Beer-Braised Brats with Onions and Kraut

You all know that my first love is food. I mean, obviously. But what you maybe might not know is that my close-second love is beer. 

I attribute my love of beer to my dad. Like any college kid, I lived off of a steady diet of pizza and cheap beer (Go Dawgs!) and while I could toss back a number of Bud Lights back in my day, I didn't start to appreciate good beer until my dad handed me a Ninkasi Total Domination IPA one day. For fellow IPA lovers, you're probably thinking, whoa – nothing like going from 0-60 with that choice! But apparently the pallette wants what the pallette wants because upon first sip, I was hooked on that sharp, super bitter flavor of good, craft beer and thus, a true beer lover was born. 

I love beer so much today that it's practically running through my veins. From the aroma of the hops to the crisp, cold taste, I adore everything about it. But the thing I probably love most about beer isn't just the taste and the way it makes me feel, it's the camaraderie of drinking good beer and eating good food with family and friends. That's what living the good life is all about! 

So to my fellow beer lovers, this one's for you because for the love of beer, when you're not drinking it, why not eat something that's cooked in it? Sure seems like a sound philosophy to live by, if you ask me! And that is what this recipe is all about, folks. 

Whether you're knee deep in football/tailgating season, celebrating Oktoberfest or just need an excuse to eat a tasty beer-infused meal, these beer-braised brats with onions and kraut are a beer lover's dream. These salty, succulent sausages (aliteration for the win!) slow cooked in tangy onions, mustard and kraut and bitter beer are rich, tangy and absolutely perfect beer-drinking food. What's arguably better than how satisfying these taste on a crisp fall day with a cold one in hand is how easy they are to throw together on the grill. That's right, take these to your next tailgate party and you'll be the hero of the hour. Promise. 

If this dish isn't the best tribute to my favorite frothy beverage, then I don't know what is! So go ahead and crack open a cold one and enjoy this dish with the ones you love. Cheers! Salut! Prost! Slainte Mhath! 

Beer-Braised Brats with Onions and Kraut

Ingredients

  • 1 package good Brats, such as Johnsonville 
  • 24 oz beer (2 12-oz beers), such as an amber or pale ale
  • 1/4 cup whole-grain mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup sauerkraut
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

Combine beer, mustards, onions and sauerkraut in a 10-inch square disposable aluminum pan.  Season with salt and pepper. Nestle sausages into kraut and onions. 

Place tray on hot side of grill and cook until simmering, about 4 minutes. Slide to cooler side of grill. Cover grill and cook for about 20 minutes, turning once halfway through. 

Using tongs, remove sausages and place directly on cooking grate over hot side of grill. Cook, turning occasionally, until well browned and crisp, about 3 minutes total. Return to pan. Toast buns over hot side of grill, if desired. Serve sausages with buns, more mustard, kraut and onions from pan.

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