European Schnitzel Recipe

The Germans love their Schnitzel. We sometimes wonder how much one person can eat, but then again, it is delicious. Schnitzel is made using veal, pork or chicken, pounded flat with a meat tenderizer, breaded, and then fried to a crisp golden color. It’s a delicious main dish, moist inside with a crunchy crust. You can serve it with a mushroom sauce, cream sauce – or even ketchup because it’s not unlike a sophisticated chicken finger. It’s also great as a sandwich, eat it on a roll with mustard.

It’s a great dish to serve at an Oktoberfest party, or any time of the year. It’s a popular dish here in Germany, but also in Czech Republic, Austria, Italy, and many more countries across Europe.

Schnitzel, potato salad, pickle
Schnitzel with Potato Salad

In our area, there are consistently 4 entrees on a menu at a German restaurant. Ox Tail, a Fish option (includes head and bones), vegetarian Ravioli, and Schnitzel. We’ve tried all of these, and with the result that we eat a lot of schnitzel here.

Below is the recipe provided by the instructor. She wrote it out from the top of her head, as she doesn’t reference any written recipe, just what she grew up cooking with her mother and grandmother. The baked version is included in the Notes below.

Schnitzel, potato salad, pickle

European Schnitzel Recipe

This recipe serves up delicious schnitzel, an excellent meal all year, and a perfect main for your Oktoberfest parties.
Serve with a side of potato salad and pickles.


  • Pork cutlets (may use chicken breast as alternative)
  • All-purpose flour
  • Eggs
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Salt
  • Canola oil (or you may use vegetable, sunflower, or peanut oil)


  • STEP 1: Pound a pork slice gently with a meat tenderizer. You want it to be less than ½-inch thick. Season with salt on both sides.
  • STEP 2: Using a large frying pan or skillet, heat canola oil to medium-high heat. Use about 1/2 – 3/4 inch of oil, you want the schnitzels to float and not stick to the bottom.
  • STEP 3: Using three wide bowls or plates, prep with 1) flour, 2) beaten eggs, 3) breadcrumbs. Coat the meat three times: first in flour, then in beaten eggs, and lastly in breadcrumbs.
  • STEP 4: Fry breaded meat in heated oil, about 2-3 minutes per side. Use tongs to turn them and remove from pan. You are aiming for a deep golden brown. Work in batches, don't overlap pieces in the pan.
  • STEP 5: When golden brown, remove schnitzels onto a cooling rack over a paper towel to catch any drips.


Schnitzels should not be made by deep frying. They are best with this method of shallow frying.
Baked Schnitzel: Alternatively, you may bake the schnitzel instead of frying. Line a baking pan with foil, drizzle with olive oil, and put in the oven while it preheats to 425 F. Add the meats to the pan without overlapping, and drizzle with more olive oil. Bake for 5-6 minutes, then flip them over and bake for another 5 minutes, until lightly browned.
Meats should measure at least 165 degrees on the meat thermometer.

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