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My friend, Doris, makes Rouladen for special occasions and I always get hungry for them when she mentions them. You will note I have several options here ending with a combination of her recipe and how I've adapted it for our family.

  • 2 – 3 lbs round steak, cut for Rouladen (8 - 12 thin slices)
  • salt, pepper and marjoram to taste
  • mustard
  • 1 - 2  large onions, chopped (I used 1 onion)
  • 15 – 20 slices bacon
  • a few pickles. sliced (optional)
  • 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can button mushrooms
  1. In a large frying pan, sauté onion and bacon. I used pre-cooked bacon, so I just add it once the onion is soft, or use it without frying. You can skip the sauteing if you prefer the short cut. 
  2. Tenderize the meat. I put a few slices on a chopping board, cover the meat with a plastic bag and then use the meat hammer on it. This way the juices don’t splatter.
  3. Sprinkle meat lightly with salt, pepper and marjoram, then paint lightly with mustard.
  4. Divide onions and bacon on tenderized meat slices and add pickle on one end.
  5. Roll up, starting with pickle end, folding in the sides a tad. Secure with toothpick if you like.
  6. Brown in same pan as you cooked the onions in. I like to add a splash of wine at the end of the browning process and continue cooking them until it’s almost evaporated.
  7. Transfer Rouladen to roasting pan.
  8. Add cream of mushroom and liquid from mushrooms to drippings in pan and bring to boil. I used 1 can mushroom soup and about 1/2 cup light cream.
  9. Pour sauce over Rouladen and bake at 325° F for 1 - 1 ½ hours, depending on size. Add button mushrooms for last 20 minutes.
Other option for sauce: Add 3 cups beef or chicken broth (shake 1 cup with 3 Tbsp flour to thicken) to drippings in pan. Cook rolls on stove or in the oven, in the sauce. When done, remove rolls onto serving plate and stir ½ cup of cream into the gravy.

Our favorite family version: to the cooked onions and bacon I add about 2 cups stove top prepared stuffing and a handful of cranberries, leaving out the pickle. I also leave out the button mushrooms. While fixing the amount of gravy (after Rouladen are cooked) I add sliced sauteed mushrooms and more half and half to make the amount of gravy we like. It it needs seasoning, I add a tsp of better-than-bouillon. This can all be prepared the day ahead and re-heated the next day.

Serving suggestion: Serve with Bev's Spaetzle or mashed potatoes and red cabbage


  1. I was with you right up to the pickle. I'm just not sure what kind of texture and flavor that adds.

    This might be something to make and serve and only tell them it's beef and see their reactions.

  2. I'm sure there are as many Rouladen recipes as there are cooks!! Memaw, they don't taste quite as good without the pickle. It imparts a delicious flavor! My grands always do a 'picklectomy' before they devour the rest of the Roulade! I still add a light touch of my favorite mustard to the meat and a sprinkling of Montreal Steak Spice for extra zip! It's our favorite meat dish!!

  3. I love Rouladen and for me they must have a pickled gherkin in them and some mustard!! I guess that's my german roots coming through! Thank You so much for reminding me of this lovely dish!

  4. Lori @ here's a handFebruary 5, 2010 at 7:51 AM

    I've never had rouladen, or made it myself, but I've heard people rave about somebody's rouladen.I think 4 out 6 in my household would do a 'picklectomy' as well. But it sounds delicious to me.

  5. I love the sound of this dish...
    I love beef.
    Love bacon.
    Love mushrooms.
    Absolutely LOVE pickles!
    What a wonderful combination:)Thanks for sharing. I would love to give it a try.~Ellie

  6. Sounds marvelous! We just watched Julie and Julia so this fits in with what we are hungry for next! ♥

  7. Mmmmm, I love rouladen and generally just get them at my favorite German restaurants. The problem is they're sometimes dry (reheating, I guess). Now I can make my own delicious ones.

  8. I love Rouladen, and now there's no excuse to go and make them myself.
    I have my perfect place to find them and they do have the pickle inside...and we can easily figure that out..Yummy

  9. My Mom and my Oma made rouladen, but they never put the pickle inside. just onion/bacon/mustard. Maybe it's regional, or maybe their husbands just didn't like it?? My Mom and Oma are from a village in the Ukraine.

  10. the Rouladen sounds like something done in a simular method to a dish we make. The ingredients are very different, so a very different dish. Think we will try it.
    Jackie in snowy Virginia

  11. It looks really really yummy the perfect mushrooms too. I am smiling at Karin saying her grands do the pickletomy.

  12. Just curious - why canned mushrooms? What's it like with fresh?

  13. Thank you for this recipe- I was born in Germany (father in the Army), and grew up eating rouladen. Time to make it again!

