Skip to main content

Marinating meat in dark beer may inhibit cancer risk

  • Author:
  • Updated:

With spring finally on the horizon, thoughts turn to backyard barbecues.

Besides just the warmer weather, there's more good news if you like a cold brew with your barbecue.

European researchers have discovered that marinating meat with dark beer dramatically reduces carcinogenic contamination, which is caused by the contact of dripping fat with hot embers.

Mother Jones reports on the the study, which will be published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Researchers tested the effect of marinating meat with Pilsner, nonalcoholic Pilsner, and Black beer, against a control sampling of raw meat.

Black beer showed the strongest "inhibitory effect," reducing the formation of carcinogenic PAHs by 53 percent. Pilsner beer and nonalcoholic Pilsner, showed less significant results: 13 percent and 25 percent respectively.

Mother Jones reports scientists aren't entirely sure why a beer marinade has this effect. They speculate that it might be the antioxidant compounds in beer, especially darker varieties, which inhibit the movement of free radicals necessary for the formation of PAHs.

PAHs, or polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, are a class of more than 100 chemicals composed of up to six benzene rings fused together such that any two adjacent benzene rings share two carbon bonds.

The federal Environmental Protection Agency has classified PAH compounds as probably or possibly carcinogens.

Several studies show increased incidence of cancer (lung, skin and urinary cancers) in humans exposed to PAH mixtures.

Next Up


Farmer almanacs release their 2022-23 winter forecasts for MN

November is right around the corner and one of the almanacs figures it'll be a cold and snowy month.


Minneapolis Police Department seeks authorization to use drones

A public hearing on the matter could be held this month.

Screen Shot 2022-08-08 at 12.50.25 PM

Minnesota Harvest apple farm to open under new owners this month

New food and attractions are in store for this season's fall fun.

Pixabay - water surface

22-year-old man found dead in central Minnesota lake

The man was reported missing and later found dead in the water near the lakeside residence.


Seven kids charged over shoplifting at Cabela's, 100 mph police chase

The youths were pursued in a a stolen car and almost hit a squad car, police say.

Screen Shot 2022-08-08 at 7.50.05 PM

Missing: 17-year-old Waite Park boy last seen July 3

Police say there is no reason to believe he's in danger.

Melanie Valencia

Northfield bicyclist killed in crash identified as 14-year-old

She was riding her bike to soccer practice before a driver hit her last week.

Samantha Holte

Appeal to find 17-year-old Minnesota girl

She was last seen north of Fergus Falls.

Pixabay - water surface

Man's body found near empty fishing boat on St. Croix River

The boat, and an unoccupied truck found on the shore, belong to a 43-year-old White Bear Lake man.


Police identify MOA shooting suspects, issue nationwide warrants

Three Twin Cities residents were charged Monday in connection with helping the suspects escape.

Screen Shot 2022-08-04 at 7.25.42 PM

Charges: Best Western employees helped MOA shooting suspects escape

Prosecutors allege two Best Western employees helped the suspects escape.