This vegan German potato salad made with red potatoes, shallots, dill pickles and herbs is tossed with a vinegar and mustard based dressing. Warm and delicious, it is a nice change from the usual salads.
Vegan Potato Salad (German Style)
Years ago I had tried a warm potato salad made by my German mother-in-law and was amazed by the idea of serving it warm. That recipe uses diced apples as well. Someday I will share that unique salad too.
In fact there are several versions and variations of warm potato salads throughout Germany. Many of them without mayo, but there are some mayo based versions, like the American potato salad.
Talking of warm salads, we have a pretty popular Turkish potato salad. Made without mayo, these are refreshingly different in taste.
You can serve these potato salads warm or at room temperature. And they are perfect for a lunch and ideal for the cooler months of the year. But if you want to try a comforting mayo based salad, we have this Persian chicken potato salad.
Warm and satisfying, this vegan German potato salad without bacon may be your next go-to lunch or side.
- Potatoes: I choose organic red potatoes. They are easy to cook, hold on to their shape and the peel adds a nice texture and appearance. Yellow potatoes are the next option. Avoid starchy potatoes such as russet potatoes.
- Shallots: These are mild in flavor and pair well with the other ingredients.
- Dill Pickles: This is quite important to the taste of a nice German potato salad.
- Herbs: I use fresh basil and chives. Instead of basil, I also try dill or parsley. Go for Italian parsley rather than curly parsley.
- Vegetable Broth: It enhances the flavor of the salad in a subtle way.
- Vinegar: You can use any white vinegar that does not have a strong flavor.
- Oil: Use the best quality olive oil, avocado oil or sunflower oil you can find.
- Mustard: I use a mild mustard. Try Dijon mustard if you like. And adjust the mustard as per your taste.
- Sugar: Adds a hint of sweetness that balances the other flavors.
- Salt and Pepper
How To Make German Potato Salad
*Full recipe at the end of blog post.
- Boil the potatoes in salted water.
- Saute shallots in oil. Add broth and simmer.
- Add rest of the dressing ingredients. Simmer if need to thicken.
- Toss potatoes and other vegetables with the hot dressing.
- Let the potatoes absorb the dressing well before serving.
- Adjust the amount of liquid used, that is the vinegar and broth. This salad does need more liquid than usual potato salads, but be sure not to use too much of it.
- If using more mustard, then lower the amount of vinegar used.
- A warm German potato salad should be moist.
Boil the potatoes ahead of time. And warm it up before using in the salad. The other vegetables can be prepared earlier as well. Refrigerate leftovers for up to 3 to 4 days. Warm it up before serving.
A potato salad does not freeze very well. The texture of cooked potatoes is altered after freezing and is not very palatable. So, do not freeze leftover potato salad.
Cooking Time: Will vary depending on the size of potatoes, cooking pot, the amount of water and such. So, focus on the cooked texture of the potatoes. You should be able to easily pierce a fork into it, while the potatoes still hold onto their shape and not overcooked. Set a timer with cooking time on the lower side.
Cold Water: Cook the potatoes starting with cold water. This will help make sure that the potatoes cook evenly.
Uniform Size: Scrub the potatoes and cut them in uniform size. Again, this will help cook them evenly.
Flavor: Be sure to cook the potatoes in salted water for that amazing potato flavor.
Don't Peel: Boil the potatoes with the skin on. When these are cut into halves and quarters, the cooked side will absorb the dressing very well because it has not been exposed to liquid.
Keep It Dry: Drain the potatoes well and place the pot back on the stove for a few minutes to evaporate any excess water. This will keep the potatoes dry to absorb the hot dressing we add later.
What To Serve Along
This vegan German potato salad without bacon is different in it’s own way. So why not try it with a variety of options.
- Make a vegetarian feast with spinach feta pan pizza, lentil rice or koshari.
- Try serving it with soups such as vegetarian barley soup or leek avocado soup.
- Serve it with roast goose and honey wheat rolls. Add some lentil and kale salad on the side.
- You can serve it as a side with grilled salmon kabob or kotlets.
Try this delicious recipe to enjoy a warm potato salad as they do in Germany.
