You only need three ingredients to make these plump and juicy oven baked brats, braised in beer and topped with tender onions. This is a fantastic fall recipe to celebrate Oktoberfest or to enjoy on any chilly, cozy night.
Why It Works
Now I might not be from Wisconsin, but I sure do love me some beer brats and onions! It’s the ultimate fall comfort food recipe for me- because every bite has sour, sweet, rich, and savory notes.
Brats (the nickname for bratwurst) are German pork and veal sausage links, seasoned with warm spices. They’re great on the grill in the summer, and even better cooked in the oven year-round.
When you make brats in the oven, braised in beer and covered in onions, they come out perfectly moist and plump on the inside and perfectly crispy and browned on the outside.
Why braise? Well, braising the brats in beer helps to maintain moisture and impart flavor, all while preventing the sausage cases from popping open during cooking. It’s my favorite (and a very easy!) way to make brats, and I think it’s going to be your new favorite way, too!
So let’s celebrate Oktoberfest with this recipe tonight, and tomorrow make my German Pork Chops, Kielbasa and Butternut Squash Skillet, braise Instant Pot Cabbage, or my easy Pickled Red Cabbage recipes. Sound like a plan? Good.
- Bratwurst (aka “brats”). I get mine in my Porter Road box, but they’re readily available at most grocers, too.
- Beer. Any type of beer that you like will work great. I love to use a lager, but just use whatever you already have! I promise it’ll be wonderful!
- Onions. Use white or yellow onions.
Serve with: Sauerkraut, dijon or grainy mustard, and toasted rolls. If you’d rather skip the bread and lower the total carbs, serve with mashed cauliflower.
Optionally, you can customize your brats with more ingredients! Some suggestions for ingredients to add:
- 2 cups diced potatoes
- 1 green bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
- 1 cup drained sauerkraut
- 2 peeled and diced apples
- 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
Lay the brats in a large cast iron skillet, or use any oven safe baking dish you have. Cover with sliced onions, add any of the optional ingredient you may decide to use, then pour on the beer.
Fun fact: To braise meat, you only need to partially submerge it in in liquid. So because we’re braising the brats, you don’t need to cover the brats completely in beer like you would if you were boiling them. And FYI, boiling brats is not recommended anyhow.
Next, cover the pan with foil and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the foil, and if needed, use a spatula to push the cooked onions to the sides of each sausage.
Turn on the broiler and gently broil the brats for just a few minutes on each side, just until they’re crispy and browning.
Once the brats are done, let them rest for about 5 minutes while you toast your rolls, and assemble each brat with whatever toppings you like. I like to add the cooked onions, some sauerkraut, and grainy mustard.
Baked brats only take about 20 minutes to cook in the oven, plus another 2-3 minutes per side under the broiler to get that beautiful crispy caramelization. Remember that this time may vary a bit depending on the size of the sausage links.
- The safe internal temperature of cooked brats is 160°F (63°C), per USDA. Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness. This is the best, most accurate way to determine if the sausage is fully cooked!
Making this recipe? I’d love to hear about your experience making it!
Please leave a comment below or tag me on Instagram @cookathomemom.
Oven Baked Brats & Onions
- 2 lbs. bratwurst sausages, 5-6 links
- 12 oz. beer, 1 can or bottle, any kind.
- 2 medium yellow onions
Serve with, all optional
- grainy mustard
- toasted rolls
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C). Slice the onions into 1/2 inch wide strips.
- Add the bratwurst to a large cast iron skillet or any other oven safe baking dish. Top with the sliced onions and pour the beer on top. Cover the pan tightly with tin foil.
- Set the pan in the preheated oven and cook for 20-22 minutes. Carefully peel back the foil and use a meat thermometer to test that the internal temperature of the brats has reached at least 160°F, per USDA.
- Turn the broiler on. Use a spatula or tongs to push the softened onions off the top of the brats. Set under the hot broiler for about 2-3 minutes, or until the brats are beginning to brown. Turn the brats and set back under the broiler for another 2-3 minutes to brown on the other side.
- Carefully assemble your brats on toasted rolls (if using), top with the cooked onions, and serve with sauerkraut and mustard.