What is a Currywurst?

A German sausage with a flavorful curry-tomato sauce.

How is it called in German?


“Wurst” is the German word for “Sausage”.

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to learn how to pronounce "Currywurst"

Cultural Background Story

Berlin Brandenburger Tor

The birth of the currywurst took place only a few years after the second World War. According to the Welt der Wunder, the snack stand owner Herta Heuwer reported that it was a rainy day when she mixed the first curry sauce on September 4th, 1949, clearly out of boredom. She wanted to spice up her post war meal, so she traded some German alcoholic beverages to the English for some curry powder, 

The ingredients were reputed to be peppers, ground pepper, tomato puree, and different spices – she then poured the signature creation over a boiled and cut into pieces sausage.

The combination of chili and ketchup was patented as “Chillup” shortly thereafter.


Curry Sausage

Currywurst comes with or without skin, and is cut up into small pieces then served covered int he curry sauce.

Some places serve a sweeter version and some a tangier version of the sauce.

More than 800 million of these tasty sausages are estimated sold annually.

What is currywurst sauce?
The base of Currywurst sauce that recipes have in common are tomato ketchup and curry powder. But there are many recipes with a lot of different ingredients who claim that these ingredients make the secret special flavor for the original curry sauce. Some of these ingredients that you might find in recipes are apple sauce, cola and honey.


Step-by-Step Video


Curry Sausage (Currywurst) Sauce

Angela Schofield
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Gravys & Sauces, Snacks
Cuisine German
Servings 8 portions


  • 8 German brats (alternative stadium brats or jumbo hot dogs)
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 red onion
  • 16 oz. ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste finely cubed
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • 2 tbsp. dark balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. curry powder
  • ¼ tsp. chilli powder or cayenne pepper
  • 1-2 dash hot sauce optional
  • 1 tsp. white vinegar optional


  • Heat olive oil in a medium sized pot over medium heat.
  • In the meantime, cube the onion finely.
  • Add onion cubes to the pot and fry until translucent.
  • Add tomato paste and fry with the onions for a couple of minutes.
  • Deglaze with about 2 tbsp. of water.
  • Add ketchup, balsamic glaze and honey and cook over medium-low heat for a few minutes.
  • Taste test and add about 1 tsp. to ½ tbsp. white vinegar if you prefer a tangy flavor.
  • Add soy sauce, chili powder and curry powder, blend well and transfer to a bowl. Add a dash or two of hot sauce if you like it spicy!
  • Transfer to a blowl and blend with a hand blender to a smooth texture. Alternative you can blend it in a stand mixer or a single serve blender.
  • The sauce should have a thick, honey like consistency. Add water if necessary or if you prefer a more liquid consistency.


Serve with a German roll or french fries.
Keyword German Fast Food, German Snacks, German Street Food

Serving Tip:

Don´t forget to sprinkle some extra curry-chili powder on top of the sauce. This gives the authentic Currywurst it´s signature look.

Currywurst is usually served with a side of french fries or a crispy bread roll.