Two defenders provided the goals at the San Siro with Mats Hummels on target early on for Germany, Ignazio Abate equalising before half an hour had been played for the hosts.
Italy forged the better chances to take a win, confirming their status as Germany's bogey team, although they were unable to find a winner in Milan and almost lost with the last kick of the game.
Seeking their first win over Italy since 1995, Germany were soon seeing why their fortunes have not been so good against the Squadra Azzurri, who were straight on the attack with Mario Balotelli pulling a shot wide after just 40 seconds.
It was a bright start from the hosts, but they still found themselves behind from Germany's first attack, Hummels heading in off the left-hand post from a corner in the eighth minute.
Germany could have doubled their lead in the 17th minute of an open and entertaining encounter, but the woodwork came to Italy's rescue, as it did again in the 32nd minute when Andre Schurrle pounced on a poor clearance from Leonardo Bonucci to hit the crossbar with a dipping shot.
By that stage, Italy had already levelled, Bonucci involved positively with a neat backheeled touch for Abate, who drilled a shot in off the far post with his presumed weaker left foot.
Italy had the upper hand, but were unable to find a way though the Germany defence a second time, Balotelli spending most of his time on the floor demanding free-kicks which he was only rarely given.
From one of them, in the 51st minute, Claudi Marchisio was put through to the left of goal and Manuel Neuer had to be alert to push his angled shot behind for a corner.
Riccardo Montolivo saw two quickfire attempts blocked as the hosts continued to push for a winner with Germany patiently defending and waiting for the chance to break.
It was a tactic which was frustrating Italy, and the tempers reached boiling point after Toni Kroos bit away three times at the heels of Thiago Motta, committing a foul which led to the Bayern Munich midfielder being chased by almost all of the Italy team.
Both he and Motta saw yellow cards as the friendliness of the game drifted away for the final 10 minutes, in which the flow of the game was lost before another defender, Benedikt Howedes, almost grabbed a win for Germany, hitting the post for the third time as Italy risked losing with the last kick of the game.