Whenever I'm having a cozy, comforting meal, I always want a fluffy piece of homemade bread to go alongside. This is especially true for soup or pasta, so I have something to sop up the sauce or broth in the bowl. But when I don't want to break out the yeast and go through multiple phases of rising and kneading before baking, I turn to one of the easiest recipes ever: beer bread. Thanks to the carbonation in beer, it's the perfect secret ingredient to give your loaf a light, soft texture without yeast or baking leaveners (i.e. baking powder and baking soda). Plus, since it already has a bread-like yeast flavor, it really enhances the flavor of the bread. Here's how to make beer bread in just a few easy steps—with a few simple ingredients.
How to Make Beer Bread
There are a lot of variations out there, but our Test Kitchen's trials found this easy 4-ingredient beer bread recipe had the best flavor and texture.
Step 1: Heat Oven and Prepare Loaf Pan
Step 2: Combine Beer Bread Ingredients
Test Kitchen Tip: No self-rising flour on hand? Learn how to easily make your own.
Step 3: Bake Beer Bread
Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes or until the top is golden-brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the beer bread loaf comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes before removing. Cool completely before serving.
Storing Beer Bread
Place cooled beer bread in an airtight container with a paper towel or wrap securely in plastic wrap for up to 3 days at room temperature. To freeze, wrap in plastic wrap and wrap again with a layer of aluminum foil or place in an airtight container. Freeze up to 3 months. Use our guide to storing quick bread for more tips.
Best Beer for Beer Bread
During testing, our Test Kitchen found that making the beer bread recipe turned out best using a brown ale beer. Other good choices include lagers and crisp hard ciders. IPAs and stouts aren't recommended.
Beer Bread Recipes
By definition, beer bread is any bread made with beer, so there are plenty more recipes out there featuring the boozy beverage as a flavorful ingredient in the mix. Try our bread machine beer bread or a slow cooker beer bread recipe next. And if you have too much self-rising flour left, be sure to keep these recipes handy to finish off the bag.