Irish Beer and Cheese Bread

For a carbaholic like myself, there aren’t too many things that can top a cheesy loaf of bread. All you need to do is watch how quickly I can devour things such as pepperoni bread, my grandma’s bacon and cheese bread, cheesy breadsticks with pizza, and the list goes on and on. Suffice it to say, you can’t put bread and cheese in front of me and not expect me to inhale it like I had just suffered the rigors of one of those survivor men shows. A few years ago, I made a three cheese beer bread that was darn near awesome. It had loads of cheese, tons of flavor, and, of course, beer. Last year, Krissy over at Make It Naked gave me a heads up that she had adapted my recipe to make it Irish-themed for St. Patrick’s Day. Brilliant! I loved her version and couldn’t wait to give it a try myself once the holiday rolled around again. So, here we are!

This is an amazing loaf of beer cheese bread that includes Irish ale as well Dubliner, an Irish cheese spiked with stout that adds a really nice tang and sharpness to the bread. It’s a perfect way to work Irish beer into a recipe that doesn’t necessitate busting out any Guinness. I found Smithwick’s at the local grocery store, but if you have a particular favorite, feel free to use it, just make sure that you use an ale, not a stout. A stout would be too heavy and overpowering in this recipe. I found the Dubliner cheese in the specialty cheese section of the local grocery store. If you are unable to find any Irish cheese just increase equal amounts of the other two cheddar cheeses.

This bread is heaven, in a nutshell. Aside from all of the cheese and the beer, it has robust flavor and just a hint of spice. It’s the perfect backdrop for endless variations depending on your personal tastes. I am already brainstorming some ideas for an Italian version of the bread that I can’t wait to share with you. In the meantime, I encourage you to bake this up for St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow. It would make a fabulous breakfast bread. You know, to eat alongside your first green beer of the day.

One year ago: Homemade Shamrock Shake
Two years ago: Irish Soda Bread Scones
Three years ago: Irish Soda Bread
Five years ago: Super Sugar Cookies

Irish Beer and Cheese Bread

Yield: 1 loaf

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 55 to 65 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes


8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
8 ounces extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)
4 ounces Dubliner cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)
3¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon dry mustard
½ teaspoon coarse salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon white pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1¼ cups Irish ale (I used Smithwick's)
¾ cup sour cream
1 egg
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan and set aside.

2. Measure out ¼ cup of the sharp cheddar, ¼ cup of the white cheddar and 2 tablespoons of the Dubliner and reserve for topping the bread later.

3. In a large bowl, combine the remaining cheese, the flour, baking powder, dry mustard, salt, cayenne, white pepper, and garlic. Stir to ensure that all of the cheese is coated with flour.

4. In a small bowl, whisk together the beer, sour cream, egg, and Worcestershire sauce.

5. Pour the beer mixture into the cheese and flour mixture. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to mix the dough until just combined. Spoon the dough into the prepared loaf pan, using a spatula to even out the top. Mix together the reserved cheeses and sprinkle evenly on top.

6. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean (or, if you have an instant-read thermometer, the middle of the bread reaches 190 degrees F).

7. Remove bread from the oven, place on a wire rack, and cool for 10 minutes. Run a knife along the edges of the pan and continue to cool. When the bottom of the pan can be touched, turn the bread out and let cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

(Recipe adapted from Make It Naked)


35 Responses to “Irish Beer and Cheese Bread”

  1. Georgia on March 16, 2012 at 12:24 am

    This looks really good. It’s a bread w/o yeast! I chicken out when I see a recipe with yeast. I’ll have to put this on my grocery list. I have never bought Dubliner cheese before. Hopefully stores in my area carry it.


  2. Averie @ Averie Cooks on March 16, 2012 at 12:50 am

    This bread looks & sounds so good. Cheese, beer, not yeast, no fuss…love it!


  3. Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes on March 16, 2012 at 1:20 am

    I hate beer but love beer bread! I’m sure I can find this cheese at Wegmans – they carry everything! Thanks for the great recipe…


  4. Nancy @ CouponClippingCook on March 16, 2012 at 3:56 am

    looks so moist and delicious. I could eat a piece or 3 of this yummy bread.


