German Potato Salad: an amazing side dish for your summer parties

Total time: 50 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 8 people
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By Cookist
potatoes, cleaned
2 pounds
12 ounces
Apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup
1 to 3 tbsp
Dijon mustard
1 tbsp
salt and pepper to taste
Garlic, minced
3 to 4 cloves
fresh dill or parsley, chopped
1/2 cup

Planning the menu for your next summer barbecue? This easy German potato salad is the perfect side dish for your next backyard bash! Great for potlucks, picnics, cookouts and even Oktoberfest, German potato salad has it all.

It's packed with tender, thick-cut potatoes and crispy bacon tossed in a tangy, sweet dressing, making each bite an utter delight. You can enjoy this easy German potato salad hot, warm, or cold, but it's especially delicious served warm. Bonus? It makes great leftovers!

What is German Potato Salad?

German potato salad is a classic potato salad recipe. The recipe originates from German immigrants to the US. It's similar to mayo-based potato salad but has German influences like adding mustard, bacon, and fresh herbs. It's sweet, tangy, and savory.

There are different regional variations of German potato salad like Bavarian potato salad, which adds onion, beef or chicken stock, and pickles to the ingredients in this recipe.

German Potato Salad Ingredients

You can make this mouthwatering German potato salad with ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen.

Potatoes give the best flavor, but other waxy varieties like new potatoes, fingerlings, or Yukon gold will also work.

To give the salad its savory flavor, you'll need bacon.

To make the tangy-sweet dressing, pick up some apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, garlic, and parsley.

Don't forget salt and pepper for seasoning!

How to Make German Potato Salad

It's so easy to make this tasty German potato salad – ideal for your next gathering where you have a big crowd to feed. Start by putting the potatoes in cold salted water and bringing it to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook the potatoes for 15 to 20 minutes, until tender.

Drain the water, then put the potatoes back in the pot and let the steam blow off for several minutes. Chop the potatoes into 1/2-inch thick pieces. Grab a fresh pot and cook the bacon until it's nice and crispy. Take it out with a slotted spoon, then switch off the heat.

Mix the vinegar and sugar into the grease and season it with salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer, then mix in the garlic. Cook the garlic for a minute or so. Take the pot off the heat. Add the potatoes and toss to coat. Stir in the bacon and parsley. Place into a serving bowl, and enjoy.


Should You Serve German Potato Salad Warm or Cold?

Although it's ultimately a matter of personal preference, we recommend serving German potato salad warm or even hot. You could also serve it at room temperature, but if you do, make sure it doesn't sit out for over an hour. If you make it ahead of your get-together, cover it and put it in the fridge until it's time to eat. It tastes great cold, too!

Tips for Making Easy German Potato Salad

Make sure to salt the water when boiling the potatoes. It will add loads of flavor without making the potatoes salty.

Bring the potatoes to a boil in cold water. This will help them cook more evenly and not absorb too much water.

For a smokier flavor, add a little smoked paprika.

To make vegetarian German potato salad, leave out the bacon or use a vegetarian meat substitute.

Make your potato salad even heartier by adding chopped boiled eggs.

For a creamier German potato salad, add ¼ cup to ½ cup mayonnaise.

Feel free to adjust the sugar in this recipe to suit your tastes. You can also swap it for a sweetener like monkfruit or stevia.


What to Serve with German Potato Salad

This hearty, savory German potato salad goes well with just about everything. It's a fantastic side dish to serve at potlucks, picnics, and barbecues. Enjoy it with barbecue ribs, grilled chicken or pork, sausages, bratwurst, or mushroom burgers. When you're not barbecuing, it also makes a great side with roasts, casseroles, and stews.

How to Store and Reheat German Potato Salad

Cover your potato salad and store it in the fridge for up to 5 days. To reheat your potato salad, pop it in the microwave and heat in 1-minute intervals until warmed through.

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Fill a large pot with cold water and some salt. Put the potatoes in the pot and bring them to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until tender.

Drain, then return to the pot and let the steam blow off for several minutes.

Chop the potatoes into 1/2-inch thick pieces.

In a second pot, cut in the bacon into 1-inch pieces.

Sauté the bacon until crispy, stirring occasionally.

Take the bacon out of the pot using a slotted spoon and set it aside.

Turn the pot off the heat. Whisk the sugar into the grease.

Pour the vinegar, then season with salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer.

Whisk in the garlic and mustard.

Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Take the pot off the heat. Add the potatoes and toss to coat. Stir in the bacon and parsley.

Stir well, then serve and enjoy!


Cut any bigger potatoes in half so they're all roughly the same size. This will ensure the potatoes cook evenly.

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