When you think of cooking bratwurst, you probably imagine putting them on the grill for a smoky summer dinner. However, when the weather is cold and you don't feel like standing over a grill, but you do want the flavor of bratwurst, you can cook them in your oven.
Using Your Oven to Cook Bratwurst
Cooking bratwurst in the oven is quick and easy. With some simple prep and the right oven temperature, you'll have juicy brats in no time.
You can either broil or bake your brats. If baking, preheat the oven to 350°F. If broiling, adjust your oven rack to the center of the oven and turn your broiler on high.
Bratwurst doesn't require a lot of prep. However, prepping your pan can save you clean up later.
- For baking, you'll need a rimmed cookie sheet or baking pan and foil. Simply line the cookie sheet with foil.
- For broiling, you'll need a broiler pan and foil. Line the bottom part of the broiler pan with foil for easy clean up and place the broiling grate over the top.
Basic Baking Method
Bake the brats following these three steps:
- Lay the brats in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake in the preheated oven until the internal temperature reaches 160°F to 165°F, which takes about an hour.
- Turn the brats once using tongs about half-way through cooking.
Basic Broiling Method
To broil the brats:
- Lay them on the top rack of the broiling pan in a single layer.
- Place them under the broiler and use tongs to rotate them one-quarter turn every four minutes.
- Broiling will take about 12 minutes, and the brats are done when they reach an internal temperature of 160°F.
While the tendency is to want to dive into hot, juicy brats, resting them will help keep the juices in the meat. Remove the brats from the oven and allow them to rest on their pan, tented loosely with foil, for 10 to 15 minutes before serving them.
Beer Boiling and Broiling
Make your brats even juicier and more flavorful by boiling them in beer. A stout or lager works well here.
- 1 red onion, quartered
- 3 garlic cloves, smashed
- 1 to 2 pounds bratwurst
- Add enough beer to a large pot that you can submerge the number of brats you want to cook.
- Add to the beer a quartered red onion and three cloves of garlic you've smashed along with the brats.
- Bring to a boil and boil for 20 minutes.
- While the brats boil, preheat your broiler as noted above.
- Transfer the brats to a broiling pan and broil, turning a quarter turn every four minutes, until they are browned on the outside, about 16 minutes total.
Brats and Sauerkraut
You can also cook the brats in the oven with the sauerkraut.
- 4 to 6 cups of sauerkraut
- 1 to 2 pounds bratwurst links
You'll also need a baking dish and tongs.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- Spread the sauerkraut in an even layer in the baking dish.
- Layer the brats in an even layer directly on the sauerkraut.
- Bake in the preheated oven, turning once after 30 minutes, for 60 minutes or until the brats reach an internal temperature of 160°F. Rest, tented with foil, for 10 minutes before serving.
Bratwurst and Root Vegetables
You can also roast your brats directly on root vegetables. The veggies will flavor the brats and the juices from the brats will flavor the vegetables.
- 3 medium red potatoes, cut into one-inch cubes
- 2 carrots, peeled and cut into one-inch cubes
- 1 red onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 pounds bratwurst links
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- Toss the potatoes, carrots, and onion with the olive oil and salt. Spread in a single layer in the bottom of a 9x13-inch roasting pan or baking dish.
- Lay the bratwurst in a single layer on top of the root vegetables.
- Bake in the preheated oven until the bratwurst reach an internal temperature of 160°F.
- Rest, tented with foil, for 10 minutes before serving.
If you want a taste of summer during the stormy winter months, bake or broil your bratwurst instead of grilling it. Oven cooked bratwurst makes a tasty main course all year round.