Beer and BBQ Recipes

When the worlds of beer and food collide, the results can be enough to make your mouth water. With the keen eye of Amy Chamberlain, chef/owner of Manchester, Vermont’s Perfect Wife Restaurant and Tavern, we managed to select the following winning recipes sent in to us by BYO readers. We encourage you to enjoy the weather, get out and brew up some of this great BBQ cuisine!

Rauch’s Smoke on the Water Beer-B-Que Sauce

Jack Castro
Fort Collins, Colorado


  • 6 oz. homebrewed rauchbier
  • 24 oz. ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/8 molasses
  • 1.5 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/8 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger
  • 3 tbsp. pineapple juice


1. Combine all ingredients into a sauce pan. Cook on medium heat for 30–45 minutes. Sauce should be well blended.
2. Let cool for 20 minutes. Ladle into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
3. Use with your favorite meat and try it as a dip. Pour the rest of your rauchbier into a glass and enjoy!


Thai-Style Beer Marinade

Tony Simmons
Pagosa Springs, Colorado

We have enjoyed this marinade recipe many times. The combination of the honey, beer, and spices makes it a local favorite. Best of all, it is easy to prepare and cooks in a flash.


  • 1/3 cup peanut oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup dark soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup pilsner (or you can use a darker beer for more a malty flavor)
  • 2 tbs. sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp. Thai chilies (dried) (or use crushed red pepper flakes — or more if you dare!)
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly grated ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 11/2 tsp. dark toasted sesame oil
  • 12 pre-soaked bamboo (or metal skewers)
  • 11/2 lbs. favorite meat (elk in the Rockies)


  1. Cut meat into thin strips (easier if meat is partially frozen).
  2. Soak meat in marinade (we like using a 1-gallon zip-close bag and marinating overnight).
  3. Skewer the strips.
  4. Grill over high heat. Baste and turn after 1-2 minutes (metal skewers will reduce cooking time)
  5. Serve with Thai salad or noodles.


Uncle Catfish’s Chipolte Smoked Porter BBQ

Shawn Childress
Marietta, OH


  • 2 gallons ketchup
  • 4 cups distilled vinegar
  • 4 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 5 lbs. light brown sugar
  • 11/3 cups Worcestershire sauce
  • 5 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 3 tbsp. onion powder
  • 2 tbsp. thyme
  • 2 tbsp. ground mustard
  • 3 dried chipotle peppers (crushed)
  • 6 hot chiles (only slit them and cook them — do not chop)
  • 1 beef bullion cube
  • 1 tbsp. ancho powder
  • liquid smoke to taste (use concentrate only, not the cheap stuff!)
  • 36 oz. tomato paste
  • 4 cups smoked porter
  • 2 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 3 tsp. anchovy paste


  1. Add all ingredients together except the beer. Bring to slow simmer as long as possible (48 hours is not too long). Try to caramelize the batch without sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  2. Add the beer in the last 5–6 hours of boiling.
  3. Bottle into 12-oz. beer bottles and let meld in fridge for one month.

Hot version:

Take 1 can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and blend with 2–3 cups of sauce from above.


Tiger Stout Pork Shoulder Marinade

John Collier
Winslow, Arizona


  • 1 5–10-lb. pork shoulder w/bone
  • 1 pint of Guinness or preferred stout
  • 6–10 garlic cloves (pressed or minced)
  • 1/4 cup Tiger sauce
  • 1 tbsp. seasoning salt
  • 1 tbsp. chipotle pepper sauce


  1. Marinade overnight, pour off liquid and apply a simple dry rub of 1/4 cup seasoning salt and 1/4 cup turbinado sugar.
  2. Cook shoulder 6–8 hours at 175 ºF (79 ºC), preferably by charcoal grill during the last 11/2 hours (with indirect heat).


