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Extract recipe for Newbie

Started by Callan86, March 03, 2017, 02:00:11 PM

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Afternoon all,

After a few kit brews I feel confident enough to attempt my first extract brew. From the various YouTube videos and articles I've read extract brewing isn't that great a step up from kit brewing, same principles of santization, maintaining fermentation temperature etc still apply, the wort/hop boil being the main difference. Is there any particular extract recipe that would be suitable for the first time extract brewer? Thanks in advance!


I have done a few extract Brews.  Basically just a Tin plus some DME and some specialty grains.  here is a link to the first one. http://www.nationalhomebrewclub.ie/forum/kit-brewing/2nd-brew-1st-hack-looking-for-suggestions/

I've done 7 of these now and have made some minor tweaks along the Way.

One of my favorites that was ready to drink quickly quickly and was cleaned out by myself at the brothers in a week is

Tin - Coopers Australian Pale Ale
250g Crystal 60L - 155 EBC  Anything close is fine.  Higher number will give you a slightly darker beer. Lower will give you a lighter colour
250g Carapils - Helps with Head retention
1Kg - Wheat DME

You'll need a decent size pot. I use one that can hold 6 - 8 liters easily.

Process -
Just to say some people will just steep the grains at about 75C to 80C for 30 - 45 mins, in 3 liters of water, but I like to treat is as a mini mash.  A bit of practice :)

Use whatever you prefer.  I doubt there would be a huge difference.

Get a Muslin bag and put your grains in there. Get 2 liters of water at 67C into your pot.  Pop in the grains and give it a good mix to coat the grains in the warm water.  This will drop the temp to 65C.  Try to hold it close to this for about an hour.  it might go up and down a little, no biggie.  Some people will pop the pot in the oven.  I don't as I like to like to give it a mix or swirl to get the liquid moving over the grain.
Ikea have an excellent food thermometer.  It has a probe you can keep in the pot...  remember to sanitize it :)  You might need a small bit of heat for a few seconds every few minutes...  not too much hassle, as you prepare you fermentation bucket and get your Coopers tin warm.

Boil a kettle and let is cool to 76C.

Once the hour is up, remove the grain bag and place is on sieve. Pour over the 76C kettle water slowly, rinsing the grain.  It will run almost clear.

You will have 3.5 liters... ish of water.  I normally add some warm water (from a boiled kettle) to get aprox 5 liters in there (helps with the DME mix)

I normally have the heat on Low for this part...   
Mix in the DME, then Coopers Tin of LME.  Add a little hot water to the Tin to get all the LME out. Mix for a little while until everything is dissolved.

Add 5 Litres of Cold water to the fermentation bucket, from a height to help oxygenate.
Pour Wort on top.
Add more cold Water to 20 liters.  For me at this time of the year the cold water gets me to around 22C.
I aerate the Wort a bit, then pitch the yeast.  I pitch dry and have had no problems so far.

Last Example of this one
23/1/17 - OG 1.046 - 08/02 FG 1.011  -  16 days to ferment out.

I Dry Hoped this one with 50G of Mosaic.  I have tried Cascade in a few, but Mosaic really stands out on the nose and add a little more bitterness.

For dry hopping I use a small Nylon Bag with 5 Sanitized Marbles in it.  I will tie a meter of thin monofilament to the bag and drop it into the beer around day 7.  The mono will be hanging outside the fermenter and makes removing the bag without infecting the beer a lot easier. I dry hop for 5 days.  I like to add the hops when the beer is still fermenting. I've read somewhere (don't have reference) that it helps.

No hop boils just yet as I don't have a large pot.  That's next :)

I batch prime with 85g brewing sugar.  Bottle indoors for 2 weeks then off to the Garage for 2 weeks. This one barely made it 2 weeks in the garage.


Thanks mac2k, lots of great info there.  :)

Based on my own drinking preferences I'll try a red ale first with a basic hop addition. I was at the alltech conference a few weeks ago and loved the new Sullivan's red ale from Kilkenny, I'm also partial to the Brรบ Brewery's Rua which is that bit more hoppy and fruity to taste. I'll keep people posted on how I get on!



Remember to let us know how you got on.  I will hopefully be trying an extract red ale in the next couple of months, so if you find a good recipie, pop it up :)


Excellent instructions mac2k, thanks for doing this.

I too am about to try my first extract brew having had drinkable results from the last five or six kits I did, but I think this was more to do with the quality of the kits than my skill as a brewer!

I picked up this earlier http://www.geterbrewed.com/creamy-stout-extract-beer-kit/ but it came with zero instructions.

So, questions....

