By Carl Hanson

The best of the 'fest

Just say ja to the best of Oktoberfest. These top-rated recipes go great with German beer, of course, or a tasty Riesling...any ol' time of year. But especially for Oktoberfest. But before you dig in, here's a little primer on Oktoberfest.

When is Oktoberfest?

Oktoberfest begins on the second to last Saturday in September when the mayor of Munich open the festivities in Germany, and ends on the first Sunday in October. In 2019, Oktoberfest officially starts on September 21 and runs through October 6.

What is Oktoberfest?

It's one of the world's largest — and certainly most beer-soaked — festivals of food and drink. It began as a multi-day celebration in the early 19th century when Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. These days, you can find local Oktoberfest celebrations wherever lovers of German food and drink get together.

The Best Recipes for Oktoberfest

1. Beer Glazed Brats and Sauerkraut

"I came up with this recipe, because I was looking for a more intense beer flavor with a little bite, and this is it," says JTk364. "A very satisfying dish if you crave German flavor that's Americanized. We love this dish served on potato rolls with spicy hot German mustard, Swiss cheese, and ice cold beer on the side."

Photo by lutzflcat

2. Grandma Jeanette's Amazing German Red Cabbage

"This was awesome and everyone loved it," raves Laura. "I made it for my Oktoberfest girls nite and served it with sauerbraten and German potato salad."

Photo by lutzflcat

3. Authentic German Potato Salad

"Absolutely the MOST delicious hot German Potato Salad we've ever eaten," says Mom, What's for Dinner? "I increased the recipe for an Oktoberfest party."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by Dianne

4. Papa Drexler's Bavarian Pretzels

"Wow! These were really good," says KATIEINOK. "I grew up in Germany and loved the pretzels there, and these pretzels tasted like I was back there in Bavaria!"

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by lili

5. Gourmet Beer Cheese

"Perfect beer cheese recipe for Oktoberfest," says dj2007. "Smoked Gouda adds the perfect touch. Serve with soft pretzels."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by Christina

6. German Potato Pancakes

"This recipe is the best," raves Simply Mo. "I served it at Oktoberfest, and everyone loved it. I made homemade applesauce and served them with sour cream."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by LYNNINMA

7. Wiener Schnitzel

"This recipe produces a classic Wiener Schnitzel," says William. "A veal cutlet in the encrusted Viennese manner. Follow this recipe and you will have a delicious meal."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by islandartist

8. Butter Schnitzel

Pork cutlets are breaded, pan-fried, and served with a mushroom, butter, and wine sauce. "I loved this," says hillary. "It turned out great. I made extra sauce and put the pork over mashed potatoes."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by naples34102

9. Jaeger Schnitzel

"This is wonderful," says Helene. "Serve this breaded and fried cubed pork with mushrooms and hunter gravy over a bed of noodles, with a salad and a hunk of thick crusty bread."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by naples34102

10. Fries with Curry Ketchup

You know what goes great with beer? French fries, German-style. The key here is the curry ketchup. Paula concurs: "The star of this recipe is the ketchup. This ketchup concoction is fabulous!"

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by Soup Loving Nicole

11. Rye Beer Bread

"The beer adds another layer of flavor to this rye loaf," says Kitty. HVN5 calls this recipe the best: "I like the flavor and the texture of the bread, it's light and good. Excellent for Reuben sandwich."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by lutzflcat

12. German Spaetzle Dumplings

"Uber love!" raves Mary-Lou. "I took the advice to freeze the spaetzle before browning in butter for our annual Oktoberfest party, and it worked out perfectly."

Best of Oktoberfest | Photo by Deb C

Want more of a good thing? Check out our Oktoberfest Recipe Collection.