Schlachteplatte: A Traditional German Delight

1. What is Schlachteplatte?

Schlachteplatte is a hearty German dish that is beloved by meat lovers and carnivores alike. It is essentially a platter filled with various cuts of cured and smoked meats, sausages, and other traditional German delicacies. The name “Schlachteplatte” actually translates to “slaughter plate,” which may not sound very appetizing at first, but trust me, it’s delicious!

Imagine a beautiful wooden platter piled high with slices of juicy roast pork, crispy pork belly, tender smoked sausages, and succulent cured ham. Add to that some tangy sauerkraut, creamy mashed potatoes, and maybe even a few pickles on the side for good measure. This is the essence of Schlachteplatte – a true feast for the senses.

The Origins of Schlachteplatte

Schlachteplatte has its roots in the rural regions of Germany, where it was traditionally prepared during the winter months after the annual pig slaughter. In those days, nothing went to waste, and this dish was a way to make use of every part of the pig.

While it may have originated as a way to utilize leftovers from the slaughter, Schlachteplatte has evolved into a celebrated culinary tradition in its own right. It has become synonymous with German comfort food and is enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.

2. Where does Schlachteplatte originate from?

Schlachteplatte can trace its origins back to the rural areas of Germany, where it was common for families to raise their own pigs for meat. After slaughtering the pig in late autumn or early winter when temperatures were low enough to ensure proper preservation of the meat, families would gather together to prepare and enjoy Schlachteplatte.

This tradition of communal pig slaughtering and feasting dates back centuries and was especially prevalent in regions such as Bavaria, Franconia, and Swabia. The practice of Schlachteplatte has since spread throughout Germany and can now be found in various forms across the country.

Regional Variations

While the basic concept of Schlachteplatte remains the same, there are regional variations that reflect the unique culinary traditions of different areas in Germany. For example, in Bavaria, Schlachteplatte often includes Leberkäse (a type of meatloaf) and Weisswurst (traditional Bavarian sausages), while in Franconia, it is more common to find smoked pork chops and bratwurst on the platter.

No matter where you are in Germany, however, you can be sure that Schlachteplatte will be a delicious celebration of all things meaty and flavorful.

3. Can you describe the traditional ingredients of Schlachteplatte?

The traditional ingredients of Schlachteplatte vary depending on personal preferences and regional variations. However, there are a few key components that are commonly found on this hearty platter:

Cured Meats

  • Roast pork: Tender slices of slow-roasted pork with crispy crackling skin.
  • Pork belly: Succulent strips of fatty pork belly that melt in your mouth.
  • Cured ham: Thinly sliced cured ham with a rich flavor profile.


  • Smoked sausages: These may include Bratwurst or other regional varieties such as Nürnberger or Thüringer sausages.
  • Frankfurters: Thin, long sausages often served with mustard on the side.


  • Sauerkraut: Tangy and slightly fermented cabbage that adds a refreshing contrast to the rich meats.
  • Mashed potatoes: Creamy and buttery mashed potatoes provide a comforting base for the meats.
  • Pickles: A few pickles on the side add a touch of acidity and crunch to complement the flavors of Schlachteplatte.

These are just some of the traditional ingredients you might find on a Schlachteplatte. However, it’s worth noting that variations can exist depending on personal preferences and regional specialties.

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4. How is Schlachteplatte typically prepared and cooked?

The preparation of Schlachteplatte is a labor of love that requires time, patience, and attention to detail. While the exact cooking methods may vary depending on personal preferences, here is a general overview of how Schlachteplatte is typically prepared:

Curing and Smoking

Before the meats are cooked, they are often cured with salt and spices to enhance their flavor and prolong their shelf life. This process can take several days or even weeks, depending on the desired level of curing. After curing, some cuts may be smoked to add an extra layer of depth to their taste profile.

Roasting and Grilling

Once cured and smoked, the various cuts of meat are then roasted or grilled to perfection. The roast pork is slow-cooked until tender with crispy crackling skin, while the pork belly is rendered until it becomes irresistibly crispy and succulent. The sausages are typically grilled or pan-fried until they develop a delicious char on the outside.


Once all the components are cooked, they are artfully arranged on a platter to create an enticing display of flavors and textures. The sauerkraut is heated through and served alongside the meats, while the mashed potatoes provide a comforting base for the platter.

