Sauerbraten is a German style pot roast marinated for days to achieve an intensely delicious flavor, served with a gingersnap gravy.


By Sue Lau | Palatable Pastime

German food for me always has  seemed to epitomize holiday eating. I don’t know if I have romantic notions based on part of my heritage or if German culture has made it so, but it is. Beyond the Christmas trees and Good St. Nick, Holdiay craft bazaars and Christkindlmarkets, mulled wine and O Tannenbaum playing annually on the Charlie Brown cartoon, there was always food.

From lebkuchen and marzipan candies, stollens filled with dried fruits and almond paste, strudel stuffed full of apples, tortes piled high with delectable fillings, roast goose, rotkohl, pickled herring, chestnuts, and that most noble of holiday foods: beef. And in the German tradition,  there is the pot roast- which tantalizes by being marinated for days on end. You might worry that the meat would go bad but it has a very high acidity which tends to preserve from the vinegar and wine,  also giving it a pleasant tang with the accompanying spices and the gingersnap gravy gives a sweet-sour character which is perfect with dumplings (knodels), spaetzle, buttered noodles, or even mashed potatoes.

For our meal, I served knodel  dumplings and also my recipe for rotkohl with cranberries (this will post on the 21st,  my first blog opening for it) and that red cabbage is perfect with any roasted meat such as beef, roast goose or duck, or even holiday ham. Mark your calendar for it!

The baking time is long and slow and lends to a very tender cut of beef, one that I hope you enjoy.

Tomorrow I will be posting my recipe for Gingerbread Eggnog Latte with the #SundaySupper group. That will be followed by eight consecutive days of Christmas cookies recipes I have prepared for you as I continue my journey with the 12 Days of #Christmas Cookies blogging group. I hope to see you then! And as always have a pleasant week!



  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Marination time for meat: 3-4 days


  • 3 pound boneless beef rump roast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder 
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 3-4 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon juniper berries, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 medium carrots,  peeled and chopped
  • 3/4 cup gingersnap crumbs (pulse about 10 pepperkakor/gingersnap cookies in food processor)


  1. Pat beef dry and sear on all sides in oil then set aside.
  2. Heat beef broth, wine, vinegar, onion powder, salt, garlic, bay leaves, clove, crushed juniper berries, peppercorns and mustard seeds to a boil in a small saucepan.
  3. Allow marinade to cool down enough to pour over meat in a covered container or marinade bag (cool enough that it doesn’t try to melt the bag)- make sure meat is covered in a  hard container and in a marinade bag be sure to squeeze out the air.
  4. Refrigerate meat in this mixture for four days.
  5. On the fourth day, preheat the oven to 325°F.
  6. Remove meat from the marinade and set in a dutch oven.
  7. Strain the solids out of  the marinade, stir the brown sugar and thyme in, and then pour over the meat.
  8. Place chopped onions and carrots in and around the beef.
  9. Cover the Dutch oven and  roast the meat for 3-1/2 hours.
  10. Take the Dutch oven out and lift out the meat; whisk in the gingersnap crumbs.
  11. Add meat back in, cover and roast thirty minutes more.
  12. Serve sliced roast with vegetables and gingersnap gravy (I also served rotkohl/red cabbage and knodel dumplings but you could also opt to serve spaetzle, noodles or mashed potatoes).

From the kitchen of

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Lendenbraten with Black Truffle Sauce

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