I have found Berlin food surprisingly diverse – maybe because it is such a young cosmopolitan city in Germany.  You can get some of the best German food in Berlin but you also have lots of ethnic things to eat in Berlin. A Berlin food tour is a great way to experience the city’s culinary diversity. I once took one of the Withlocals Berlin food tours and loved it for I finally  got to appreciate some of the best food in Berlin! A local foodie named Liz enriched my discovery quest of Berlin foods with lots of insights, anecdotes and fun facts about the delicacies, venues and places we were exploring together.  The small scale of the tour meant we got to experience both typical Berlin food but also lots of the stories behind the food. As a bonus (and as you all know, the kids and I have got a sweet tooth), there are plenty of sweet treats considered Berlin local food.

Typical Berlin Food: Currywurst

You can’t leave Berlin without experiencing Currywurst which is ubiquitous in the city. We are always happy to try  street food in a new place. This German fast-food equivalent of pizza for Americans or fish and chips for the British has a relatively recent history.

After World War 2, ketchup was in scarce supply to accompany pork sausages.  An enterprising Berliner came up with a sauce involving ingredients she got from the British forces stationed in Berlin.  This sauce of tomato paste, worcestershire sauce and curry powder quirky caught latched onto the public’s tastebuds and a food icon was born. As an Indian-American, I am always fascinated by how widespread the British love of curry went.

One of the most popular places in Berlin for Currywurst is Curry 36 in the young and trendy Kreuzburg district.  Open 24 hour, Curry 36 caters to the late night bar and club crowd in the area well.

Currywurst is typical Berlin food and is ubiquitous.

Currywurst is typical Berlin food and is ubiquitous.

Berlin food :  Kartoffelpuffer

Technically Kartoffelpuffer (German potato pancakes) are not just a Berlin local food. They are popular everywhere in Germany. Berlin however is such a walkable city and Kartoffelpuffer is a great street food snack.

Fun Fact! Kartoffelpuffers are NOT potato rostis even though they look similar. Rosti uses shredded potatoes but the katoffelpuffer uses grated potatoes for a finer texture.
German potato pancakes are among the great things to eat in Berlin.

German potato pancakes are among the great things to eat in Berlin.

 

You can serve Kartoffelpuffer as a sweet or savoury dish. We prefer our Kartoffelpuffer dusted with icing sugar but you can also get it served with apple sauce. The savoury version has a yogurt sauce or sour cream.

What to eat in Berlin:  Berliner Pfannkuchen

A Berliner Pfannkuchen (or Berliner for short) is a type of German doughnut. Just to be contrary, Berliners call this pastry treat a Berliner Pfannkuhen but Pfannkuchen is technically pancakes elsewhere in Germany. Don’t get conned into eating pancakes when you are looking for doughnuts!

Urban Legend Alert! American media has called out John F. Kennedy’s famous speech in Berlin where he said “Ich bin ein Berliner for using the indefinite article wrong. Instead of identifying as a Berliner, he was thought to have referred to himself as a jelly doughnut. Wrong! Apparently the indefinite article use was correct AND no one from Berlin calls the Pfannkuhen a Berliner anyway.  

You can get Berliners everywhere but traditionally they were eaten at celebrations like New Years Eve and the period before Lent. Berliners can come as jelly doughnuts or have no filling inside.

According to my sugar loving kids, some of the best food in Berlin is a Berliner Pfannkuchen (a jelly doughnut)

According to my sugar loving kids, some of the best food in Berlin is a Berliner Pfannkuchen (a jelly doughnut)

Food To Eat in Berlin: Schaumkauss

Schaumkauss (translated as “foam kiss”) are tasty little treats of chocolate covered marshmallow. Similar to a teacake in the United Kingdom, you can find them easily in Berlin. In fact, there are approximately 1 billion schaumkauss made in Germany which works out to a dozen per person per year.

Schaumküsse are a great food to try in Berlin.

Schaumküsse are a great food to try in Berlin.

Sometimes you can find Schaumkauss served in a bun. I personally prefer to put the extra carbs to use in eating more Schaumkusse itself.

Food to try in Berlin: Baklava

When did Baklava become German I hear you ask.  Well, there is a huge Turkish community (including German-born descendants of Turkish immigrants) living in Berlin. They are located mostly in the areas that were formerly West Berlin (let’s face it immigration to East Germany was not happening).

Fun Fact! The German Turkish community is the largest population of Turks outside of Turkey!
Tasty Baklava is a surprising entry in Berlin local food to try.

Tasty Baklava is a surprising entry in Berlin local food to try.

You can find “Little Istanbul” in the southeast part of the trendy Kreuzberg district. If you’ve stopped at Curry 36 for a currywurst, it’s easy to meander over to this area for something sweet afterwards.

SPREAD THE WORD! PIN THIS TO YOUR TRAVEL PINTEREST BOARDS FOR FUTURE REFERENCE! 

5 delicious Berlin local food suggestions (including Berlin food your kids will love)

5 delicious Berlin local food suggestions (including Berlin food your kids will love)

This site generates income via partnerships with carefully-curated travel and lifestyle brands and/or purchases made through links to them at no extra cost to you. More information may be found on our Disclosure Policy.