People Are Now Putting Pickles in Beer to Make It Taste Better

It's better than you'd think, apparently!

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As humans, many of us are fond of some…unconventional food combos. As we move through life (especially our college years), people try mixing random things together, only to discover that hey, that tasted pretty good! Sure, milk and Coke or peanut butter as a burger condiment might strike some as strange, but to others, they’re delicacies. We’re not here to judge.

So, with that open-minded spirit, we’re taking a look at another food combo that might raise some eyebrows: beer and pickles. We put pickles in our Bloody Marys, so why not? Here’s why people are experimenting with this unusual mix—and why you might want to try it.

You Need a Special Kind of Beer

And by “special beer” we mean cheap beer. This combo is really only intended to spice up everyday beer and make it more palatable; you probably shouldn’t be trying the pickle method with a small-batch craft beer. You could. But we’re not recommending it.

As you might imagine, this isn’t terribly complicated: pour your cheap beer into a glass, then plunk a pickle into the alcohol the way PBR and Grillo’s Pickles did here. It’ll start foaming right away! You probably don’t want to leave it in longer than two minutes or your beer will go from having “notes of vinegar” to being pickle-flavored. And pretty much no one wants that. (If you do, this pickle-flavored beer is for you.)

Thank the Midwest for This

This isn’t a totally new thing, even if you’re just hearing about it now! Back in 2017, Esquire wrote a story that explained why it works. Basically, the vinegar and salt in the pickle complement the flavor of the beer, which makes drinking a whole new (and better) experience.

Apparently this is a tradition that hails from the Midwest, which makes sense when you think about it—we Midwesterners do love our beer! So if you’re looking for someone to thank (or to blame) for this combo, point a finger at the middle of the U.S. But we bet you love these iconic Midwestern foods, so don’t be too harsh.

Recipes for People Who Love Pickles
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Emily Hannemann
Emily adores both food and writing, so combining those passions as a writer for Taste of Home makes perfect sense. Her work has also appeared in Birds & Blooms and on TV Insider. When she’s not eating peanut butter straight from the jar, you'll find her running or birdwatching. Emily is currently a journalism graduate student at the University of Missouri.