Beer Bread: One bottle in the recipe, one bottle to sip

(Photo illustration by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
(Photo illustration by Hector Vivas/Getty Images) /

With everyone baking bread, beer bread is the simple recipe to try.

Sometimes the simplest recipes are food choices that people crave. Beer bread has become that tasty, crave-worthy dish that will make anyone forget about banana bread or even that difficult to make sourdough bread. With a bottle of your favorite beer and a few ingredients, bread will be on the table.

Recently, many people have become obsessed with baking bread. Whether it is the sense of accomplishment of baking or baked out of necessity, the KitchenAid Stand mixer, loaf pans and oven have been getting a workout. Even the novice baker has had some flour flying around the kitchen.

Unlike some other bread recipes, beer bread is considered a quick bread. The recipe goes back hundreds of years. Although some quick breads can be a little heavy, the beer in this bread helps to lighten the texture. The carbonation from the beer gives it that boost and keeps the bread a little fluffier.

While there are a variety of bread recipes available, beer bread is probably one of the easiest options to make. A quick search can find a variety of recipes. More importantly, there are even mixes available to simplify the whole process.

For example, Budweiser has four signature recipes, Classic, Basil Parmesan, Cheesy Garlic and Cheddar Bacon. Each mix requires just one can of Budweiser. It is simple, easy and on the table in a relatively short amount of time.

The best part about these Budweiser Bread Mix Kits is the flavors. Whether the Cheddar Bacon is paired with an omelet or the Cheesy Garlic is paired with a beer can chicken, each flavor has numerous pairing opportunities.

The Budweiser Beer Bread Mix Kits can be purchased online for $6.95 a mix.

If you are trying to push your bread baking skills, Axel Erkenswick Co-Founder Smack Dab Chicago, a Sam Adam’s Brewing the American Dream client, has created a recipe using Sam Adams Lager. This recipe is more complex than just a mix. Still, the bread recipe shows how the beer flavors the bread.

Here’s how to make Samuel Adams Beer Bread Recipe

Samuel Adams Beer Bread Recipe


  • 3 cups white bread flour
  • 1/2 cup fine whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats (optional – oats add texture and flavor. If you skip the oats, decrease beer by ¼ c.)
  • 1 – 12 oz bottle of Samuel Adams Boston Lager®
  • 2 tablespoons honey or other sweetener
  • 1 oz of butter or other fat
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons instant dry yeast or equivalent – Extra flour for working the dough


  • Make sure all your ingredients including the beer are at room temperature.
  • Start with your liquid in your mixing bowl. Next add the butter and honey. Top that with both flours, add the yeast on one end of the bowl and the salt on the other – this is so the salt doesn’t kill your yeast.
  • Using a wooden spoon or your hand, start to mix the contents of your bowl. After you see the liquid absorb, knead the dough for 5-10 minutes.
  • Turn it on to a wooden or other surface and using a little flour on the table, start folding the dough and kneading continuously until you have a smooth dough that springs back when you poke it using your finger
  • Now add the oats and knead them into the dough. Fold them into it and press them into the dough kneading a few more times to incorporate.
  • Put it into a bowl, cover towel and place to rest (warm and draft free location) for 1-1.5 hours until it doubles in size.
  • Scrape it out and gently press it to release gas keeping a round shape. Shape it into a log.
  • Place this into a lightly greased 9” x 5” loaf pan, cover it and its time to double in size again for 1-2 hours. When the dough is almost doubled in size, preheat your oven to 400F.
  • Score your loaf with a cut right down the middle using a serrated knife 1/2” deep and sprinkle/spray the top with water.
  • Bake your loaf for 35-40 minutes. It will have an internal temperature of 190F to be fully baked. Let it rest in the pan for 10 minutes, take it out of the pan and transfer to a cooling rack.

Recipe provided by Axel Erkenswick Co-Founder Smack Dab Chicago and Sam Adams.

Whether you bake bread from scratch or use a mix, the beer in the recipe does matter. Since the flavor of the beer comes through in each bite, it can be fun to play with the beer choices.

A dark stout can make for a bolder flavor. Some dark ales can add some nutty notes to the bread. Other citrus wheat beers can add a touch of brightness.

Overall, it can be fun to play with flavors. While baking always has a touch of science at its core, flavor is key. Generally, if you like drinking a particular beer, you might like baking with it. What’s the worst that can happen – you have to buy more beer to drink.

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Are you making beer bread? Do you have a tip, trick or baking hack to share?