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German Cucumber Salad – 2 Dressing Options

This German Cucumber Salad is budget-friendly, easy to make, and perfect for a family dinner, party, or potluck. Cucumber salad (called Gurkensalat in German) is very popular in Germany and is often served as a side dish with meat or fish.

German cucumber salad on a plate garnished with chopped dill.

The traditional German cucumber salad is made with a lot of dill and you can also add parsley, tomatoes, and garlic.

There are two types of dressing that are usually used for this salad. You can make it with sour cream or yogurt-based dressing or with oil and vinegar-based dressing.

The secret to making a delicious German cucumber salad is to slice the cucumbers really thin.

I wasn’t able to slice them super thin for the pictures because my mandolin slicer isn’t adjustable and I don’t really mind them to be a bit thicker. But Germans usually slice the cucumbers so thin that the slices are almost translucent.

I prefer to buy small field cucumbers for this salad when they are available in grocery stores here in Toronto.

I love them because they are local, super fresh, crunchy, and slightly sweet. But large field cucumbers or English cucumbers work great too. If you use large field cucumbers, make sure to peel them and remove the seeds.

German Cucumber Salad with Vinegar and Oil

This cucumber salad tastes better when chilled so place it in the fridge for at least one hour before serving. And don’t be afraid to make a big batch as it keeps well in the fridge and even tastes better the next day as cucumbers ferment a bit.

German cucumber salad on a plate with a silver fork on the left.

German Cucumber Salad with Sour Cream or Yogurt

This cucumber salad also should be chilled before serving. But keep in mind that it might become watery if it sits in the fridge for a long time so chill it for about 30 minutes and then mix it again before serving.

Although it will still taste fine the next day, you might not enjoy the watery dressing so it’s better to consume it the same day.

And don’t forget to ask for the Gurkensalat if you go to a German restaurant.

German cucumber salad with creamy dressing in a white bowl.

If you like simple salads made with raw vegetables, check out this Raw Turnip Salad, this Red and Green Cabbage Salad, and this Super Healthy Cabbage Salad.

German cucumber salad on a plate.

***Please note*** The nutrition information provided below is for the cucumber salad with vinegar and oil.

German Cucumber Salad

German Cucumber Salad

Yield: 4 to 6 portions
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

This simple German cucumber salad is crunchy and refreshing. It's perfect for a family dinner or a party and the leftovers taste great too. Two dressing options.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds small field cucumbers (English cucumbers would also work), thinly sliced
  • 1/2 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh dill, loosely packed

For Vinegar and Oil Dressing:

  • 4 Tbsp white vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • salt to taste

For Creamy Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
  • 1/2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped (optional)

Instructions

  1. Place the cucumbers, onion, and dill into a large bowl.

For Cucumber Salad with Vinegar and Oil:

  1. Add the white vinegar, olive oil, and sugar. Mix well to combine. Season with salt.
  2. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
  3. Keeps well in the fridge for up to 24 hours.

For Cucumber Salad with Creamy Dressing:

  1. In a small bowl, add the sour cream, olive oil, mustard, white wine vinegar, sugar, and garlic (if using). Mix to combine.
  2. Add the dressing to the cucumbers and mix well. Season with salt.
  3. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving. Better to consume the same day.

Notes

Nutrition information is a rough estimate for 1 of 4 servings calculated for the salad made with vinegar and oil.

Nutrition Information
Yield 4 portions Serving Size 1/4 of recipe
Amount Per Serving Calories 142Total Fat 10.5gSaturated Fat 1.5gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 9gCholesterol 0mgSodium 11.4mgCarbohydrates 11.7gFiber 1.6gSugar 5.6gProtein 2g

Nutrition facts provided on this website are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a qualified health care provider for personalized diet advice and make sure that each of the ingredients is allowed in your diet.

Did you make this recipe?

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Christine

Sunday 7th of June 2020

This recipe looks delicious! Can I use a red onion?

Maria Ushakova

Sunday 7th of June 2020

Yes, absolutely :)

Natalie

Thursday 18th of April 2019

Thank you for providing two dressing options! Both were delicious.

Betty

Monday 8th of April 2019

If you add salt to the cucumbers or in water should you rinse them before using or not add any more salt?

Maria Ushakova

Monday 8th of April 2019

I would just drain them and shake off the excess liquid. Then I would add other ingredients and taste the salad. If there is not enough salt, just add a pinch or so.

Claire

Monday 19th of February 2018

Made both versions for a dinner party and everybody loved them! So easy to make and very inexpensive. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

Renate

Monday 8th of January 2018

I salt my Cucumbers and let them sit for about 30 minutes, then i drain the juice before adding the Onions , Vinegar and oil, salting the Cucumbers takes away the bitter taste that you sometimes get by peeling and slicing the Cucumber from the wrong end, my Oma always said to peel from the Bloom to the Stem since the Stem part has a bitter substance in it, also salting the Cucumbers and discarding the juice makes them easier digestible.

Lisa

Friday 13th of July 2018

To stop from not being able to digest cucumbers. My German Dad told me a trick that works. For cucumber salad, slice the cucumbers, put in a few tsp of salt to the water. Completely submerege the THIN cucumbers in the water. He did it several hours. So it takes longer to make, by soaking in the water. Continue with the GERMAN IDEA. You can soak cucumbers the same way, for other meals....Hope it helps others, like ME, who love cucumbers.

Maria Ushakova

Monday 8th of January 2018

Hi Renate! This is such a great tip! Also, salting them first will help to get rid of the excess water. Thank you so much for taking the time to share! :)

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