German Meatballs in Caper Cream Sauce


Enjoy these mouthwatering meatballs over homemade spaetzle, which are small irregular-shaped noodles popular in European countries./

German Meatballs in Caper Cream Sauce inside casserole dish with spaetzle noodles in bowl to the side
Photo: Brie Passano
Start To Finish Time:
35 mins
4 cups


  • 1 egg

  • 2 ¼ cup milk

  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh dill

  • 2 teaspoon stone ground mustard

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

  • ½ cup fine dry bread crumbs

  • 1 pound lean ground beef

  • 3 tablespoon butter

  • 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour

  • 2 tablespoon drained capers

  • 1 tablespoon liquid from jar of capers

  • 1 recipe Spaetzle

  • Lemon wedges (optional)


  • 2 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1 cup milk

  • Butter and/or black pepper (optional)


  1. In a large bowl combine egg, 1/4 cup of the milk, 1 Tbsp. of the dill, the mustard, salt, and pepper. Stir in bread crumbs. Add ground beef; mix well. Shape mixture into twenty-four 1 1/2-inch meatballs.

  2. In a 12-inch skillet melt 1 Tbsp. of the butter over medium to medium-high heat. Add meatballs; cook 10 to 12 minutes or until done (160°F) and browned, turning occasionally. Remove meatballs; wipe out skillet.

  3. For gravy, in skillet melt remaining 2 tbsp. butter over medium heat. Stir in flour until smooth. Gradually stir in remaining 2 cups milk. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Stir in capers, caper liquid, and remaining 1 Tbsp. dill. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Stir in meatballs; heat through. Serve meatball mixture over Spaetzle. If desired, serve with lemon wedges.


  1. In a medium bowl stir together flour and salt. Stir in eggs and 3/4 cup of the milk. Continue adding milk, 1 Tbsp. at a time, until mixture reaches the consistency of thick pancake batter. (Mixture may be slightly lumpy and should fall off a spatula in thin ribbons.) Let stand 5 to 10 minutes.

  2. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to boiling. Set a colander with coarse holes over the pan of rapidly boiling water and pour batter into colander. Press through holes with a rubber spatula. Cook and stir 1 minute; drain. If desired, toss spaetzle with butter and/or pepper.


You may use a steamer basket insert instead of the colander when pressing the batter through the holes. The basket should have holes that are 1/8 to 1/4 inch in diameter. If desired, used two wooden spoons to prop the basket over the pan of rapidly boiling water.


When the spaetzle is done, it will float to the top of the boiling water.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

716 Calories
27g Fat
71g Carbs
45g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 716
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 27g 35%
Saturated Fat 13g 65%
Cholesterol 296mg 99%
Sodium 1448mg 63%
Total Carbohydrate 71g 26%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 45g
Vitamin C 0.8mg 4%
Calcium 818mg 63%
Iron 7.4mg 41%
Potassium 833mg 18%
Fatty acids, total trans 1g
Folate, total 176.8mcg
Vitamin B-12 4.1mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.6mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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