Authentic German Potato Salad served Warm or Cold


This authentic German potato salad bridges all seasons. The “potato salad” vibe makes it perfect for spring picnics or summer potlucks, but since it is served hot with comforting ingredients, it makes for a warming side dish in fall or winter.

Authentic German Potato Salad Recipe (served warm or cold)

To simplify the job, the folks at Idaho Potato Commission recommend peeling the potatoes after you cook them for this authentic German potato salad. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Wash the potatoes. With a paring knife cut a line around the center of the potato, just piercing the skin.
  2. Place the potatoes in a pot, cover with water, put on the lid, and bring to a boil.
  3. Turn the heat down and gently boil the potatoes for 30 minutes or until a fork easily pierces the potatoes.
  4. Remove the pan from the stove and carefully pour off the hot water.
  5. Run cold water over the potatoes to make them just cool enough to handle.
  6. Peel the cooked skin from the potatoes – it should peel away with relative ease.

Authentic German Potato Salad Recipe (served warm or cold)

Special Diet Notes: Authentic German Potato Salad

Forgoing the mayonnaise, this recipe gets it’s creaminess from a simple, tangy white sauce that is naturally dairy-free, soy-free, egg-free, nut-free, and gluten-free.

For vegan German potato salad, substitute sliced olives or vegan bacon for the bacon.

Authentic German Potato Salad
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6 servings
  • 4 medium Idaho potatoes
  • 2 bacon strips (can use vegan bacon, if desired)
  • 1 diced Spanish onion
  • ½ cup diced celery
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water
  • ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
  1. Boil the potatoes with the skins on.
  2. While those are cooking, fry the bacon in a large skillet until crisp and remove to paper towels to drain.
  3. Peel the cooked potatoes (see post above for more detailed instructions), and thinly slice.
  4. In the bacon drippings, brown the onion and celery.
  5. Stir in sugar, cornstarch and salt, followed by the water and vinegar. Cook, while stirring, as it thickens.
  6. As the sauce thickens, stir in the sliced potatoes, and add more water, if needed.
  7. Transfer to a dish and serve while still hot.

About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


  1. I usually really like your recipes, but be careful with the word “authentic” – I’m actually German and have never seen anything like this potato salad in Germany. Instead, I would recommend making a Bavarian style potato salad with vinegar – it’s dairy free, too – but also sugar free and still creamy: Boiled potatoes, bacon bits, diced apple, diced cornichons and a sauce of beef stock, white vinegar and mustard to soak

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