This German potato salad is vegan, gluten free, dairy free, egg free, nut free and soy free.
- Extra Protein: Add some grilled tofu, boiled eggs or cooked chicken. Cut and place it on the top of salad.
- Low Sodium: Reduce the amount of salt used. Be sure to use sufficient quantity of vinegar and herbs, as these ingredients enhance the flavor and taste.
- Lower Carb: Cauliflower is a popular substitute for potatoes in lower carb recipes. Try using lightly steamed cauliflower instead of potatoes.
- Flavor Twist: Add roasted bell peppers or pickled red onions. Try a sprinkle of kala namak (black salt) or nutritional yeast for umami flavor. Add some diced green apples to the salad.
Warm German potato salad is healthy and satisfying. Add grilled tofu and it becomes a meal.
Potatoes are a good source of complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6, manganese, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, niacin and folate. They are also rich in antioxidants such as carotenoids, flavonoids and phenolic acids.
When potatoes are cooked with the skin on, more nutrients and fiber are retained. Along with the other vegetables in the recipe, this potato salad offers a lot of health benefits.
More German Recipes
Some of our popular German recipes are listed below. So many baking recipes, it was time to make something savory!
- German Stollen
- Apple Cake (Apfelkuchen)
- Nussecken (Chocolate Hazelnut Bar Cookies)
- Bienenstich (Bee Sting Cake)
★ DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? PLEASE COMMENT AND GIVE IT A STAR RATING BELOW!
Vegan German Potato Salad
- 2 pounds waxy potatoes small, halved
- 1½ tablespoon salt 1 tablespoon of this for cooking water that will be drained
- ⅓ cup olive oil avocado oil or sunflower oil
- 2 shallots diced or 1 medium red onion (½ cup)
- ¼ cup vegetable broth low sodium
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon mustard mild mustard or Dijon
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika optional
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper freshly ground
- 2 dill pickles sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped basil dill or parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped chives
- Salad Bowl
- Place potatoes in a large cooking pot and cover with an inch of cold water and add one tablespoon salt. Bring it to a rolling boil, lower the heat and let it simmer until potatoes are tender but still have a bite, about 5 to 10 minutes. Drain and allow to cool.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet at medium-high heat. Add diced shallots and saute, stirring often, until translucent but not brown, about 5 minutes.
- Add vegetable broth and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat and add vinegar, remaining oil, mustard, sugar, ½ teaspoon salt and pepper. If watery, simmer 2 to 3 minutes to thicken it a bit.
- Cut the cooled potatoes into smaller cubes if needed and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Pour the hot dressing over potatoes. Add sliced pickles, half the basil and chives. Toss to coat, crushing larger pieces slightly. Taste and adjust seasoning.
- Allow the salad to rest at room temperature for a few minutes until potatoes absorb the dressing very well. Top with remaining herbs, freshly ground black pepper, smoked paprika and drizzle of olive oil. Serve the salad warm or at room temperature.
- Potatoes: I use organic red potatoes. They are easy to cook, hold on to their shape and the peel lends a nice texture and appearance. Yellow potatoes are the next option. Avoid starchy potatoes such as russet potatoes.
- Make Ahead: Boil the potatoes ahead of time. And warm it up before using in the salad. The other vegetables can be prepared earlier as well.
- Leftovers: Refrigerate leftovers for up to 3 to 4 days. Warm it up before serving. Do not freeze leftovers.
- Nutrition facts do not include salt absorbed while cooking potatoes.
- For more information on ingredients, variations and serving suggestions, scroll up the page to the blog post.
This potato salad is the best! Filling, warm and delicious!
I'm usually not a fan of potato salad because it's way too heavy & creamy -- which is why I loved your version! It was healthier than the traditional potato salad I'm used to, lighter and way more flavorful!
Thanks Anjali for your lovely feedback.
This is so so flavorful and such a nice change from the creamy potato salads I grew up on!
So glad you like it.
I like to eat my potato salad warm. Red potatoes with the skin on is how I like it too. Leftovers are wonderful.
Sounds like the perfect side dish to bring to a summer cookout to me! :) Yum!