These Beer Brats with Braised Red Cabbage are everything you’ll ever want in a sausage. The brats are incredibly flavorful from being slowly steeped in beer, spices, and onions, and every bite of these brats is a complete explosion of flavor.
Beer brats are a completely amazing and delicious experience. You begin with brats slow simmered in beer and spices, then finish them hot on the grill. The high heat creates a char on the outside of the brats that’s darn near heavenly. Topped with a sweet and tangy braised red cabbage, this is a game day meal that will knock your socks off.
I added the braised cabbage as an homage to my adoring husband who used to live in Germany and still retains a mild fanboy-style obsession with brats and kraut. I even busted out his beer steins for the photo shoot! Hope you guys all love this one as much as we do. Just be prepared to hate every brat you have at any BBQ you go to for the rest of your life. Sorry and you’re welcome.
One final bonus note: This recipe is a great one to make for crowd or to serve at a party (Superbowl, anyone?). You can prep and simmer the brats while everybody arrives, then spend a few short minutes crisping the sausages and you’re ready to eat!
Beer Boiled Brats
I feel like I should name drop here to give you a little extra back story on this recipe. First of all, this cooking technique is coming straight to you from my BFF Chef Tyler Florence. When I was in NYC in August 2015 going for a Guinness World Record in marathon grilling (seriously, craziest experience of my life), good ol’ T-Flo (that’s what I call him…not to his face) asked me how I prefer to cook my sausages. I told him I like to go low and slow over wood smoke to retain lots of moisture and avoid wrinkly dogs.
Tyler proceeded to lay down some serious sausage knowledge which I soaked up in my sleep-deprived world record haze and brought back to share with you. Tyler told me the secret to juicy and tasty sausages is a pre-grilling simmer in super flavorful liquid. Not a boil, mind you, but a slow gentle simmer to bring your sausages up to temp and infuse them with extra layers of goodness. Next, a quick sear to crisp up the sausage casing and you’re good to go for the best sausage of your life!
Like I said, I took his advice and used it to make these fan-freaking-tastic beer brats. The take home message, friends? Simmer instead of boiling these tasty brats. It’ll make all the difference.
How to Cook Beer Brats
So, I’ve talked up these brats quite a bit. Now to the good stuff. Here’s how to make these packed-with-flavor, want-to-eat-them-all-the-time brats:
- Get the beer simmering. Combine the beer, onions, ginger, and whole seeds in a medium pot on the stove top over medium heat. Bring to a simmer.
- Slowly simmer the brats. Pierce the brats multiple times with a fork and gently place them in the simmering beer. Cover the pot with a lid, turn on the heat, and allow the bratwursts to cook for 15 minutes.
- Preheat your grill. While the brats are simmering, preheat your favorite grill at High heat (450 degrees F) for direct grilling.
- Prep the cabbage. Heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Coat the shredded cabbage in the olive oil and season it with salt and pepper.
- Braise the cabbage. Strain 1/2 cup of the beer braising liquid and add it to the cabbage. Cook the cabbage for 10 minutes until softened, then stir in the honey and vinegar. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Grill the bratwursts. Remove the brats from the braising liquid and place them directly on the preheated grill. Grill them for 2-3 minutes per side until the casings are crisp and browned.
- Grill the buns. Split the bratwurst buns and grill them cut side down for approximately 30 seconds until they are nice and toasty.
- Assemble your beer brats. Place your brats on your toasted buns, top with whole grain mustard, and pile high with cabbage.
More Brats and Hot Dog Recipes
Ah, brats and hot dogs. There’s something so satisfying about a good brat or hot dog in the afternoon (and on nights and weekends too!). If you’re looking for a bunch of great bratwurst and hot dog recipes, look no further than Hey Grill Hey. We have top-notch recipes to keep your palate satisfied.
Beer Brats Recipe
Watch the video below and I’ll show you how I make these beer brats at home. I’m here to help you make better BBQ, feed the people you love, and become a backyard BBQ hero. Check out more of my smoking and grilling recipe videos on YouTube, Instagram, or our Facebook Page.
Beer Brats with Braised Red Cabbage
- 1 pound fresh bratwursts
- 1 package bratwurst buns
- whole grain mustard
- 2 bottles dark German beer
- 3 inch piece fresh ginger sliced into coins
- 1 large yellow onion sliced
- 1 Tablespoon whole fennel seeds
- 1 Tablespoon whole coriander seeds
- 1 Tablespoon whole mustard seeds
- 1 Tablespoon whole celery seeds
- 2 cups red cabbage thinly sliced
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- kosher salt
- cracked black pepper
- In a medium pot, combine the beer, onions, ginger, and whole seeds. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
- Pierce the bratwursts all over with a fork and then gently slide them into the beer. Cover the pot, turn off the heat, and let the bratwursts cook for 15 minutes.
- While the brats cook, prepare your grill for high heat direct grilling.
- While your grill preheats, prepare your braised cabbage. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Dump in the shredded cabbage and toss to coat in the oil. Season with the salt and pepper.
- Strain 1/2 cup of the beer braising liquid and add it to the cabbage. Cook about 10 minutes until softened and stir in the honey and vinegar. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Remove the bratwursts from the braising liquid and head out to the hot grill. Grill the sausages for about 2-3 minutes per side until the casings are crisp and browned.
- Split the bratwurst buns and grill cut side down for about 30 seconds, until they are nice and toasty.
- Slather each bun with some of the whole grain mustard, top with a crispy brat, and a pile of the braised red cabbage. Eat and enjoy!
**This post was originally published January 2016. It has since been updated with more information and helpful tips. The recipe remains the same.