Labskaus - a Specialty of the Seafaring Town of Hamburg

Labskaus - a German specialty from Hamburg

Flickr user Jimborange

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 45 mins
Servings: 3 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
803 Calories
41g Fat
68g Carbs
41g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3
Amount per serving
Calories 803
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 41g 53%
Saturated Fat 13g 64%
Cholesterol 303mg 101%
Sodium 2743mg 119%
Total Carbohydrate 68g 25%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Total Sugars 27g
Protein 41g
Vitamin C 20mg 98%
Calcium 206mg 16%
Iron 6mg 33%
Potassium 1402mg 30%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Labskaus is a one-dish meal made with mashed potatoes, corned beef, and beets. It’s bright red from the beet juice and served with a fried egg, pickles and pickled, rolled herring (rollmops).

Labskaus used to be a poor person’s food, but now pickled meats and fish are so expensive that it has become a luxury food, even served at fancy restaurants. It also has a reputation for being a hangover cure.

Serves 3.


  • 1 small onion, chopped

  • 4 teaspoons unsalted butter, or margarine, divided

  • 1 pound potatoes, about 4 medium, peeled and quartered

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 1 cup beef broth

  • 10 ounces corned beef, homemade or canned, chopped

  • 1 (15-ounce) can pickled beets, in slices

  • 1 tablespoon pickled beet juice

  • 9 rollmops, pickled herring wrapped around a gherkin pickle

  • 3 large eggs

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Cook the potatoes in salted water until soft.

  2. Brown the onions in 2 teaspoons butter for 3 minutes and remove from heat.

  3. Brown the corned beef cubes in the same pan until warmed through.

  4. Chop 5 beet slices small, reserving the rest.

  5. Drain the potatoes and add the milk. Mash the potatoes with a potato masher (they will be chunky). Add enough broth to make the potatoes wet, but not runny. Fold in the browned onions, chopped corned beef, chopped beets, and the beet juice. Season with salt and pepper.

  6. Using a non-stick pan, melt 2 teaspoons butter and fry the 3 eggs. Salt and pepper to taste.

  7. Divide the labskaus onto 3 pre-warmed plates. Arrange 1 fried egg on top of each mound of labskaus, add the rollmops, the reserved pickled red beets, and spicy German pickles and serve immediately.

Raw Egg Warning

Consuming raw and lightly cooked eggs poses a risk of foodborne illness.

Tip: Pre-warming the plate is essential for total enjoyment of this meal because it can cool down so fast. Place plates in an oven that has been heated for a few minutes and then turned off. Use potholders to remove them shortly before serving.