Beer bread has been a favorite easy bread recipe of mine since a newly-graduated college friend introduced me to it years ago. For him, a twenty-something without much cooking experience who usually had beer on hand, it was an easy recipe. I liked it, too.
I’ve baked beer bread on and off since then but hadn’t made it for awhile. It seemed like a great addition for our St. Patrick’s Day New England boiled dinner, as it’s a quick and easy soda bread.
The alcohol in the beer does bake off when cooking, but dairy-free beer bread doesn’t have to be made with beer. Club soda or plain seltzer would work as well. The bread will have a different taste with either of those substitutions, however.
If you want, you can stir in sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sliced olives, crumbled bacon, chopped herbs, anything that sounds good. You can also brush the top with melted dairy-free margarine for added flavor and color.
No self-rising flour on hand? No problem! I’ve included directions for homemade self-rising flour.
Special Diet Notes: Dairy-Free Beer Bread
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian.
- 3 cups self-rising flour or Homemade Self-Rising Flour Mix (below)
- 3 tablespoons sugar (can sub your favorite sweetener)
- 12 ounces of beer (see Beer Note & Options below)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons melted dairy-free margarine or buttery spread (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 375ºF and grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan with oil.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and sugar. Add the beer and stir just until combined.
- Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan and even it out.
- Bake for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean.
- Remove the bread from the pan and place it on a cooling rack.
- Brush the top with melted margarine, if desired.
- Let the bread cool a bit before slicing. It will be a bit crumbly when warm.
Beer Note & Options: You can use any kind of beer, but stronger-flavored beers like IPAs can make for bitter bread. For an alcohol-free option, you can substitute 12 ounces of club soda or plain seltzer for the beer. Just make sure you select a dairy-free beer. Some beer does contain milk.
i am baking a loaf with seltzer, vanilla, and streusel filling and topping. smells delicious, can’t wait to taste it!
That sounds delicious! I hope it turns out well for you!
Does the butter make a huge difference in the end? I see you say it’s optional..
It just adds a nice flavor on the bread.
I used to make this recipe years ago when I worked at a small brewery. Stouts, porters, browns, reds and “malty” beers in general make a good loaf. IPAs don’t make a good bread like your article said. American lagers make a decent loaf as well, not surprisingly a white bread sort of thing. “Milk” stouts generally do have milk elements, usually lactose in them. Extra note for vegans many beers using isinglas finings (fish swim bladder) to remove sediement prefiltration (no fish parts remain). Others use plastic finings.
Thanks for sharing all this information, Jason!
Thank you for the note Jason – it was a good reminder! I’ve added a link to our information about milk in beer.
I tried to make the self rising flour with whole wheat flour and it didn’t turn out well. I ended up with a brick instead of bread. I’m going to see if I can buy whole wheat self rising flour and try it again because it smelled awesome.
Yes, you would need to add leavener (to replace the “self-rising” aspect) regardless of what flour you use if you are substituting self-rising. From there, I recommend white-wheat flour if you are trying to go whole grain. It is still 100% whole wheat, but is a softer strain of wheat that rises better.
Baked this bread for the first time. Smells wonderful while baking! So delicious with my sausage and bean soup. And so easy to make!
Thank you for this recipe!
Do you have nutritional information?
Glad you are enjoying it! I just added nutrition facts for you Pammie.
Thank you so much for your speedy response!
I’ll be making this bread again soon!