Consider Baking With Beer

We’ll start you off with pilsner pepperoni rolls

Heated Editors
Published in
5 min readApr 29, 2020
Photo: Lori Rice

It seems like everyone is doing one of two things: drinking or baking bread. (In some cases, both.) Heated caught up with Lori Rice, author of Beer Bread: Brew-Infused Breads, Rolls, Biscuits, Muffins, and More, to discuss her book and why you might want to add a splash of IPA to your next loaf.

Heated: How did Beer Bread come to be? Why did you start baking with beer?

Lori Rice: Back in 2017, I wrote the book Food on Tap: Cooking with Craft Beer. That book was originally pitched as a baking-with-beer book. But my publisher felt like a cooking-with-beer book might reach a broader audience, so, Food on Tap came to be. About a year later, when we were brainstorming new ideas for topics, a beer bread book was suggested. I eagerly agreed since that is what I had hoped to write from the beginning. Part of writing the book that you really want to write is waiting for current trends to align and create a market for it.

This book is a full-circle project. I worked in bakeries baking bread and bagels from late high school through college. Then later in adulthood, my husband and I developed a passion for beer history and craft beer through our world travel. These travels introduced me to beer, but also to beer used in baking, like the brown breads in Ireland that are sometimes made with stout. Writing this book allowed me the opportunity to pull from my baking, travel, and beer experiences and experiment with new ideas. Having the opportunity to create it and encompass several things that I enjoy so much has been fulfilling for me personally and professionally.

Is baking with beer like cooking with wine? Is it ideally something you’d want to drink, or does the type of beer matter more than its drinkability?

I’d say that cooking with beer can be similar to cooking with wine, but baking with beer is much more forgiving. Which I guess is interesting because typically when people talk about cooking versus baking, baking is much more exact and scientific, right? If I compare my process to creating recipes for Food on Tap (cooking with beer) versus Beer Bread (baking with beer), you’ll find that in cooking I suggest very specific flavor profiles in…