The 4 Easiest Ways To Make Your Own Green Beer For St. Patrick’s Day

Reaching that perfect shade of emerald is easier than you'd think.

While Ireland has its own St. Patrick's Day traditions, we in the U.S. celebrate in a very American way. Once March 17 is upon us, you may notice green beer appearing everywhere. Both Irish American pubs and sports bars love serving pint after pint of green-colored beer. It's a funky way to toast the Irish by paying homage to the color of the Emerald Isle. You might be wondering how to make green beer the way your favorite bar does, but it's not as hard as you'd think. 

If you're planning a St. Patrick's party of your own, wouldn't it be cool to offer green beer to your guests? It's not a very complicated process and involves a few simple steps. Whatever questions you have, we're here to help you along the way. Find out exactly how this practice got started and get answers to things such as, "Does green beer stain your teeth?"

You have many options for learning how to make your own green beer for St. Patrick's Day. They involve everything from green food coloring and leafy greens to matcha tea and even rock candy! What's most important is having a ball with traditions new and old on this St. Paddy's Day. Keep people smiling with awesome snacks, festive desserts and as much green beer as they can drink. 

Do Irish People Drink Green Beer?

St. Patrick's Day isn't as public a holiday as it is elsewhere in the world. In Ireland, people celebrate St. Patrick's Day with a local parade, a family meal, or drinks with friends. It doesn't focus on the color green as much and is seen as a day of Irish pride without fixed activities. Going out to eat may be followed by a trip to the pub where traditional Irish music is played. 

Where Does Green Beer Originate?

Though many believe green beer originated in Ireland, it's an American invention. Green beer was first created in 1914 by Dr. Thomas Curtin, an Irish American doctor. He made a batch of green beer for his St. Patrick's Day party. His St. Paddy's Day bash took place at the Schnorrer Club of Morrisania in the Bronx borough of New York City.

What Is the Best Beer To Make Green Beer?

For the most part, there isn't one particular type of beer that suits the color green more than any other. Generally, American lagers, pale ales and pilsners work well. However, Irish Guinness stout is not a good choice. This is because green won't show up through the dark shade that Guinness is known for having. A lighter-colored beer is your best bet if you decide to go green for St. Patrick's Day.

How Many Drops of Food Coloring for Green Beer?

How green you make your beer is up to you, but remember that less is more. A very pale ale might only need one or two drops of green food coloring. Others may require five or six until you reach the perfect shade of green. Add one or two drops at a time and mix immediately so you don't overdo it. Liquid food coloring is best when making your own green beer for St. Patrick's Day. Powder and gel food coloring are too intense and may alter the beer's texture.

Does Green Beer Stain Your Teeth?

It is possible for green beer to stain your lips and/or teeth when drinking beer that has green food coloring. It shouldn't affect the taste of the beer, but you might want to take note if posing for a photo! Since it's St. Patrick's Day, slightly green teeth are to be expected. You may want to try some green beer but stick to the non-green variety after one pint. You can always brush your teeth to easily get out any temporary stains. 

How to Make Green Beer

Check out these easy methods to learn how to make your own green beer for St. Patrick's Day. 

Green Food Coloring

The most obvious way to turn beer green is by adding drops of green food coloring to the brew. A good rule of thumb is to add a drop of green food coloring for every 12 ounces of beer. If you want a darker color, add a couple more drops at a time. Liquid food coloring is best, which you can adjust as you proceed.

Leafy Greens

To avoid using food coloring, try adding leafy greens to your beer instead. First, blend leafy greens such as spinach, kale or chard in a food processor or juicer. Add a little bit at a time to the beer until you get a proper green color. It shouldn't take much to achieve green beer this way. 

Plus, you shouldn't add so much that it changes the beer's taste. Another option is to add one tablespoon of wheatgrass juice to the bottom of the beer glass before adding the beer. It may prove to be the healthiest St. Patrick's Day beer you've ever had!

Matcha Green Tea

One of the most unexpected ways to make green beer is to use matcha green tea. It has a particular flavor, so tread carefully here. Add a touch of matcha powder to the beer and monitor the taste. It's loaded with health benefits, but this method may prove the least tasty one for making green beer.

Rock Candy

One method from Better Homes and Gardens uses rock candy to achieve a St. Patrick's Day hue. Stir the beer with a green rock candy stick until it turns green. As the candy dissolves, your beer's color will continue to grow more green. 

It may sweeten the beer a touch, but overall rock candy won't alter the flavor of your favorite beer. All you'll have to do is raise your glass and say, "Sláinte," which translates to "good health."

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