Are you a goetta fan? Here's how it's made (2024)

COVINGTON, Ky. — Whether someone is a fan of goetta, they’ve never heard of it, or would prefer to get-a bite of just about anything else, no one can deny the iconic status of northern Kentucky and Cincinnati’s signature sausage.

A family company in Covington has been producing most of the goetta people find in stores for decades.

What You Need To Know

  • Glier’s Meats has been producing most of the goetta you’ll find in stores for decades

  • Goetta is like breakfast sausage, and typically is made from pork, beef, herbs and spices and steel-cut oats

  • Glier’s Meats President Dan Glier says his father developed the family recipe from the recipes of German housewives

  • It has become one of the signature foods of the Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky region

When people say “see how the sausage gets made,” they’re talking about the unpleasant truths behind something that could lessen its appeal. Dan Glier, however, has been seeing how his family’s sausage gets made his whole life. And he doesn’t find it unpleasant or unappealing.

“As long as you understand what meat is. Meat is the flesh of an animal. So there you go. Now some people get kind of oozy about that, but I’ve grown up with it, and there’s not very many things in the packing house that will make my stomach churn,” Glier said.

Are you a goetta fan? Here's how it's made (1)

Glier’s Goetta is the most prominent brand on the market. (Spectrum News 1/Sam Knef)

People not from northern Kentucky or Cincinnati may be unfamiliar with Glier’s Goetta, or even goetta in general. It’s like breakfast sausage and typically comprises pork, beef, herbs and spices. The ingredient that really makes it unique, though, is steel-cut oats.

“Goetta is a peasant food from Germany. It was not known as goetta in Germany. It’s known as grutzwurst over there, or grits, grain, wurst, sausage, grain sausage,” Glier said. “It was brought over by the early immigrants, probably in the late 1800s. And almost all of it was home cooked.”

To this day, it’s still made in a lot of homes.

“As we say, we’ll take second place to grandma’s goetta,” Glier said.

Glier is the president of Glier’s Meats, which he said owns 85–90% of the goetta market share. The company makes a lot in Covington every day.

“My dad started his business in 1946. He grew up in the meat business at his uncle’s meat shop in Newport. That’s where he started working on his goetta creation. He said that his mother, my grandma, made goetta, but it was a miserable excuse for a perfectly fine product. So he visited the other German housewives in his neighborhood. And when heard somebody had a good goetta, he talked to them,” Glier said. “And from probably a half a dozen different recipes, he developed his. He added more meat to it, so it was a commercial product.”

It’s become a signature food of the region, and can be found in pretty much any grocery store.

Are you a goetta fan? Here's how it's made (2)

Dan Glier’s family business has been producing goetta in Covington for decades. (Spectrum News 1/Sam Knef)

“We are convinced that without Glier’s, goetta would’ve disappeared like many other sausages. When’s the last time you heard of either a grain sausage or a sausage that isn’t a hot dog, a brat or a met? I mean, how many are there? There were lots, but there’s a lot of them that have just disappeared,” Glier said. “We carried it on. We promoted it, and we elevated the product to really almost a cult status now.”

Glier has truly lived a goetta life. And anyone who doesn’t like it, as far as he’s concerned, should probably get-a life themselves.

“I take mine in probably about an ounce and a half slices, and eat three of them for breakfast three or four times a week. I still have it. Still love it. And I find it hard to believe that somebody wouldn’t love it,” Glier said.

Still, those people exist. But if anything could change their mind about the sausage, Glier said it would probably be either of two of his favorite applications: goetta nachos and goetta grilled cheese.

Glier’s Meats also puts on Goetta Fest in Newport. The annual event is taking place this year from July 27–30, and Aug. 3–6. It features all kinds of goetta creations, and has previously drawn in visitors from all over the world.

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Are you a goetta fan? Here's how it's made (2024)


What does goetta mean in German? ›

The word goetta comes from the Low German word Götte, meaning groats or coarse grains (or a food made from them).

Is goetta an Ohio thing? ›

Goetta gets its origin from the German immigrants who settled in what is now the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood of Cincinnati. In order to stretch their food dollar, they used the scraps from local butchers and hog slaughterhouses to make a satisfying, inexpensive dish.

