Holiday Ingredients in Frankfurt

Ready to go shopping for those Holiday meal ingredients but not sure what they are called or where to find them? We hope we can help you.

* Frozen Turkeys  (Puten or Truthahn) – Rewe, Galleria Kaufhof, Karstadt
Since ovens are smaller here and the turkeys not so large, we often roast 2 smaller ones, doing one the day before, and then you already have broth for gravy and you get 4 drumsticks for all the kids. No Butterballs here, but we have found that roasting the bird breast side down will give you a super moist turkey. It won’t be quite as photogenic, but it still looks tasty.

* Fresh Turkeys – Poultry stores on Berger Strasse 169 and Leipzieger Strasse 63 and at the Klein Markt Halle. Most Farmers markets will have a poultry stand where you can get these, but you may have to order them. Be prepared to pay a lot though.

* Cranberries – Fresh ones can be found at Rewe, Klein Markt Halle, or Farmers Markets.
As a substitute, if you don’t want to cook the fresh ones or can’t find them, is to buy a jar of Preiselbeeren. These are very similar in taste and look like tiny cranberries. They are sweeter and my family likes them better. Saves the work of cooking the fresh. They are in every grocery store either with the canned veg/fruits or with the jams.

* Mushroom soup for green bean casserole – there are packages of dry mushroom soup that are easy to make. Only use half the liquid called for to get the same consistency as a can of soup

* Pumpkin  (Kurbis)- Cans of pumpkin puree are available in Galleria Kaufhof and Karstadt, but be prepared to pay a high price.
Rewe often has fresh diced Hokaido pumpkins or frozen, diced Hokaido pumpkin which you can quickly cook and then puree for pies, etc. You can also use fresh Hokaido Pumpkins instead as they do not need to be peeled. They are available in every store and at every market.
Wash, slice in half, scoop out seeds, place on a plate upside down and microwave each half for 10-12 min. depending on the size of the pumpkin. Test with a fork for softness. Puree with handheld mixer, food processor or blender. You will get about 3 cups from most Hokaido pumpkins, but it may be more or less. Roasting in the oven, cut side down works well too.

* French style green beans – These are not available here, you will have to use regular canned or frozen green beans. Beware of the jars of green beans, they all have a vinegar/sour liquid on them. Sadly.

* Potatoes for mashed potatoes – Look for ones that say they are “Mehlig”

* Pecans – Pricey and hard to find. We have found that you can substitute walnuts in your pie recipe with excellent results with some of us actually preferring the walnuts to the pecans.

* Soft Brown Sugar – Available at most large Asian Stores, Galleria Kaufhof, or you can easily make your own with regular sugar and molasses. Plenty of recipes online how to do this. The large Asian store on Kaiserstrasse has the soft kind and it isn’t that expensive

* Baking Soda – Most Asian stores will have Arm & Hammer Baking Soda, large boxes in Frankfurt cost between 1.35-1.99€.

* Thickener for Gravy or Sauces – Corn Starch is called Maisstärke or you can use the German instant thickener called Mondamin. With Mondamin, you just sprinkle and stir.

* Celery – Widely available in most grocery stores and Farmers Markets

* Cider – The Farmers markets are all selling this fresh apple juice. Drink it quickly before it turns.

* Cornmeal to make cornbread – Called Mais Gries or Maismehl. You can find this in most grocery stores. An alternative is to go to a Reform Haus and have them grind it for you. Polenta is a good substitute.

Nutmeg = Muskatnuss
Cinnamon = Zimt
Cloves = Nelken
Sage = Salbei – you can find this dried in grocery stores or fresh at the farmer’s markets
Sour Cream = Sauer Sahne
Heavy Whipping Cream = Schlag Sahne
Cream Cheese = Frisch Käse  (Kerniger Frisch Käse is Cottage Cheese)
Powdered Sugar = Puder Zucker

Evaporated Milk – Kondensmilch, which comes in a can either with sugar (gesüsst) or not. You can substitute this in your pumpkin pie recipes

If we have missed an ingredient that you are looking for, please let us know.


    • Hi Melissa, you can buy cooked chestnuts in vacuum packs in almost every grocery store. Look in the produce section. You could also roast your own chestnuts, as this is very easy to do. We used to do this all the time for the kids. Check out some Youtube videos to see the various ways people recommend roasting them.


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