Beer Braised and Grilled Brats with Onions

Dive into making Beer Braised and Grilled Brats with Onions – a game day favorite that’s easy, affordable, and delicious.

Beer Braised and Grilled Brats with Onions

Today, we’re diving into making Beer Braised and Grilled Brats with Onions. Beer braised brats are simple, contain a small handful of ingredients, and please the masses. Brats remind me of game day. Beer braised and grilled brats are a Superbowl go-to. They’re easy to make and affordable.

Few recipes utilize a small handful of ingredients to marry the deep, malty flavors of beer with the smoky char of the grill as effectively as this one. Perfect for any season, this dish is versatile and pairs well with a variety of side dishes; this recipe is ideal for backyard barbecues, family dinners, potlucks, and more.

Try this recipe in your next gathering and let us know what you think!

Best Beer for Brats

The choice of beer is crucial in this recipe, as it's the primary flavor infuser for the brats. Despite the choice of beer being vital to the recipe, it’s also incredibly simple; choose your favorite beer. Personally, I find beer-braised onions to be extra tasty when cooked with Mexican lagers (Corona, Modelo), stouts (Guinness), or pilsners. 

Ales, lagers, and darker beers like stouts or porters work wonderfully, offering a range of tastes from light and crisp to rich and robust. Consider a beer that complements your taste preferences and the meal’s overall flavor profile. A good rule of thumb is to cook with a beer you enjoy drinking.

How to Cook Beer Brats

Cooking beer brats involves a simple process of braising and grilling. Why braise then grill? Braising slowly and evenly cooks the brats to the perfect doneness, ensuring every bite is juicy and flavorful. 

Once the brats have reached the perfect internal temperature, there is no better way to finish them than by grilling. A kiss of fire and smoke adds depth of flavor and texture to the brats. Following this process will create perfect brats every time.

Boil or Braise Brats

How to Boil Brats in Beer

Boiling brats in beer is easy. It is also a straightforward process and the fastest way to cook brats thoroughly. When available, always boil brats in beer vs water. Using beer as your boiling liquid not only keeps the brats moist but also infuses them with delicious flavor, even more so when you combine add onions and dijon mustard to the mix. Most often, folks boil brats before grilling to ensure they are fully cooked and to prevent burning.

How to Braise Brats in Beer

Braising brats in beer, with the addition of aromatics, cooks the brats slowly and allows them to soak up all of the rich flavors. Braising the brats is a more gentle cooking process and will result in exceptionally tender brats. Whether on the stovetop, in the oven, or a slow cooker, braising offers control over the cooking environment. This is our preferred method.

How Long to Braise Brats in Beer Before Grilling

Braising brats in beer should take about 10-15 minutes on medium heat or until they’re fully cooked. The goal is to infuse them with flavor before finishing them off on the grill for that irresistible smoky crust. However, I often add the brats, beer, onions, and dijon mustard at the same time over medium low heat and let them braise for an hour or so before grilling.

Beer Brats Slow Cooker

For those who prefer setting and forgetting, cooking beer brats in a slow cooker is a hassle-free method. Place your brats in the slow cooker, cover them with beer and onions, and cook on low for 4-6 hours or high for 2-3 hours. What is the downside to this method? Nothing. If you have errands to run and you want the brats soaking up all of those delicious flavors while you are away, this is the method for you. When I am cooking brats for a crowd, this is my preferred method. I have 2-3 large crock pots full of brats and grill one pot at a time, ensuring everyone has a fresh, ready brat straight from the grill.

How Long to Smoke Beer Brats

Smoking beer brats adds a new layer of depth to their flavor. Smoke the brats at 225°F (107°C) for 2-3 hours, or until they reach an internal temperature of 160°F (71°C), for a smoky twist on this classic dish.

Brat Internal Temp

Whether grilling, smoking, or braising, the safe internal temperature for brats is 160°F (71°C). Always use a meat thermometer to ensure they’re cooked perfectly.

How Long to Grill Brats

After braising or boiling, grill the brats on a preheated grill over medium-high heat. Turn them occasionally, cooking for about 5-10 minutes, until they’re golden brown and slightly charred.

Beer Brats Recipe


  • 5-6 brats
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 12 oz (355 ml) beer of choice
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Buns and condiments for serving


Prep the Brats: In a large skillet over medium-low heat, add brats, onions, and Dijon mustard. Pour beer carefully over the brats and onions

Braise the Brats: Add the brats to the skillet. Pour in the beer, ensuring the brats are fully submerged. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook for 10-15 minutes.

Grill the Brats: Preheat your grill to medium-high heat (350 F). Transfer the brats from the beer mixture to the grill. Cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown.

Serve: Serve the brats on buns with sautéed onions and your favorite condiments.

This Beer Braised and Grilled Brats with Onions recipe is not just a meal; it’s an experience. By carefully selecting your beer, braising your brats to perfection, and finishing with a smoky char on the grill, you’re guaranteed to impress at any dining occasion. Cheers to a recipe that’s sure to become a staple in your rotation!

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