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Dark Beer & Chocolate Chips Sourdough Bread


Here is a recipe of the delicious and flavorful dark beer and chocolate chips sourdough bread that my friend Maria was so kind to share with me.

The combination of dark beer and chocolate chips sounds unusual, but I was blown away by the result of the final bake, its incredible flavor and soft texture.

Are you ready to learn more?

Let’s go!


Sourdough starter 




  • 10 pm add starter to the water and whisk together, add flour, mix well, cover loosely, let it sit at room temp 74-78F until. In about 8-10 hours starter has to reach the peak (triple or more in volume). You can learn how to make starter from scratch here.
  • Boil the beer and let the cool down before using in the dough. This step will help to evaporate the alcohol ( bacteria and wild yeast from starter, doesn’t like alcohol, it acts very slow with it)
  • You want to prepare the beer around the same time. Pour the required amount into a sauce pan and warm it up on a low heat for 10 minutes, let it cool down overnight. This will help with alcohol evaporation which is required in order not to disturb the dough fermentation process.


  • 8 am mix flour, beer and honey, cover, let it rest 1 hour for autolyse.
  • During the autolyse process flour absorbs water becoming fully hydrated. This activates gluten development.
  • 9 am add sourdough starter. 
  • Mix on low speed of your mixing machine for 2-3 minutes, or KitchenAid on speed 3 for 3-4 minutes until well incorporated.
  • Also if for some reason you don’t have a mixing machine, you can incorporate starter into the dough by hands. Using the Rubaud method or the slap and fold method (about 5-7 minutes).
  • Cover, let it rest for 30 minutes.
  • 9:30 am add salt.
  • Mix on low speed of your mixing machine for 2-3 min, or with KitchenAid on speed 3 for 5-6 minutes until well incorporated. The dough should come up together, but still be sticky on the bottom.
  • If you are mixing by hands, using the Rubaud method or the slap and fold method it will take about 10 minutes. Do a couple of stops in between mixing, this helps to tighten up gluten.
  • We will continue gluten development and structure building by performing stretches and folds during the warm fermentation period.
  • Leave to rest for 30 minutes at 74-78F /23-26C.
  • 10 am spray your work surface with water, wet your hands to perform lamination.
  • Lamination is the process of stretching the dough as thin as you can without ripping it. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top, then fold the dough all together, cover and let it proof.
  • 10:45 am 1st stretch and fold.
  • 11:30 am 2nd stretch and fold.
  • 12.15 pm 3rd stretch and fold.
  • Performing stretches and folds help with gluten development.
  • Keep monitoring the dough, if it rises too fast, you can shorten the time between stretches to 40 minutes or less.
  • After the final stretch let the dough proof for 30 minutes at 76-80F/ 23-26C. You should see some bubbles on the surface, the dough has to become lighter. We are looking for 40%-50% rise. 

Preshaping sourdough 

  • 12:45 pm transfer the dough on to a work surface and dust its top with flour. Flip the dough over so the floured side faces down.
  • Fold the dough onto itself so the flour on the surface remains entirely on the outside of the loaf. This will become the crust.
  • Place the dough round on a work surface and let it rest for 30 minutes uncovered.

Shaping sourdough 

  • 1:15 pm dust the dough with whole wheat flour. Use a dough scraper to flip it over on to a work surface so the floured sides face down.
  • Starting at the side closest to you, pull the right 2 corners of the dough to the left, then fold them up into half of the dough. Repeat this action on the left side too.
  • Finally, roll the dough. Shape it into a smooth, taut roll.
  • Transfer the roll, seam side up, to a prepared proofing basket (loaf pan with kitchen towel)
  • Cover it with plastic and return the dough to the 80F (27C) environment for 15 minutes.
  • Then transfer the dough to rise for 14-24 hours in the refrigerator.


Next morning:

  • Preheat your oven to 500 F, place a cast iron pan with the lid inside for 45 minutes -1 hour.
  • Remove the dough from the fridge. 
  • Flip it over on a parchment paper, score it with a sharp knife or a scoring lame
  • Transfer on to the hot cast iron pan, cover with the lid (to create steam for a beautiful and crusty crumb).
  • Bake at 500F for 15 minutes with lid on.
  • Remove the lid, lower temperature to 450F. 
  • Bake for 20 more minutes until golden brown.

Let it cool for 2 hours and enjoy your dark beer and chocolate chips sourdough bread 🍺 🍪

20 thoughts on “Dark Beer & Chocolate Chips Sourdough Bread

  1. Thanks for the recipe Natalya. I was wondering why the crumb is this way…

    1. It’s dark because of sugar from honey and beer got caramelized during baking 🙌

      1. Thanks for your reply. I actually meant the extremes in the crumb – wild and open in places and tight in places…

  2. Grams of chocolate and what type?

    1. Chocolate chips or just cut the chocolate bar 😊

  3. Should we weigh the beer straight out of the bottle or after heating?

    1. I was measuring it after it was boiled and cooled of 😊

  4. I made this and came out really delicious, but will warm more than the required amount as almost 100g of beer have evaporated, had to add water instead. If I would like to add some cocoa powder, do I add it during autolyse or lamination? Thank you! Great recipe!

    1. Hi!
      Good point about adding more beer, it will bring hydration to a higher level, and will give you a more open crumb. Also if you want to add cocoa, do it during autolyse 🙏

  5. Hello Natalya, thank you four your detail guidance there. I have a question, I saw Levain on recipe, but I didn’t find when Levain mix with dough or I have missed it?

    1. Hi!
      At 9 am after autolyse is done, you have to add sourdough starter 🙏

  6. Hi,
    Is there any other beer I can use instead of dark beer. Its difficult to find one in India. We get Lager beer here.

    1. Madhura, hi!
      Yes, you can use any beer 🙏

  7. How many grams of chocolate chips? Thanks

    1. 30-40% from total amount of the dough (can be less or more)

  8. Hi Natasha,
    This recipe looks yum. Can I substitute stone ground whole wheat flour (10%) with anything?

    1. Hi!
      Thank you!
      You can use any whole grain flour

  9. Son muy buenas tus recetas 👍😃

  10. Hi, is it possible to use bewer’s yeast insted of the sourdough starter? Thank you 🙂

    1. Hi!
      Yes, you can use yeast, but the directions and timing will be different.

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