Feasting at a German Christmas Market

In Christmas, Europe, Food, Germany, Our Journeys, Road Trips, Sense, Trip-Types, World Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

More than just sausages

In 2016, we had a bumper year for German Christmas markets. Not only did we revisit our old friend Cologne, but we also travelled to Düsseldorf, Nuremberg, Rothenburg ob der Tauber & Stuttgart.

The Bandstand at the Engelchenmarkt, Düsseldorf, Germany

Even for us “Christmas market lovers” that was quite a challenge. However, it was interesting to discover the amazing selection of food that is available, and you certainly won’t go hungry.

We learnt fairly early on that you don’t need to be seated at a restaurant to get the most out of the experience, you can feast on the markets themselves, or just graze in a bar whilst enjoying a beer or two – you are in Germany after all

I think the theme here is stocking up for the winter.

Here is a sweet and savoury taster for you, but obviously only in the visual sense, sorry!!

Food, glorious food

Top of the list has to be the much-loved German sausage. There are so many different varieties available, bratwurst, currywurst, krakauer to name but a few. In Nuremberg, they had their own rostbratwurst version; “Drei im Weggla” – “Three in a bun”

Food, glorious food at the Christmas Markets, Cologne, Germany
My first curly wurst, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany
Three in a bun, Nuremberg, Germany
Selecting your sausage at the Angel Christmas Market, Cologne, Germany
Currywurst with plenty of sauce, Cologne, Germany

Honestly, there is fish as well

There are also some tasty fish options, particularly the flame cooked salmon. We also came across mackerel in Stuttgart, which we hadn’t seen anywhere else.

Cooked over charcoal, Stuttgart, Germany
The Flammlachs Stall,  Düsseldorf, GermanyBackfish in a roll, Cologne, Germany
Salmon, the traditional way at the Christmas Markets, Cologne, Germany

Back to the grill

If the carnivores amongst us fancied a change from the sausage, other meats are available. There are the foot long kebabs in Cologne and the sticky doughy option in Stuttgart

Something new from the markets, Stuttgart, Germany
Bread & pork kebabs, Stuttgart, Germany
A meat feast, Cologne, Germany
Smoking grill, Cologne, Germany
Meat and Chicken Kebabs, Cologne, Germany
Steak at the Dom Christmas Market, Cologne, Germany

Food to Share

We find it enjoyable sharing a lot of these dishes, that way you get a taster of each.

Or just the pure meat in a roll

Amazing Pork, Cologne, Germany

The choices here were glazed baked ham or marinated pork steak.

A generous ham roll, Cologne, Germany

You certainly don’t get short changed on the portion sizes

Hearty option

One of my favourite dishes is the gulaschsuppe (goulash soup to you and me, not too sure if you needed the translation), this one even came with its own edible bowl.

Gulaschsuppe & gluhwein at the Christmas Markets, Cologne, Germany

Then there are the carbs

The reibekuchen is a deep-fried potato cake often served with apple sauce, in Cologne they are bought in 3’s. In my opinion, they have to be shared, but I’m not German.

Potato cakes with apple sauce, Cologne, Germany
Potato cakes with sour cream, Stuttgart, Germany

Different towns & cities have different ‘rules’ – Stuttgart, and it’s two with a sour cream sauce.

Flammeckeuche to share, Cologne, Germany

The flammeckeuche or tarte flambée – it looks like a pizza, but the similarities end there. Quite light to eat, and you can even get a vegetarian option.

The flammbrot options, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany
Oh Flammbrot, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany

The flammbrot has a thicker base than the flammeckeuche; we tried this in Rothenburg ob der Tauber.

Pretzels, or Brezels, Cologne, Germany

A popular snack amongst many Europeans particularly in Alsace and Bavaria is the pretzel or Brezel, not only are they dusted with salt, but you can also get them grilled with cheese.


Gary and I did not sample all of these on one trip, with a have been visiting Cologne for years.

Finally, something sweet

There are so many choices here this is just the tip of the iceberg. Waffles, crepes, gingerbread or lebkuchen, baked apples, glazed apples, chocolate marshmallows, schneeball, sweet sticky nuts, now my mouth is watering.

A waffle with cream and nuts, Cologne, Germany
A waffle selection, Christmas Markets, Cologne, Germany
Aachener Printen for sale at the Dom Christmas Market, Cologne, Germany
Carefully selecting the Lebkuchen hearts at the Christmas Market. Cologne, Germany
Gingerbread hearts, Stuttgart, Germany
Sweet Stuff, Stuttgart, Germany
Gingerbread loaves for sale, Nuremberg, Germany
The nut seller, Nuremberg, Germany
The crêpe maker at the Angel Christmas Market, Cologne, Germany
Something sweet at the Christmas markets, Düsseldorf, Germany
Mum enjoying a baked apple, Christmas Markets, Cologne, Germany

Of the region

A selection of the sweeter delicacies can be found across Germany; however, some are more localised than others. Such as the schneeball (a shortcrust pastry ball), which is quite synonymous with Rothenburg ob der Tauber & Nuremberg gingerbread, which traditionally I believe needs to be produced within the city limits to be classified as Nuremberg gingerbread.

The Schneeball and hot chocolate, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany
Greeting and gingerbread from Nuremberg, Germany

Tip of the Iceburg

To be honest each year more options seem to be added, and we’ve skipped a few because we don’t want to spoil all the suprises do we.

Our Choice

Our preferred mode of transport for visiting these markets is always the car, that way it doesn’t matter how many Christmas treats we return with for family and friends; there’s room for it all. If you’re not taking your car save a little bit of room in your suitcase, surely everybody loves gingerbread.

Inspired to visit the German Christmas Markets?

Something must tempt you? If you’d like more information on the German Christmas Markets then we’ve a few posts for you. Feel free to have a look around and see what takes your fancy.

Feasting at a German Christmas Market

(Why not Pin It for Later?)

Have You?

Visited the real deal – a genuine German Christmans Market? Have you been to many – What’s your favourite? (It doesn’t count if you’re German because you always choose your local one)

About the Author


Janis, the co-founder of Our World for You, was born in London and raised in Kent and the Isle of Wight.Along with Gary her partner, they have been travelling part time since 1995. In 2016, they decided that enough was enough with the 9 to 5, so armed with the knowledge and experience that they had gained on their adventures, that they wanted to inspire others to travel the world near and far.

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Feasting at a German Christmas Market was last modified: July 17th, 2018 by Janis