9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner

Our friends at Food Loves Beer Magazine have created a beer-inspired Thanksgiving menu that will surely impress your guests! Read their feature below to find out their thought process behind choosing every beer. 


9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner


Want to win Thanksgiving? Beerify your Thanksgiving dinner with these nine craft beer-infused recipes.

We partnered with our friends at Union Beer to bring you this post. Special thanks to Allagash Brewing Company, Bell’s Brewery, Bronx Brewery, Greenport Harbor Brewing Company, Lagunitas Brewing Company, Stone Brewing, and Victory Brewing Company.

Thanksgiving can be stressful. Beer can help. It’s a natural tenderizer for meats, a leavening agent for bread, and one of the world’s best means of seasoning. Cooking with beer can elevate your meal—adding rich flavors ranging from sour to sweet, citrusy to toasty and more—and traditional Thanksgiving dishes are no exception. It’s all about choosing the right beer for the job.

To ensure your turkey day is everything it could be, we’ve compiled some of our favorite Thanksgiving recipes and beerified them for you. From a succulent turkey, big-batch cocktail and homemade cranberry sauce to traditional side dishes and an extraordinary dessert, we’ve got you covered. Most of these recipes can be prepped in advance or have make-ahead components, making them perfect for your busiest day in the kitchen. So, get ready, get set, start your oven—and show Thanksgiving who’s boss.

Happy Thanksgiving!!! Scroll down this page to discover nine delicious ways to add beer to your Thanksgiving dinner.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Beer Brined Turkey with Beer Gravy

1. Beer Brine Your Turkey! Add Some Beer Gravy To The Mix.

Beer-brining your turkey is a pretty much foolproof way to produce a tender, juicier, more flavorful bird. An easy gravy starts in the same roasting pan that the turkey is cooked in. And who doesn’t want to douse super-delicious beer gravy over everything on their plate? We brined our bird with Victory Golden Monkey, a bold and spicy Belgian-style Tripel that adds an incredible depth of flavor and a hint of clove to both the turkey and the gravy.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Sparkling Cranberry Pumpkin Beer Sangria

2. Greet Your Guests With A Signature Beer Cocktail.

The perfect reception cocktail, this Sparkling Cranberry Pumpkin Beer Sangria pours all the best flavors of Thanksgiving—pumpkin, spice, and cranberry—into a single glass. So easy and delicious, it also makes a festive centerpiece for your bar! Our pumpkin ale of choice for this cocktail was Greenport Harbor Leaf Pile Ale. Not too sweet, and with just the right amount of spice, it provides the perfect base for a welcoming, refreshing drink.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Stuffed Stout Mushrooms

3. Transform A Traditional Starter Dish Into A Major Player With Beer.

Start the meal off right with this simple Stuffed Stout Mushrooms recipe. Packing big flavors into a small package, these beery mushrooms offer your guests immediate gratification and get them ready for the main course. Stone Xocovezaadds warm spices and chocolate, ideal accents to the natural earthiness of the mushrooms.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Kale

4. Toss Your Favorite Fall Salad With A Beer Dressing.

Simple but oh-so-satisfying, this Kale & Apple Salad with Sour Ale Dressing combines fresh seasonal ingredients into a light, flavorful accompaniment to all the must-have heavier dishes on the menu. Bell’s Oarsman Tart Wheat Ale is a natural choice here. It needs little more than a touch of lemon juice and a good quality extra virgin olive oil to create a bright, refreshing dressing.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Saison Goat Cheese Muffins

5. Add Some Beer Bread To The Table.

Thanksgiving dinner prep is hard enough. Save yourself some time and stress with this oh-so-easy-to-put-together recipe for Saison Goat Cheese Muffins. It turns out Allagash Saison and goat cheese are soul mates, and the taste of both shines through in these rustic bite-sized treats. Trust us, these mini muffins will be gone in minutes.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Beer Cheese Mashed Potatoes

6. Give A Popular Side Dish A Makeover Using Beer.

While turkey has the starring role, sometimes Thanksgiving is really all about the sides. These decadent spuds get a boost of flavor from beer cheese made with Greenport Harbor Ale. It has a perfect balance of malt and hops to pair with the sharp cheddar in this recipe, making these Beer Cheese Mashed Potatoes a guaranteed winner for any Thanksgiving spread.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Beer Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

7. How Do You Get Everyone To Love Brussels Sprouts? Add Beer!

Even the most avid Brussels sprouts hater will love these Beer Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon. This recipe elevates the country’s most underrated vegetables to side-dish superstars. Isn’t everything better with bacon and beer?! We think so, especially when the beer is a sweet and hoppy barleywine like Lagunitas Brown Shugga’.

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner: Homemade NEIPA Cranberry Sauce

8. Amp Up The Flavor Of Your Homemade Cranberry Sauce With Beer.

NEIPA adds a tropical tang to this Thanksgiving classic. A match made in heaven, cranberry and New England-style IPA (or in this case, Northeast-style IPA) belong together! The pair’s flavors complement each other beautifully and this Homemade NEIPA Cranberry Sauce is sure to be a big hit. The NEIPA we chose: Bronx Brewery Built For This; its flavors of citrus and tropical fruit are definitely built for this three-ingredient cranberry sauce!

9 Ways to Beerify Your Thanksgiving Dinner:Brown Ale Apple Rose Cake

8. Create A Showstopping Beer-Spiked Dessert.

Our dreamy Brown Ale Apple Rose Cake is a real crowd-pleaser! It’s easier to make than it looks and sure to impress all of your holiday guests. Bell’s Best Brown Ale pairs so effortlessly with apples that we used it all throughout this cake. The sponge, apple filling, and caramel cream cheese frosting are all infused with this well-balanced brown ale, and the result is gloriously decadent and absolutely delicious!

If you make any of these recipes, show us! We’d love to see how they turn out. Snap a photo and share it with us on social media using the hashtag #foodlovesbeer and tagging us @foodlovesbeer. Have something to say about this recipe roundup? Tell us in comments below. Do they sound yummy? Please like this post by clicking the heart in the header! We’d really appreciate it. 

Looking for more recipes like them? Be sure to check out our Recipe collection. 

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