Oktoberfest is the largest Volksfest in the world, renowned for its beer festival. The event occurs in mid to late September and runs through to the beginning of October.
You’d be forgiven if the first thing that came to your mind when thinking of Oktoberfest was that aforementioned beer festival, but there is so much more to enjoy about Oktoberfest that goes far beyond just the alcoholic content!
As well as beer, there is also tons of food to enjoy during Oktoberfest, with a great deal of it being traditional German cuisine.
With this in mind, we are going to be looking at twenty-five authentic Oktoberfest dishes that will give you a taste of the cuisine that Germany has to offer! Let’s get started.
Considered to be one of the ultimate forms of street food, Currywurst is a dish made of the well-known German sausage Bratwurst alongside a sauce that is a cross between curry sauce and ketchup.
The currywurst sauce is the trickiest part of this recipe to get right if you are trying to make it as traditional as possible.
If you’re not as fussed about making the sauce traditional, then there are tons of different ways that you can change up the recipe to your own personal tastes.
There are recipes for currywurst out there that include a range of other ingredients such as plum juice, apple sauce, apricot jam, and even cola!
Oktoberfest is the perfect place to get a traditional German pretzel, known in German as Laugenbrezels.
The perfect German pretzel recipe should result in a soft but chewy pretzel with tasty bursts of saltiness. The great thing about pretzels is that they are really easy to make, too!
All you will need is some active dry yeast, all-purpose flour, baking soda, coarse salt, kosher salt, organic barley malt syrup (though molasses works as a suitable replacement), and butter.
These traditional German potato pancakes are often found at Oktoberfest and are delicious yet easy to make. Kartoffelpuffer is a treat across every region of Germany that is another popular choice of street food.
These pancakes are made from potatoes that are grated finely when they are raw, as this allows them to cook faster than usual, It also makes the potatoes cook more evenly.
Once the potatoes are shredded, they are wrung out and then mixed up with flour, egg, and some finely grated onions before they are fried until lightly golden brown.
The final pancake should have a soft interior with a deliciously crispy exterior.
This classic Bavarian dish can be found in most German beer gardens and is often used with other dishes such as pretzels or crusty bread.
There are tons of different variations of Obatzda, but the traditional recipe uses a combination of butter, Camembert cheese, and- of course- beer!
Obatzda is also seasoned in the classic recipe, usually with salt and pepper along with caraway seeds and paprika.
Also known as Tarte Flambé, Flammkuchen is a traditional German pizza that is known as a white pizza due to typically being topped with crème fraîche.
The Flammkuchen is a thin pizza that will often be topped with smoked bacon and onions that are sliced thinly, as well as that crème fraîche that we mentioned.
The dish originates from the Rhineland and Baden-Württemberg regions of Germany, as well as the adjacent Alsace region in France.
Similar to Kartoffelpuffer, Bratkartoffeln is a delicious appetizer that is often used as a side dish in Oktoberfest.
Bratkartoffeln are very similar to cottage potatoes that are pan-fried. They are often served with bacon, fresh herbs, and onions as a garnish.
Some other seasonings that are commonly used with these German fries include rosemary, leaf parsley, thyme, and salt and pepper.
This is another side dish that is beloved and popular throughout Germany, as well as a healthier alternative when it comes to a side dish.
This traditional German red cabbage dish is often made with apples and onions as well as juniper berries, cloves, bay leaves, vegetable broth, red currant jam, red wine vinegar, and butter as well as sugar, water, salt, and all-purpose flour.
Pork schnitzel is another German dish that can often be found during Oktoberfest, usually alongside one or more of the side dishes that we mentioned above!
A typical schnitzel is a pork chop that has been pounded thoroughly until completely thin, as this makes the cutlets incredibly tender.
Once thin, the cutlets are then breaded before they are sautéed. The result is a schnitzel that will have a juicy center as well as a crispy crust.
Sausages are a popular item on the menu during Oktoberfest, but did you know that this roasted chicken dish is also one that is eaten commonly during the festival?
Wiesn Hendl is a simple dish of a whole roasted chicken that is prepared with a great deal of salt and sometimes some ground paprika.
This gives the chicken a highly savory taste, which makes it the perfect accompaniment for the variety of beers that are available during Oktoberfest!
Originating from Swabia- a region in Bavaria-, this dish is a savory German onion pie that has similarities to both Quiché and deep dish pizzas, being something of a hybrid of the two.
Zwiebelkuchen is prepared with a crust that is filled, which is where it gets its similarities with a deep dish pizza.
The filling itself is what makes it more akin to Quiché in nature, with a mixture of cooked onions, cream, bacon, and eggs. It has a very similar taste to the aforementioned Flammkuchen.
This German comfort food is another that tends to be eaten as a side dish during Oktoberfest.
Dumplings in general are a much-loved dish in Germany, often used in stews, soups, and even roast dinners. They are also enjoyed on their own too.
In beer gardens and during Oktoberfest, you are likely to see these pillowy and fluffy potato dumplings as an accompaniment to other dishes.