Finally, the Schlachteplatte is ready to be enjoyed by friends and family, who gather around the table to savor each bite of this hearty German feast.

5. Are there any variations or regional differences in the preparation of Schlachteplatte?

While Schlachteplatte follows a general template of cured and smoked meats, sausages, and accompaniments, there can be variations in its preparation depending on personal preferences and regional specialties. Here are a few examples:

Bavarian Style

In Bavaria, Schlachteplatte often includes additional components such as Leberkäse (a type of meatloaf) and Weisswurst (traditional Bavarian sausages). The meats may also be seasoned with Bavarian spices such as caraway seeds or marjoram for added flavor.

Franconian Style

In Franconia, Schlachteplatte may feature smoked pork chops alongside other cuts of meat. Bratwurst is a popular sausage choice in this region, known for its savory blend of spices.

Swabian Style

In Swabia, Schlachteplatte might include traditional Swabian sausages like Maultaschen (filled pasta pockets) or Blutwurst (blood sausage). The sauerkraut may be seasoned with juniper berries or other aromatic spices.

These are just a few examples of how Schlachteplatte can vary across different regions in Germany. The beauty of this dish lies in its ability to adapt and showcase the unique flavors and culinary traditions of each area.

6. What is the significance of Schlachteplatte in German culinary culture?

Schlachteplatte holds a special place in German culinary culture as a celebration of tradition, community, and hearty comfort food. It embodies the values of resourcefulness and making use of every part of an animal, which were essential skills for survival in rural Germany throughout history.

Today, Schlachteplatte is not only enjoyed for its delicious flavors but also for the sense of togetherness it brings. It is often prepared and shared during festive occasions, family gatherings, or even at local festivals dedicated to celebrating German cuisine.

A Feast for Meat Lovers

Schlachteplatte is a true feast for meat lovers, showcasing a variety of cuts and flavors that highlight the rich heritage of German charcuterie. From tender roast pork to smoky sausages, each bite tells a story of craftsmanship and culinary expertise passed down through generations.

Whether enjoyed at home or at a traditional German restaurant, Schlachteplatte invites diners to indulge in the pleasures of good food, good company, and the warmth that comes from sharing a meal together.

7. Is there a specific occasion or time of year when Schlachteplatte is commonly enjoyed?

Schlachteplatte is traditionally enjoyed during the winter months in Germany when temperatures are low enough to ensure proper preservation of cured meats. This coincides with the time after the annual pig slaughter, when families would gather together to prepare and enjoy this hearty feast.

While there is no specific occasion tied to Schlachteplatte, it is often associated with festive events or family gatherings. It is a dish that brings people together and creates a sense of warmth and conviviality during the colder months.

Christmas Markets

In Germany, Schlachteplatte is commonly found at Christmas markets, where visitors can indulge in traditional German dishes while enjoying the festive atmosphere. The aroma of sizzling sausages and roasted meats fills the air, creating an irresistible temptation for hungry passersby.


While Oktoberfest is more famous for its beer, Schlachteplatte is also a popular choice among festival-goers looking for a satisfying meal to accompany their drinks. It provides the perfect sustenance to keep revelers fueled throughout the day of festivities.

Of course, Schlachteplatte can be enjoyed at any time of year if you’re lucky enough to find it on a menu or are willing to try your hand at preparing it yourself. After all, why limit yourself to just one season when you can savor the flavors of Schlachteplatte all year round?

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Schlachteplatte is typically served with a variety of side dishes that complement its rich flavors and add balance to the meal. Here are some traditional accompaniments you might find alongside this hearty German platter:


No Schlachteplatte would be complete without sauerkraut – tangy fermented cabbage that cuts through the richness of the meats. The sauerkraut is usually cooked until tender and seasoned with spices such as caraway seeds or juniper berries.

Mashed Potatoes

Creamy mashed potatoes provide a comforting base for the meats and help to soak up all the delicious flavors on the plate. The potatoes are typically boiled, mashed, and seasoned with butter, salt, and pepper.


Mustard is a classic condiment that pairs perfectly with the smoky sausages and cured meats of Schlachteplatte. The tangy heat of mustard cuts through the richness of the meats and adds an extra layer of flavor to each bite.


