German Potato Salad
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Warm German Potato Salad — A classic potato salad made with tender red potatoes, bacon, onions, and a tangy vinegar dressing! This no-mayo potato salad is a family favorite side dish that’s perfect for parties, picnics, and potlucks!!
Easy German Potato Salad (with Bacon!)
Backyard barbecues, potlucks, picnics, graduation parties, and summertime events are the perfect reason to make a big batch of German potato salad.
Potato salad is a family-favorite side dish made with buttery and tender red potatoes, bacon, and onions tossed in a tangy vinegar- and mustard-based dressing.
I like knowing that this potato salad is mayo-free so that in the warmer months there’s not as much to worry about when it may be left out in the heat.
Additionally, there are some people who just don’t love mayo, and this potato salad may be right up their alley!
It’s a cinch to make, comes together very easily, and is done in about 30 minutes. The longest part will be waiting for the potatoes to boil and then all you need to do is whisk together the dressing, drizzle, toss, and serve.
Ingredients in Warm German Potato Salad
My family’s German red potato salad uses commonly found ingredients that you may likely have on hand in your pantry and fridge.
For this German potato salad, you’ll need:
- Red potatoes — The closest potatoes to the real German ones used for this salad, but Yukon gold charlotte or yellow potatoes are fine. Do not use russet or white potatoes because they’re too starchy.
- Red onion — However, you can use any type of onion (or omit if you have good reason to such as an allergy).
- Garlic — For flavor.
- Beef stock or broth
- White wine vinegar — Do not use apple cider vinegar if you want this to be authentic. You can use white vinegar instead.
- Dijon mustard — Or German mustard.
- Granulated sugar — Optional, but helps balance the vinegar.
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Parsley — Gives the dish some nice color and extra flavor.
- Olive oil — Any oil can theoretically be used but I really find that this is the best and obvious choice.
- Bacon, cooked — Optional but highly recommended (forgot to include it in the photo).
How to Make German Potato Salad
Begin by cutting the potatoes in halves and placing them in a kettle or pot. Cover them with water and boil over medium heat until fork tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove the potatoes from the water and slice into bite-sized pieces. You can peel them potatoes or leave the skins on. Place the potatoes in a large bowl.
To a separate medium bowl, whisk together the onion, garlic, beef stock, vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt, pepper, and olive oil.
Evenly drizzle this dressing over the warm potatoes and then add optional parsley.
Add in cooked bacon, stir to combine, and get ready to dig in! My family goes crazy for this vinegar potato salad!
What are the Best Potatoes for German Potato Salad?
For my German-style potato salad, I use red potatoes because they’re the closest potatoes to real German potatoes that are traditionally used in this potato salad.
Yukon gold or yellow potatoes are acceptable substitutes. Do not use russet or white potatoes because they are too starchy.
What Type of Mustard Should I Use?
In this summer potluck staple potato salad, opt for Dijon mustard. This is the perfect time to crack open the Gray Poupon.
Or you may be able to find German mustard, which is also fine.
Do not use regular yellow mustard, an overly grainy brown mustard, honey mustard, or any other mustards you may have in your fridge.
Can I Use Apple Cider Vinegar Instead of White?
No, do not use apple cider vinegar. Only white wine vinegar or regular white vinegar are recommended for this tangy-flavored potato salad.
Should I Serve This Recipe Warm or Cold?
We prefer serving this as a warm German potato salad, but you may serve it chilled or at room temperature as well.
Can I Omit the Bacon?
We prefer making this warm German potato salad with bacon, but you may omit it if desired.
You may also substitute the traditional pork bacon with your bacon of choice (i.e. turkey or another kind).
Can I Make This Recipe in Advance?
Definitely! Vinegar-based potato salads taste even better the next day because the potatoes soak up all that flavor!
If prepping this recipe to serve later, you can gently reheat it in the microwave before serving to guests.
Tips for the Best German Potato Salad
When you’re boiling the potatoes, make sure not to overcook them. You don’t want them to fall apart!
Although you can peel the potatoes or leave the skins on, I opt for leaving the skins on for both the pop of red color.
Plus, the skins of red potatoes are thinner that other types of starchier potatoes. Additionally, after being boiled I find them to be ultra tender and I typically don’t love potato skins.
Make sure to add the mustard and vinegar dressing to the potatoes when they are still warm so they better absorb all of that tangy goodness.
You can wait to add the cooked bacon bits until right before serving so it stays nice and crisp. It’s a wonderful contrast against the buttery soft and tender potatoes.
To save time, you can use precooked bacon from your grocer’s refrigerated case that you simply need to zap in the microwave for a minute or two and dice into pieces.
You can of course make bacon the traditional way while the potatoes boil. If you are and want extra bacon flavor in your German potato salad, use two tablespoons of bacon grease rather than the olive oil called for.
- 2 pounds red potatoes
- 1 medium red onion, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon garlic, finely minced
- ½ cup beef stock or broth
- ⅓ cup white wine vinegar (white vinegar may be susbtituted)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- ½ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste if desired
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
- 4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped; optional but recommended
- Halve the potatoes, add them to a large kettle or pot, cover with water by at least 2 inches, and boil over medium to medium-high heat until fork tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Do not overcook; you don’t want them to fall apart.
- Remove the potatoes from the water and dice them into bite-sized pieces. You can peel the potatoes or leave the skins on. I personally think the salad has better visual appeal with the skins on; set aside.
- To a small bowl, add the onion, garlic, beef stock or broth, vinegar, Dijon mustard, sugar, salt, pepper, olive oil, and whisk to combine.
- Evenly drizzle the dressing over the warm potatoes, sprinkle with parsley, and gently toss to combine.
- Add the bacon pieces before serving* (See Notes).
*Bacon:To save time, you can use precooked bacon from your grocer’s refrigerated case that you simply need to zap in the microwave for a minute or two and dice into pieces.
You can of course make bacon the traditional way while the potatoes boil. If you are and want extra bacon flavor in your German potato salad, use two tablespoons of bacon grease rather than the olive oil called for in the dressing.
Storage: Potato salad will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days. It can be gently rewarmed before serving if desired.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 245Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 9mgSodium: 525mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 8g
More Easy Potato Salad Recipes:
Potato Salad with Bacon — This no mayo Potato Salad with Bacon is ready in just 30 minutes! It’s a vinegar potato salad the whole family will love.
Roasted Sweet Potato Salad – Goodbye mayo-loaded, mushy, boring potato salad. Hello to a Mexican-inspired potato salad full of flavor and texture with corn, black beans, peppers, and cilantro! Great for outdoor events and lunchboxes because there’s no mayo!
Pink and Purple Potato Salad — Move over, boring potato salad! Have this PRETTY one made with purple potatoes instead!! NO MAYO makes it healthier and perfect for picnics, parties, potlucks and events!!
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