Cheesy spaetzle in a white casserole dish on a grey placemat on a wooden surface (with logo overlay)

How to Make Cheesy German Spaetzle from Scratch

Cheesy Spaetzle is a delicious German pasta recipe that’s perfect as a side or an appetizer. Make a homemade dough, press it, and cook!

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We have a wonderful group of friends who get together once per month for our Dinner Club. Of course, during the COVID-19 quarantine, we put our get-togethers on hold. But, our idea this year was to choose a different country or region and cook foods related to that each month. Our last country was Germany, and one of our friends brought some delicious homemade spaetzle to try with our German food.

I had never had or even heard of Spaetzle before this. It’s a type of pasta dish that is popular in Germany, Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, and surrounding areas. I was excited to try it because my family has Hungarian heritage.

Let me tell you, it was amazing! I went back for seconds and even thirds. Plus, I kept a bit to reheat the next day for leftovers.

About a month later, I got the craving for some cheesy spaetzle again. This time, though, we didn’t have our friend coming over to make it for us. So, Justin and I tried to make our own. When I was researching the recipe, I found that there is a tool made for spaetzle. We didn’t think it would be a big deal and decided to use a metal colander. Trust me, splurge on the spaetzle maker!

Using the metal colander worked, but it was not easy. It also took two of us. One person had to hold the large-holed colander while the other forced the spaetzle dough through it. But, it is doable! Though I won’t be making this again until I get a spätzle maker or potato ricer. I suppose a cheese grater might work, too. 

Spätzle, or nokedli in Hungarian, are a type of Central European egg noodles typically served as a side for meat dishes with sauce. Commonly associated with Swabia, it is also found in the cuisines of southern Germany and Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Vojvodina, Slovenia, Alsace, Moselle, and South Tyrol. Spätzle is the Swabian diminutive of Spatz, thus literally “little sparrows”.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sp%C3%A4tzle

Spaetzle Step by Step

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 quarts water
  • 12 oz provolone cheese (torn)

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Add the flour and 1 tsp of salt to the stand mixer bowl. Stir to combine with the wire whisk.

Dry ingredients in a stainless steel mixing bowl on a wooden surface

Whisk the eggs in a small bowl.

Beaten eggs in a stainless steel bowl next to another bowl with dry ingredients on a wooden surface

Use a spoon to make a well in the middle of the flour mixture. Pour the whisked eggs into this well then add the milk.

Liquid ingredients on top of dry ingredients in a stainless steel bowl on a wooden surface

Use the dough hook to knead the dough for about 15 minutes on speed 2. Use a wooden spoon to pull a bit of the dough up and test if it is at the right consistency. It should just stick to the spoon and be stretchy.

Spaetzle dough in a stainless steel bowl on a wooden surface

Add the water and salt to a large stockpot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Use a spaetzle press or a metal colander with large holes and a spoon to press the spaetzle batter through the holes and into the boiling water. Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the noodles start to float to the top of the hot water.

Spaetzle noodles in boiling water in a large stockpot on a wooden surface

Drain the cooked spaetzle and run cold water over them to stop the cooking process.

Spaetzle noodles in a metal strainer in a stainless steel bowl on a wooden surface

Place the pasta in a bowl with some ice water for a couple of minutes.

Spaetzle noodles in ice water in a stainless steel bowl on a wooden surface

In a 9×13 baking dish, use a slotted spoon to scoop and layer half of the spaetzle noodles. Top with half of the cheese.

Single layer of spaetzle noodles topped with cheese in a white casserole on a wooden surface

Repeat with another layer of spaetzle and top with the remaining cheese.

Spaetzle noodles topped with cheese in a white casserole dish on a wooden surface

Bake for about 10 minutes, until the cheese is melted. Serve warm and sprinkle with white pepper or black pepper as desired.

Cheesy spaetzle in a white casserole dish on a grey placemat on a wooden surface (vertical)

Spaetzle Leftovers

Storage: Any leftover cheesy spaetzle can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days.

Reheating: Reheat in a casserole dish in the oven. Add a bit of milk or a little butter, if needed, to make it creamy again.

Recipe

Originally Published On: May 15, 2020

Last Updated On: November 14, 2023

Cheesy spaetzle in a white casserole dish on a grey placemat on a wooden surface

Cheesy German Spaetzle

Cheesy Spaetzle is a delicious German pasta recipe that's perfect as a side or an appetizer. Make a homemade dough, press it, and cook!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course:
Side Dish
Cuisine:
American
|
German
Keyword:
cheese
|
dough
|
pasta
Servings: 6 cups
5 from 5 votes

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 quarts water
  • 12 oz provolone cheese (torn)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400F
  • Add the flour and 1 tsp of salt to the stand mixer bowl
  • Stir to combine with the wire whisk
  • Whisk the eggs in a small bowl
  • Use a spoon to make a well in the middle of the flour mixture
  • Pour the whisked eggs into this well then add the milk
  • Use the dough hook to knead the dough for about 15 minutes on speed 2
  • Use a wooden spoon to pull a bit of the dough up and test if it is stretchy
  • Add the water and salt to a large stockpot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat
  • Use a spaetzle press or a metal colander and spoon to press the dough through the holes and into the simmering water
  • Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the noodles start to float to the top
  • Drain the noodles and run cold water over them to stop the cooking process
  • Place the pasta in a bowl with ice water
  • In a 9×13 baking dish, layer half of the spaetzle noodles
  • Top with half of the cheese
  • Repeat with another layer of spaetzle and top with the remaining cheese
  • Bake for about 10 minutes, until the cheese is melted
  • Serve warm
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Nutrition Facts
Cheesy German Spaetzle
Amount Per Serving (1 cup)
Calories 443 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 11g55%
Cholesterol 150mg50%
Sodium 1145mg48%
Potassium 201mg6%
Carbohydrates 42g14%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 24g48%
Vitamin A 690IU14%
Calcium 485mg49%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutrition content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.

20 thoughts on “How to Make Cheesy German Spaetzle from Scratch”

    1. I hadn’t either until our friend brought some over. My husband had, but he lived in Germany for a few years when he was young and studied German in school.

  1. This looks very yummy indeed. How interesting that your family has Hungarian heritage. We are based in the UK but I wonder where are heritage descends from x

  2. 5 stars
    I think I’ll try making this with my daughter. She’s 13 and has been really into cooking and baking lately. Looks interesting to make and sounds tasty.

  3. 5 stars
    Great recipe! The whole family loved it, those recipes are always a keeper in our house! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    This is the BEST comfort food! My family loved it. Thank you for your step by step photos. They made it very easy to make the recipe.

    1. You’re welcome! I am a visual learner, so I like to see what it should look like at each step so this is as much for you as it is for me the next time I make it at home! 🙂

  5. I make this all the time. But differently. We don’t rinse the spaetzle or plunge it in ice water. What we do instead is layer the hot noodles with the cheese. No need to bake. Ten top it off with crispy fried onion bits.

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