Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund returned to winning ways with an impressive 3-0 victory at Wolfsburg.
Jurgen Klopp's side, held to a 1-1 home draw by second-bottom Stuttgart last weekend, got off to the perfect start when Lucas Barrios put them ahead with just two minutes on the clock.
Nuri Sahin added a second five minutes before half time and Mats Hummels rounded off the triumph in the 71st minute as the Westphalians restored their 11-point advantage at the top with their 10th away win of the season.
Bayern Munich came from behind to defeat Werder Bremen 3-1 and move up to third in the Bundesliga.
Per Mertesacker scored at both ends, first putting Bremen ahead in the 47th minute and then putting Bayern in front in the 75th after Arjen Robben had equalised.
Miroslav Klose then sealed the win for Louis van Gaal's side as they moved up to their highest league position of the season, still 14 points behind leaders Borussia Dortmund, who won at Wolfsburg.
Schalke missed a chance to pull closer to the European spots in the Bundesliga as they lost at 1-0 home against Hoffenheim after a lacklustre showing.
Hoffenheim bounced back from their 1-0 loss at Energie Cottbus in the German Cup quarter-finals with Isaac Vorsah scoring the game's only goal after just four minutes.
Schalke failed to build upon their extra-time last-minute victory over Nurnberg in the cup to remain on 25 points for 11th place - eight points from fifth. Hoffenheim have lost just once in their last eight games and have moved to 29 points in eighth place.
Charles Takyi scored two goals as St Pauli climbed out of the Bundesliga relegation places with a well-earned 3-0 home victory over Cologne.
Takyi struck in the 30th and 36th minutes for a 2-0 lead and then substitute Florian Bruns added a third with a 76th-minute penalty.
It was only St Pauli collected their first win in 11 league games by beating Cologne for the first time since May 1991 St Pauli now have 22 points for 14th place. Cologne suffered just their second loss in the last five matches for 19 points and 16th place.
Timmy Simons scored one goal and set up another as Nurnberg earned an impressive 2-0 victory at home over 10-man Hamburg to remain well clear of the Bundesliga relegation zone. The Belgian converted a penalty in the 59th minute and Almog Cohen made it 2-0 after 70 minutes. Gojko Kacar was sent off for Hamburg in the 69th minute.
Nurnberg bounced back from their last-minute, extra-time loss against Schalke in the DFB-Pokal to move to 26 points and 10th place - seven points from the drop zone. Hamburg saw their three-game winning streak snapped to remain on 30 points for seventh place.
Lewis Holtby's first-half goal was enough to push Mainz back into fourth place after they held on for a narrow win against Kaiserslautern.
Holtby scored the game's only goal in the 23rd minute, giving Thomas Tuchel's team their first victory of the year.