy and a side of potato dumplings or spaetzle.

12. Kartoffelpuffer (potato pancakes) with apple sauce

German Kartoffelpuffer, or potato pancakes, are a popular winter dish. Grated potatoes are mixed with flour, eggs, and spices and fried to a crispy texture. Traditionally served with sweet applesauce made from cooked apples, sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon.

This tasty and satisfying meal is easy to make at home and can be customized with different seasonings and toppings.

Something Sweet

Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte” by mikelo is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

13. Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte (Black Forest cake)

Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte, or Black Forest cake, is a traditional German dessert. It consists of layers of chocolate cake, whipped cream, and cherries soaked in Kirsch, a cherry liqueur.

The cake is then topped with additional whipped cream, chocolate shavings, and more cherries. Its name comes from its origin in the Black Forest region of Germany, where the cherries and Kirsch are produced.

The cake has become a popular dessert in many countries and is often served on special occasions such as birthdays and weddings.

Himbeerkuchen” by Cappellmeister is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

14. Everything bakery - Donauwelle, Berliner (Krapfen), Himbeerschnitte & Bienenstich Torte

German bakeries are synonymous with delicious treats such as cakes and pastries.

Donauwelle, a classic German dessert, consists of a chocolate and vanilla sponge cake with cherries and buttercream, topped with chocolate glaze.

Krapfen, a type of doughnut, is filled with jam or vanilla cream and dusted with powdered sugar.

Another popular pastry is Himbeerkuchen, a raspberry-filled cake with a buttery crust.

Finally, Bienenstich is a yeasted cake with a caramelized almond topping, filled with vanilla cream.

From sweet to savory, German bakeries offer a variety of baked goods that are perfect for breakfast, snacks or dessert.

Something Unusual

Labskaus” by Noema Pérez is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

15. Labskaus

Labskaus is a traditional dish from Northern Germany, particularly popular in Hamburg. It’s a hearty and filling meal made with mashed potatoes, corned beef, onions, and pickled beets. Some variations may also include herring, bacon, or fried eggs.

For non-Germans, Labskaus may seem like an unusual dish due to its unique combination of ingredients and flavors. However, it’s a highly regarded dish in the region and considered a comfort food by many locals. Labskaus is often served with a fried egg on top and a side of pickled gherkins, adding a tangy contrast to the savory flavors of the main dish.

If you’re feeling adventurous, give Labskaus a try next time you’re in Northern Germany. It’s a dish that’s sure to warm you up and give you a taste of the local cuisine.

Share this post!


You might also like:

Leave a Reply