How to Cook Bratwurst in Beer

how to cook bratwurst in beer

Mmm, beer brats.

We’re about to let you in on a tasty, delicious secret.

Learning how to cook bratwurst in beer is so simple that you can learn all the steps in under two minutes.

Guaranteed.

And your ingredient list is ridiculously simple — brats, beer, and two onions.

That’s all you need for amazing beer brats.


It’s not magic or some sort of Midwestern voodoo.

Bratwurst is incredibly easy to cook if you follow the few simple steps outlined below.

How to Cook Bratwurst in Beer

buy brats online

WisconsinMade specializes in shipping genuine Wisconsin brats to every U.S. state.

Your ingredient list may be simple but it’s important that you start with a solid foundation: your bratwurst.

Not everyone is lucky enough to be able to hop in their car and drive over to pick up some brats from Usinger’s or Carle’s.

WisconsinMade is one of the few online retailers that ships genuine Wisconsin brats throughout the U.S. but you’ll need to plan ahead and be sure to buy enough to satisfy your brat cravings.

If your only option is the pre-packaged meat aisle at a chain store, Johnsonville is usually your best bet.

You’ll also need two large white onions and a six pack of beer.

The Best Beer for Cooking Brats

stone ground mustard for bratwurst

Inglehoffer stone ground mustard is the mustard of choice for many bratwurst purists.

You’ll encounter some debate as far as the best beer to use when learning how to cook bratwurst in beer but there’s really no bad choice so don’t stress the decision too much.

Since you’ll be simmering your brats in beer, a lot of that six pack won’t reach your belly.

Some people purchase accordingly and buy cheaper beer for cooking the brats, while others insist that craft beers impart their own unique flavors to the brats and should be used when learning how to cook bratwurst in beer.

Most cooks enjoy a beverage or two while cooking their brats, so keep that in mind as well when grabbing a six pack (or more).

Some traditionalists insist that the only acceptable beer to cook brats in is Leinie’s, with only stone ground mustard used as a condiment.

Cooking Up Beer Brats

cast iron bratwurst cooker

Cook perfect brats, hot dogs, and cornbread over a fire with this cast-iron bratwurst cooker!

Put your brats in a pot that comfortably holds them and add equal parts beer and cold water until the liquid covers the brats completely.

Slice your onions into large sections and toss them in, turning the heat on your stove to high to bring the pot to a boil.

Don’t let them boil very long, as our goal is to gently simmer your brats in beer. After it begins to boil turn the heat down to a very low boil and let it simmer for about 20 minutes.

After they’ve simmered, you’ll have several options as far as how to finish off your brats and check off learning how to cook bratwurst in beer from your brat bucket list.

Many brat enthusiasts will grill brats after the beer bath — although some insist on reversing the order and grilling first then simmering in beer.

If you do grill your brats, only grill them for about 5 to 10 minutes on a low to medium heat, just long enough to get a good char.

They’re essentially cooked at this stage so too long on the grill or too high of a heat can cause them to overcook and dry out or burst.

You can also finish off your brats in a pan or even put them in a cast-iron bratwurst cooker and cook over a fireplace or camp fire!