Surviving the autumn grind: how to eat well in Germany and Austria

There is a lot to appreciate about living in Germany and Austria: distinct cultures, stunning landscapes, a high standard of living – the list goes on.

Surviving the autumn grind: how to eat well in Germany and Austria
Photo: Getty

For many of us, it’s a wonderful experience that we will appreciate forever. However, life in this region can sometimes be a little intense, and this is never more evident than in the lead-up to the end of the year. 

Prepare for the busiest of seasons with local ingredients and inspiring, time-saving recipes. Receive €60 off your first four orders with HelloFresh. Click here for Austria and here for Germany 

Falling leaves, rising stress

When things start to get colder and darker across Germany and Austria, the change comes quickly. All of a sudden those long summer evenings will be replaced by days that seem to end abruptly, and turn into cold, foggy nights. To compensate for the lack of sunlight, both Germans and Austrians have come up with a typical solution – get busier. 

If you venture outside the cities, not only will you find a countryside erupting in red, brown and gold, but a bewildering variety of harvest festivals for you to enjoy too. It seems as though every weekend there’s another festival for you to visit, and with daylight at a premium, you can feel drawn to try each and every one. Kürbisstände (pumpkin stands) will appear on the side of the road in many regions, and you may just find yourself arriving home with yet another root vegetable you don’t know what to do with. 

It’s also at this time of the year that many businesses begin to plan for the year ahead. Strategy meetings, conferences and other essential work is often crammed into the daily calendar during the four months of September to December. If you’ve got children, a bulk of their learning takes place at this time too, as when the new year begins, there seems to be a never-ending series of holidays. 

Rising stress levels and a sudden lack of time in the day may not make themselves apparent immediately, but when they do, it can really be a challenge. 

Stay happy, healthy and stress-free throughout the busiest time of the year with HelloFresh. Readers of The Local get €60 off their first four orders with HelloFresh. Click here for Austria and here for Germany 

Photo: HelloFresh

Shock to the system

Being suddenly thrown back into the work grind after the summer holidays can be quite the shock. There are often new systems to get used to, new colleagues to work with, and an ever-busier schedule. It’s difficult to find the time to sit down to eat as a family, or with a loved one. Quite often we may find ourselves in front of a computer, eating as we work. When we do cook, we often turn to comfort food which isn’t the healthiest option. 

When you add the inevitable slew of social events that this time of the year brings, it can be very easy to feel out of sorts, tired and cranky. Too many carbs and sweet treats can play havoc with your blood sugar. Worst of all, you begin to miss the zest and spice of your favourite foods!

Photo: The Local Creative Studio

Your survival secret for the gloomy months

Now, more than ever, you need a strategy to make it to the end of year with your sanity intact, while still taking good care of yourself. Exercise is important, as is taking time out for regular breaks. 

Another strategy that can help you at this time of year is a meal kit box – like those provided by HelloFresh. Each week, you get the exact amount of ingredients you need to cook recipes of your choice. There are tonnes of balanced options, and the best part is that you can take your taste buds on a tour far away from Rostbraten (roast beef) or Rotkohl (red cabbage sauerkraut)

Not only can this save you time – no more wondering about what to cook – but the specific portions means you’ll be saving money on food you don’t end up eating. Sustainable, recyclable packaging also means you’ll be helping the planet.

This year, HelloFresh is bringing something new to the table. Frische Blitzgerichte are lightning-quick, five minute recipes made in only three easy steps. The recipe options change on a frequent basis, exposing you to new tastes, ingredients and flavours. What a perfect way to save time and try something new!

The stretch of time between September and December can be a crazy, chaotic and stressful time. Investing in meal kit boxes can be an ideal way to take back time, and ensure that you remain fit and healthy among all those sweet treats. 

Get a HelloFresh meal box subscription this September, and give yourself extra time and peace of mind. Click the link for Austria or Germany to save €60 on your first four boxes.

At time of publication the offer is – 60€ off over 4 HelloFresh boxes with free shipping included on the first box. This offer is subject to change.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


‘The customer is ready’: German supermarket chain Aldi to phase out battery farm meat

Germany's supermarket giant Aldi says it will stop selling meat produced with low animal welfare standards by 2030, in a move hailed by Greenpeace as a "milestone".

'The customer is ready': German supermarket chain Aldi to phase out battery farm meat
Photo: picture alliance/dpa/dpa-Zentralbild | Martin Schutt

“The customer is ready,” the budget store said in a statement, citing increasing sales of sustainably produced goods and a change in consumer awareness as the reasons for the decision.

Meat sold in German supermarkets is rated according to animal welfare standards from one to four, with the lowest rating offering the poorest conditions.

Aldi said it was aiming for 15 percent of meat in its stores to adhere to levels three and four by the end of this year, rising to 33 percent by 2026.

 It aims to stop selling level-one meat completely by 2025 and for all meat to adhere to levels three and four by 2030.

International and frozen goods will be exempt from the policy.

READ ALSO: ‘We need a meat tax’: German politicians pitch plan to improve animal welfare

Greenpeace said the discount retailer had landed a “bull’s eye” and praised the decision as “a milestone that shows the whole industry the way to go”.

Thomas Schroeder, president of the German Animal Welfare Federation, also welcomed the move and called for other retailers to follow suit.

“From our point of view, the current legal basis for the keeping of animals in agriculture is not sufficient to ensure animal welfare,” he said.

Renate Kuenast of the Green party accused the government of being “overtaken” by the food industry on the issue and of being too slow to work out new meat production methods with farmers.

READ ALSO: Cheap meat called into question after large coronavirus outbreak at slaughterhouse 

The Bild daily warned that means “one kilogramme of mince for 0.99 euros will no longer be available at the supermarket” in sausage-mad Germany, calling it an “Aldi-Bombshell”.

Germany’s rating system measures the amount of space the animals have and whether they have access to outdoor space, as well as the quality of their feed, care and health monitoring.

Level four guarantees at least twice as much space as level one, as well as permanent access to outdoor space.