How to Make Green Beer for St. Patrick’s Day

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If you have ever attended a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, you have witnessed, if not tried yourself, the spectacle that is the now-traditional green beer.  Contrary to popular opinion, there is very little difference between this festive offering and the regular beer that you find in the store.  Now you can prepare for your own St. Patrick’s Day party by mixing up a batch of your own green beer for your holiday party.  It is a simple recipe, but can have a dramatic impact.

  1. First, you will need a beer.  Lighter beers tend to work much better, but you can achieve a similar effect with a darker beer with a little experimentation.  Even the darkest beer will still gain a festive green head, however.
  2. Add green food coloring to the mug, then pour the beer. 2-3 drops should be plenty to achieve a bright green color with a light-colored beer.

Tips & Warnings

  • Lose the bottles.  The effect and flavor will be much more dramatic with a large, clear, ice-cold mug.
  • Even though the flavor is the same, most people will still think there is a difference.  Try adding a bit of lime for a bit of zest and brightness, as well as to avoid having to explain that you added nothing but coloring.
  • The traditional choice for a green beer recipe is Guinness, though any light-colored beer could be used in a pinch.
  • If you add the food coloring after pouring the beer, don’t stir too vigorously.  Otherwise, you could beat out all of the carbonation before the mixing is done.
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