How Long To Boil Brats?

How long to broil brats? For the ultimate summer cookout, nothing compares to popping a few brats on the grill. But sometimes it can be tricky knowing how long to boil your brats before throwing them onto the heat. Whether you’re working with raw or pre-cooked brats, we’ve got some simple and delicious tips for boiling—and then grilling! — the perfect brats that will have your friends talking all summer long. So keep reading to learn everything you need to know about boiling bratwursts like a pro!

Simmer, Don’t Boil

Although I refer to this process as “boiling,” it’s crucial to understand the distinction between boiling and simmering. A fantastic fundamental bratwurst recipe, like my How to Cook Brats in Beer. Here are the fundamentals on how long to boil brats, however, a guide provides more information.

You should place the brats in a pot or sizable pan and fill it halfway with liquid (either water and beer or just water). Bring them to a rapid boil, then immediately reduce the heat to a very low boil that is more like a simmer.

For a great crispy char and finishing, simmer your brats for approximately 10 to 12 minutes. Then, finish them off on the grill or in a skillet with only your brats and some olive oil.

How Long To Boil Brats
How Long To Boil Brats

Boiling Brats

Cooking perfect brats doesn’t have to be a hassle! Just follow instructions on how long to boil brats and these simple steps for boiling the sausage at the ideal temperature and you’ll get juicy, flavorful results in no time. Plus, this method eliminates unwanted grease splatters all over your stovetop!

Should You Boil Brats?

In contrast to hotdogs, which are thinner sausages, brats are a thicker sausages that might cook unevenly, hence brats should be boiled before grilling or frying. Boiling brats shortens the total grilling time, which is crucial when trying to feed a large group of hungry people. Additionally, it guarantees the complete cooking of the sausage and maintains the succulently juicy interior of the meat.

There is also the added benefit of adding some gourmet brat flavor when the brats are simmered in a flavored bath like beer or hard apple cider. The brats’ internal temperature is also raised during the boiling process, which helps to reduce the risk of the casing splitting during cooking on a medium-hot grill.

How Long To Boil Frozen Brats?

The brats will need to be boiled for a longer period of time (10 to 12 minutes in water).

The best technique to preserve brats for long-term storage is to freeze them. The flavor and texture of the brats will not change until they are packaged in a freezer-safe container.

While freezing is a straightforward method of storing food, it adds some complexity to the cooking process. However, after boiling, there is no discernible difference.

It takes around six hours for brats to defrost in the refrigerator, making it challenging to improvise a quick lunch. Fortunately, there is a technique to expedite the procedure:


  1. The brats should be allowed to defrost as long as possible without being taken out of their sealed container, preferably in the refrigerator or a basin of cold water.
  2. Your meat will be ready to boil or cook in just 50 minutes since water is a significantly stronger conductor of heat than air.

Do not forget that you do not need to defrost them before cooking.

The brats will cook more quickly the less frozen they are. However, you can also boil the brats that are completely frozen if you’re in a rush.

How Long To Boil Brats If Grilling First

Some experts advise grilling your brats first, then poaching or simmering them afterward.

  • Here, the cooking periods are roughly the same, but the order is different; 5–10 minutes are spent on the grill before 20–plus minutes are spent simmering.
  • When preparing a large number of brats for a festival or celebration, the grilling first method is frequently employed.
  • Brats are grilled first, then simmered with onions, garlic, and other seasonings on warming pans or trays. Don’t worry too much about the time when it comes to how long to boil brats because boiling brats is quite forgiving.
  • When your brats are finished cooking, the traditional way to serve them is on a firm roll with a lot of stone-ground mustard.

No ketchup, no mayo. Just mustard and store the French yellow mustard in the refrigerator since fans of fine stone-ground mustard like Inglehoffer or Plochman’s insist on it.

How Long To Grill Brats After Boiling?

It takes about 2 to 3 minutes to grill the pre-boiled brats.

The brew-brats for grilling offer the advantages of being quick and simple to prepare. It is quickly and hotly grilled, and typically does not require further seasoning.


  1. Set the grill to medium-high heat for preheating. Brats can be grilled over medium heat for a further 2 to 3 minutes, turning them regularly until browned.
  2. The charcoal must be entirely burned out before brats are placed on the grill, which is important.
  3. The height of the grill rack is equally as important as maintaining a consistent grill temperature. The brats should be cooked approximately a hand’s width above the coals if the grill is adjustable.

How To Boil Brats Without Beer

  • It is possible to boil brats without adding beer if you choose.
  • You can stew the brats in non-alcoholic beer, apple juice, apple cider, or even chicken or veggie stock.

Boil Brats Before Grilling

  • Before grilling, blanch the brats in boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • It is advised since it shortens the time the brats need to cook on the grill and makes boiling easier.


