Cooking with Beer: 10 Delicious Recipes

Beer doesn't play a huge role in my everyday life. When the weather's hot, I'll share one with friends in the backyard, and when we go out for Mexican or Indian food, I generally order beer. But recently while traveling in New Jersey, I started to think about beer quite a bit. It seemed that lots of restaurants, family, and friends were cooking with beer. From chicken to kabobs to grainy baguettes, I noticed it everywhere.

There are a lot of reasons people bake and cook with beer. I think first and foremost is the flavor: beer contains hops and malt, so it imparts a very subtle sweetness that compliments pork and chicken dishes nicely. A lot of cooks say that the yeast in beer also makes baked goods lighter and springier. From salad dressing to caramels and bread, we have a few great places to start experimenting with beer in the kitchen.

Try a Recipe:
Blackened Beer-Brined Chicken Breasts (as pictured), via Emma Christensen for The Kitchn
Orange and Ale Vinaigrette, via The Bitten Word
Cheddar Beer Dip with Smoked Sausage, via CHOW
Beer-Poached Grilled Sausages, via Whole Foods Market
Beer-Brined Grilled Pork Chops, via Epicurious
Soft Pretzels, via Martha Stewart
Beer Bread, via My Baking Addiction
Chocolate Beer Cheesecake with a Pretzel Crust, via The Beeroness
Ale and Pretzel Soft Caramels, via Sprinkle Bakes
Chocolate Beer Cake, via Fifty Two Cakes

Related: Beer For Dessert: Have a Beer Float!

(Image: Emma Christensen)

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Megan is a freelance writer, recipe developer and cookbook writer. Her first book, Whole-Grain Mornings, (Ten Speed Press) is available in bookstores nationwide. Megan also owns the Seattle-based artisan cereal company, Marge Granola.