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Published February 2, 2022. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
This amazing beef rouladen is stuffed up with mustard, pickles, and onions and served with a delicious easy to make beef gravy. You will love how simple this is to prepare and just how flavorful it is.
We aren’t huge beef eaters in our house, but when I make it, I make sure to do it right. If you are looking for some incredible beef recipes to try out then you absolutely must make my Kofta Kebab or Chicken Fried Steak recipe.
Rouladen is a classical German recipe consisting of thinly sliced and pounded out beef that is stuffed with salt, pepper, mustard, bacon, onions, and pickles. You sear the beef and then simmer it in a flavorful beef sauce until it is tender.
This is a recipe I used to make at one of the restaurants I worked at when we had a lot of leftover chunks of meat. It’s easy to make and it really packs a punch in the flavor department, however, you will need to allow some time for them to cook in the oven.
Beef Rouladen Ingredients
- Beef – I prefer to use a lean cut of beef like top round.
- Mustard – A Dijon or good German mustard will work great.
- Bacon – Use regular sliced smoked bacon for this.
- Onions – You can use yellow, red, white, sweets, or even shallots in this recipe.
- Pickles – If you can find gherkins, perfect, if not regular julienne dill pickles will work.
- Celery – This is used in the sauce.
- Carrots – Regular peeled and large diced carrots are used for the sauce.
- Leeks – These are for the sauce and braising liquid, remember to use the white end of the leek.
- Parsley – I personally like to add this to the braising liquid, but it is optional.
- Wine – A good red wine like cabernet sauvignon or merlot should be used.
- Beef Stock – Use a good flavorful beef stock for this.
- Tomato Paste – This is used to provide body to the sauce as well as helping to thicken it up.
How to Make Beef Rouladen
Follow these easy-to-make procedures for this delicious beef rouladen recipe:
Slice and gently pound out the top round steak until it is doubled in size, and still about a ¼” thick. Repeat until all the steak is flattened.
Next, season one side of the meat with salt and pepper and then brush some Dijon or German mustard in the center of the seasoned beef.
Add 1 slice of bacon cut in half to the center of the beef onto the mustard and then add on a few sliced onions.
Place some julienne pickles on top of the onions.
Fold in the sides of the beef and then roll it up tight from back to front.
Tie a piece of butcher’s twine, about 1 foot in length, around the center of the rouladen to close it uptight.
Sear the beef on both sides in a large rondeau pan with clarified butter over medium-high heat until well browned.
Set the beef to the side and roast the mirepoix until lightly browned. Stir in some tomato paste until it is completely mixed in.
Deglaze with red wine and cook until the wine is almost gone, or au sec.
Pour in the beef stock, season well with salt and pepper, and then add the beef rouladen back into the pan.
Bake in the oven at 325 for about 90 minutes or until the beef is very tender.
Remove the cooked beef set aside and strain the braising liquid into a medium-size saucepot.
Simmer over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until it has slightly reduced and thickened. Finish with butter, salt, and pepper.
Slice the beef rouladen and serve with the sauce and optional spaetzle.
Make-Ahead and Storage
Make-Ahead: This recipe is meant to be served once it is done cooking. However, you can keep the roulade warm in the sauce in a pan over very low heat up to 30 minutes before serving.
How to Store: Cover and keep it in the sauce in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Cover and keep in the sauce for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before reheating.
How to Reheat: Add the desired amount of rouladen and sauce to a medium-size saucepot and heat over low heat until warm throughout
Chef Notes + Tips
- If top round is not available you can substitute for sirloin, ribeye, bottom round, shoulder, or flank.
- Take care not to tie the string to tight or the ingredients in the inside will fall out.
- Rouladen is commonly served with potatoes and cabbage.
- Feel free to ask your butcher to pound out the steak for you.
More Beef Recipes
German Beef Rouladen Recipe
For the Rouladen:
- 2 pounds top round beef, cut into 8 large slices
- 1/3 cup Dijon or German mustard
- 8 slices of bacon, cut in half
- ½ peeled and thinly sliced yellow onion
- 5 small-medium size pickles, julienne
- salt and pepper
For the Sauce:
- 2 thinly sliced leeks
- 1 peeled and large diced yellow onions
- 2 peeled and large diced carrots
- 2 large diced celery stalks
- 6-8 parsley stems with leaves
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 cup cabernet sauvignon wine
- 4 cups beef stock
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons of red currant jelly, optional
- Preheat the oven to 325°.
- Gently pound out the top round steak between two pieces of plastic wrap or in a plastic zip bag until it is doubled in size, and still about a ¼” thick. Repeat until all the steak is flattened.
- Next, season one side of the meat with salt and pepper and then brush some Dijon or German mustard in the center of the seasoned beef.
- Add 2 slices of bacon to the center of the beef onto the mustard and then add on a few sliced onions.
- Place some julienne pickles on top of the onions.
- Fold in the sides of the beef and then roll it up tight from back to front.
- Tie a piece of butcher’s twine, about 1 foot in length, around the center of the rouladen to close it up tight. You can also add an additional knot going in the opposite direction as well if you are worried the inside stuffing may spill out. Repeat the process until all the ingredients are used.
- Add some clarified butter to a large rondeau or pot and heat to medium-high. Sear the beef on both sides until well browned. You may need to do this in batches if your pot is not big enough.
- Once browned, set the beef to the side, and add the leeks, onions, celery, carrots, and parsley to the pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until lightly browned. Stir in some tomato paste until it is completely mixed into the vegetables.
- Deglaze with red wine and cook until the wine is almost gone, or au sec.
- Pour in the beef stock, season well with salt and pepper, and then add the beef rouladen back into the pan.
- Bake in the oven at 325 for about 90 minutes or until the beef is very tender. It could take an additional 30 minutes.
- Remove the cooked beef and set aside and strain the braising liquid into a medium-size sauce pot.
- Simmer the sauce over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until it has slightly reduced and thickened. Finish with butter, salt, and pepper and optional red currant jelly.
- Slice the beef rouladen and serve with the sauce.