When summer temps go from “hot” to “hoo boy!” (looking at you, humidex), nothing beats that refreshing first sip of ice-cold beer. At the end of the day, when it’s time to eat, you want classic summertime foods that cook up fast and go down easy — especially with the perfect brew to go alongside. Here are seven of our steamy-weather faves.
- Grilled corn on the cob + India pale ale (IPA)
- In-season salad + saison
- Beer-can chicken + lager
- Barbecued ribs + American pale ale (APA)
- Grilled sausages + amber lager
- Shrimp tacos + wheat beer
- Homemade ice pops + sour beer
When tossed on a hot grill, fresh cobs of corn get super-sweet and juicy, with just the right amount of smoky char. That’s one reason street corn is so popular in warm places like India and Mexico. And when paired with a citrusy IPA brimming with bitter-tasting hops, every crunch of sweet-salty corn tastes better than the last. Try this combo in our Grilled Mexican-Style Street Corn with IPA — the cobs get boiled in IPA-infused water and then grilled and finished with a smear of creamy mayo-cheese sauce (made with more of the citrusy brew) and a squeeze of tangy lime.
Salad is always a solid summer meal option because fresh produce is at its peak. You don’t really need a recipe, either — just toss together some greens and fresh veggies, and a protein, such as nuts, legumes or deli meat (and don’t forget a little cheese if you’re feeling extra). Drizzle it with oil and vinegar, and you’re done. And what better to pair with a hearty dinner salad than a bubbly, crisp saison, with its fruity-spicy undertones that complement those savoury fixings? Our Zero-Waste Salad with Beer Vinaigrette is ideal for using up crisper
Obviously, we think beer-can chicken is the superior roast chicken, but it honestly delivers: You get unbeatable crispy skin over tender, juicy meat that’s been steamed and flavour-infused with beer. These chickens are often cooked with lager, which also makes a crisp, palate-cleansing partner to the salty roasted meat. To really turn up the flavour, try our Herbed Lemon Radler Beer-Can Chicken, which gets its citrusy notes from a refreshing lemony radler.
No summer is complete without a mess of ribs, slow-roasted and mopped with sweet-smoky sauce for hours. Whether you’re a backyard pitmaster or picking up takeout, medium-bodied APA is a natural beverage companion for American-style barbecue. Its toasted malt flavours complement the brown sugar notes in classic rib sauce, while a counterbalance of citrusy American hops helps wash down a savoury rack or two.
The toasty, bready notes of amber lager pair so well with salty sausages, whether they’re spicy, mild or honey-garlic. Complement the brew’s nutty malt tones by serving links (or regular hot dogs, for that matter) on grilled buns, and you have a no-fuss hand-held dinner. As for condiments, get into our Spicy German Lager Mustard Sauce, an easy-to-make topper that delivers a little heat, a little tang and lots of full-bodied German lager flavour.
Shrimp is by far the easiest (and most forgiving) seafood to grill, and its bite-size stature makes it ideal for stuffing into tacos along with a bevy of toppings. Refreshing wheat beers, whether you like them light or dark, will take a back seat to bold taco flavours yet have enough body to stand up to peppery heat. Our Grilled Shrimp Tacos with Smoky Beer Marinade take shrimp for a dip in lager before grilling and then tuck them into taco shells with more lager-soaked slaw, avocado, pineapple and a dash of hot sauce.
On those dog days, dunk your feet in a kiddie pool and tuck into our Watermelon, Strawberry & Belgian Ale Ice Pops, inspired by Mexican paletas. These adults-only frozen treats are a mixture of sweet watermelon, juicy strawberries, tangy lime juice and fruity-spicy Belgian ale. If you want to enjoy your pop with a cold one in the other hand, keep it simple by choosing the same Belgian ale. Or for knock-your-socks-off refreshment, head in the opposite direction with a sour beer: Its fruity undertones will meet the ice pops in the middle, but your taste buds will love the wild ride of sour and sweet.