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Brewing beer at home is easy and fun
Brewing beer at home can be done easily!
Are you wondering how to make beer at home? Brewing beer at home has many advantages, including the satisfaction of making something yourself, and of course, enjoying the finished product! So what are you waiting for? Read on for easy instructions on how to make your own beer.
First of all, you’re going to need some basic supplies. The good news is that you should be able to find everything you need at a local brewing supply store (brick & mortar or online) for under $200.
A quick starter list will probably include:
A brewing pot
A length of plastic hose
A designated bottling bucket
An airlock and a stopper
A thermometer (your best choice would be the stick-on kind)
A bottle capper
Some type of bottle brush
Wooden mixing spoons
Let's get started!
If you are reading this article on how to make beer at home, you are probably a beginner, and if that’s the case, one of the easiest ways to get going right away is to purchase a beer making kit. It will include all of the necessary ingredients, including yeast and malt concentrate, as well as different kinds of fermentable ingredients, which add unique flavors to your beer. Of course, you could buy everything separately, but the kit is probably going to save you time, if not money as well in the long run, and is a foolproof way to ensure you you’re starting out with everything you need to make beer at home.
Now that you’ve gathered all of your equipment and ingredients (or purchased your kit), your most important first step is to sanitize of your equipment. To do this, first clean all of the equipment with hot, soapy water. Then you can sanitize either with an iodine or chlorine solution, both of which should be included in your kit.
Once you’ve completed the sterilizing step, you’re ready to begin. Most beer making follows the same steps, with differences only in the add on ingredients, so this basic procedure is a good place to start: First, put two quarts of water in your brewing pot, bring it to 180F (just before it boils- you should see it steam, but not bubble), then remove from the heat. Add the ingredients from your kit, including the malt concentrate and your fermentable ingredients, carefully following the instructions included with your kit.
Stir your brew until everything is dissolved; then put the lid on and simmer on low heat for about 20 minutes. When the time is up, pour the contents of your pot (now called a wort), into the fermenter, which should be already filled with four gallons of water. Stir everything for 4 minutes, which oxygenates the mixture. Wait to add your yeast until the wort is cool to the touch- otherwise you will kill the yeast and have to start all over again. A good rule of thumb is if you can put your finger in until the count of 10, you can add yeast safely.
Once the yeast has been added, it’s time to allow your wort to ferment. The fermentation process should take around 5 days, during which it’s important to keep the temperature a constant 65F, and keep your wort in a dark place. You’ll know the mixture is fermenting by the appearance of tiny air bubbles appearing at the top.
When 5 day arrives you need to start checking your beer each day. When the bubbles disappear, your brew will be done, and ready to be bottled. Don’t rush this step- without the proper length of time to ferment; your brew won’t taste as delicious as it could, so be patient.
Let's bottle it up!
Before your beer goes into the bottle, you have to carbonate it with a primary solution. To make the solution, bring 2 cups of water and 1 cup of dextrose to boil in your saucepan over medium heat, and then let it cool for 30 minute before pouring it into the bottling bucket. Attach one end of your hose to the spigot on your fermenter, and place the other in the bottling bucket. Open the spigot, and your beer should begin to fill the bottling bucket. When the bucket is full, detach and clean the hose and throw away the fermenter. When you fill the bottles, leave around an inch of air at the top, and cap securely to ensure there are no leaks. .
The final step is to put your bottled beer in a cool dark place (think basement, not fridge!) for the second fermentation, which will take around 2 weeks. That’s it! You are ready to drink your very own beer, and ready to teach others how to make beer at home too!