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Bratwurst on Grill

I am going to grill up some bratwurst this weekend and have never done it before. What would you suggest serving with the bratwurst?

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  1. God...my 2 sons LOVE brats; I mean, they get excited about having them...is it a "guy thing"?...I don't get it but I do like to make them on the grill for them...we braise them in beer and onions first...then finish on the grill. We love having some kind of potatoes with them (we've done hash browns, scalloped, even potato salad) and coleslaw. You could even grill up some corn on the cob, too; we grill corn almost every time we grill anymore.

    1. Many (check you package) bratwursts are allready fully cooked (somehow) so you are heating them through and crisping the surface on the grill.
      I usually garnish with chopped onion and sweet and dill relish, but a suggestion I picked up here of topping bratwurst with kimchi is a marriage made in heaven.

      1. My Wisconsin-born husband insists on Johnsonville brand brats, the original version only, done entirely on the grill, he sneers at boiling in beer first...I think it's like parboiling ribs first, some people do it, some people think it's heresy. (they are completely raw...cook slowly to get them done all the way through. use tongs, do not puncture when turning) We serve them on a large hot dog roll w/ chopped onions. Pickle relish optional. I've served them at a lot of outdoor parties and people , especially men, love them, even those unfamiliar w/ brats. I usually serve typical cookout fare, potato salad, baked beans, fruit, maybe some gazpacho.

        1. How about a hot German potato salad? That goes with brats for me.

          1. In the US Bratwurst are generally a Wisconsin thing, served on hard rolls with German mustard and sauerkraut. Potato salad is a good side dish, as is the grilled corn Val suggested. Don't get the pre-cooked bratwurst, you want the raw fresh Johnsonville ones. You can pre-simmer them in beer and onions (prick the skins with a pin to keep them from bursting), or just cook to completion on the grill.

            1. I like them boiled in beer...I don't care what the cheeseheads say! Good German beer. And then I grill them. Top with fried onions and currywurst sauce (which is basically ketchup + curry powder + paprika).

              1. Try some this this place, they are the best - www.bavariasausage.com

                This is my method :

                I place them in beer and onions on the side burner of my grill until it comes to almost a boil, at the same time heat the main chamber of your grill. When this has been achieved, I place them on the grill until they expand and start to brown a little, then back in the beer and onions for a minute or two so they don't explode from the heat. Repeat this process a few time until you have achieve the browning that you like and the nice plump juicy Brat.

                I also top with the onions, a little saurkraut, and serve with both a spicy and a sweet mustard..this is how it is served in Bavaria ....My In-Laws will back that.

                Serve with Pommes .... aka (fries) with curry powder/ketchup mixture.

                Good Luck !!

                1. Never, ever put them in liquid and boil them. If you must, they can float around in heated liquid after being grilled or be brought to the barest simmer in liquid and then grilled but do not boil them unless you like butterflied brats.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: CDouglas

                    If you were referring to my post, I never mentioned boiling them. You heat them slow in the liquid, then on the chamber of the grill, when the skins get dryish and ready to split, back in the liquid, repeat this a few times. And yes, this is the way they do it ... Similar to the methods used for WeissWurst

                    1. re: Jimbosox04

                      Weisswurst is boiled, period. In water, not in beer and onions, and it's not grilled.

                    2. re: CDouglas

                      Hooey. I start mine in cold beer, sometimes cut with a little water, depending on the brew, bring to a boil to fully cook, then onto the grill to finish. I have never EVER had a brat split with this method.

                      And for added flavor, I'll vary the beer. I've used Guinness, hard apple cider, blueberry lager, Natty Light...just about anything you can think of. The big benefit, I think, is that I know my brats are fully cooked before hitting grill and don't run the risk of charring them or overcooking.

                    3. I like them cooked in hot beer and onions, then finished on the grill. Unless the beer is at a rolling boil they shouldn't split.
                      Brats are also great just grilled directly.
                      Either was, one very,very important thing is that they are grilled rather slowly over a low heat or even indirect heat. Otherwise they will burn, split open...etc. Be patient.
                      I like them with just mustard and kraut on a brat bun.

                      1. Thanks, everyone, for your advice! I cooked the brats and they were really good. I tried to take a little bit from everyone's advice. I cooked the brats on indirect heat on the grill (they were raw to start) for about 20 minutes. I served them on fresh sub rolls with sauerkraut and grainy mustard. Side dishes were corn on the cob on the grill with sweet and red potato gratin. Really yummy and easy!

                        1. Similar question about grilling italian sausages...have a recipe for grilled sausage kebabs, is this whole concept flawed? If boiling the sausages would leak them of fat and flavor, wouldn't cutting the sausages into chunks (to be threaded on skewers) do the same, but even worse? I'm thinking I'll just grill them whole, and only skewer the veggies.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: yamalam

                            I'd grill them whole. I think cutting the sausage would leech out all the flavor and moisture.

                            1. re: JenBoes

                              I'd grill them whole, too. Although, they're often cut with a knife then baked. Whereas German sausages are often delicate in flavor, Italian sausages are rarely something you worry about all the good stuff dripping out of.