Gallery: 29 Recipes für Oktoberfest

Pretzel Rolls
Pretzel Rolls

These pretzel rolls are basically soft pretzels that have not been given the signature pretzel twist. We like to split them open and fill them with thick-sliced bacon and some nice grainy mustard.

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[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

Beer Bread with Onions
Beer Bread with Onions

This quick bread has only a few ingredients, comes together quickly, and produces a fantastically beery, oniony final product. Although the recipe calls for light beer, experimenting with darker styles is always encouraged.

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[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

Pepper and Jack Beer Bread
Pepper and Jack Beer Bread

This recipe is a perfect example of just how versatile beer bread can be. The Monterey Jack provides a certain smoothness, while the peppers (any kind will work) add an unusual twist.

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[Photograph: Donna Currie]

Pork Schnitzel Meatballs
Pork Schnitzel Meatballs

Although most things breaded and fried make for great bar snacks, pork schnitzel is anything but finger food. To rectify this, use ground pork in lieu of the cutlets and make spherical schnitzel instead. And because this is in meatball form, you don't have to put your beer stein down to cut into your schnitzel—just plop a meatball in your mouth with one hand, while das boot is in the other.

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[Photograph: Marvin Gapultos]

Braised Red Cabbage with Apples and Raisins
Braised Red Cabbage with Apples and Raisins

This colorful side dish is a study in contrasts. Braising cabbage in apple cider brings out its natural sweetness, while finishing it with apple cider vinegar adds a pleasing acidity. Thin sticks of gala apples add a bit of crunch and tart flavor, while raisins absorb the cider to become sweet and plump. The slaw pairs perfectly with a glass of cloudy, straw-colored hefeweizen.

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[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]

Spicy Beer Mustard
Spicy Beer Mustard

This mustard has quite a bite when tried alone, but when eaten in a sandwich, it has just the right amount of spice, with a very slight sweetness that wonderfully complements anything salty, like pastrami.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Beer Cheese
Beer Cheese

This beer cheese isn't unlike Kenji's cheese sauce, but the use of a nutty brown ale as a base adds a slight bitterness that complements the sharp cheddar really well. A soft pretzel straight out of the oven seems like the most perfect pairing, but anything you wish to dip in this sauce will probably come out delicious.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Biala Kielbasa with Pierogi and Sauerkraut
Biala Kielbasa with Pierogi and Sauerkraut

Kielbasa may be a Polish specialty, but this sweet pork sausage is still a perfect addition to any Oktoberfest menu, and the pierogi and sauerkraut round it out nicely.

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[Photograph: Barbara Hanson]

Currywurst
Currywurst

Currywurst is a weird, wonderful, and uniquely Berlin combination of sausage and curry ketchup. The wurst part of this dish is really up to you—any mild beef, pork or veal links will do. The sausage is really just a vehicle for the curry sauce.

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[Photograph: Caroline Russock]

Grilled Bratwurst with Beer, Mustard, and Sauerkraut
Grilled Bratwurst with Beer, Mustard, and Sauerkraut

Bratwurst simmered in sauerkraut and lager is a natural pairing (make sure to save some beer to simmer yourself in while you wait for those sausages). A few thyme sprigs and a scoop of good whole grain mustard didn't RSVP to the party, but they're welcome to crash.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Buffalo Chicken Sausages
Buffalo Chicken Sausages

Buffalo sauce may have been designed for wings, but it's versatile enough to be used with a variety of meats, including these ground chicken sausages. If you're using a relatively mild hot sauce, add some cayenne to raise the heat.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Spicy Mango Chicken Sausage
Spicy Mango Chicken Sausage

Mango chicken sausage provides a really nice mixture of flavors that makes for a bright, fresh, and fruity link. Against the light taste of the chicken, the sweetness of the mango stands out, while the jalapeño lends a pleasing, mild heat.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Chicken Sausage with Basil and Tomatoes
Chicken Sausage with Basil and Tomatoes

The high ratio of chicken to tomatoes and basil in this recipe is misleading; this is a fresh and full-flavored sausage that's excellent for the spring, but still very good year-round.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Brined Pork Roast with Red Cabbage and Semmelknödel
Brined Pork Roast with Red Cabbage and Semmelknödel

A simple pork roast combined with wilted cabbage and a soft semmelknödel is a favorite meal for anyone who grew up with Eastern European family. Semmelknödel are simple bread dumplings, boiled in salted water and served alongside pork and cabbage.

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[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

Sausage and Sauerkraut Stew with Duck Fat Dumplings
Sausage and Sauerkraut Stew with Duck Fat Dumplings

This stew tastes better the next day; the juniper's sweetness really shines through, even though its delicate flavor takes a back seat to the more assertive paprika. The dumplings, however, don't keep well; cook them just before serving.

