Brats are a staple meal at our house. It’s one of our favorite things to grill. My method is pretty basic: 2 minutes on each of the four sides for a total of 8 minutes and then I add a minute or two extra to get them up to about 160 degrees.
If you really want to have a great, juicy brat, your goal is to get it up to 160 degrees without rupturing the casing. As with all meats, you should let your meat rest on the counter for 30-45 minutes ahead of time to bring it up to room temperature. That gives you less of a temperature difference on the grill. Next, make sure your grill isn’t too hot. I keep mine around 375 or 400 for brats. And finally, there is a big difference between different brands of brats. I find that the brats from the butcher generally have a thicker casing than the ones in the grocery store. Johnsonville brats are delicious, but I have a very hard time grilling them without splitting them open or having little grease geysers erupt out of the brat. With care, I can grill most of the butcher brats with them spouting grease. If one or two does break open a bit, that’s ok. Use that one when you stick your thermometer in to check the temp.