  1. Heat the grill to a medium-high setting. Then, over medium-high heat, add the brats, onion, and your preferred beer to a big pot.
  2. Reduce heat, bring to a boil, and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes, or until brats are thoroughly cooked, before grilling.

Boiling Brats Without Grilling

Can brats be grilled without a grill? You can, certainly!


  1. Boil the brats in water, beer, or a combination of both. However, the liquid just needs to cover them by half in the pan.
  2. Then start boiling them for 10 to 15 minutes, or long enough to fully pre-cook them.
  3. After that, fry with oil, butter, olive oil, or your preferred media. You may get the browned exterior casing in a pan in this method.

Boiling Brats In Water

Transfer the uncooked brats to a big pot, cover them with beer, and bring to a boil. The pot should be heated to medium.

  • Once the mixture starts to slightly simmer, cover the saucepan.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low if the beer starts to boil. It’s crucial to maintain a steady simmer to ensure that the brats are well cooked.
  • Cook for roughly 20 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center of a bratwurst reads 145°F internally.

The USDA recommends that the brats be thoroughly cooked and safe to consume by the time they reach an internal temperature of 160°F on the grill. Brats should be cooked gradually rather than boiled since high heat produces more flavor and better results.

Boiling Brats In Beer

Transfer the uncooked, fresh brats to a pot and cover them with cold water to boil them in beer. The pot is warmed to medium-low.

  • Once the mixture starts to slightly simmer, cover the pan.
  • Reduce the heat of the flame to medium-low if the liquid starts to boil. A slow simmer is also necessary to ensure that the brats are properly cooked through.
  • Cook for roughly 20 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center of a bratwurst reads 145°F internally.

The USDA recommends that the brats be thoroughly cooked and safe to consume by the time they reach an internal temperature of 160°F on the grill. The best beer brats should be gently cooked rather than boiled because high heat would destroy the mouthwatering tastes.

Brats can be boiled in a wide variety of liquids. You may also incorporate some apple cider vinegar or ginger ale into the beer mixture to increase its sweetness. I enjoy seasoning my Beer Brat dish with ingredients like whole-grain mustard and sauerkraut.

Why Do You Boil Brats In Beer?

To enhance beer taste, brats are boiled in a beer bath. Take your time and cook the brats at a very low simmer so that the tastes can get a chance to get into the casing. This is the greatest way to infuse the brats with flavor.

How To Boil Brats Without Beer

Using readily available water to cook bratwurst is the simplest method. Depending on what you have in your pantry, there are many different methods to change the poaching liquid. The brats should be submerged completely in the beer bath for best results. Because too much heat will cause the flavors to be lost, brats should be cooked gently (at a gentle boil). Please visit my Beer Brats Recipe for further details on how to boil bratwurst. Some of my favorite bratwurst recipes are listed here:

  • Beer brats: whole grain mustard, red onion slices, sauerkraut, and beer.
  • Brats made without beer: brown sugar, tart apples, hard apple cider, and red onion slices.
  • Non-alcoholic Beer brats with ginger beer, huge sweet onions cut into quarters, sauerkraut, garlic powder, and olive oil
  • Apple Juice Beer Brats: apple juice, tart apples, red onion, and butter.
  • Wisconsin beer, onions, and butter brats.

Video: How Long To Boil Brats

Can You Boil Brats The Day Before?

Brats can be boiled the day before and then, after cooled, kept in the refrigerator in an airtight container. The brats can be preserved in a flavorful beverage, such as beer or apple cider. The flavor of the brats will be enhanced by marinating them in the flavored liquid. Heat up both brats in the liquid as soon as the bratwurst sausages are prepared for serving, just before grilling or frying. The casing won’t split when the brats are seared because of the heating process.

Should You Boil Brats Before Grilling

  • No doubt. You should boil your brats first before grilling them.
  • Brats will be fully cooked because boiling them before grilling ensures this.
  • Additionally, it enables the liquids to stay within while the casing cooks on the grill to a crisp brown color.

How Long Do You Grill Brats After Boiling?

After boiling the brats, grill them for two to three minutes on each side.

When should you employ this bratwurst preparation method? Everything is based on their size. In fact, pre-cooking your brats makes more sense the larger they are.

The best way to guarantee that your brats are completely cooked on the inside and not burned on the outside is to follow these instructions.

Another typical method for cooking brats is a partial boil followed by grilling. The brats can be boiled in either water, beer, or flavoring.


In order to partially cook the brats, you must boil them for 3 minutes. To finish cooking the drained brats, place them on a hot grill.

This technique imparts a barbecue scent to the outside while maintaining the brats’ internal moisture.

How To Tell When The Brats Are Fully Cooked?

When it comes to cooking brats, getting them just right can be tricky. To help you out in the kitchen and make sure your bratwurst is perfectly cooked every time, here are a few helpful tips!