Guinness-Battered Onion Rings

Steve Barnhart
Evanston, Illinois

Yield: 1 lb. onion rings before cooking


  • 1 lb. onion, cut into rings
  • 2 oz. flour, all-purpose
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 large egg, whole
  • 4 oz. Guinness draught
  • flour, all-purpose (as needed)


  1. Preheat a deep fryer to 375 °F (191 ºC).
  2. Separate the onion into individual rings. Set aside.
  3. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside in a bowl.
  4. With a whisk, whip the egg in a small bowl until frothy. Add the beer and whip to incorporate.
  5. Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and whip to incorporate.
  6. Dredge the onion rings in the second all-purpose flour and dust off any excess. Add the onions to the batter and mix well to cover all surfaces.
  7. Carefully drop a few at a time in the deep fryer, allowing them to float freely. Fry the onions for 60–90 seconds, depending on the size of the pieces.
  8. Remove them from the deep fryer when golden brown and let rest on a platter lined with paper towels.
  9. Season with salt and enjoy!


Takin’ Names Baked Beans

Phil Williams
Lock Haven, Pennsylvania


  • 2 28-oz. cans of store bought baked beans (fat removed)
  • 1 lb. bacon (diced)
  • 1/2 of a small onion
  • 11/2 cups light malt extract
  • 1 bottle of chili sauce
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp. of prepared mustard
  • 1 dash of Worcestershire sauce


  1. Brown the bacon and onion together and then place it into a medium sized roaster (grease and all).
  2. Remove the fat clump from the cans of beans and add to the roaster.
  3. Add all other ingredients and make sure that they are well mixed before putting into the oven.
  4. Bake for two hours in preheated 350 ºF (177 ºC) oven and allow to set for one hour before serving.


Hops Smoked Chicken

Kyle Hill
Millersville, Maryland


  • 1 whole chicken
  • Mesquite wood smoking chips
  • 1 oz. Cascade hop pellets water
  • 1 tbsp. cumin
  • 1 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1 tbsp. chopped dry rosemary
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cut chicken into halves. Split the chicken at the back bone and breast.
  2. Rub meat, both sides, with the mixture of herbs and spices.
  3. Prepare charcoal, light and let coals turn grey before placing smoking pan into grill.
  4. Place 2 handfuls of mesquite into smoking pan along with hops. Add enough water to wet the bottom of the wood chips, but not covering wood.
  5. If smoking pan has holes or you do not have a smoking pan, one can easily be made from tin foil. Tear 2 sheets about 10 inches wide. Turn up sides 2 inches and crease the corners, allowing liquid to be kept inside. After adding wood, hops, and water, place a sheet on top, fully covering lower half. Poke a few holes in the top, allowing smoke to leave pouch.
  6. Place smoking pan on side of coals, allowing it to heat to the point of smoking. This may take up to 10 minutes. The hop pellets will expand with the steam from the water.
  7. Place the chicken, skin side down, on the grill. Sear skin side before turning. Allow chicken to cook for about 45 minutes or until thickest part is 160 ºF (71 ºC) or higher.


Stout Marinated Ribs with Honey Stout Glaze

Jeff “Mongo” Reamy
Billings, Montana


  • 3 cups of your favorite stout
  • 1 large red onion sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil
  • 4 tbsp.minced garlic
  • 4 lbs. pork spare ribs

For glaze:

  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup stout
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tsp. black pepper


  1. Mix all ingredients well and prepare grill (medium heat). Remove ribs from marinade and place on grill. Grill until cooked through.
  2. About two minutes before ribs are done, brush with glaze and cook one minute on each side. Serve with remaining glaze.
  3. Pour yourself a big old stout and enjoy!


Bell’s Kalamazoo Stout Teriyaki Steak

Brian Sylvester
Chillicothe, Ohio


  • 2/3 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp. molasses
  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • 2 tsp. dry mustard
  • 2 tsp. garlic
  • 1/4 cup Bell’s Kalamazoo Stout (or similar stout)

Step by step:

1. The key to marinating these delicious beauties is starting out with a choice cut of beef and cutting it into approximately 4” pieces. This recipe makes two to three steaks depending on size.
2. Marinate in a covered bowl overnight, turning steaks once. Grill the following day and enjoy!


Chief’s Blizzard BBQ ribs

Bradley D. Holderman
Pensacola, Florida

BBQ’ing is a year round sport, especially if you are in the Army and snow-bound overseas. I have traveled around the world on Uncle’s dime for about 15 years and have been perfecting this recipe. We always have a “first snow” BBQ when we were stationed in England. The real secret is the smoking method with the mesquite wood and using John Boy and Billy sauce.

