The Best Beer Cocktail Recipes to Kick Off Happy Hour

Razzy Lager
Photo: Kritsada Panichgul

It's hard to deny the buzz around beer cocktail recipes. There's nothing quite like sitting down with an ice-cold brew, whether it's a dark stout or a light wheat beer. These drinks made with beer take the beloved beverage to the next level via stout shakes, beer Bloody Marys, homemade shandy cocktails, and more. And if classic ales aren't your top choice, we've got ginger beer cocktail ideas too.

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Ginger Beer Shandy Floats

Ginger Beer Shandy Floats
Jessica Merchant

Type of Beer: Ginger beer, plus a wheat beer, such as Oberon Ale

Keep that ginger beer handy from making Moscow Mules (or Moscow Mule Cupcakes!) to put to use in this unique ginger beer drink. Combine 5 cups of wheat beer with 4 cups of ginger beer, then accent that ginger with crystallized ginger bits. Finish with lemon slices and vanilla ice cream or, to really amp up the citrus vibes, we bet lemon sorbet or gelato would taste incredible too!

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Razzy Lager

Razzy Lager
Kritsada Panichgul

Type of Beer: Dark lager beer, such as Heineken Dark Lager

A hint of sophistication hides in every sip of this ruby-hued drink made with beer. Fresh raspberries, Chambord raspberry liqueur, and dark lager beer combine for a drink that beer-lovers and cocktail aficionados alike will fall for. Serve in frosty mugs to complete the upscale experience.

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Spicy Beer Mary

Spicy Beer Mary Cocktails
Kritsada Panichgul

Type of Beer: Lager or pilsner beer, such as Stella Artois

If you're a big Bloody Mary fan, our beer-spiked take on the classic cocktail is just your style. Instead of turning to vodka to make this spicy cocktail more spirited, we've added beer for a tasty new twist. Worcestershire sauce, hot pepper sauce, and horseradish crank up the heat in this beer mixed drink recipe.

Buy It: Dailyware Cantina Pitcher ($7, Bed Bath & Beyond)

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Cider Moscow Mule

Cider Moscow Mule
Brie Passano

Type of Beer: Ginger beer

Moscow Mules are one of the most popular ginger beer cocktails for good reasons: They taste incredible and are a breeze to whip up! Simply combine ginger beer, vodka, and lime juice. Come fall—or anytime, really—take it to the next fruity level by stirring in a glug (that's a precise measurement, right?) of apple cider.

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The Porcupine

Porcupine drink
Andy Lyons

Type of Beer: Pale ale, such as Sierra Nevada

Sweet-tart pineapple juice transforms pale ale and Prosecco for an irresistible beer mixed drink recipe. So what's the deal with the name? This golden pitcher cocktail earns its animal-inspired moniker from the spikes on the garnishes of wedges of pineapple and sprigs of fresh rosemary.

Buy It: Luigi Belly Pitcher ($35, Bed Bath & Beyond)

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Guinness Float

Guinness Float
Blaine Moats

Type of Beer: Guinness

Here's the scoop: These Guinness floats are just as fitting on the most scorching days of summer as they are on St. Patrick's Day. Satisfy your ice cream float craving with an adults-only beverage that will make you feel like a kid again. Vanilla ice cream, Guinness stout, and Baileys Irish Cream liqueur make up this dessert-worthy beer cocktail.

Buy It: Pint Glass, Set of 4 ($12, World Market)

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Ginger Beer Shandy

Ginger Beer Shandy
Kritsada Panichgul

Type of Beer: Lager or pilsner beer, such as Heineken

Nope, we're not talking about a ginger beer cocktail here. We're stirring up a tasty beer cocktail recipe featuring lager, ginger ale, and crystallized ginger. Ginger ale brings more bubbly sweetness, while lemon juice keeps things bright, fresh, and shandy-like.

Buy It: Crystallized Ginger ($6, Target)

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Dandy Shandy

Dandy Shandy
Blaine Moats

Type of Beer: Dark stout, such as Guinness

Celebrate all things British with a cocktail made with ginger beer that features rich stout to balance out the gingery zing. Not only does this beer drink require just two ingredients, but it also is a cinch to make. Just pour and drink—and, if desired, pair with fish and chips to complement the UK cocktail.

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Michelada

Michelada
Andy Lyons

Type of Beer: Mexican beer, such as Modelo

Mexican cerveza preparadas are traditionally beer drinks made with tomato juice, hot sauce, or salsa. Our version of the Mexican beer cocktail combines lime juice, chipotle pepper sauce, and cayenne pepper with the classic ingredients for an extra kick of flavor. Serve over ice for one of the most refreshing beer beverages around.

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Bloody Mary Beer

Bloody Mary Beer
Andy Lyons

Type of Beer: any

Add something special to your brunch menu by serving up this beer mixed drink recipe alongside your coffee, OJ, and water. This make-ahead Mary lets you choose your favorite type of beer to add to the mix. If you'd rather go the mocktail route, nonalcoholic beer works just as well.

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Chocolate Stout Shake

Chocolate Stout Shake
Alison Miksch

Type of Beer: Chocolate or regular stout, such as Rogue Ales Chocolate Stout

This beer cocktail recipe is a dessert in a glass! Vanilla ice cream and fudge sauce are good without alcohol, true. But the sundae mainstays are downright irresistible once you add chocolate stout.

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The Aloha Shandy

Aloha Shandy
Andy Lyons

Type of Beer: Wheat beer, such as Blue Moon

Say hello to a refreshing beach-inspired twist on a shandy cocktail! Instead of sticking to just lemonade and beer, we added passion fruit juice for a taste of the tropics. Each batch serves 14, so this beer cocktail is ideal for all-afternoon entertaining or larger get-togethers.

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Suds 'n' Cola Coolers

Suds 'n' Cola Coolers
Jason Donnelly

Type of Beer: Wheat beer, such as hefeweizen

This beer cocktail was designed to be sipped on a toasty summer afternoon (although it's great all year long)! Each glass offers a perfect mix of canned cola, bottled wheat beer, and wedges of fresh fruit. Whether you're tailgating, at a picnic, or just enjoying the seasonal sun from your porch, you'll love how easy and portable it is.

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