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These easy stovetop bratwurst sandwiches make a flavorful and simple weeknight dinner that’s ready in less than 30 minutes! Also perfect for Game Day, the beer brats are delicious on toasted buns with sweet and sour cabbage or sauerkraut, onions, and mustard. Serve the sandwiches with a side of applesauce, German potato salad, soft pretzels, or a crisp green salad, and wash it all down with a cold beer!

Hands serving a tray of beer brats on buns

Quick weeknight dinner alert! Sometimes we’re tired of the same old chicken dinner, but we don’t have the time or energy to spend more than 30 minutes preparing our family’s supper. That’s where these beer bratwurst sandwiches come into play! They’re flavorful and satisfying, only require one skillet, and come together with minimal time and ingredients.

Traditional Bratwurst Sandwich

Bratwurst (or “brat” for short) is a type of German sausage made from pork, often with some beef and/or veal mixed in. There are many different varieties of bratwurst throughout Germany, with many different ways of enjoying the sausages. A traditional German bratwurst sandwich is typically served with or inside a white bread roll made from wheat flour, and topped with mustard.

As a pub dish, bratwurst is often paired with sauerkraut or potato salad, and sometimes served with dark, crusty country bread made from rye flour, or with a soft pretzel. A popular German fast food, the sausage is enjoyed by fans at soccer stadiums and is sold by street vendors.

Close overhead shot of bratwurst sandwiches on a tray

What are the best buns for bratwurst?

I’ve shown classic hot dog buns here, which work well with a standard-size bratwurst. For a crustier option, look for hoagie rolls or a baguette. If you can get your hands on them, pretzel rolls are also a delicious platform for a bratwurst sandwich!

Searing bratwurst in a skillet

Ingredients

This is just a quick overview of the ingredients that you’ll need for this german sausage sandwich recipe. As always, specific measurements and step-by-step cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Oil: I prefer a neutral oil with a high smoke point, like vegetable oil or canola oil, for browning the sausages.
  • Bratwursts: usually sold in packages of 5, but you can increase or decrease the number of sausages that you cook to feed your family. Freeze any extra uncooked brats for another meal.
  • Onion: infuses the brats with flavor, and can also be used for topping your sandwiches.
  • Beer: any variety will work. Pick a dark stout for a stronger flavor, use a light lager for a mild taste, or substitute with chicken broth for an alcohol-free dish.
  • Buns: I use traditional white hot dog buns, but hoagie rolls or pretzel rolls are also great.
  • Sweet and sour red cabbage or sauerkraut: a tangy, acidic garnish for topping the sandwiches. If you’re from the South, pickled chow-chow relish also works well!
  • Mustard: a bratwurst sandwich just wouldn’t be complete without some spicy brown mustard on top.
Pouring beer into a skillet with brats and onions

How to Make Bratwurst Sandwiches

This easy bratwurst recipe comes together on the stovetop with just one skillet…in about 20 minutes. You can’t beat that for a convenient weeknight dinner!

  1. Sear the bratwurst in oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat until browned, about 3-5 minutes per side.
  2. Add the onion and beer to the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer the sausages until they’re cooked through (about 8-10 minutes total). Flip the sausages halfway through so that they cook evenly.
  4. Serve the brats on toasted buns, season with salt and pepper if desired, and garnish with toppings.
Overhead shot of hands holding a platter of bratwurst sandwiches

Toppings for Bratwurst Sandwiches

Garnish your juicy beer brats with any of these toppings:

Side Dishes for Bratwurst Sandwiches

Here are some easy sides traditionally served with bratwurst:

Square overhead shot of bratwurst sandwiches on a platter

Storage

Once assembled, bratwurst sandwiches should be enjoyed immediately to avoid soggy rolls. The cooked leftovers will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Thaw frozen brats in the fridge overnight, and then reheat in a skillet over low heat or in the microwave until warmed through. Assemble sandwiches and serve!

