Bavarian Beer Cheese Spread is a Bavarian beer garden classic made with brie or camembert cheese, butter, and beer! You can get it in every Bavarian restaurant and beer garden. It is served with pretzel bread or rustic sourdough bread.
Perfect for making ahead, and serving as an appetizer at a party or for Brotzeit! You can make this beer cheese dip a day ahead and let it sit in the fridge overnight – let it come to room temperature before serving to make it easier to spread on your pretzel bread.
Obatzda is a classic Bavarian dish like Kaiserschmarrn (Torn Pancakes), Cheese Spaetzle, and Covered German Apple Cake. You can get it at any beer garden, supermarket in Bavaria, or traditional Bavarian restaurant. But it’s super easy to make it at home with ingredients you can get at your local supermarket!
There are many different ways to make this beer cheese spread but one thing they all have in common are the main ingredients: aged soft cheese like Camembert or Brie, good quality butter, and a small amount of wheat beer.
Obatzda or Gerupfter (Franconian name) is traditionally seasoned with paprika powder, caraway seeds, salt, and pepper. You can add chopped onions to the dip but I recommend adding them just before you serve the beer cheese spread otherwise they could develop a bitter taste when you make the dip in advance.
I’ve tried many different variations of this beer cheese dip. My husband and I took a tour of the Viktualienmarkt in Munich a few years ago and at the cheese stand they served one with all the aged soft cheese they had leftover. It had Gorgonzola, Camembert, Blue Cheese, and many other kinds of cheese in it and had a really strong flavor (and smell) but was delicious.
But normally you only use Camembert or Brie Cheese. Many people also leave out the beer and to be honest it doesn’t really taste any different. But if you want to do it right use beer, a non-alcoholic wheat beer will also do the job!
To make my beer cheese dip I use Laughing Cow Cheese. It goes really well with the other cheese and makes the dip easily spreadable. A common problem with Obatzda, made only with cheese and butter, is that it gets quite firm in the fridge. In my opinion cream cheese is not the right choice for this dip, because the flavor doesn’t fit.
This recipe is perfect for your Oktoberfest party but also makes a great addition to every holiday appetizer buffet!
Bavarian Beer Cheese Spread (Obatzda)
- 6 oz Laughing cow cheese 170g
- 7 oz Brie or Camembert Cheese 200g
- 3/4 stick butter room temperature, 85g
- 4 tbsp wheat beer
- 1/2 tsp caraway ground
- 1 1/4 tsp paprika spice
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup chives finely chopped
- 1 white onion
Cut the Brie (or Camembert) Cheese into small cubes and add it to a medium bowl.
Add Laughing cow cheese, butter, wheat beer, ground caraway, ground paprika, salt, and freshly ground pepper and mix with a fork until combined and smooth.
Cover airtight and let it sit in the fridge for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Take it out of the fridge and let come to room temperature before serving. Garnish with chives and finely sliced onion rings. This dip keeps fresh in the fridge for about 3 days (without onions).