Cheddar and Bratwurst Soup with Pumpkin Ale

Cheddar and Bratwurst Soup with Pumpkin Ale ~ a classic fall soup with a light boozy broth, cheddar cheese, plenty of  chunky veggies, and perfectly grilled brats!

A bowl of cheddar and Bratwurst soup

Comforting and cozy doesn’t begin to describe this soup. It’s warm, cheesy, malty, smokey, grassy, thick, earthy and yummy.

Cheddar and Bratwurst Soup in a white bowl

I’m loving cooking with beer lately. I’m so impressed with how the flavor lingers in dishes like stews and soups, even after long cooking. And how many times have you passed by Pumpkin Ale and wondered about it? Ale brewed with pumpkins isn’t a trendy the new idea— it goes back to colonial times, and those guys knocked back quite a bit of it, along with lots of hard cider. Nowadays brewers sometimes add a hint of fall spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and clove to these seasonal beers. (Don’t worry, it doesn’t actually taste like pumpkin.)  I chose to use Blue Moon, which happens to be the winner of last week’s ABC News Pumpkin Ale taste test.

Bratwurst sausages

The ale, caraway seeds, bratwurst, sharp cheddar and dill make for lots of layers of flavor in this soup.

cheddar cheese

A bowl of cheddar and bratwurst soup with fresh dill

This soup is adapted from The Maine Food and Lifestyle blog.

3.47 from 15 votes

Cheddar and Bratwurst Soup with Pumpkin Ale

Course Appetizer, Soup
Cuisine American. German
Author Sue Moran


  • 4 uncooked bratwurst sausages
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • I medium onion peeled and chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • 1 12 oz bottle pumpkin ale I used Blue Moon
  • 32 oz box of chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 russet potatoes peeled and diced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups about 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • big handful chopped fresh dill


  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a heavy bottomed soup pot.  Brown the bratwurst on all sides.  Add 1/2 cup water to the pan, cover, and steam the sausages for about 15 minutes, until cooked through.  Remove the cover and let any excess moisture boil away.  Remove the sausages and set aside.
  • Add the other tablespoon of oil to the pan and saute the onion, carrots and caraway seeds for about 10 minutes until the onions turn translucent.
  • Sprinkle in the four and cook for a minute, stirring constantly.
  • Pour in the beer, chicken stock, and water, whisking to combine the flour and liquid.  Add in the potatoes and bay leaves and bring to a boil.
  • Simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes until the potatoes and carrots are cooked but not mushy.
  • Remove the bay leaves and add the Worcestershire sauce, half and half, mustard, salt and pepper.
  • At this point I took my immersion blender and blended the soup briefly, so it was thickened but there were still whole veggies left.  If you don't have a stick blender you can take part of the soup out and blend it in a blender or food processor.  You can just leave it chunky if you want to as well.
  • Slice the sausages on a slant and add them to the pot.  Bring the soup back to a simmer, then take it off the heat to slowly add in the cheese, stirring until the cheese has completely melted and the soup is smooth.   Sprinkle in the dill just before serving.
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.



Cheddar and Bratwurst Soup with Pumpkin Ale ~ pin

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    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    Amanda B.
    October 3, 2019 at 9:47 pm

    I made this soup four years ago and it’s been a staple of the family Oktoberfest every year since. I’m about to make it again! Thank you for sharing this wonderful treat.

  • Reply
    Gayle Trunfio
    October 15, 2018 at 8:39 pm

    Looks great. Any substitution suggestions for the bratwurst? Not overly fond of sausage in general. Thanks.

    • Reply
      October 15, 2018 at 9:54 pm

      You can leave it out, Gayle, or substitute ham or sausage.

  • Reply
    January 11, 2016 at 8:21 am

    This soup is so tasty! I made it once this winter, but now that the holidays have passed I’m not sure I’ll be able to find pumpkin ale. I am going to try a honey ale instead and see how it turns out….fingers crossed

    • Reply
      January 11, 2016 at 8:23 am

      I think any ale would be fine, Jessica, that flavor will come through no matter what – so glad you enjoyed it 🙂

  • Reply
    Mary Bird
    November 4, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Yours is he only blog I follow..all your things look great. I made this soup last night but would only change one thing: used cream instead of 1/2 & 1/2..and no extra water.

    so good!

  • Reply
    Rosita Vargas
    October 20, 2012 at 1:48 am

    Estupenda receta me gusta combinación prefecta,abrazos y abrazos

  • Reply
    Magnolia Verandah
    October 19, 2012 at 6:33 am

    Love the look of that cheese, love the look of those sausages, but what is pumpkin ale?

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    October 19, 2012 at 2:07 am

    The soup is gorgeous! The beer, the cheese! and I love that big hunk ‘o cheddar in your pics! I bet the flavors in this are just so good!

    Now THIS will help keep you warm in the winter…it sounds so good!

  • Reply
    October 19, 2012 at 12:32 am

    WHERE did you get the amazing looking cheese? I’m excited to try this, because my boys LOVE brats!

  • Reply
    Sarah Kenney
    October 18, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    ooooo, i might make this for next week. I’ve been making a soup on the weekends and we eat it all during the week for lunches. I might take out the potatoes and add big chunks of fish…I know a little weird but we’re not supposed to be eating potatoes. I have a hard time sticking fish into dishes and this way I could get all of that pumpkin-y goodness too!!

  • Reply
    Tricia @ saving room for dessert
    October 18, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    What’s not to LOVE about this soup! Your description makes me want to run by the store on my way home and get everything I need. My son and his new bride are in Maine on their honeymoon – hope they have something that tastes as delicious as this looks.

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      October 18, 2012 at 9:46 pm

      Congratulations Tricia—what excitement in your house! My husband and I honeymooned—all too briefly—on Cape Cod. I want a second honeymoon in Maine!

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