15 Beer-Spiked Recipes to Make You a Tailgate Legend

A golden soft pretzel being dipped into a small cast iron bowl Guinness Beer Cheese
Photo: Allrecipes Magazine

Beer and tailgating go together like, well, fall and football. Here, we've taken that winning combo one step further and lined up some of our favorite football party foods with the beer built right in. Scroll through and find brew-based recipes including beer-cheese dip, meaty chili, beer soup, and crispy beer-battered fish, shrimp, and jalapeño slices — proving that beer is great for more than just drinking. Whether you're Team IPA or Team Stout; Team Sweet or Team Savory, chances are you'll find a recipe (or several) to add to your tailgate menu. Cheers!

01 of 16

Beef, Bean, and Beer Chili

Beef, Bean, and Beer Chili
Chef John

The two key ingredients that make this one of the best chili recipes in our entire roster of chili recipes? A can or bottle of your favorite beer and a spoonful of unsweetened cocoa powder. (Trust chef John, he knows his stuff...and his chili!) Try it as the centerpiece of your chili bar for an interactive tailgate menu that guests will rave about long after the season is over.

02 of 16

Beer Brats

close up of beer-braised and grilled bratwurst sausages served with grilled onions

Wisconsin Beer Brats are beloved by locals for good reason — they're plump and juicy, jam-packed with flavor, yet are a breeze to make. For these brats, you'll use a whopping 4 cans of ale, plus diced onion, red pepper flakes, garlic, and salt, to make the "bath" to poach the brats in for about 15 minutes. Then all that's left to do is grill until cooked through, top with those beer-infused onions, and devour.

03 of 16

Wisconsin Native's Beer Cheese Soup

close up of a bowl of Wisconsin Native's Beer Cheese Soup served with popcorn on top and soft pretzels on the side

Recipe submitter SAVVYHOSTESS says, "As a Wisconsin native, I'm accustomed to a fantastic beer cheese soup. This is the recipe I've created, as a salute to my home state...America's Dairy land...and a state that brews a mighty fine beer! Serve with lots of popcorn floating on top!"

04 of 16

Jan's Pretzel Dogs

Close up of a trio of Jan's Pretzel Dogs - hot dogs rolled and baked in pretzel dough - with mustard dipping sauce

"Hot dogs wrapped in a pretzel are a perfect snack. Perfect for Super Bowl parties or the weekend tailgate! A little something different using your favorite can of beer instead of water! Delicious!" —What's for dinner, mom?

05 of 16

Beer Floats

two glasses of stout foaming over with scoops of vanilla or coffee ice cream
Chef John

Cap off your tailgate menu with these playful grown-up ice cream floats. Try coffee ice cream with stout beer and a dusting of cocoa powder, or sweeten the deal with raspberry sour beer and vanilla ice cream. Feel free to get creative, chef John says, just be sure to keep in mind this secret for scoop success: "Choose a beer that's on the toasty, malty, sweeter side, and stay away from beers that are too hoppy, dry, and bitter."

06 of 16

Coconut Shrimp I

close up of a batch of homemade Coconut Shrimp on a platter

"These crispy shrimp are rolled in a coconut beer batter before frying. For dipping sauce, I use orange marmalade, mustard and horseradish mixed to taste." —LINDAV10

07 of 16

Beer Steak

Beerbecue Beef Flank Steak

Beat the clock with this grilled steak recipe that calls for just 10 minutes of prep time and 10 minutes of cook time. Between those two quick "plays," simply allow the meat to marinate in the refrigerator in a combo of beer, lemon pepper, and salt for an hour or two; say, the first half so you can grill during halftime! Then all that's left to do is grill to your desired doneness — for best results, always use a meat thermometer.

08 of 16

No-Knead Beer Bread

loaf of homemade No-Knead Beer Bread sliced open on a wooden cutting board

Still recovering from your pandemic sourdough bread and banana bread overdose? Grab a can or bottle of ale and try this beer bread. It will be the ultimate Rx to ease you back into bread-making since it's "simple, yet looks and tastes like a loaf you would buy at a European bakery. Texture is beautiful, nice and crispy on the outside and inside very soft and chewy," says Allrecipes user Alymade. The 5-ingredient, no-knead bread is great for ambitious and amateur bakers, chef John explains: "This really is an easy, fun, and fast recipe, and you'll be amazed at how great the results are, even for the most inexperienced bread maker."

09 of 16

Beer Margaritas

a margarita in a glass with salt rim and lime garnish

Sure, you can drink a beer as-is. But for something even more festive and party-worthy, why not stir it into a mixed drink recipe to share with the 21+ crew? While it's called a "margarita recipe," this pitcher of limeade and beer cocktails calls for tequila. Vodka or rum would work, too. Dip the rim of the glass in a little water and margarita salt, and serve on the rocks.

10 of 16

Crispy Beer Batter Fish & Chips

Crispy Beer Battered Fish and Chips
Chef John

Put an end to soggy fish and chips once and for all. "Virtually every beer-battered fish recipe looks crispy coming out of the fryer, and some even stay crispy for a few minutes, but then the inevitable sogginess sets in," chef John explains. "But with his dialed-in batter recipe, keeping said lager-style beer batter super-cold, and patting the fish very dry before coating it, "you can achieve a fried fish where the last bite is as crisp as the first."

11 of 16

Baked Beer Can Chicken

Baked Beer Can Chicken upright in a foil-lined baking pan
Robyn Celeste Beto

If your chicken recipes can err on the boring side, this beer can roast chicken will change your tune. Allrecipes home cook Marty raves that it's "so juicy. My sister who rarely eats any meat said it was the best chicken she ever ate and asked me to make it again." By roasting the bird with a partially-full can of beer in the bottom, it permeates the inside with moisture while the rest of the poured-out can that's in the pan steam the exterior.

12 of 16

Air-Fried Bratwurst Bites with Spicy Beer Mustard

overhead view of Air-Fried Bratwurst Bites with Spicy Beer Mustard served with roasted peppers

Make a big batch of this easy snack and let everyone help themselves. "Loved this and the sauce was SO great! Can't wait to make this one again for the next football party. It is sure to impress!" —Soup Loving Nicole

13 of 16

Beer Cake II

a slice of chocolate cherry walnut beer cake on a white plate

With tart cherry juice and caramel-like beer in the batter for this 9- x 13-inch cake, no one will confuse it with a boxed cake mix! But that doesn't mean it's complicated. The entire cake comes together in a single bowl, and it calls for almost all refrigerator and pantry staple ingredients. Studded with nuts and cherries, the only thing that would make a slice better is a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

14 of 16

Guinness® Beer Cheese Dip

A golden soft pretzel being dipped into a small cast iron bowl Guinness Beer Cheese
Allrecipes Magazine

Think of this easy party dip recipe like cheesy queso with a stout beer boost. In addition to a bottle of Guinness®, it showcases melty cheese, zippy salsa, savory Worcestershire sauce, and a couple spice cabinet staples. It cooks and can be kept warm in your slow cooker all four quarters — win-win! Try it with soft pretzels or tortilla chips, recipe creator HellYesItsSteve suggests.

15 of 16

Deep Fried Jalapeño Slices

close up of Deep Fried Jalapeno Slices on a platter
Marsha Nevarez Burley

The title of this recipe tells you everything you need to know about these irresistibly snackable bites. You probably already guessed by now that they're dipped in beer batter, right? KELLY_K says, "This is wonderfully quick and easy! I put out some nacho cheese dip salsa and sour cream to dip them in. It was a big hit!"

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