  14. Going to buy some gherkins. I think they would be amazing in this.

    Bookmarked this recipe!

  15. Wow this looks great and it's true there must be as many rouladen recipes as there are Mennonite last names... We make ours with the beef and pickle and onion but put a slice of deli ham down on the beef before wrapping up te pickle and onion... I married a guy as far from Menno as you can get and he LOVES roulden, pickle and all!!! When I say 'I should make rouladen for dinner' he goes 'huh?!' And I say 'the meat with the pickle inside' and his face lights up... So all of you, try the pickle!!! We also make it with like a tomato & mushroom soup gravy but the husband loooove bacon and mushrooms so might have to switch it up! oooo also does anyone out there have a good simple tomato onion salad recipe (the one made with a buttermilk dressing)... That's what we have with this and I've searched the site and haven't come across one!

  16. Seems like your a great cook, these so yummy and the chicken with the coconut. Have never tried either.

  17. I just found your blog the other day, there are so many recipes I want to try here, everything looks so good!I am of Mennonite background and ja we sure can cook!
    I tried this rouladen version the other day, I have been making this for years but what differs is I have never used mushroom soup and I never cook any of the filling ( not even the bacon) I thought cooking the onion/mushrooms/bacon might enhance the flavor...well honestly it tastes the same either way so next time I won't bother cooking first.As for the mushroom soup,it tasted really great, I used it for the gravy on my mashed potatoes,yummy! Usually I make the gravy so it was nice to skip this step...BTW I use dill pickle all the time..Jen

  18. I have a potentially odd question. Minus maybe the pickle, which as some other readers mentioned, I never had rouladen made that way, do you think one could can rouladen maybe minus the addition of mushrooms and gravy? I know perhaps it sounds weird, but I'm a single gal and making rouladen does take some time plus there is only so much I can eat at 1 time.

  19. Stephanie - you can bake them and then freeeze them in single size servings and thaw and re-heat. Hope that helps.

  20. My family has made this dish for generations. We however make it a little different. We make it with a sprinkle of salt and pepper, a slice of ham and roll it up with a carrot stick. We then brown them and make gravy from the drippings. The meat is never dry and the taste is one that EVERYONE loves. I've tried them with the pickle...and occasionally a hard boiled egg inside (another version), but I think the carrot tastes so great! All in all, it is a wonderful dish, no matter how you are used to eating it!

  21. This is a lot like my mothers recipe. She was a spectacular German cook and loved to make this dish for me. For those with pickle paranoia, I would suggest finely dicing the pickle and adding a modest sprinkle to the interior rather than eliminating it. It is a critical element to the flavor profile. The pickle will all but dissolve in the cooking process and eliminate any such picklellectomy! I find that a thin Dijon mustard coating inside also helps to soften the pickle profile. My mother always finished them in heavy cream beef gravy. I have added thick slices of fresh sautéed portabella mushrooms for an elegant look as well as great texture and flavor. I use a wide but short dumpling noodle cooked ala dente as a base to rest this great meal on and to absorb the rich gravy. I like to pair this meal with a German Dormfelder wine which is a semi dry with just a hint of fruit in the front. This meal is a bit of a time consumer so I always chill at least 2 bottles to insure some is left when the food is served. Enjoy!

  22. I love Rouladen. My Oma didn't put pickle in hers, but I can't imagine you would be able to taste it ... especially if you chopped it instead of putting a slice in. The meat was spread with mustard and sprinked with salt and pepper, I believe, and then topped with the following mixture which had been sautéed and then cooled to room temp - finely chopped onions, finely chopped canned mushrooms and chopped Speck/Bauch/Rauchfleisch (I just cut up packages of bacon). I think the fine chopping had something to do with picky eaters who claimed not to like mushrooms and/or onions. As for the question about why canned mushrooms, I would say because they're less expensive ... but also, why would you waste perfectly good mushrooms in a dish where it wouldn't make a difference if fresh or canned was used? Put canned mushrooms in the Rouladen and eat those fresh ones in a salad or with other crudités with or without dip!

  23. In the 1950's my Mother's version had a seasoned bread stuffing inside the beef and beef broth and tomato sauce were used rather than a cream sauce. I wish I could find a similar recipie somwhere because she never wrote her recipie down, I will try your version (minus the pickle) just because it sounds delicious.

  24. This is the first time I have part. cooked the bacon and onions I put garlic with the mustard and add carrots and dill pickles and roll them up. brown then add beef broth and onions and thicken the broth after with browned flour


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