German Sausage With Curry Ketchup (Currywurst)

Currywurst with French Fries
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  • 45 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4 currywurst (4 servings)
Ratings (38)

Germans take tremendous pride in their sausages, known around the world for their flavor. Many recipes for German sausage are closely guarded family secrets, while others are hotly contested for their authenticity. Some are served on a roll, as Americans serve hot dogs, but others are eaten with a knife and fork, depending on how fancy the meal is.  

German sausage with curry ketchup, known as currywurst, is the number one street food or fast food known as imbissbuden. Vendors sell them at street fairs and carnivals, and they're a great introduction for those unfamiliar with this ubiquitous German delicacy.

It starts with a grilled sausage (Berliner currywurst is a pork sausage which resembles a hot dog, while other cities might use bratwurst) and curry-flavored tomato ketchup.

A good currywurst is made with good quality sausage that is grilled hot, and the ketchup should have body rather than being the thin, watered-down stuff found in squeeze bottles.

Included below is a recipe for homemade ketchup that starts with tomato paste, just in case you don't have any ketchup on hand.

What You'll Need

  • 4 to 6 links sausage (bratwurst or knockwurst or old-fashioned butcher-style frankfurters)
  • 2 teaspoons cooking oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup apple, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped fine
  • Water (to thin tomato paste)
  • 6 ounces tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice, ground
  • 3 to 5 teaspoons curry powder (or to taste)
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons ginger, freshly grated
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pepper, to taste

How to Make It

Make the Sauce

  1. In a medium saucepan, add the oil, onion, and apple and sauté until onion is translucent. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute.
  2. For a more elite taste, add the spices to the garlic and sauté, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes or until spices are fragrant.
  3. Otherwise, pour in 1/2 cup water and deglaze the pan. Add the tomato paste, honey, allspice, curry powder, vinegar, ginger, bay leaf, and pepper.
  1. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or longer, adding water to reach desired consistency.
  2. Remove bay leaf and blend with an immersion blender for a smooth sauce, or leave chunky if desired. Keep sauce warm or rewarm it when ready to serve.

Grill the Sausage

  1. Grill sausage links and then cut into 1-inch bites and serve with hot sauce.
  2. Alternatively, score the sausage links on the diagonal and grill to create more crispy surface area and then slice.
  3. A third approach would be to slice the link on the diagonal but leave it whole after grilling for the diners to cut as they wish

Unlike other varieties of German sausage, currywurst is not traditionally served on a bun or a roll, but French fries are a frequent accompaniment.

Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
Calories 209
Total Fat 7 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Unsaturated Fat 3 g
Cholesterol 10 mg
Sodium 152 mg
Carbohydrates 34 g
Dietary Fiber 4 g
Protein 7 g
(The nutrition information on our recipes is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. Individual results may vary.)