These tasty Air Fryer Beer Brats will quickly move its way into your monthly dinner rotation. They are quick, easy and taste amazing! I make them when I don’t want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen, but still want a fun meal! Beer brats on the table in under one hour.
We often think of Beer Brats or Bratwurst as an Octoberfest or fall festival food that you only find during the autumn, but it is easy to make these any time of the year in just a few minutes with your Air Fryer.
Enjoy sinking your teeth into a huge brat that is nestled in a bun and dripping with peppers and onions anytime you want! Just a couple of easy steps will have you on your way. Beer Brats in the air fryer are just as tasty as on the grill.
Why This Recipe Works
- Just 5 ingredients
- Tastes just like you pulled it off the grill
- A quick dinner for the family or a crowd
Bratwurst – Bratwursts are long tubular sausages that are filled with veal, beef and pork that have a German origin.
Typically they are pan-fried or grilled, but we chose to Air Fry them this time for quick, easy and hands-off cooking. You will also see these labeled at “brats” or “beer brats” at the stores.
Beer – Pick a beer that you like and have on hand. We used an IPA here and would just suggest to steer away from flavored beers.
Unless you are very adventurous, I am not sure how a Cherry Wheat or Pumpkin Lager Brat would taste! Maybe give it a shot and drop a note.
🍽️ Cooking Instructions
This recipe is very flexible. Make the Onion/Pepper Mixture or skip it all together and just put the Bratwurst through the Air Fryer and add a side of your choice.
We show photos of it with the Onion/Pepper Mixture, with sauerkraut, and with a stone-ground mustard. Also, think of eating this alone without a bun to cut those carbs.
Step One: Slice the onion and peppers. Add butter to a skillet and turn heat to medium high.
Step Two: Add the onions and peppers to the skillet and cook for 10-12 minutes until they are caramelized and browned along the edges. Resist the temptation to move them too much during this process.
Once they are toasty brown, pour in four ounces of beer, stir well and allow it to evaporate. That took about 5-6 minutes.
Step Three: Marinate the beer brats in eight ounces of beer in a Ziplock bag for 30 minutes. This really takes it up a notch. Remove the brats and prepare the Air Fryer.
Step Four: Heat the Air Fryer to 360 degrees and place the brats in the basket or on the tray, depending on which version you have. Cook for 11-15 minutes. Check it early and often.
Turn them over halfway to make sure they are browning all the way around. Air Fryers vary by brand so check yours to gauge timing.
Step Five: Remove them from the Air Fryer and place them in buns. Layer with pepper/onion mixture, plain mustard or sauerkraut.
Each Air Fryer cooks differently and you need to gauge yours when cooking anything new. That is the reason I always give a range for the time. Check early and often.
I repeat this as I want to make sure everyone knows that any Air Fryer recipe should be considered a “soft” time, no matter where you find the recipe.
- Beer brats/bratwurst can be fatty so make sure your Air Fryer is clean before making this recipe.
- I did not experience any smoke when making them but I have heard of people that have. You can use the Air Fryer parchment paper if you need it.
- Any brand of brats work, feel free to do a cheddar brat or a seasonal brat to change up the flavor.
- You can use any type of ale to soak your brats. Or if you don’t want the beer-soaked brats just cook them without marinading.
Tip: If you are cooking something that drips a lot, add a couple pieces of bread to the drip tray. The bread will soak up the juices and you won’t need to worry about it smoking. This is my favorite dirt cheap Air Fryer hack!
Look for the Brats’ internal temperature to reach 160 degrees. That is when you know it is fully cooked. This is not a meal that you cook “medium.”
You can marinate these longer but we aim for tasty meals for time-crunched families so we chose a lighter taste for time savings.
The key to any successful air fryer recipe is to ensure that the hot air can circulate all around your food. So, stacking would leave you with undercooked areas that don’t cook up the way you want. I recommend always batch cooking.
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Air Fryer Beer Brats
- Air Fryer
- 5 Beer Brats bratwurst
- 1 Onion sliced, we used sweet
- 1 Yellow Pepper substitute a red or green as you like
- 12 oz Beer we used an IPA, divided
- 2 tbsp Butter
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Slice the onion and peppers. Add butter to the skillet and turn to medium high heat.
- Add the onions and peppers to the skillet and cook for 10-12 minutes until they are caramelized and turning brown on the edges. Resist the temptation to move the onions and peppers too much during this process.
- Once they are toasty brown, pour in 4 oz of beer, stir, and allow it to evaporate. This took me about 5-6 minutes.
- Marinade the brats in 8 oz of beer in a Ziplock bag for 30 minutes.
- Heat the Air Fryer to 360 degrees and add the brats.
- Remove the beer brats after 11-15 minutes. Turn them half way to make sure they are browning all the way around.
- Place them in buns and layer with pepper/onion mixture, plain mustard or sauerkraut.