The best Cologne food you have to try in the city

Best Cologne food and what to eat in Cologne

The German cuisine is extremely delicious especially when it is combined with endless glasses of cold beer. Check out these delicious things to eat in Cologne to find out what will best suit to your glass of Kölsch beer.

What to eat in Cologne

I am not gonna lie, the traditional Cologne food is all about the meat. On the menus you will find tens of different sausages, fried meat, boiled meat, baked meat and whatever meat you can imagine. All this comes with a huge portion of fried potatoes and cabbage. So brace yourselves and be prepared for a meat feast. If you are a meat and beer lover, you will certainly feel like home in Germany.

3 Things you must eat in Cologne

Schnitzel – extremely delicious fried piece of pork or veal meat, coated with bread crumbs and eggs. It is usually served with fried potatoes.


Bratwurst – a grilled sausage made from finely minced pork and beef. It is one of my favourites.


Schweinshaxe (Hämmche) – an enormous roasted or boiled pork knuckle (usually about 600g to 1400g, including the bone). It is served with mashed potatoes and pickled cabbage (Sauerkraut).

Other things to eat in Cologne

  • Himmel un Ääd (Heaven and Earth) – this dish is a combination of mashed potatoes (the earth) and apple slices (the heaven). It usually comes with blood sausage.
  • Mettbrötchen – it is minced raw pork meat with raw onion rings on a bread roll.
  • Halver Hahn – it is a rye roll with cheese, butter and mustard.
  • Flönz/Blutwurst – a blood sausage.
  • Kölsche Kaviar – a blood sausage served with slices of onions and rye roll.
  • Rheinischer Soorbrode – this meal is made from horse or beef meat marinated in vinegar and raisins, served with potato dumplings and red cabbage.
  • Leberkäse – it is a baked meat loaf, prepared from beef, pork and bacon.

What to drink in Cologne

Cologne is known for its beer – Kölsch. It is soft, light-coloured beer with a little fruitiness. Kölsch is served in small glasses of 0,2 L, which are tall and cylindrical. Try the Kölsch in an original brewery (brauhaus).


The person who serves you the Kölsch beer is called “Köbes”. The Köbes will bring you a new glass of the fantastic ale every time the old one is over without even being asked. So if you don’t want more just put the beer pad on your glass.

It is easy to lose track how many beers you drank, so the waiter will mark each one of the beers with a line on your beer pad.

Tipping and Etiquette


It is not typical water to be served on your table without specially requesting it. So if you want, you have to order it and you will have to pay for it as any other beverage. You will be asked whether you wish carbonated mineral water or still (stilles Wasser).  It is uncommon to request a tap water.

How to pay

Service is included in the menu prices, so you don’t have to add 20% more on your bill. It is enough the amount to be rounded. For example 4,40 EUR to be rounded to 5 EUR.

If you like the food or the service very much you can always leave 5-10% over the amount. When the waiter comes with the bill, you have to hand him/her the money (or the credit card) and say the amount you want to pay.

Restaurants in Cologne I have tried

Brauhaus Em Kölsche Boor
It is one of the oldest breweries in the city and their Kölsch is with superb quality.
Opening hours:
Every day: 10:30 AM – 00:00
Address: Eigelstein 121, 50668 Köln

Brauhaus Gaffel am Dom
It is a huge brewery located next to the Cologne cathedral. The menu provides a large selection of typical Cologne food with oversized tasty portions.
Opening hours:
From Sunday to Thursday: 11:30 AM – 00:00
Fridays and Saturday: 11:30 AM – 02:00 AM
Address: Bahnhofsvorplatz 1, 50667 Köln

Other good places to try Cologne food

Traditional German restaurants and pubs

Bei Oma Kleinmann
They have an extensive Schnitzel menu and are masters in preparing delicious Schnitzels since 1949. So it’s no wonder why this restaurant serves the best Schnitzel in Cologne. 
Opening hours:

