Oktoberfest Hot German Potato Salad Recipe

This warm, bacony delicious potato salad amps up any outdoor cookout.

Some folks think that the concept of potato salad originated in Germany. Interestingly, this recipe, which is widely popular in the US, is not at all common in Germany, so it most likely was developed by German American immigrants. German potato salad is sweet and sour, spicy, savory, rich, meaty, and warm all the way down. I make up a batch, chill it, and take it to football tailgate parties where I heat it up on the grill. It's the perfect perfect BBQ and grilling side dish for those chilly fall games with a pot of chili or a Wisconsin Brat Tub.

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German potato salad is sweet and sour, spicy, savory, rich, meaty, and warm all the way down. It's perfect for those chilly fall tailgates.

Course. Lunch. Dinner. Salad. Side Dish. Vegetable.

Cuisine. German. American.

Makes. 8 servings

Takes. 30 minutes


3 pounds of starchy potatoes

3 eggs

6 slices bacon

1 large onion, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon celery seed

1/2 teaspoon mustard seed

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 teaspoons Morton Coarse Kosher Salt (read more about the science of salt here)

1/2 cup distilled vinegar

1 cup water or chicken broth

2 teaspoons sugar

1 teaspoon paprika for garnish

3 tablespoons fresh or frozen parsley or chives or scallion tops for garnish

About the potatoes. You'll want to get uniform bite size slices or cubes and you'll want the potatoes to finish cooking about the same time, so choose potatoes that are about the same size.

Optional. You can substitute leftover rib meat or pulled pork for the bacon. If you do use the bacon fat you have in the fridge (you do have bacon fat in the fridge don't you?). Duck fat, goose fat, or butter will work fine.

Optional. Sometimes when I am feeling bold, I add a tablespoon of chopped fresh rosemary.

Optional. Add 2 tablespoons prepared brown mustard when you add the vinegar and water.

Optional. Some folks serve German Potato Salad with bratwurst or other sausages, even hot dogs, on top. Another option is to slice cooked sausages and add them to the sauce when you add the potatoes. For this recipe, use 2 hot dog sized sausages.


1) Cook. Hard cook the eggs according to this method. Peel and wash the potatoes. Boil a 2 quart pot of water. Add the potatoes. When a knife can be inserted to the center easily, remove them, drain them in a colander, and set them aside.

2) Cook the bacon in a skillet over a medium heat or under the broiler until it is crisp. Crumble it and set it aside for now. Discard all but about 3 tablespoons of the fat.

3) Sauté the onion in the drippings over medium heat until they are translucent. While they are cooking, peel the eggs and slice them, perhaps 1/8" thick, and slice the potatoes about 1/4" thick. Some folks like the potatoes cubed. If you are among them, don't let me talk you out of it. Just keep things bite sized. Set them aside for a few minutes. When the onions are soft and translucent, add the flour, celery seed, mustard seed, pepper, and salt, and cook and stir for about 3 minutes. Add the vinegar, water or broth, and sugar, and stir until it begins to thicken. Add the bacon, eggs, and potatoes. Stir gently to coat everything with the sauce, trying not to break the potatoes and egg yolks too much.

4) Serve. Garnish with the greens and a sprinkle of paprika for color. Serve warm.

"Potato salad is very personal: everyone makes theirs differently."Trisha Yearwood

Meathead Goldwyn

Meathead is the founder and publisher of AmazingRibs.com, and is also known as the site's Hedonism Evangelist and BBQ Whisperer. He is also the author of "Meathead, The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling", a New York Times Best Seller and named one of the "100 Best Cookbooks of All Time" by Southern Living.




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