How To Tell When Brats Are Done On The Stove

The USDA recommends that fried brats be cooked through and safe to consume once they have reached an internal temperature of 160°F on the burner. In order for the casing to have a chance to sear, brats should be cooked on medium-high heat. They should also be rotated frequently to guarantee even browning.

Bratwurst can be fried in just about any pan. However, some pans are slightly easier to use than others.

Because it is simpler to manage the pan’s temperature, heavy, stainless steel frying pans are perfect for frying bratwurst. With equally good results, a sizable cast iron pan can also be used, but more care must be used because cast iron skillets absorb a lot of heat and can easily overcook the sausage. Because the fat generated during the cooking process has a tendency to damage the non-stick surface, I avoid using a non-stick pan when making bratwurst.

How Do You Know When Brats Are Done Boiling?

When the casing gets white and the brats float, the brats have finished boiling and are ready for grilling or frying. The best way to determine this is to check to see if a brat’s center meat thermometer reads 145°F. The USDA recommends that the brats be thoroughly cooked and safe to consume by the time they reach an internal temperature of 160°F on the grill.

Do Brats Float When Done?

Fresh bratwurst that hasn’t been cooked will sink to the bottom, but cooked bratwurst will float and turn white when it’s finished. A meat thermometer put into the core of a brat should read around 145°F for a more accurate measurement. The USDA recommends that the brats be thoroughly cooked and safe to consume by the time they reach an internal temperature of 160°F on the grill. The temperature of the brats, if you are not grilling or frying them, should read 160°F.

How Do You Tell If Brats Are Done Without A Thermometer?

Without a thermometer, you can test a brat’s doneness by picking it up with tongs and moving it around on the grill; if it feels firm but still has a tiny bounce, the bratwurst is cooked. Additionally, you can use your finger and thumb to press the bratwurst; if it feels solid with a little give, it’s ready. Additionally, you may determine whether a bratwurst is cooked through by inserting a thin cake tester or fork into the center and feeling the metal to see if it is warm.

How Do You Serve Bratwurst?

Traditional toppings for bratwurst include sauerkraut, whole grain mustard, and soft bread rolls (brat buns). Sour cream and potato salad go particularly well with brats. I enjoy adding a little relish to my brats since the sweetness seems to enhance the flavors of the salty bratwurst and sour sauerkraut.

How Long To Boil Brats
How Long To Boil Brats

Frequently Asked Questions Of How Long To Boil Brats

Are Brats Gluten Free or Keto?

Yes, bratwurst is typically gluten-free and low in carbohydrates, making it a great option for those following gluten-free or keto diets.

How Long Do You Boil Brats?

Most recipes call for boiling bratwursts for 10 to 12 minutes, but this depends on the size of the sausages. Smaller brats can take less time, while larger sausages may require up to 30 minutes of boiling. To ensure that the bratwurst are thoroughly cooked, insert a meat thermometer into the center and make sure it reads 160°F.

How Do You Keep Brats Warm?

Once you’ve finished cooking your brats, it’s important to keep them at a safe serving temperature. Transfer the cooked bratwursts onto a plate lined with paper towels and cover them with aluminum foil. This will help absorb any excess oil while keeping the bratwursts warm. If you plan on serving your brats within an hour, you can also place them in a slow cooker on the low setting.

Can I Double the Recipe?

Absolutely! If you’re serving a larger group, simply double the recipe and boil for the same amount of time; however, make sure to use a bigger pot so that all of the brats can fit comfortably.

Can I Boil Brats Without Beer?

Yes, you can absolutely boil bratwurst without beer! Simply use water and a few tablespoons of white vinegar to create the same rich flavor. The vinegar will also help break down any proteins in the meat and make it juicier. Additionally, you can add some diced onions or garlic cloves for an extra boost of flavor.

Final Thoughts

So, how long to boil brats? The answer is about 30 minutes. Drop your sausages into boiling water and let them cook for about 15 minutes before reducing the heat to low and letting them simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes. Be sure to save some of that tasty beer you’ve been drinking too because now it’s time to soak your cooked brats in it! Let the brats sit in the beer for at least 5 minutes (longer if you want a more intense flavor) before removing them from the liquid and serving them with mustard on a bun. Sweet Basil’s Cafe hopes you enjoy!


Hi, My name is Mariana. I have been a chef at Sweet Basil's Cafe for five years, and my loves every minute of it. I takes great pride in crafting delicious dishes that bring pleasure to people's palates, as well as creating an inviting atmosphere where customers can relax and enjoy their meals. I am especially known for my creative interpretations of classic dishes, as well as my signature desserts. With great patience and dedication, Mariana ensures that every dish is cooked perfectly and served with a smile. My passion for cooking has earned me the respect of customers and staff alike, resulting in many loyal patrons who return time and again to enjoy my creations. Whenever you visit Sweet Basil's Cafe, you can be sure to have an unforgettable culinary experience. Mariana's vibrant personality and enthusiasm for cooking is always a treat!

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