This fast and easy Beer Bread Recipe has only four ingredients—butter, self-rising flour, sugar, and your favorite beer. Soft, buttery, and slightly sweet inside, with a crispy, buttery top, it is perfect for chili, stews, or soups.
A perfect "guy" recipe that goes with most "guy" foods.
Self-rising flour— substitute AP flour, baking powder, and salt
Sugar or honey
Beer— OR plain seltzer water or a soda.
Optional additions—cheddar cheese, chopped jalapenos, garlic
Featured Comment from Sarah:
"My husband and I devoured the better part of the loaf, so I'm currently baking another fresh loaf to go with the leftover soup tonight!"
Soft, buttery, and slightly sweet inside with a crispy, buttery top, even the "non-beer" person will love this beer bread. It's super easy to make, even for the non-cook. You can do this.
Slathered with butter, it is an excellent compliment to chili, stews, or soups. Makes great toast and sandwiches.
👨🍳How to make Beer Bread
- Combine self-rising flour with sugar.
- Add beer and melted butter. Stir until the foam subsides and all of the dry flour is incorporated. Do not over-mix.
- Pour the batter into a prepared pan and brush the top with more butter.
- Bake in a preheated oven until a toothpick comes out clean—about 50 minutes.
This is a summary of the steps and ingredients. See the recipe card or the step-by-step photo instructions below for complete instructions.
- Use seltzer water or soda instead of bear.
- Use 2 tablespoons of honey for the 3 tablespoons of sugar.
- Add optional ingredients like chopped jalapenos, bacon, or garlic.
- Add a cup of shredded cheddar cheese to make cheddar bread.
What is the best beer to use for beer bread?
The easy answer is whatever type of beer you like. Some of the bread tastes will be the beer you add, butter, and a yeasty malt flavor. So use what you want. Something with less intense flavors is probably preferred.
Most people don't think they can tell a taste difference between using darker beers vs. lighter beers or expensive vs. cheap beers. But some feel that more flavor will come through with a robust dark beer.
Store at room temperature in an airtight container for 3-4 days—no need for a refrigerator.
It can also be frozen for 4 months.
Making self-rising flour
Self-rising flour is a bit old-fashioned, but it is a shortcut your grandmother would use for biscuits or other quick bread recipes.
It is a standardized mixture, so if you were making biscuits, you would cut in your butter, add some milk, and be ready for the oven.
- 1 cup of all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
Bisquick is self-rising flour with some hydrogenated vegetable shortening added, so you won’t need to add the butter.
Quick bread is a bread product that uses leavening agents other than yeast or eggs, usually baking soda or baking powder. The texture of quick bread is very different than yeast-leavened bread.
Quick bread has more of a muffin-like texture than yeast bread's gluten texture. Typical quick bread includes banana, soda, beer bread, biscuits, cornbread, muffins, pancakes, scones, and cookies.
When we sift flour, it breaks down any clumps and provides a fluffier result. It also helps mix other ingredients throughout the flour. It will improve the texture a bit. If you don't have an old-school flour sifter, you can get about the same effect using a large fine-mesh strainer.
Do you have to sift if a recipe suggests it? No, but the results will be denser, but not a lot.
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Step-by-Step Photo Instructions
Preheat oven to 375° conventional.
Start by prepping a 9 by 4 inch loaf pan with a good spray of PAM or a light coat of butter. Your loaf pan size may vary, but it will be fine.
Combine 3 cups of self-rising flour with 3 tablespoons of sugar. Optional: run the flour/sugar mixture through a sifter. If you do not have self-rising flour, mix 3 cups of AP flour with 4 ½ teaspoons of baking powder and ¾ teaspoons of salt.
Add 12 oz of beer. Add 3 tablespoons of melted butter. Stir until the foam subsides and all of the dry flour is incorporated. Do not over-mix.
Add to prepared pan and level in the pan.
Brush top with 1 tablespoon of melted butter.
Bake until a toothpick comes out clean—about 50 minutes.
Turn onto a rack to cool for about 15 minutes before cutting. Store airtight at room temperature for up to 3-4 days.
Beer Bread Recipe with 4 Ingredients
- 3 cups self-rising flour - Substitute is listed in the instructions
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons butter - divided
- 12 oz beer
- 1 cup cheddar or other cheese
- Chopped jalapenos
- garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 375° conventional.
- Start by prepping a 9 by 4 inch loaf pan with a good spray of PAM or a light coat of butter. Your loaf pan size may vary but will be fine.
- Combine 3 cups of self-rising flour with 3 tablespoons of sugar. Optional: run the flour/sugar mixture through a sifter. If you do not have self-rising flour, mix 3 cups of AP flour with 4 ½ teaspoons of baking powder and ¾ teaspoons of salt.
- Add 12 oz of beer. Add 3 tablespoons of melted butter. Stir until the foam subsides and all of the dry flour is incorporated. Do not over-mix.
- Add the batter to the prepared pan and level in the pan.
- Add to prepared pan and level in the pan.
- Bake until a toothpick comes out clean. About 50 minutes.
- Turn onto a rack to cool for about 15 minutes before cutting. Store airtight at room temperature for up to 3-4 days.
Your Own Private Notes
- Use the beer of your choice. You can substitute 1 ½ cups (12 ounces) plain seltzer water or a soda.
- To make one cup of self-rising flour mix 1 cup of all-purpure flour with 1 ½ teaspoon of baking powder and ¼ teaspoon of salt.
- I suggest sifting the flour to make the bread less dense. You skip it if you want.
- This bread is easy to add things. A cup of cheese, some chopped-up pickled jalapenos, or some garlic powder. Have some fun with it. Google will give you endless suggestions.
- Good sealed tightly for about 3-4 days or frozen for 4 months.
To adjust the recipe size:
You may adjust the number of servings in this recipe card under servings. This does the math for the ingredients for you. BUT it does NOT adjust the text of the instructions. So you need to do that yourself.
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Originally Published March 11, 2018. Updated with more explanation, refreshed photos, and table of contents.
Based on King Authur's Classic Beer Bread.