German Savory Potato Cake (Kartoffelkuchen)

Total Time
1hr 40mins
Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr 10 mins

Germans love to serve rich, savory pastries - especially with potatoes and/or onion. This one is flavored with ham, garlic,and rosemary. This makes a great appetizer or if served with a salad, a nice accompaniment for lunch. This would be nice as a brunch item. Translated directly from the German version I found in "Schoener Essen" magazine.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Peel and wash the potatoes.
  2. Divide the potatoes into two even portions; take one portion cut them into halves, then place in salted water and cook about 20 minutes, until soft enough to mash.
  3. Shred the remaining raw potatoes.
  4. Place 50 grams of the butter in a heated pan.
  5. Sauté the onion and the ham chunks together in the butter.
  6. Add the shredded potato and turning them over occasionally with a spatula, cook together for about 5-8 minutes.
  7. Remove from the pan and let cool.
  8. Drain the potatoes that have been cooking in the water and mash them (using a potato ricer).
  9. Mix together with the remaining 125 grams of butter, the flour, and some salt & pepper, kneading together to make a dough.
  10. Using the wrapper from your butter, grease a large rectangular rimmed baking tin about 32 x 39 cm in size (or use a rimmed cookie sheet) and then dust pan with breadcrumbs (If you already tossed your wrapper, just grease the pan with a little butter or oil).
  11. Press out the potato dough evenly to form a crust in the pan.
  12. Strip the rosemary leaves from their stems and chop them.
  13. Whisk together the eggs, rosemary, garlic, sour cream, caraway seeds (optional), and combine with the shredded potato mixture.
  14. Season with salt& pepper to taste.
  15. Spread this mixture on top of the potato pastry.
  16. Place on a lower rack in the oven (preheated to around 200°C) and bake approximately 50 minutes.
  17. Cool slightly (about 5-10 minutes), then cut into 16 squares.
  18. Garnish with a small dollop of sour cream and a bit of fresh rosemary, if desired.


Most Helpful

Just to clarify that if you don't have the exact size pan indicated, use the large wide flat pan with a rim - such as a jelly roll pan. The slight sogginess that reviewer Jen experienced was probably due to using a 9x13 lasagna pan - which is much deeper and smaller. In Germany, they sell pans especially designed for making this dish that unfortunately aren't available everywhere. When sliced, this should look more like a flat, square slice of pizza.

HeatherFeather October 27, 2002

This was a bit time-consuming to make, but very easy (and actually kind of fun!). The end result is extremely tasty, although next time I would use a bit less butter as it's very rich. The potato base seemed soft, but has firmed up as the dish cooled. I made the recipe in a lasagna pan and cut into 64 small (1.5") squares. I think this will make a great appetizer for the German party I'm attending tonight!

JenDQ September 23, 2002

This was a bit fussy to make because of all the different parts to it, and unfortunately didn't turn out as well as I would have liked. The texture was fine, but it was quite bland even though I added some extra ham. My husband thought it was ok with sour cream, but overall probably wouldn't make it again.

CountryMama January 16, 2009

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