A crusty loaf of fresh bread is often served alongside Schlachteplatte to mop up any remaining juices or to create delicious meat-filled sandwiches. It adds an element of texture and can be used to make open-faced sandwiches with slices of meat and sauerkraut.

These side dishes not only enhance the flavors of Schlachteplatte but also provide a variety of textures and tastes that make each bite a delight for the palate.

9. Are there any specific condiments or sauces that complement the flavors of Schlachteplatte?

Schlachteplatte is a flavorful dish in its own right, but there are a few condiments and sauces that can elevate its taste even further. Here are some options that pair well with this hearty German platter:

Horseradish Sauce

Horseradish sauce adds a kick of heat and tanginess to Schlachteplatte. Its sharp flavor cuts through the richness of the meats, creating a harmonious balance on your palate. You can either buy prepared horseradish sauce or make your own by mixing grated horseradish with sour cream or mayonnaise.


Mustard is a classic accompaniment to German sausages and cured meats, and Schlachteplatte is no exception. Whether you prefer a smooth Dijon mustard or a grainy whole-grain mustard, its tangy flavor will enhance the taste of the meats and add an extra layer of complexity to each bite.

Apple Sauce

For a touch of sweetness and acidity, apple sauce can be a delightful addition to Schlachteplatte. Its fruity flavors provide a refreshing contrast to the rich and savory meats, creating a symphony of tastes on your plate.

Pickle Relish

If you’re looking for some added crunch and tanginess, pickle relish can be the perfect condiment for Schlachteplatte. The pickles’ briny flavors complement the cured meats and sausages, adding an extra burst of flavor with every bite.

These condiments and sauces are just a few options to consider when enjoying Schlachteplatte. Feel free to experiment with different combinations to find your own perfect match!

10. How does the taste and texture of Schlachteplatte compare to other German meat dishes?

Schlachteplatte stands out among other German meat dishes due to its variety of flavors, textures, and the sheer abundance of meat on one platter

11. Are there any cultural or historical anecdotes associated with the origin of Schlachteplatte?

Origin and Cultural Significance

Schlachteplatte, also known as “Butcher’s Plate,” is a traditional German dish that originated in the region of Northern Germany, particularly in cities like Bremen and Hamburg. It has a rich cultural history and is often associated with local festivals and celebrations. The origins of Schlachteplatte can be traced back to the practice of slaughtering pigs during the winter months, when the meat could be preserved for longer periods without refrigeration.

Festivals and Traditions

In Bremen, the city hosts an annual festival called “Schlachte-Zauber” where locals and tourists gather to celebrate the culinary traditions of Schlachteplatte. During this festival, various stalls offer different variations of the dish, showcasing its importance in local culture. Additionally, in Hamburg, there is a similar event called “Schlagermove,” which combines music and food while paying tribute to traditional dishes like Schlachteplatte.

The serving of Schlachteplatte has become synonymous with communal dining experiences in Germany. It is often enjoyed in large groups or at family gatherings where people come together to share a hearty meal. This tradition not only highlights the cultural significance of Schlachteplatte but also promotes social bonding and unity among friends and family.

12. Has the recipe for Schlachteplatte evolved over time, or has it remained relatively unchanged?

Evolving Ingredients

Over time, the recipe for Schlachteplatte has adapted to changing tastes and preferences while still maintaining its essence as a hearty meat-based dish. Originally consisting mainly of pork products such as sausages, ham hocks, and bacon, modern variations may incorporate other types of meat like beef or poultry. This evolution allows for a wider range of flavors and options to cater to different dietary preferences.

Regional Variations

Furthermore, the specific ingredients used in Schlachteplatte can vary regionally within Germany. For example, in Bremen, it is common to find “Pinkel,” a type of smoked sausage made with oats and pork fat, as an essential component of the dish. In contrast, in Hamburg, pickled vegetables like sauerkraut are often included alongside the meat. These regional variations reflect the diversity of German cuisine and highlight the adaptability of Schlachteplatte.

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Despite these adaptations, the core concept of Schlachteplatte remains relatively unchanged – a generous platter filled with an assortment of flavorful meats and accompanied by traditional side dishes such as potatoes or bread rolls. This consistency ensures that even with evolving recipes, Schlachteplatte continues to evoke a sense of nostalgia and culinary heritage.