When do I use the lactose?
As I'm not doing a boil, I guess I don't need the Whirlfloc tablet?
Again, as there's no boil, I'll be dry-hopping. Do I use the whole lot? There is 50g of East Kent Golding

Even though this is sold as an extract kit, the hop packet says 60min on it, so now I'm confused. Should I treat it as an all-grain brew day, do a mash, dissolve the malt extract, and boil with the liquid from the grains? I have a boil kettle and wort chiller, so not a problem if this is the better approach.

Thanks for your input.


Hi ceedee,

Molc made this beer and did a review/guide here. You will definitely have to do a boil though as the hops need boiled. The reason it's called an extract kit is because the 2 cans of extract are a substitute for doing your own mash.


Thanks for the link, very helpful. It also clears up my confusion between kit and extract as I never really understood the difference, but when you said the extract is instead of a mash, it clicked  :)

I'm guessing by the photos on molc's review that the boil is in the region of 25 to 28 litres to end up with a fermentable volume of around 23 litres

It's poor form not to include any instructions though, doesn't encourage beginners into the hobby when they have to guess the process. I've emailed GEB, but had no reply....also poor. This is where this forum is so valuable as newcomers can easily draw on the knowledgable experts.


Yeah the instructions were generic when I got them, so not much better. Of you have any questions, just ask on here and we'll help out. You don't always get the finished product from the vendors and some knowledge is assumed.
Fermenting: IPA, Lambic, Mead
Conditioning: Lambic, Cider, RIS, Ole Ale, Saison
On Tap: IPA, Helles, Best Bitter


Cheers lads, I've more or less got it sorted now, will be putting this together this weekend, if the IPA has done fermenting. Looking forward to it. The only question left is what post boil volume should I be aiming for if I'm after a "normal" abv stout? I'm thinking around the 23 litre mark?


I'd say you'll be grand with 23litres yeah.


This was one of my first extract recipes many moons ago...a bit complex but worked a treat

All grains were steeped at around 68c for 30 min then added to boil at start with extract

Recipe: Irish Red Ale
Asst Brewer:
Style: Irish Red Ale
TYPE: Extract
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
Boil Size: 15.20 l
Post Boil Volume: 13.80 l
Batch Size (fermenter): 18.93 l   
Bottling Volume: 18.93 l
Estimated OG: 1.042 SG
Estimated Color: 11.2 SRM
Estimated IBU: 29.8 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 0.0 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU         
0.23 kg               Belgian Cara 8/Caramel Pils (8.0 SRM)    Grain         1        7.1 %         
0.11 kg               Special Roast (50.0 SRM)                 Grain         2        3.6 %         
0.06 kg               Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM)                  Grain         3        1.8 %         
0.06 kg               Chocolate Malt (450.0 SRM)               Grain         4        1.8 %         
2.72 kg               Gold Malt Syrup (4.0 SRM)                Extract       5        85.7 %       
28.35 g               Williamette [5.50 %] - Boil 60.0 min     Hop           6        16.8 IBUs     
28.35 g               Goldings, B.C. [5.00 %] - Boil 30.0 min  Hop           7        12.9 IBUs     
2.0 pkg               US-04


Currently drinking my way through my second extract brew, still a bit of fine tuning to do with the specialty grains and hop additions, but it's very drinkable as is and I'll be distributing samples of this brew among family and friends for feedback!  :)

Based on my experiences so far I've some questions that
1. Liquid malt extract versus Spray malt extract: Is there any real difference between the two when it comes to the quality of your end product? The main advantage I've found with spray malt is handling and measuring smaller amounts is a lot easier too.
2. What's the benefit of a late extract addition? Some of the recipes I looked at called for it at the same time as the aroma hop addition, others didn't.


Hey Callan86,

Only just seeing this now after being offline for some time.

Quote from: Callan86 on July 14, 2017, 12:51:08 AM
1. Liquid malt extract versus Spray malt extract: Is there any real difference between the two when it comes to the quality of your end product? The main advantage I've found with spray malt is handling and measuring smaller amounts is a lot easier too.

Spray Malt can be a bit of a pain to mix, but really handy for smaller amounts. Some of the AG brewers will use is to get a recipe to the desired OG as well. Some of the tins will just be a liquid malt, but some will have had hop or grain additions and be for a specific recipe.  Coopers Indian Pale Ale or Stout for example.

Quote from: Callan86 on July 14, 2017, 12:51:08 AM
2. What's the benefit of a late extract addition? Some of the recipes I looked at called for it at the same time as the aroma hop addition, others didn't.

When I use the specific tins like an Coopers IPA, I will always add these at the end of the boil, just before I cool and go to FV. The reason for this is I don't want to be re-boiling any of the additives, and I do extracts in a 12 liter Pot, so I don't want to be doing a 60 minute boil with all my sugars and half the water. I think this will effect the flavor of the final beer. So I am adding 50% of the fermentables at the very end, then into the FV with additional water to get 20 or so liters into the FV.