Horizontal shot of a platter of bratwurst sandwiches

Recipe Variations

  • If you prefer to grill the bratwurst sandwiches, follow this recipe for grilled beer brats. You can even prepare the grilled sausage on an indoor grill pan.
  • I like a jar of sweet and sour red cabbage for a nice weeknight shortcut, but you can also prepare braised red cabbage with apples and onions or fried cabbage to use on your sandwiches instead.
  • For an alcohol-free recipe, substitute chicken broth for the beer. You can also use apple cider, but it will give the sausages a sweet flavor.
  • Add Swiss cheese or sharp cheddar to the sandwiches, or try some crispy bacon for even more flavor.
  • To serve a larger group, double all of the ingredients. You may need to use two separate skillets (or work in batches) so that you don’t overcrowd the pan.
Close overhead image of beer brats on sandwiches

Tips for the Best Bratwurst Sandwich Recipe

  • Any variety of beer that you enjoy will work. Try a deep, dark beer for a stronger flavor (like Guinness or other stouts), or look for a lighter lager (such as Coors Lite or Miller Lite) for a more mild, kid-friendly taste. To make it authentic, pick a German beer!
  • Skip the bread and sandwiches, and instead serve the brats with mashed potatoes or spaetzle, or alongside big soft pretzels.
  • Simmer the brats uncovered to allow the beer in the pan to reduce, or cover the skillet to help the sausages cook even faster.
  • Total cooking time will vary depending on a number of different factors, so an instant-read meat thermometer is always the best way to know when your sausages are done. Bratwurst are considered safe for consumption when they reach an internal temperature of 160°F.
Blue and white tray of beer brats on sandwiches with cabbage and mustard

More Bratwurst Recipes to Try

Square overhead shot of bratwurst sandwiches on a platter

20-Minute Bratwurst Sandwiches

Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings 5 sandwiches
Calories 334 kcal
These easy stovetop bratwurst sandwiches make a flavorful and simple weeknight dinner that's ready in less than 30 minutes!

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 5 bratwursts
  • 1 sweet onion, sliced
  • 1 cup beer
  • 5 hot dog buns, toasted (or use pretzel rolls or hoagie rolls)
  • ½ cup sweet and sour red cabbage (such as Aunt Nellie’s brand) or sauerkraut
  • Spicy brown mustard, for serving
  • Optional garnish: chopped fresh parsley

Instructions

  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the bratwurst to the skillet. Sear the sausages until nicely browned, about 3-5 minutes per side.
  • Add the onion and beer. Increase the heat to high; bring the liquid to a boil.
  • Once the liquid boils, reduce the temperature to low.
  • Simmer over low heat, uncovered, until the liquid reduces, the onions soften, and the sausages reach an internal temperature of 160°F, about 8-10 minutes total. Flip the sausages halfway through, and occasionally stir the onions.
  • Serve the brats on the toasted buns. Garnish with red cabbage or sauerkraut, mustard, and parsley.

Notes

  • If you prefer to grill the bratwurst sandwiches, follow this recipe for grilled beer brats. You can even prepare the grilled sausage on an indoor grill pan.
  • I like a jar of sweet and sour red cabbage for a nice weeknight shortcut, but you can also prepare braised red cabbage with apples and onions or fried cabbage to use on your sandwiches instead.
  • For an alcohol-free recipe, substitute chicken broth for the beer. You can also use apple cider, but it will give the sausages a sweet flavor.
  • Add Swiss cheese or sharp cheddar to the sandwiches, or try some crispy bacon for even more flavor.
  • To serve a larger group, double all of the ingredients. You may need to use two separate skillets (or work in batches) so that you don’t overcrowd the pan.
  • Any variety of beer that you enjoy will work. Try a deep, dark beer for a stronger flavor (like Guinness or other stouts), or look for a lighter lager (such as Coors Lite or Miller Lite) for a more mild, kid-friendly taste. To make it authentic, pick a German beer!
  • Skip the bread and sandwiches, and instead serve the brats with mashed potatoes or spaetzle, or alongside big soft pretzels.
  • Simmer the brats uncovered to allow the beer in the pan to reduce, or cover the skillet to help the sausages cook even faster.
  • Total cooking time will vary depending on a number of different factors, so an instant-read meat thermometer is always the best way to know when your sausages are done. Bratwurst are considered safe for consumption when they reach an internal temperature of 160°F.

Nutrition

Serving: 1sandwichCalories: 334kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 13gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 847mgPotassium: 322mgFiber: 2gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 7IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 63mgIron: 2mg
Keyword: Beer Brats, bratwurst recipe, bratwurst sandwich, bratwurst sandwiches, german bratwurst recipe
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: European
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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