German Potato Salad

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 23 minutes
Servings 6 servings

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This German Potato Salad is made with red potatoes, bacon, and a homemade dressing made of sauteed onion, cider vinegar, bacon drippings. Serve it warm or chilled!

See the step by step recipe down in the recipe card.

overhead image of german potato salad in white bowl

This recipe is generously sponsored by The Little Potato Company and I was compensated for my time creating it. Thank you for supporting the brands that make The Recipe Rebel possible!

It’s picnic and cookout season, and I couldn’t be more excited!

We love making a bunch of cold salads (they’re perfect for making ahead!) and grilling up a bunch of meat, like this Grilled Chicken and this Grilled Pork Tenderloin. A big glass of this Homemade Lemonade or a refreshing Milkshake is also a must!

This recipe is perfect for serving alongside almost anything, and we love it because it can be served warm or chilled.

I always use a bag of Little Potatoes (this time I chose Blushing Belles), because it means no washing, no peeling and little prep!

overhead image of german potato salad with bag of Little potatoes

They come washed and ready to cook, so I just halve or quarter them before boiling and our salad is well on its way to being on the dinner table.

What is German Potato Salad?

Since I am not German, I’m no authority on German Potato Salad.

However, we’ve been enjoying this Potato Salad at our summer cookouts for a long time now, and I wanted to share my version!

German Potato Salad is lighter and fresher than your typical mayo-laden potato salad (although I love those, too!).

It’s made with boiled red potatoes, crispy bacon, and a homemade vinaigrette comprised of apple cider vinegar, bacon drippings, (many add Dijon mustard, but it’s not our favorite) and I love adding a sprinkling of fresh chopped parsley or green onions.

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Do you serve German Potato Salad warm or cold?


Since you toss the boiled potatoes with the dressing immediately after draining, you can serve right away, or chill to serve later.

Chilled is a great option for a large gathering because you can make it in advance and not sacrifice any quality.

It is delicious both ways!

Just keep in mind that when completely chilled the dressing does sort of firm up (that’s the bacon fat in it) — so I prefer to serve room temperature or slightly warm for this reason.

What kind of potatoes are best for this potato salad?

Red potatoes are traditionally used in German Potato Salad, but any kind will work fine.

I prefer to choose Little Potatoes because they have a smooth, thin skin, that doesn’t have to be peeled or washed (they come ready to cook!).

With how busy summer days can get, we love any shortcut that helps us get dinner on the table!

Can I make it ahead?


Because the potatoes are cooked, this potato salad can be made ahead and stored up to 4 days before serving.

This is great because you can pair leftovers with a variety of grilled dinners throughout the week!

close up image of german potato salad with wooden spoon

What to serve with this German Potato Salad:

Almost anything! But here are some of our favorite pairings:

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German Potato Salad

5 from 13 votes
This German Potato Salad is made with red potatoes, bacon, and a homemade dressing made of vinegar, sugar, and bacon drippings. Serve it warm or chilled!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 23 minutes
Cuisine American, canadian
Course Main Course, Salad, Side Dish
Servings 6 servings
Calories 212cal


  • 1 ½ lb Little potatoes (quartered)
  • 4 slices thick cut bacon (chopped)
  • 1 red onion (finely chopped)
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley (chopped)


  • Quarter potatoes and cook in a large pot of boiling, salted water for 6-8 minutes, until tender. Drain and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, cook chopped bacon on medium heat until crispy, about 4-5 minutes. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel, leaving bacon fat in the pan.
  • Place pan back on the heat and cook onion in bacon fat until tender, about 4-5 minutes.
  • To the onions, add vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Remove dressing from heat and pour over potatoes. Add cooked bacon and parsley to potatoes and toss.
  • Serve immediately or allow to cool.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 212cal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 361mg | Potassium: 561mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 68IU | Vitamin C: 25mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords german potato salad

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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Reader Interactions


  1. Riki Decman says

    Hello Ashley, i love this salat. But here in germany we dont use any sucker in it, because it should be slightly sour as a contrast to the mostly sweet BBQ.

    Tanks for your great recipes

  2. Carrie Robinson says

    What a great side dish for a backyard BBQ! Definitely a change from the usual potato salad. 🙂

  3. Lindsay says

    it’s been a long time since I had a german potato salad, I almost forgot about it! Lots of restaurants near me serve it with friday fish fries. I’ll be trying this recipe soon.

      • Sandy says

        My family recipe includes hard boiled eggs. It boosts the protein and adds flavor. My one change is to use green onions and use mostly the green part. I add some to the hot dressing a cook just a minute or two. The rest I add raw to the salad. German potato salad is one of those foods that came to America generations ago and used to be common. Nowadays I find at a pot luck so many people have never heard of it much less ever tasted. Once they try it they are hooked!

  4. Alex says

    I finally got around to making this today – it’s terrific. Even my friend, who usually doesn’t like potato salads, likes this one. it’s much lighter than mayo-based potato salads!


5 from 13 votes (7 ratings without comment)

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