Best Pastry Stouts: Decadent, Dessert-Like, and Indulgent

Hey beer enthusiasts! Have you ever sipped on a beer that tastes like dessert? Welcome to the world of pastry stouts! These beers are rich, sweet, and loaded with flavors that remind you of your favorite baked treats.

Imagine indulging in a slice of chocolate cake or a cinnamon roll in liquid form. Sounds enticing, right? Let’s dive into the world of pastry stouts and find out what makes them so irresistible.

1. Prairie Artisan Ales’ Bomb!

Prairie Artisan Ales’ Bomb! is a decadent stout brewed with coffee, chocolate, vanilla beans, and ancho chili peppers. It’s like sipping on a spicy mocha—rich, bold, and bursting with flavor.

2. Funky Buddha Maple Bacon Coffee Porter

Funky Buddha’s Maple Bacon Coffee Porter combines the sweetness of maple syrup, the smokiness of bacon, and the robust flavors of coffee. Think of it as breakfast in a glass—sweet, savory, and utterly satisfying.

3. Evil Twin Even More Jesus

Evil Twin’s Even More Jesus is a thick, black stout with intense flavors of chocolate and coffee. It’s like biting into a dense chocolate cake—rich, smooth, and incredibly indulgent.

4. The Bruery Bakery: Coconut Macaroons

The Bruery’s Bakery: Coconut Macaroons stout is brewed with coconut and vanilla, delivering a sweet, tropical flavor profile. Imagine enjoying a coconut macaroon—sweet, chewy, and delightful.

5. Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)

Founders KBS is a bourbon-barrel-aged stout with flavors of chocolate, coffee, and vanilla. It’s like having a boozy dessert—complex, rich, and warming.

History and Background

Origins of Pastry Stouts

Pastry stouts are a relatively new phenomenon in the craft beer world. They emerged from the desire to create beers that are as decadent and indulgent as desserts.

These stouts often incorporate ingredients like vanilla, chocolate, coffee, and various spices to mimic the flavors of pastries and sweets.

Evolution Over Time

Since their inception, pastry stouts have grown in popularity, with brewers continually experimenting with new and exciting ingredients.

What started as a niche style has now become a staple in many breweries, with some even dedicating entire series to these dessert-like beers.

Key Regions and Their Influence

While the trend of pastry stouts began in the United States, it has since spread worldwide.

Breweries in Europe, Australia, and beyond have embraced this indulgent style, adding their unique twists and local ingredients to create diverse and flavorful variations.

Characteristics of Pastry Stouts


Pastry stouts typically have a deep, dark color—often pitch black—with a thick, creamy head. They look as inviting as a slice of chocolate cake—dark, glossy, and topped with a layer of frothy goodness.


The aroma of pastry stouts is a tantalizing blend of sweet and roasted notes. Common scents include chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and caramel. It’s like stepping into a bakery—warm, sweet, and utterly delightful.

Flavor Profile

The flavor of pastry stouts is where they truly shine. Expect a rich, creamy mouthfeel with layers of sweet, roasted, and sometimes spicy flavors.

Each sip reveals complexity, from the initial sweetness to the lingering roasted finish. It’s like enjoying your favorite dessert in a glass—indulgent, satisfying, and deeply enjoyable.


Pastry stouts have a full body with a smooth, creamy mouthfeel. The carbonation is typically moderate, providing a rich, velvety finish. It’s like sipping on a luxurious milkshake—thick, smooth, and incredibly satisfying.

Types of Pastry Stouts

Traditional Pastry Stouts

Traditional pastry stouts focus on classic dessert flavors like chocolate, vanilla, and coffee. They’re rich, flavorful, and perfect for any occasion. Think of them as the timeless classics of the beer world—always enjoyable and indulgent.

Modern Interpretations

Modern interpretations of pastry stouts include innovative combinations of ingredients and brewing techniques.

