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Bavarian Lasagna

Updated on December 30, 2015

About Bavarian Lasagna

After leaving Germany when I was two, my mother made this layered meat pie when I was growing up in Santa Clara, California. This savory dish was the ultimate comfort food, combining the unique flavors of my home land, the Bavarian alps of Germany, with the convenience of the West Coast. I think this might be an original recipe, so I'm claiming the copyright to it today, August 13, 2011, just in case it becomes a worldwide craze!


I will list ingredients first, then the steps. This recipe takes about 1 1/2 hours and feeds 8 to 10.

  • 36 slices mini cocktail rye bread
  • 16 oz. Swiss cheese, sliced
  • 2 lbs. ground beef or turkey
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 15 oz. can sauerkraut
  • 8 Russett potatoes, boiled
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese


This recipe requires several steps.

  1. With skin on, mash boiled potatoes with milk, sour cream and 2 tablespoons of butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
  2. Saute ground beef or turkey (or a combination of both) with onions until brown. Drain, season with salt and pepper and set aside. In the same pan, combine 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons of flour. Heat for one minute, stirring constantly. Mixture will be lumpy. Add 2 cups milk, 1/4 tsp. salt and a dash of pepper and stir until thick. Remove sauce from heat and set aside.
  3. Line a 10" x 15" Pyrex baking pan with 18 slices of cocktail rye bread. Top with 1/2 of the Swiss cheese. Place the remaining 18 slices of bread atop the cheese. Layer bread with cooked ground beef mixture, white sauce, sauerkraut and top with mashed potatoes. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and cook in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes.

Helpful Substitutions

You may want (or need) to substitute some ingredients. You can substitute large pieces of rye bread for the cocktail slices, but only use one layer instead of two. You can substitute any kind of cheese for the Swiss, but the more flavorful, the better. Dried onions can be used in place of fresh. Other vegetables can be added to the sauerkraut layer. Instant mashed potatoes can be used in place of cooked potatoes. Don't have any Parmesan cheese? Try painting the potatoes with a thin coat of Caesar or Ranch salad dressing.

OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Potato Ricer
OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Potato Ricer

A potato rice makes wonderfully silky mashed potatoes. Just be sure to peel them first!



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