Craving a reason to celebrate between Labor Day and Halloween? Set up a spread of my best Oktoberfest recipes for German food and drink to commemorate the largest “volksfest” or people’s festival in the world.
Oktoberfest is a 16- to 18-day “people’s festival” hosted annually (since 1810!) in Munich in honor of the marriage of the crown prince of Bavaria.
When it’s not impacted by the pandemic, Oktoberfest celebrations now begin in late September to take advantage of the longer days and nicer weather. Regardless of when or where you enjoy this Oktoberfest menu, it’s sure to deliver a big punch of German flair.
My best Oktoberfest recipes are inspired more by my Midwestern family’s German roots rather than classic German cuisine, so feel free to take liberties to make these German recipes your own, too!
But know that all of my Oktoberfest menu features have are tested and true; put through the paces in the Culinary Hill test kitchen (and my home kitchen) many times before being shared on this Oktoberfest menu.
So if you can’t make it to Germany to celebrate Oktoberfest in person, add any or all of my German recipes to your dinner table or fall party menu. Just add a big “boot” of beer (German Hofbräu beer is a staple among Midwesterners with German roots), and you’ll feel practically transported to Munich. No passport required!
Pan-fried to crispy-on-the-outside, juicy-on-the-inside perfection, my Pork Schnitzel is a crowd-pleasing Oktoberfest entree idea.
Similar to a Midwestern Pork Tenderloin Sandwich, these pork cutlets are breaded and sizzled up to a consistency that will remind kids (and kids at heart) of chicken fingers. Garnish with fresh parsley and pair with lemon wedges to squeeze on top; these fresh elements will really perk up the savory, hearty flavors.
Bread and fry thin chicken cutlets to bring a platter of traditional Chicken Schnitzel to the table in just 25 minutes. Like supersized chicken nuggets, this classic German dinner recipe is a supremely family-friendly meal!
Bacon, beef broth, and tomato paste make this hearty beef recipe for Rouladen a major umami delight. Try this gravy-topped classic German entree as part of your Oktoberfest menu or anytime you’re craving comfort food.…
Grilling and Smoker Recipes
It’s not summer or tailgate season without beer brats. If you like the flavor of caramelized onions, then you’ll love this easy 4-ingredient grilled brat recipe. Beer brats are a time-honored Midwestern tradition, and no…
Think of these eggy, easy make-ahead noodles like the German cousin of classic butter noodles.
While the texture is best with a spaetzle press, I have a trick for scoring similar results with a colander or steamer. The best news about this German side dish recipe? You can form and boil the noodles up to 3 days ahead!
Take a break from mayo-strong salads and try my punchy German Potato Salad. Spiked with tangy mustard and crowned with crumbled crispy bacon, after just one bite, chances are you’ll want to serve this German side dish all year long (not just as part off your Oktoberfest menu).
Tender-crisp red cabbage transforms into a tangy and savory side dish recipe in this classic German Braised Red Cabbage. This is my twist on traditional Rotkohl, a sweet-sour cabbage dish often served alongside Rouladen and…
Sure, you can buy these in the supermarket freezer section. But it’s actually a cinch, and a totally fun family cooking project, to make chewy and pillowy Homemade Soft Pretzels right in your own kitchen.
Simply round up some flour, yeast, sugar, baking soda, butter, egg, and salt, then gather the family. It’s time to do the twist!
This traditional German cookie is like a mash-up of Gingerbread and frosted Sugar Cookies. Warmly-spiced with notes of molasses, nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, and allspice, these glazed cookies pair beautifully with everything on this Oktoberfest menu. Especially another boot of beer.
Now that you have a complete line-up of Oktoberfest recipes, just stock up on Hofbräu beer, cue up a polka playlist, and invite your family and friends. Happy Oktoberfest, friends!