13. Are there any vegetarian or vegan alternatives available for those who don’t consume meat?

Vegan and Vegetarian Adaptations

While Schlachteplatte is traditionally a meat-centric dish, there are alternative options available for those who follow vegetarian or vegan diets. These adaptations allow individuals to enjoy a similar communal dining experience without compromising their dietary restrictions.

Vegan Substitutes

For vegans, plant-based substitutes can be used to recreate the flavors and textures found in traditional Schlachteplatte. Vegan sausages made from ingredients like tofu or seitan can be used as replacements for pork sausages. Additionally, marinated tempeh or smoked tofu can serve as alternatives to ham hocks or bacon. These substitutions provide a cruelty-free option while still capturing the essence of the original dish.

Vegetarian Options

For vegetarians who consume dairy and eggs, incorporating cheese or egg-based dishes alongside the traditional side dishes can create a satisfying vegetarian Schlachteplatte. Cheeses like camembert or brie can add richness and flavor to the platter, while boiled eggs or egg salad provide additional protein.

These vegetarian and vegan adaptations of Schlachteplatte cater to the growing demand for plant-based alternatives and showcase the versatility of German cuisine in accommodating various dietary preferences.

14. Do restaurants in Germany commonly serve Schlachteplatte, or is it primarily a homemade dish?

Prominence in Restaurants

Schlachteplatte is a popular dish in Germany, and it can be found on the menus of many traditional German restaurants throughout the country. Its prominence in these establishments reflects its cultural significance and enduring popularity among locals and tourists alike.

Specialty Restaurants

In cities like Bremen and Hamburg, where Schlachteplatte has strong historical ties, there are even specialty restaurants that focus solely on serving this traditional dish. These establishments often pride themselves on using high-quality meats sourced from local butchers, ensuring an authentic and delicious experience for diners.

Homemade Tradition

While Schlachteplatte is readily available at restaurants, it is also a cherished homemade dish prepared by families during special occasions or festive gatherings. Many Germans take pride in their culinary skills and enjoy showcasing their heritage through homemade versions of Schlachteplatte. This tradition not only allows for customization based on personal preferences but also strengthens familial bonds as generations come together to prepare and share this beloved meal.

Overall, whether enjoyed at a restaurant or made at home, Schlachteplatte continues to hold a significant place in German cuisine, representing both cultural traditions and culinary craftsmanship.

In conclusion, if you’re a meat lover and enjoy hearty German cuisine, Schlachteplatte is a must-try! With its mouthwatering combination of various meats and traditional sides, it promises to satisfy your cravings and leave you feeling happily stuffed. So gather your friends or family, head to a German restaurant, and indulge in this delicious feast – you won’t be disappointed! Prost to good food and great company!


Was gehört im Norden zur Schlachtplatte?

The dish known as Schlachtplatte or Metzgete became so popular that the specialties from freshly slaughtered pigs were also offered in taverns: Along with the boiled meat, primarily consisting of head and belly, there are blood and liver sausages, grilled sausages, pork ribs, mashed potatoes, and sauerkraut.

Wann ist Schlachtplatte Zeit?

Autumn is the season of traditional feasts, and even though very few people still participate in the slaughtering process, it is still common to gather and enjoy Metzgete meals.

Schlachteplatte 1

Was kostet eine Schlachtplatte?

Additional Information
Price per kilogram: 13.28
Product unit: Piece
Shelf life: 10 days from delivery at +7°C
Average nutritional value per 100g: Fat: 16g, Carbohydrates: 4g, Protein: g

Woher kommt die Schlachtplatte?

The tradition originated in earlier times when agriculture was not as industrialized as it is today. Back then, it was not possible to feed all the pigs during the winter, so they were slaughtered for purely economic reasons.

Welche Leberwurst für Schlachtplatte?

It ranges from fine and mild in delicatessen liver sausage, veal liver sausage, truffle liver sausage, mushroom liver sausage, or cream liver sausage to hearty and strong in homemade liver sausage, farmer’s liver sausage, country liver sausage, or crackling liver sausage.

Was gibt es bei einem Schlachtfest?

Traditional dishes on slaughter day include boiled pork, pork stew, sausage, stuffed pig’s stomach, liver and meat dumplings, minced meat, soup, potatoes/mashed potatoes, liver and crackling sausage, pork belly, lard, and other dishes according to the host’s preference. The side dishes served are sauerkraut and bread.