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[Photograph: Max Falkowitz]

Chicken Schnitzel
Chicken Schnitzel

Schnitzel is often made with pork or veal, but using thinly pounded chicken breasts makes this an ideal lighter main course. The coating of flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs gets crisp and golden in the pan, and the short cooking time produces an extra juicy chicken cutlet on the plate.

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[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]

Planked Maple-Mustard Pork Tenderloin
Planked Maple-Mustard Pork Tenderloin

This pork is incredibly tender and juicy, with a faint sweetness that contrasts with a little spice and crunch from the mustard crust, while the maple plank lends a touch of woodsy flavor.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Beef Rouladen With Dill Spaetzle
Beef Rouladen With Dill Spaetzle

Two inexpensive-to-make German classics—rouladen and spaetzle—walk the line between humble and showy. The beef-wrapped vegetables in the rouladen provide a wonderful array of flavors, while the spaetzle, or egg noodles, are perfect for sopping up gravy. In this recipe, both are enhanced by the addition of dill.

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[Photograph: Jennifer Olvera]

Berliner Weisse
Berliner Weisse

Berliner Weisse is a cloudy and sour German wheat beer, and this brew-in-a-bag-style recipe is perfect for homebrewers looking for a sense of adventure and experimentation.

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[Photograph: Joe Postma]

Pilsner
Pilsner

A crisp, clean, fresh pilsner is a key part of anything involving German beer, especially Oktoberfest. This is an all-grain homebrewing recipe which is written for the intermediate level, brew-in-a-bag homebrewer.

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[Photograph: Sarah Postma]

How to Brew Your Own Munich Helles for Oktoberfest
How to Brew Your Own Munich Helles for Oktoberfest

Munich Helles is a smooth, light lager that's exceedingly popular at Oktoberfest. You're aiming for a clean, bread-malty, Pilsner-flavored beer with enough noble hops bitterness and flavor to balance the malt.

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[Photograph: Peter Reed]

Beer Caramel Ice Cream
Beer Caramel Ice Cream

The subtle flavors of the pale ale complement the caramel perfectly, and because of all the beer, this will be lighter than many other caramel ice creams.

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[Photograph: Max Falkowitz]

Peach Kuchen
Peach Kuchen

Kuchen simply means "cake" in German, but it often refers to a not-too-sweet confection that's similar to American coffee cake. This version uses sour cream to keep it extra moist and a heavy dose of cinnamon to give it flavor. Slices of juicy peaches make the perfect topping. So while adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream might not be traditional, it's certainly welcome.

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[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]

Fudgy Chocolate Pretzel Cake
Fudgy Chocolate Pretzel Cake

A super tall, super moist cake is swathed in a creamy sour cream chocolate frosting and gets a salty kick from crunchy pretzels. This recipe uses a dark cocoa (such as Hershey's dark), which results in a very dark cake, but this is not necessary—regular natural cocoa will work just fine.

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[Photograph: Yvonne Ruperti]

Chocolate-Filled Pretzel Nuggets
Chocolate-Filled Pretzel Nuggets

Here's a suggestion for those who like plenty of sweet with their salty: chocolate-filled pretzel nuggets. These pillow-like nuggets are sort of like Combos meet chocolate-covered pretzel—that is to say, the pinnacle of sweet and salty pretzel perfection. This recipe can easily be used to make full-sized soft chocolate pretzels, as well.

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[Photograph: Jessie Oleson]

Easy Black Forest Cake
Easy Black Forest Cake

The cake is usually a stacked affair made up of layers of dark chocolate cake brushed with liquor (namely kirsch, made with cherries), with fluffy whipped cream and cherries nesting between the layers. Curled shards of chocolate deck the top and sometimes garish maraschino cherries sneak their way in.

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[Photograph: María del Mar Sacasa]

Cranberry Apple Strudel
Cranberry Apple Strudel

Sliced apples are tossed with cranberries for a little sweet-tart chew, with walnuts for crunch and cinnamon for spice. The filling is encased in puff pastry and baked into one large, golden roll. Slice the strudel thin to expose the beautifully layered fruit, then dust it with confectioners sugar and maybe a dollop of whipped cream.

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[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]

German Apple Pancake
German Apple Pancake

This apple pancake, which is cooked in a pie plate, is not only a relatively stress-free brunch dish but also a terrific way to use up the ever-abundant apples available at this time of year. While in the oven, the batter will puff up and the sugar will caramelize in the apple's juices; serve immediately, hot out of the oven. If you have any leftovers, you can serve slices of this pancake cold or at room temperature as a dessert topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

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[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

Stollen
Stollen

Stollen is packed full of all those great warming spices, like nutmeg, cardamom, and cinnamon, in addition to almonds, cherries, raisins, and orange zest. Once out of the oven, the warm loaves are brushed (read: saturated) in melted better and topped with a sugar-ginger mixture.

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[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]