From Tuesday to Sunday: 05:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Monday: closed
Address: Zülpicher Str. 9, 50674 Köln

Brauerei Päffgen
Go for their beer. This is a traditional brewery from 1883 and they serve one of the best Kölsch in Cologne.
Opening hours:
From Sunday to Thursday: 10:00 AM – 00:00
Friday and Saturday: 10:00 AM – 00:30 AM 
Address: Friesenstraße 64-66, 50670 Köln

Brauhaus Pütz
They offer very delicious sausages and great Kölsch.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Thursday: 12:00 PM – 00:00
Friday and Saturday: 12:00 PM – 01:00 AM
Sunday: 04:30 PM – 11:30 PM
Address: Engelbertstraße 67, 50674 Köln

Brauerei zur Malzmühle
It’s a family brewery and it is the second oldest one in Cologne. The Kölsch is brewed exactly as it was in 1858. The beer here is one of the best Kölsch in Cologne.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Thursday: 11:30 AM – 00:00
Friday and Saturday: 11:30 AM – 01:00 AM
Sunday: 11:30 AM – 11:00 PM
Address: Heumarkt 6, 50667 Köln

Die fette Kuh
The name of this place in English means – the fat cow. Considering the size of the burgers that are served here, they definitely come from really big cows. The restaurant is not a traditional German pub, but they offer the best burgers in Cologne. So if you want to vary your diet of Schnitzels and Cologne sausages, check out this place.
Opening hours:
From Wednesday to Monday: 12:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Tuesday: closed
Bonner Str. 43, 50677 Köln

Gaststätte Lederer
It is a small restaurant with delicious traditional German food.
Opening hours:
Every day: 09:00 AM – 03:00 AM
Address: Unter Fettenhennen 2, 50667 Köln

Gilden im Zims
They serve one of the best pork knuckles in Cologne.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Thursday: 12:00 PM – 01:00 AM
Friday: 12:00 PM – 03:00 AM
Saturday: 11:00 AM – 03:00 AM
Sunday: 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Address: Heumarkt 77, 50667 Köln

Restaurant Heumarkt
In addition to the delicious Cologne food, the restaurant also offers Balkan specialities and Argentinian steaks.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Friday: 11:30 AM – 02:30 PM and 05:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Saturday and Sunday: 11:30 AM – 11:00 PM
Address: Heumarkt 47, 50667 Köln

Peters Brauhaus
It is a great brewery with authentic German food.
Opening hours:
Every day: 11:00 AM – 00:00
Address: Mühlengasse 1, 50667 Köln

It is not a typical Brauhaus, but they serve delicious traditional German food.
Opening hours:
From Sunday to Friday: 10:00 AM – 00:00
Saturday: 09:00 AM – 00:00
Address: Pfeilstraße 32-35, 50672 Köln

Weinhaus Vogel
If you are looking for cheap tasty Cologne food with great Kölsch – this is the place.
Opening hours:
Every day: 10:00 AM – 00:00
Address: Eigelstein 74, 50668 Köln

Places for a quick bite

Cafe Riese
It’s a lovely café with a great variety of cakes, sandwiches and typical Cologne style dishes.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Saturday: 08:00 AM – 08:00 PM
Sunday: 11:00 AM – 06:00 PM
Address: Schildergasse 103, 50667 Köln

Manufactum brot&butter
It’s a nice bakery with delicious homemade croissants.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Friday: 09:30 AM – 07:00 PM
Saturday: 09:30 AM – 06:00 PM
Sunday: closed
Address: Brückenstraße 23, 50667 Köln

Merzenich Bäckereien
The bakery is founded in 1896. So as you can imagine, they have a lot of experience if preparing tasty pastries.
Opening hours:
From Monday to Saturday: 06:30 AM – 08:00 PM
Sunday: 08:00 AM – 06:00 PM
Address: Wallrafplatz 4, 50667 Köln

Map of the best places to eat in Cologne

Have you tried something from the list “what to eat in Cologne”? Is there any other Cologne food that is a must eat?

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