10 Great Beers for Your Barbecue

No matter what's on the grill, there's a perfect beer

Beer and Barbecue

Babett Lupaneszku/Stocksy United

Before you fire up the grill for your backyard barbecue, be sure to stock the cooler with some great beer. It's fun to explore the different tastes available and pair them with steaks, ribs, chicken, or whatever you're cooking, even if it's just a few hot dogs or burgers.

From well-crafted ales to a refreshing lager and fruit beers to an Oktoberfest, if you're looking for a new brew for your summer gatherings, give one of these bottles a taste. 

  • 01 of 10

    Stone IPA

    Stone IPA
     Stone Brewing

    The hoppiness of an IPA is a perfect complement to any grilled food and it will not go unnoticed. Stone IPA offers an ideal flavor match for the char on everything from a steak to a rack of ribs.

    This well-rounded California beer is a delight to drink on a hot summer day. It's filled with flavor, including a nice hint of citrus that plays well against the soft malt and bitterness that reaches a perfect 71 International Bitter Units (IBUs). At 6.9 percent alcohol by volume (ABV), it's not a lightweight, either.

  • 02 of 10

    Sawtooth Amber Ale

    Sawtooth Ale From Left Hand Brewing
    Left Hand Brewing

    From Colorado, Left Hand Brewing Co. has an impressive line-up to choose from. Sawtooth Ale is a great choice among the lot and at 5.3 ABV, it's just above that perfect session beer mark.

    This amber ale is one that every beer drinker can enjoy. It's not too hoppy—just 27 IBUs—and offers a great maltiness with a drier finish, so it's both complex and refreshing. This balance makes it ideal for the basic burger, but it's also enjoyable with grilled fish or any new recipe you're trying out.

    If you are in the mood for something darker, Death Before Disco is the brewery's porter. The brewers highly recommend it for any barbecued food.

  • 03 of 10

    Founders Solid Gold

    Founders Solid Gold Premium Lager
    Founders Brewing Co.

    Many backyard chefs enjoy an ice-cold lager while they're working the grill. While you can go with one of the big names, why not stock your cooler with something new? Founders Solid Gold is a perfect way to break that routine.

    This gold lager takes the taste of the average American beer to new heights. At 4.4 percent ABV and 20 IBUs, it's refreshing, crisp, and clean, but crafted to meet the demands of today's beer lovers. If you enjoy All Day IPA, give the brewery's lager a chance.

  • 04 of 10

    Deschutes Black Butte Porter

    Deschutes Black Butte Porter
    Deschutes Brewery

    On a hot afternoon, you may be thinking twice about drinking a dark porter, but it is one of the best styles for any meat. It is fantastic alongside the deep char you're going for under the grill's fire.

    A top choice in this style comes from the Bend, Oregon brewery of Deschutes. Their Black Butte Porter is a beer to marvel at, with delicious chocolate-coffee against a malty cream. Even if you don't drink this one while grilling, crack open a bottle when you sit down to feast.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Smuttynose Old Brown Dog

    Smuttynose Old Brown Dog
    Smuttynose Brewing Company 

    If you enjoy the strong malt of a brown ale, Old Brown Dog from New Hampshire's Smuttynose is worth checking out. It's a staple from the early days of America's craft brewing scene and a favorite for smoked and grilled meats.

    This beer has a sweet caramel base with a nice hoppiness that weighs in at just 29.5 IBUs. It also has a pleasant nuttiness, which makes it ideal for veggie burgers or any poultry with an herbal rub.

  • 06 of 10

    Fat Tire Amber Ale

    New Belgium Fat Tire Brown Ale
     New Belgium Brewing Company

    Any of your favorite grilled foods that have a great barbecue marinade are the ideal complement to Fat Tire. Another staple on the U.S. beer market, it's very easy to find and a no-fail choice when it comes to grilling season.

    Fat Tire is a flagship brew of New Belgium Brewing Company from Fort Collins, Colorado. It's a great choice for an enjoyable balance of malt, hops, sweet, spice, and fruit and a guaranteed crowd pleaser.

  • 07 of 10

    Ommegang Witte

    Ommengang Witte Beer
    Brewery Ommengang 

    Perfect for a ribeye, grilled fish, or anything you want to toss in the smoker, Ommegang Witte is a fantastic find in the beer cooler. It's an interpretation of a classic Belgian wit and a great beer for food.

    If you like Blue Moon, this is going to be your beer. At 11 IBUs, the hops are barely noticeable and it has a refreshing orange flavor with hints of spice. It is light, crisp, and slightly sweet wheat background.

  • 08 of 10

    Paulaner Oktoberfest Märzen

    Paulaner Oktobersest Marzen
    Paulaner Brewing Group

    If brats, hot dogs, or spare ribs slathered in a homemade barbecue sauce are on your menu, Paulaner Oktoberfest Märzen is a great choice. It's a classic amber beer from a famous German brewery and  is sure to be an instant hit.

    This brew is available year-round in the U.S. and has a refreshing zest that's ideal for summer. It's an ideal balance of bitter and malt, and highly rated among beer connoisseurs.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Kanaha Blonde Ale

    Kanaha Blonde Ale From Kona Brewing
    Kona Brewing Co.

    For a low-calorie beer, Kanaha Blonde Ale is an ideal choice. Each bottle has just 99 calories and it's light, refreshing, and ideal for a summer day.

    This selection comes from Hawaii's Kona Brewing Co. It has an intriguing tropical island flare and includes real mango to give it a fruity crispness. You'll definitely want to serve this beer with any grilled seafood, fruit, or veggie kebabs.

  • 10 of 10

    Schlafly Raspberry Hefeweizen

    Schlafly Raspberry Hefeweizen
    Schlafly Beer

    When you're in the mood for a fruity beer, it's hard to beat Schlafly's Raspberry Hefeweizen. Real raspberries are fermented directly into the mix and it's very light, boasting an ABV of 4.1 percent and just 16 IBUs.

    Brewed as a hefeweizen, this one plays off the German tradition of great wheat beers. That gives it an underlying sweetness that plays perfectly off the berries. It's a beer that screams summer and can be a great complement to any barbecue food as well as the traditional side dishes.