German coleslaw- otherwise known as German cabbage salad- is not like your typical coleslaw in that it doesn’t use mayonnaise, which is one of the significant ingredients of standard coleslaw.
Instead, krautsalat uses white wine vinegar or apple cider, which gives it a savory and tart taste rather than a rich and creamy one as is common with regular coleslaw.
Another typical ingredient that isn’t used in krausalat is carrots, with the German dish instead using caraway seeds.
A traditional German pasta dish, Schinkennudeln can be found on the menu in most German pubs, so you can be sure to see it around Oktoberfest.
The pasta dish is often served with ham and features a creamy and rich egg mixture.
It is then topped off with fresh herbs and is thought to be a lighter alternative to some of the other traditional German dishes.
This German snack is the perfect accompaniment to Oktoberfest beer, as it is considered to be classic German beer garden fare.
This snack features two of the most well-known German foods- bratwurst and sauerkraut- and turns them into delicious, bite-size balls with a golden brown, breaded casing.
You will want some excellent quality sauerkraut along with uncooked bratwurst, cream cheese, breadcrumbs, onion, parsley, and seasonings such as cumin, salt, pepper, caraway, and garlic powder in order to make these snacks.
If you are looking for some cold German food to enjoy during Oktoberfest, this German sandwich platter is a great choice.
The meal is made up of fresh bread with a range of various cold German accompaniments and toppings.
These include meats such as salami, cooked bratwurst, and smoked Black Forest ham, as well as cheeses like Camembert, Limburger, Emmental, and Bavarian Blauschimmelkäse.
Another staple in beer gardens, Wurstsalat is often offered during Oktoberfest and is very easy to make should you want to give it a try.
In Bavaria, local sausages will be used to make Wurstsalat as well as vinaigrette, which will be used in place of mayonnaise or mustard.
Some other ingredients in the salad are dill pickles, onions, and herbs.
A beloved dish in German home cooking, sauerkraut soup is known for being a fantastic accompaniment to German beers thanks to its hearty yet light nature.
Sauerkrautsuppe has a unique flavor that combines the tangy taste of sauerkraut with smoked sausage and seasonings such as paprika and caraway.
Beer braised brats combine the traditional German bratwurst sausage with a deliciously malty beer sauce to create the perfect Oktoberfest dish.
Some of the best beers that work with brats include dark lagers- much like Doppelbock or Dunkel- or ales, such as Dunkelweizen.
As well as your beer, you will need beef stock, oil, butter, thyme, brown sugar, paprika, pepper, salt, and onions to create the sauce to cover and cook the brats with.
This popular Bavarian beer hall dish is a roasted pork hock that keeps the crispy skin on the top.
Schweinshaxe can be found in various beer gardens and is made traditionally via the spit-roasting cooking method.
This is such a popular dish that around 80,000 pork hocks tend to be consumed during Oktoberfest on the main festival grounds!
Let’s now take a look at some sweet treats that are often consumed during Oktoberfest!
Dampfnudel is a German, steamed dumpling that will be topped off with powdered sugar as well as rich and creamy vanilla sauce.
The dumplings are steamed until they are puffed up and have a golden brown crust. They are also known for their soft, pillowy texture.
Although often served as a Christmas food, Lebkuchnherzen is popular around Oktoberfest too thanks to that sweet and delicious gingerbread taste.
The sweetness of the gingerbread makes them a perfect pairing with darker, more bitter beers.
Another sweet treat that is often eaten at Christmas- but has become a popular snack during Oktoberfest-, these almonds are cooked alongside salt, sugar, vanilla extract, and cinnamon to create a candied dessert that is perfect to snack on.
These delicious apple fritters are another perfect, traditional German dessert that is rolled in cinnamon sugar and has a crunchy exterior with a fluffy and soft interior.
Originating from the southwestern region of Germany, black forest cake is a dessert that has become popular around the world thanks to its delectable combination of dark chocolate and cherries.
You are sure to find some black forest cake during Oktoberfest due to its role as a staple of German dessert foods.
Not a fan of cake? Then try these black forest cookies instead!
The cookies have a sweet taste and a soft texture, with a delectable combination of chocolate chips and maraschino cherries.
Frequently Asked Question
How Long Does Oktoberfest Last?
Oktoberfest usually lasts around sixteen days at the very least, beginning in September and ending in October.
The ending date falls on the first Sunday in October or on October 3rd, whichever date comes first.
Where Can You Eat At Oktoberfest?
There are various halls scattered around the Oktoberfest festival in Germany, as well as places to eat outsides of the halls and stands for other kinds of snacks.
What Are Some Other Dishes Served At Oktoberfest?
As well as what we have talked about above, some other traditional German cuisine served during Oktoberfest includes the following:
- Knodel- Boiled dumplings
- Stollen- Fruit bread
- Steckerlfisch- Grilled fish
- Wurstel- Vienna sausage
- Weisswurst- Pork and minced veal sausage
- Bohnen mit Speck- Peas, beans and bacon
- Matoschen- Ravioli with spinach and beans
- Deutsches Beefsteak- German beefsteak
And much more!