Is goetta like scrapple? ›

Scrapple is made with pig parts, cornmeal (and/or flour), and spices. Goetta is created with both pork and beef and uses oats as the binder. While both historical foods are breakfast meats and still eaten today, goetta is much more popular as a sought-after dish frequently served in restaurants.

What is scrapple called in Kentucky? ›

"Yeah, goetta. It's kind of like scrapple."

Is goetta good for you? ›

What Is the Nutritional Value of Goetta? It's hard to believe that Glier's Goetta could possibly be good for anything other than your taste buds. But, the fact is that what makes Gliers Goetta savory and unique - whole grain pinhead oats - is what makes it heart-healthy, cholesterol-friendly, and fiber-rich.

What do Germans say when they eat? ›

Etiquette Rules when Dining Out in Germany

You'll find that most Germans begin the meal with a hearty Guten Appetit! Similar to Bon Appetit, it is an elegant way to phrase "Let's eat!". More informally, especially at lunch, you can expect an exclamation of "Mahlzeit!".

What is Ohio's signature food? ›

Skyline Chili is Ohio's signature dish and one of the state's most iconic dishes. Skyline Chili was started in 1949 by Greek immigrant Nicholas Lambrinides, who brought his homemade chili to Cincinnati.

Is haggis like goetta? ›

It is traditionally served at Burn's Night Suppers on January 25th because Robert Burns, the bard of Scotland and a fan of the dish, wrote the poem 'Address to a Haggis' calling it 'great chieftan o' the pudding-race! ' It is fairly similar to the Cincinnati speciality goetta but with more liver flavor.

Do Germans eat goetta? ›

Goetta is a peasant food from Germany. It was not known as goetta in Germany. It's known as grutzwurst over there, or grits, grain, wurst, sausage, grain sausage,” Glier said. “It was brought over by the early immigrants, probably in the late 1800s.

What is livermush called in Pennsylvania? ›

Other Names

This mixture made its way south, transforming into scrapple in Pennsylvania's Amish country, becoming livermush as it traveled down through the Shenandoah Valley into the Piedmont region of North Carolina, and finding its home around Charlotte.

What animal is goetta? ›

Our first dish from Ohio is the quintessential goetta (pronounced gett-aa). It's an amalgamation of pork, beef, spices, and steel-cut (pinhead) oats formed into a loaf, sliced and pan-fried.

What is scrapple called in the south? ›

In the South, scrapple is often called livermush.

Do Amish eat scrapple? ›

Scrapple and panhaas are commonly considered an ethnic food of the Pennsylvania Dutch, including the Mennonites and Amish.

What is spam made of? ›

In fact, SPAM only contains six ingredients! And the brand's website lists them all. They are: pork with ham meat added (that counts as one), salt, water, potato starch, sugar, and sodium nitrite.

What is Dutch scrapple? ›

This dish has both Dutch and German origins, and it's most popular in areas of Pennsylvania with Dutch and German roots. Essentially a type of meat pudding, scrapple is usually made from finely minced ground pork meat and offal, spices, and coarse flour such as cornmeal or buckwheat.

What does the German word Braunschweiger mean? ›

Braunschweiger (/ˈbɹɑʊ̯nˌʃwɑɪgɚ/, named after Braunschweig, Germany) is a type of sausage. The type of sausage the term refers to varies by region. In the German language, Braunschweiger is the demonym for people from Brunswick (German name Braunschweig), but under German food law refers to a variety of mettwurst.

Does Germany have goetta? ›

Germans back in Germany didn't make goetta. The sausage derivative is an American specialty, specifically out of Cincinnati, Ohio.

How do you say tasty in German slang? ›

• tastyleckerschmackhaft↔ smakelijk
• tasty→ leckerköstlich↔ heerlijk
• tasty→ delikatwohlschmeckendschmackhaft↔ savoureux
• tasty→ Saft-saftigdelikatwohlschmeckendschmackhaft↔ succulent

What is pork belly called in Germany? ›

Schweinebauch m

Pork belly is eaten smoked in several countries. Schweinebauch wird in einigen Ländern geräuchert verzehrt.

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