Authentic Rouladen Recipe: German Beef Roll with Red Cabbage

The Ultimate Guide to the Best Cuts of Meat For Your German Rouladen

What is a Rouladen?

The dish is often served with boiled potatoes, red cabbage, and horseradish sauce.

A rouladen is often prepared using a thin slice of beef rolled into a log shape and then sliced into pinwheels. The rouladen may either be first boiled in water or seared in oil (or optionally pan-fried) before it is boiled or roasted. The meat is usually seasoned with salt, pepper, nutmeg, white wine and onion on both sides of the meat before it is rolled up.”

The dish was first served in Berlin, Germany by butcher Juergen Knechtel.

The butcher’s son, Juergen, was a man who was too proud to patent the recipe. The dish was first served in Berlin in the 1960s, but he did not patent the recipe so now it can be found all over Germany.

What Makes Beef a Good Choice for Rouladen?

Different types of beef cuts can be used for cooking rouladen. Rouladen is typically made with pork and beef, but any meat can be used. The most common cuts are chuck roast and round roast.

Beef is a good choice for rouladen because it is an inexpensive, lean, high-quality meat that can be used in many different recipes. It can be purchased as boneless chuck roast or even on sale, making it a budget-friendly meat.

What Kinds of Cuts Can You Use in Roulangens?

You can use cuts of meat to make delicious dishes such as veal cutlets and beef rouladens.

There are many different cuts of meat that you can use to make amazing dishes at home.

If you want to make veal cutlets, you will need a piece of veal

Quick Tip!

Beef rouladens is made via a recipe that calls for veal shoulder on sale or ground beef, but it is your choice whether you want to prepare one or the other.

What Kinds of Cuts Can You Use in Roulangens?

Veal cutlets and beef roladens are both delicious dishes that come from using certain cuts of meat in specific recipes.

You can make rouladen with many kinds of cuts of meat. The most popular cuts are beef round, veal shoulder, brisket and pork shoulder.

Using different cuts for your meat will change the taste, texture and price significantly.

We recommend to use veals because they are usually cheaper cut of meat and they provide a rather neutral flavor that goes well with the other flavors in the dish.

The Perfect Rouladen Recipe – Traditional German Recipe for a Delicious Meal

What to Serve with the Perfect Rouladen Recipe

The perfect rouladen recipe consists of thinly sliced beef, ham, bacon, onion, pickles and mustard. All these ingredients are layered inside the beef roll which is then baked in the oven until browned on the outside. The main ingredients can also be cooked beforehand and assembled later to save time.

German food is known for its hearty and filling dishes. There are many traditional recipes to choose from, but the perfect rouladen recipe is a favorite for many German families.

The perfect rouladen is a dish where beef or pork meatloaf is wrapped in bacon and then served with either a mushroom or wine sauce. The dish often includes various vegetables such as cabbage and carrots, herbs such as thyme and marjoram, and spices such as salt and pepper.

A few side dish ideas that go well with this meal are mashed potatoes, red cabbage, and spätzle (a type of egg noodle). These side dishes are often served along with the main course in Germany.

How to Make the Perfect Rouladen

Rouladen are delicious and easy to make. All you need is ground beef, bacon, onion and pickles. The only thing that takes time is to cook the meat for some time in a pan on the stovetop.

You can serve them with mashed potatoes or sauerkraut.

The Top 5 Side Dishes for the German Rouladen Recipe

Sauerkraut – A German Favorite and Perfect Side Dish for Rouladen

Sauerkraut is a popular side dish in German cuisine and is perfect with any kind of meat, especially Rouladen.

Sauerkraut is a type of cabbage that has been fermented by lactic acid bacteria. It was first created as a pickled food and was invented in Germany. Sauerkraut can be served as an appetizer, side dish or condiment and can also be used to season soups or stews.

Sauerkraut can be found in many grocery stores.

Quick Tip!

Potato Salad – Another Classic German Side Dish that Pairs Well with Rouladen

Potato salad is a dish made from cooked potatoes and various ingredients like mayonnaise, mustard and onions. This side dish is usually served chilled or cold, and can be made in many ways. The salad is often eaten with meat dishes, like rolade or Wiener Schnitzel.

Potato salad was first created in Germany in the 1800s as the Germans sought to use up the surplus potatoes they had after their country’s failed potato harvest in 1845-1846. It was one of the first dishes they created out of necessity as opposed to creativity, much like beef Stroganoff which was also a result of that failed harvest.

First we have to go back to the 1800s when there was a potato famine in Germany. The Germans were left with a surplus of potatoes and they needed to use them up somehow.

In 1872, the first cookbook with a recipe for potato salad was published by German chef and restaurateur Erich Conradi, in his cookbook “Kuchenmeisterei” (Mastery of Cake-making).
It’s not clear if he invented it or just first published it.

Quick Trivia!

After World War II, potato salad became an icon of German cuisine. In 1983, the German state Hesse declared potato salad to be its “national dish”.

Rouladen and Rot Kraut

Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time1 hour 50 minutes
Course: Main
Cuisine: german
Servings: 3 servings
Calories: 1130kcal



  • 1.5-2 lb flank steak sliced long and thin
  • 4-6 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 small onion chopped fine
  • 6-8 slices bacon
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2-3 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 10-12 button mushrooms sliced
  • 1 cup parsley fresh, chopped
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1/4 cup white wine

Rot Kraut

  • 1 head red cabbage shredded
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 4 gala apple cut into eighths and then sliced into 1/2″ slices
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar



  • Preheat the oven to 325F
  • brush the flank steaks with dijon mustard, place the bacon on top and then top with the onions and half the parsley. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Cut the steaks into 6 equal parts then roll them up. Use tooth picks to hold them together if necessary
  • melt 2 tbsp butter in a large pan and sear the rouladen on all sides til deep brown. Remove the rouladen from the pan and place in a large roasting pan.
  • Add the wine to the pan and deglaze, scraping up all the bits. Pour the pan sauce into the roasting dish over the rouladen. Add enough water to the roasting pan til the water level reaches about half the height of the rouladen. Cover the rouladen with the mushrooms, then cover the pan and roast at 325F for about 90 minutes.
  • When the rouladen is done, remove it from the pan and pour the juices through a colander into a bowl to separate the mushrooms from the juice, collecting the juices in the bowl.
  • Melt the butter in the frying pan, then whisk in the flour to build a roux. Whisk in the juices and worchestershire sauce. Bring the heat up to high til the gravy is on a rolling boil, then reduce to medium and simmer til thickened. Adjust flavour as needed with salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce,

Rot Kraut

  • Melt the butter in a large pot
  • Add the cabbage and stir to fully coat the cabbage in the butter
  • Coat the cabbage with half the sugar, then stir to fully coat. Repeat with the second half. Add the apples and vinegar, stir to combine. Simmer 30-40 minutes covered til cabbage is fully soft


Calories: 1130kcal | Carbohydrates: 83g | Protein: 64g | Fat: 61g | Saturated Fat: 30g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 21g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 245mg | Sodium: 1123mg | Potassium: 2354mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 54g | Vitamin A: 5910IU | Vitamin C: 202mg | Calcium: 273mg | Iron: 9mg