The best beer for this is a light (lawnmower) ale or a fresh batch of Cooper’s draught. It keeps you going for the long hours of watching your meat cook.


  • 5 lbs. of baby back pork ribs
  • 1 jar of John boy and Billy’s Hot and spicy BBQ sauce
  • Hungarian paprika rub
  • Lawry’s season salt
  • freshly cracked peppercorns
  • garlic powder
  • Old Bay seasoning salt


  • charcoal is best
  • mesquite chunks (soak in water 30 minutes prior to cooking)
  • old soup can full of water

Ribs prep:

  1. First thing is to wash the ribs off in cool water and remove the lung lining from the back (Concave) side of the ribs. This will ensure full flavor penetration.
  2. Cut the ribs into 4 inch sections (about every two rib bones), lay out on a clean surface and prepare to spice.
  3. Sprinkle the paprika on the ribs and hand rub the spice into the meat. Be sure to spice both sides and the ends.
  4. Sprinkle Season salt, fresh pepper, garlic and Old Bay to taste on both sides of the ribs and the ends to taste. Set aside and get the fire ready.

Fire prep:

  1. Start the charcoal in the left side of a charcoal grill (smoker).
  2. After the coals are gray, clear an area in the center of the coals and place the soup tin full of water in it and move coals next to the tin.
  3. Place a couple of mesquite chunks in the fire and let them flame up for a couple of minutes.
  4. Place the cooking grates on the grill.

Ribs cooking:

  1. Don’t let the grill get past 300 ºF (149º C) if possible.
  2. Place the ribs on the right side of the grill for offset cooking and close the lid and choke the chimney for maximum smoke (about 80% closed).
  3. Let the ribs smoke for about one hour and try not to open the lid.
  4. After one hour, open the chimney to about 50% and throw another small chunk of mesquite wood on the coals and allow it to flame up.
  5. Move the ribs to the left side of the grill for direct cooking and cook until done (lid closed).
  6. Brush a generous amount of John Boy and Billy sauce on the ribs and turn them, repeating the process on the other side. Brush once more before you take them off the grill.
  7. You will have the best tasting ribs with a nice smoke ring around the outside of the meat. Enjoy with a homebrew and some Texas Toast thrown on the grill after the work is done.

Cleaning tip:

When you are done using your cutting board, spray it off with hot water and use the following method to make it fresh. Pour a few capfuls of lemon juice on the cutting board and sprinkle it with salt. Scrub the board with a fresh sponge and when done, the board should be void of all smells.


Homebrew B.B.Q. sauce

Dwayne Boulter
Salida, California


  • 12 oz. tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1 small onion (minced)
  • 1/2 cup dark karo syrup
  • 12 oz. homebrew of your choice
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. smoke salt
  • 1 tbsp. liquid smoke seasoning
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tsp. orange peel


In a medium saucepan, combine the ingredients, stirring to blend over medium heat and simmer for 45 minutes.


Grilled Pound Cake with Beer Butter Sauce

Matthew Lange
South Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Serves 4


  • 12 oz. bottle of cream ale
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. ground chipotle
  • chile pepper
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 3 tsp. corn starch
  • 6 tsp. cold water

On the grill:

  • 2 granny smith apples peeled, cored, and sliced into 16 wedges
  • 2 bananas
  • 8 slices pound cake 3/4 inch thick

For Beer Sauce:

Heat beer, chipolte, and cinnamon in saucepan until hot. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Stir in butter until melted. Mix corn starch with water, add to sauce, and bring to a simmer until slightly thickened. (Can be made a day ahead and refrigerated. Reheat before serving.)

For the Grill:

Heat frill to medium high heat. Place apples and bananas on grill until roasted but still firm. Remove from grill and slice bananas. Add to sauce. Grill pound cake slices until toasted.

Place two slices toasted pound cake and scoop of ice cream on each of four plates. Spoon apples, bananas and hot beer butter sauce over all. Serve immediately.

Issue: May-June 2004