These variations add depth and uniqueness, creating fresh and exciting takes on the classic style. Imagine your favorite dessert with a creative twist—bold, inventive, and full of character.

Other Regional Variations

Brewers worldwide have embraced the pastry stout style, adding their unique twists. From American craft breweries experimenting with exotic spices to European brewers adding local fruits and herbs, the possibilities are endless.

Each variation offers a new perspective on the classic pastry stout, providing a diverse range of flavors and experiences to explore.

Pairing Pastry Stouts with Food

Best Food Pairings

Pastry stouts pair beautifully with a variety of dishes, especially desserts. Here are some pairing ideas:

  • Traditional Pastry Stouts: Perfect with chocolate cake, brownies, and vanilla ice cream. The rich, sweet flavors complement each other, creating a decadent experience.
  • Modern Interpretations: Great with spiced desserts like gingerbread, caramel flan, and fruity pastries. The complexity of these stouts pairs well with bold and spiced flavors.
  • Other Regional Variations: Pair with creamy cheeses, roasted nuts, and berry tarts. The diverse flavors of these stouts balance the richness of cheeses and the tartness of berries.

Why These Pairings Work

The sweet, rich, and complex flavors of pastry stouts make them an excellent match for desserts and other sweet treats.

The roasted and sometimes spiced notes enhance the flavors of both the beer and the food, creating a harmonious and indulgent experience.

It’s like having the perfect dessert to cap off a meal—each sip and bite complement the other, making every moment more enjoyable.

Homebrewing Pastry Stouts

Basic Recipes

Interested in brewing your own pastry stout? Here’s a simple recipe to get you started:


  • Pale malt
  • Chocolate malt
  • Caramel malt
  • Lactose (for sweetness)
  • Hops (like Cascade or Fuggle)
  • Vanilla beans
  • Cocoa nibs
  • Yeast (English Ale or similar)
  • Water


  1. Mash the grains at 152°F (67°C) for 60 minutes.
  2. Boil the wort, adding hops at various stages for bitterness and aroma.
  3. Add lactose, vanilla beans, and cocoa nibs in the last 15 minutes of the boil.
  4. Cool the wort and pitch the yeast.
  5. Ferment at 68°F (20°C) for about two weeks.
  6. Bottle or keg, carbonate, and enjoy your homemade pastry stout!

Tips and Tricks

For the best results, use fresh ingredients and high-quality malts. Experiment with different flavor additions like coffee, spices, and fruits to create your unique pastry stout.

Pay attention to fermentation temperatures to avoid off-flavors and ensure a clean, smooth finish.

Common Challenges

One common challenge is achieving the right balance of sweetness and roastiness. Start with a balanced recipe and adjust future batches based on your taste preferences.

Another challenge is maintaining the desired level of body and mouthfeel, which can be managed by using lactose and other unfermentable sugars.

Trends in Pastry Stouts

Current Trends

Pastry stouts are a hot trend in the craft beer world, with brewers continually experimenting with new ingredients and techniques.

Flavored pastry stouts, such as those with added fruits, spices, and even nuts, are particularly popular. Breweries are also creating seasonal and limited-edition pastry stouts, which add excitement and exclusivity to the style.

Future Predictions

Looking ahead, we can expect more innovation and creativity in the pastry stout category.

Brewers will likely continue to explore unique flavor combinations and brewing techniques, such as barrel-aging and using rare ingredients, to create new and exciting variations.

Sustainability and local sourcing will also play a bigger role, with brewers focusing on eco-friendly practices and ingredients to meet the growing demand for sustainable products.


To wrap things up, pastry stouts are a fantastic choice for those who love rich, sweet, and dessert-like beers.

Whether you’re enjoying a commercial example or brewing your own, these beers offer a world of indulgence and enjoyment. Their versatility in food pairings and their growing popularity make them a beloved style among beer enthusiasts.

So next time you’re in the mood for something special, reach for a pastry stout and savor the experience. Cheers!

Similar Posts