  5. Priyanka on March 16, 2012 at 5:17 am

    Cheese bread….the very name made my mouth water 🙂 . Bookmarking this..have to try it


  6. Kiri W. on March 16, 2012 at 5:54 am

    Utter yum 🙂


  7. katie on March 16, 2012 at 7:32 am

    WOW–this bread looks amazing and the best part is that there is no yeast needed! I’m super scared of yeast! lol.


  8. Katrina on March 16, 2012 at 8:18 am

    This is such a fabulous idea! Yum!


  9. Viviane Bauquet Farre on March 16, 2012 at 9:29 am

    Wonderful color! I love breads that incorporate sour cream – it does wonders for the texture. Also, Smithwicks is a choice Irish beer for bread… not so aggressive as Guinness.


  10. Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers on March 16, 2012 at 9:39 am

    What a fantastic bread! I’m with you sister, carb addict! I made a cheese bread and it didn’t turn out to well, I need to try yours!!


  11. colleen @ Secrets fromthe Cookie Princess on March 16, 2012 at 10:06 am

    I was just thinking about making beer bread tomorrow and then you come along and tempt me with this recipe. Love it!


  12. Mal @ The Chic Geek on March 16, 2012 at 10:37 am

    Yum! I love beer bread, this looks wonderful


  13. Jenn on March 16, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Mmmm.. Beer & Cheese…. and in a bread!! I am a HUGE fan of all three!! Today I am making Guiness & Sharp Cheddar Cheese soup… might just have to make me some beer and cheese bread to go with it!! Thanks for all of your incredibly inspirational recipes! *side note* I made your ICB cupcakes last night… and I have found the new love of my life: Baileys buttercream! (Sorry Hubby)… :0)


  14. Peggy on March 16, 2012 at 11:31 am

    The combination of beer, cheese, and bread is one that I will never stop loving! This looks amazing =)


  15. Erin @ Brownie Bites on March 16, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    The texture of that bread looks absolutely amazing! Visiting my favorite food blogs is killing me this week, as I’m trying to shed a couple of extra pounds that are holding on for dear life – I want beer and cheese!!


  16. Mireia on March 16, 2012 at 12:27 pm



  17. Angelyn on March 16, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    Mmmm… this looks so good!


  18. Ally on March 16, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    This bread looks like the perfect accompaniment to any homemade soup! Fantastic recipe!


  19. Jenn on March 17, 2012 at 1:58 am

    Made this tonight to go with my corned beef and cabbage. Having a hard time not taking a bite out of it.


  20. Jackie Dryden on March 17, 2012 at 11:31 am

    I can only find Dubliner at Sams, and it doesn’t have beer included, lol. But it is such a delicious cheese, kinda salty. Makes me want to get some now! I am glad to see it used in a recipe! I wish I would have found this sooner. Definately gonna make it soon!


  21. Wendy B on March 17, 2012 at 10:42 pm

    Made this tonight, and it was delish! I think next time, I may make muffins because we looooved the crust! Thanks again for yet another great recipe!


  22. Colleen on March 18, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    Made this today and the flavor was great! The crunchy cheesy top was delicious, but the overall texture was a little doughy and heavy for me. I’ll try toasting my next piece to dry it out a bit and add some “crunch”.


  23. Karly on March 19, 2012 at 11:03 am

    I am in the midst of a very dirty love affair with beer and cheese bread. I sorta want to run to the kitchen and make this right now, but I think I’m out of beer.


  24. Kim Q on March 20, 2012 at 9:49 am

    I made this for St. Patrick’s Day for my Irish hubby, and we did not love it. 🙁 It was very, very heavy (which honestly is not shocking considering the lack of yeast and the abundance of cheese) and the beer flavor really carried through too much for my liking. My husband has come around a bit though when he puts a slice under the broiler for a bit. Still not his favorite, but at least decent. I however have not been swayed. Oh well- this is the very first recipe from your site that we haven’t been absolutely gaga over. :o) And I have made LOTS!


  25. brandi on March 20, 2012 at 11:13 am

    that dubliner cheese is ALWAYS in my fridge. it’s incredible!!


