Right now the internet is ablaze with the simple beer bread recipe, but I decided to give it more flavor enter: pesto Guinness Beer Bread. A few weeks into the self-quarantine for the Corona Virus and the easy beer bread recipes keep appearing on my Facebook feed. It’s a simple and very old recipe that I think everyone has tried at some point. I was looking at the leftover Guinness from St Patrick’s Day and decided beer bread would be an ideal use for it. I had a little bit of homemade pesto and some grape tomatoes as well. Putting all my resources together I had a nice loaf in the oven in no time at all. This at home self-quarantine is not that bad.

The Guinness beer bread dough/batter will be sticky and dense when you get it mixed up. Don’t be tempted to add a ton of water to make it more liquid. This is not going to be a batter like for banana bread or pancakes. This will be more like a drop biscuit dough. The baking powder and carbonation in the beer will leaven the bread without yeast. The bread when baked is a firm bread with stiff crust that will toast up great, I even topped mine with pesto butter, yummy!

What beer is best for bread?

For this bread the darker the better so Guinness is my obvious choice.  I have read a few recipes online that are using some of the different flavored craft beers for other spins on the classic easy beer bread recipe. I bet some of the citrus IPAs would be fun to make into an orange loaf, kind of like this one here.

Pesto Guinness Beer Bread

Easy Pesto Guinness Beer Bread is a simple quick bread recipe with tons of flavors that remind me of focaccia bread. The bread is hearty and the recipe very simple to make it features whole wheat flour and no yeast.
Course baking, bread
Cuisine American
Keyword beer, beer bead, cornbread, Guinness, pesto, quick bread
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings 8


  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tbs baking powder
  • 1 12 oz bottle of Guinness
  • 3 tbs basil pesto approximately
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes quartered
  • ½ a stick of salted butter melted


  1. Pre heat over to 350 degrees. Line a greased loaf pan with parchment paper, it will make turning the loaf out much easier.
  2. Mix the dry ingredients together. Pour in the beer and mix until you get a sticky batter/dough.
  3. Pour half the melted butter into the bottom of the loaf pan.
  4. Put half the dough into the pan, pressing it down to fill the pan somewhat evenly. Put a thin layer of the pesto down. Put the other half the dough on top. Press the tomatoes into the top of the loaf.
  5. Pour the remainder of the butter over top. Dot a little pesto on top for garnish if you want.
  6. Bake at 350 for about an hour, allow to cool somewhat before turning the bread out.

Recipe Notes

The batter is sticky, I had better luck putting in the loaf pan using my hands.
The pesto layer should not be too thick, or your bread will fall apart so don’t be overly generous.
If you don’t have cherry tomatoes you can substitute olives, sundried tomatoes or even some onion for the garnish on the top.

What meals does Beer Bread go with?

Need a change up from corn bread with chili, this bread would be perfect. I also think it would be nice with any hearty stews or soups. If you toasted it and melted cheese on top this could absolutely take the place of a grilled cheese next to a cup of tomato soup. Served warm with pesto butter it would make a nice addition to a dinner party breadbasket, kind of like focaccia.

Pesto Butter

Mix 2-3 tablespoons of pesto into a stick of room temperature salted butter. Scoop the butter into a small ramekin for serving.

The Guinness Widget!

Did you buy a can of Guinness to make this bread? Did you find the widget in the bottom? Learn more about this cool invention here.

Join Our Mailling List

Join our mailing list to receive the latest recipes and food related stories.

You have Successfully Subscribed!