How to make your summer beer better

What's better than an ice cold beer on a sunny day? Think of these as beer plus—combos of your favorite brews and delicious add-ins that bring your beverage from plain Jane to cocktail town. Whether you are looking for a way to jazz up your six-pack or extend your beer's drinkability for an all day fest, these additions are sure to keep your stein delicious.

1. Beer + Juice


Just how do the beer-loving Germans get away with drinking all day? They turn to the Radler, AKA the Shandy, AKA a 50:50 mix of beer and juice that turns into a nice refreshing drink. The classic Radler is made with lemonade, but you can also take a page from Sunday brunch and mix in OJ for a fresh take on the Mimosa.

Light and fruity wheat beers work well here, but if you prefer heartier beers, a stout with orange juice is also pretty delicious. Try out other juices too, including blood orange, grapefruit, or even banana juice (which will up the banana notes in hefeweizens.)

2. Beer + Soda

Organic Ginger Ale Soda in a Glass with Lemon and Lime

Organic Ginger Ale Soda in a Glass with Lemon and Lime (iStock)

This combo is like a Radler, but with even more bubbles. In Italy, you can find the Diesel drink, a combination of draft beer and cola, while in Cuba, it's popular to drink the Bul, a light beer with ginger ale.

You can also use orange or lemon-lime soda, and even root beer. In fact, we'd add that last one to a creamy stout for an over the top boozy float.

3. Beer + Hot Sauce


Can't get enough heat? The original Mexican beer cocktail, the Michelada, combines a light, refreshing beer with the flavors of salsa—hot sauce, tomato juice, lime, and/or spices. Think of these as kind of like beer-y Bloody Marys.

4. Beer + Booze


Beer also plays well with cocktails. Light beers like pale ales, pilsners, and white beers work well in refreshing drinks, while stouts, porters, and brown ales can hold up to richer flavors.

Pour in some beer in your next Whiskey Ginger, upgrade your Aperol Spritz with some Belgian wheat beer, combine Champagne and stout for the classic Black Velvet, or add in some light beer to your next batch of margaritas.

Check out more summer beer add-ins.

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