German Cucumber Salad aka Gurkensalat

When I was growing up German Cucumber Salad aka Marinated Cucumbers aka Gurkensalat was a regular part of our meals during the summer, when cucumbers were in abundance.  I always looked forward to this fresh and crunchy, sweet and tangy dish.

German Cucumber Salad 
aka Gurkensalat
adapted from Angela's Kitchen

2 cucumbers, thinly sliced 
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup cider vinegar or you might try white wine vinegar
1 to 2 tablespoons white sugar, to taste

1/4 cup finely minced fresh dill (traditional)
1-2 Tbsp Dijon mustard (start with 1 tablespoon and add more to taste, if desired)
1 tsp Kosher salt
Fresh ground pepper

Wash, the cucumber but do not peel (unless it is your preference).  Slice the cucumber very thin using a mandolin or food processor.  It is very important that the slices be very thin as it enhances the flavor and the delicate texture of the salad.

After the cucumbers are sliced, place them in a bowl or colander.  Mix in the salt.  Allow the cucumbers to sit for at least two hours. This draws out the water assuring that your salad will not have a diluted vinegar dressing!!  Using a paper towel, gently pat the cucumbers dry.

Thinly slice the red onion.  You may separate the onion into rings or slice each piece in half and then separate.  Add the onions to the bowl with the cucumbers.

Add the vinegar, sugar and mustard to a small bowl.  Stir until the sugar dissolves.  Add the dill, salt and ground pepper to the dressing.  Pour the dressing over the cucumbers and onions.

Chill for one hour before serving.

I would use a taste as you go method as everybody has a different palate when it comes to a vinegar and sugar dressing!

If you would like a creamy gurkensalat, drain the chilled mixture and stir in about a quarter cup of sour cream or yogurt. Serve garnished with a bit of fresh dill.


This was so much fun to make and brought back so many memories....I have no idea why I waited so long to once again enjoy this wonderful accompaniment to my meal!  Thank you, Angela for the motivation and memories!

Who is Angela, you ask?  Angela is the author of the blog, Angela's Kitchen.  Yes, you are right, it is Secret Recipe Club time, once again!  Angela is a lady who has taken the bumps that life has dealt and made roses, daisies and rainbows!  Angela is one of the first dairy free and gluten free blogs in cyber-space!  She faced life's challenges head-on and has become quite a resource for folks who require this special diet.  Hop on over and take a look.  You won't be disappointed.

I had a difficult time selecting just one recipe to make....and since I am trying really hard to BE GOOD, I was headed toward salads.   I found three recipes that I wanted to make and so far, I have made two of's recipe, Cucumber Salad, was a winner.  

Angela makes her salad with rice vinegar.  Knowing that my childhood memories did not include rice vinegar, I set up a taste test.  I determined the proportions I would need of vinegar to sugar and mixed three dressings. One with rice vinegar, one with cider vinegar and one with white vinegar.  I decided that the cider vinegar best represented what I remember but it was a narrow difference between cider and white vinegar!  I am going to try white wine vinegar next...just because.

I also added some Dijon Mustard to the dressing and of course, dill is the traditional herb in Gurkensalat, so I knew I had to include it!

And...if you are interested in what the other salad was, check back later this week.  You will love it!!


  1. We enjoy cucumber salads with a sandwich for lunch. Can't wait to try your German version.

  2. I love cucumber salads and haven't had one exactly like this. Nice pic for SRC and look forward to giving it a try.

  3. Well, I totally don't eat cucumbers (I know....most people think that's weird), but your photos are really pretty! :) Have a wonderful day!

  4. Yum! I love cucumber salad and I'm anxiously awaiting their arrival to the farm stand. Can't wait to try this.

  5. Cucumber salad is a refreshing one and it is time to bring it out with summer coming. What a pretty photo.

  6. I'll have to try this version. I made a version with mayo but my husband prefers vinegar based cucumber salads.

  7. Good Afternoon Kate, I do enjoy cucumber in a salad, so I will be trying your German Cucumber Salad for sure. Yes I agree with you, cider vinegar would make an nice addition to this salad. I am certainly going to be making the salad this summer.
    Best Wishes

  8. My grandmother served a similar salad every night of the week. I use cider vinegar and have never tried adding a bit of mustard. Sounds good.

  9. So pretty. I should eat more cucumbers.

  10. My mother and then myself have made something similar to this, but without the mustard.
    It is indeed refreshing in the summer. Whenever I have extra cucumber in the refrig. that needs
    used, this is my go to salad.

  11. Perfect for this summer when the cucumbers are fresh from the garden.

  12. The Hubs LOVES cucumbers. Pinning this for the summer!

  13. We like cucumber salads around here, and I've never tried this German version. I think maybe I need to give it a try. :)

  14. I'm not usually a cucumber salad fan, but this looks so fresh and delicious - I definitely want to give it a try!


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