  26. Chris @ The Keenan Cookbook on March 20, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    As a fellow carb-ivore I support this post! I never made beer and cheese bread (or knew about it), gotta make it soon. yum yum


  27. Christy H on March 27, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    I made this recipe as well and with a few others found it to be a bit heavy. Maybe because I used a stone loaf pan instead of metal…the top bubbled up and got crispy but the rest of the loaf fell to the bottom and was very very doughy, thick, and heavy. I will not fear…it just gives me the excuse to make it again and to buy a new kitchen item. Any input/suggestion is appreciated!


  28. Mags on March 7, 2013 at 9:47 am

    I’m going to give this one a try although I really like my own recipe using 1 stick of butter and about half the amount of cheddar cheese. I am thinking that my recipe might call for the baking powder to be in normal ratio 1 tbsp:1 cup flour.
    I also add a salad herb mix or a Tuscan herb blend to the batter.
    Just a few words of precaution:
    SIFT the flour
    and FOLD rather than stir. I make beer bread for my sister and briends every few weeks and have a heavy wooden spoon just for that purpose.
    I pour the batter into the greased pan as soon as I am done blending all ingredients; then I preheat the oven. Sitting seems to help the batter but it must sit in the loaf pan.
    By the way, if using mini pans, you can make 3 loaves from this recipe.
    For a crispier crust, lightly brush the top with melted butter just before baking and right after removing from the oven.


  29. Kim Wojcuilewicz on March 17, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    This bread is AMAZING!! I’m eating it right now with my slow cooked corned beef and cabbage. My husband is passed out and in a food coma from eating so much of it! I used a can of PBR instead of an Irish ale because it’s what we had and also 1/3 less cheese because I misread the ingredients. Lol! I can’t compare it to what yours tasted like but this bread is delicious! Thank you!!


  30. Kelly @ Life made Sweeter on April 2, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Yum, this looks good!!


  31. Arielle on April 27, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Just pulled this out of the oven and it is DELICIOUS! The best beer and cheese bread I have ever made. I didn’t find it to be heavy at all.


  32. Julesclaire on March 17, 2014 at 12:19 am

    Unfortunately, I have to agree with some of the other commenters. Was excited to make this today, and it smelled SO good in the oven! But the bread was really heavy and dense, and just didn’t turn out right. I baked it 65 minutes, then tested with a paring knife. It just never quite came out clean, even after an additional 30 minutes in the oven. I finally pulled it out because the top and edges were getting very brown. When I sliced into it after it cooled, the top was a puffy delicious cracker, and the entire bottom was a dense, heavy, doughy mass. Delicious flavor, but the texture was all wrong. Baked to take into work to celebrate St. Patty’s Day. Guess I’ll be sneaking toasted ugly delicious bits at home instead!


  33. Claire on September 15, 2014 at 11:51 am

    I made this bread last night and it is GREAT! I subbed 1 and a quarter cup for whole wheat flour and left out the Dubliner cheese because I didn’t see it at my supermarket and was too lazy to look elsewhere for it. I left everthing else the same (I even used Smithwick’s!) and its perfect. I’m sorry to hear others had problems with it being too heavy 🙁 This recipe definitely makes dense bread, but it has a lot of baking powder in it, so maybe it has to do with old or expired BP? I almost never finish a can before it has to be replaced. Just a thought!


  34. Jill Jones on March 3, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    I just made this bread. It was very dense and collapsed. (The picture of the bread on the web site appeared collapsed too.) Baked over 65 minutes, knife came our clean. The recipe calls for 20 ozs. of cheese, part of it for the topping. I converted 3 1/2 cups of flour to weight is 14 1/3 ounces. I only used 8 ounces of cheese and still was too much. Bread smelled good.
    I would suggest no more than 2-3 ounces of cheese. Worth trying again with less cheese.


  35. Mary Ann Ko on March 13, 2015 at 5:55 pm

    I just tried a bite fresh out of the oven. Mine came out delicious and it came out beautifully! I followed the recipe and was able to get the right beer and cheese. Thank you! It will be a hit at the Irish themed party we are going to this evening. 🙂


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