There are a few things to know about how to make beer at home. These range from the simple ‘kit’ extract brewing that most approach as their first attempt, through to the much more advanced and time intensive all-grain brewing.
The general process for making beer is fairly simple:
- Malted Barley is soaked in water to produce the start of the ‘wort’ (unfermented beer) by releasing the barley’s fermentable sugars
- The wort is boiled and hops is added to add flavor and aroma
- The wort is then cooled to fermentation temperature and yeast is ‘pitched’ (added)
- The yeast works to ferment the sugars and releases alcohol to make beer
That really is it. Beautiful science and nature working together.
Below are some more specific instructions on the best way to get your homebrew right every time.
Click on any of the headings below for more information.
STEP 1: BEFORE YOU BREW
Preparation and Sanitation
Before we launch into how to make beer at home, there are a few very important steps that need to be completed. These are some of the most important parts of the process
Cleaning your equipment
Cleaning your homebrewing equipment doesn’t need to be hard work. Click here for more information.
Sanitizing your equipment
The goal of sanitizing your homebrew equipment is to remove anything that may lead to future infection of your beer. Click here for more information.
STEP 2: HOW TO BREW
The simplest way to brew your own beer is through the use of pre-hopped malt extract. These are the tins of flavored extract found in all homebrew stores and many other locations. For a guide on how to make beer at home using this method, click here.
Extract with specialty grain
Once they have mastered the critical steps of sanitization, fermentation and bottling, many brewers decide take measures to improve on various aspects of their brews. The addition of carefully selected ‘specialty grain’, hops and yeast while still using malt extract is an effective and relatively simple way to achieve this. Click here for more information.
STEP 3: AFTER YOU BREW
There are a couple of important factors that will determine the success of your homebrew fermentation including the temperature and time allowed. We will cover these in detail for you here.
Once the yeast have finished doing their thing and your beer is finished fermentation, it is time to bottle. Although it is necessary for transportation, moving your beer into bottles also serves the important purpose of carbonating and conditioning.
The process of priming your beer simply adds more sugar for the left over yeast to convert into Carbon Dioxide (CO2) which in turn carbonates your beer. Here is an overview of that process.
The process of bottling your beer is a reasonably simple one, something that is best performed with a beer from a previous batch on hand and covered for you here
Conditioning your homebrew beer refers to the process of leaving it alone long enough for it to become ready to drink. We explain the reasons and what is actually happening here.