Mini German Potato Pancakes Recipe

Oktoberfest wouldn’t be the same without golden kartoffelpuffer, otherwise known as German potato pancakes. We’ve miniaturized them for bite-sized finger food that's perfect for an Oktoberfest celebration. Serve the crispy mouthfuls with applesauce and sour cream for dipping.

August 23, 2021

Photo by: Heather Baird

Heather Baird

For convenience, the uncooked mini potato cakes can be made ahead and frozen. Scoop and flatten the mixture into pancakes by the level tablespoon, then place them between sheets of waxed paper and layer them in freezer bags. Allow the frozen potato cakes to stand at room temperature 20 minutes before frying.


  • 2-1/2 lbs. Yukon gold potatoes
  • 1/2 cup grated onion (1 small)
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • applesauce, sour cream and chives, for serving

Yield: 36 mini potato pancakes


Peel and slice the potatoes into 1-inch sticks (Image 1). Place them in a food processor with the finest grater blade. Process them until the potatoes form a coarse batter. Place the potatoes in a tea towel and squeeze out as much water as possible (Image 2).

Place the potatoes in a large mixing bowl with the onion, eggs, garlic, flour and salt. Stir to combine. Add flour a little at a time until the excess liquid is absorbed and the mixture is slightly sticky. You may need to add as much as 1 cup total. The mixture should be almost dough-like.

Photo by: Heather Baird

Heather Baird

Add 1/4 cup of vegetable oil to a nonstick pan over medium-high heat, or set an electric frying pan to 350°F. When the oil shimmers, scoop the potato mixture by the level tablespoons and flatten with a rubber spatula. Repeat the process, working in batches so as to not overcrowd the pan. Add more oil as needed as you fry batches.

Photo by: Heather Baird

Heather Baird

Cook for 4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and crisp (Image 1). Transfer the fried cakes to a paper towel-lined pan to drain (Image 2).

Serve warm with applesauce on the side for a sweet take or keep it savory by topping with sour cream and chives.

Photo by: Heather Baird

Heather Baird

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