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    We are Lansing area's destination for beer and wine making supplies, accessories and information. Our store is located in Grand Ledge, MI. We're also the home to the Red Ledge Brewers Homebrew Club.

Beer Brewing Instructions

Malt ExtractsHere are easy to follow steps for brewing great beer! Cheers!

1. Add the required amount of sanitizer to your carboy or plastic bucket with water. Powdered sanitizers such as One Step or Solo are mixed at a ratio to 1 Tbsp to 1 gallon of water. Iodine, acid, or other liquid sanatizers are usually mixed at a ratio of 1 oz to 5 gallons of water. If using liquid yeast, take it out of the refrigerator and allow it to warm to room temperature.

2. Add 2-3 gallons of water to your pot and turn on the heat.

3. If you have any steeping grains (usually crystal, chocolate, roasted barley, or black patent malts, etc.) put them into a mesh bag(s) and place into the heating water and allow to steep for 30 minutes. Let the water reach, but not exceed, a temperature of 170 degrees. If you reach 170 degrees in less than 30 minutes, turn the heat off and let the grains steep until a total of 30 minutes has passed.

4. Remove the grain bag and heat the water to a boil. Turn the heat off and stir in the liquid malt extract (LME), dried malt extract (DME). Continue to stir so the ingredients don’t stick and get burned. Scorching malt will lead to undesirable off flavors. Do not add any corn sugar that might have been included in your kit. That will be used for the bottling process later (at least 2 weeks from now). This is now called wort.

5. Turn the heat back up and add your bittering hops when your wort begins to boil.

6. Watch the boil carefully! Especially at the beginning of the boil, foaming will occur. If foam looks to reach the top of your pot, reduce heat and add a small amount of water (an ounce or two) to eliminate foam. Keep the wort boiling gently. A hard or aggressive boil is not recommended.

7. Add your hops according to the recipe. Times given for hop additions are usually said as “minutes remaining in boil.” Example: 60 min addition is the first addition at the very beginning if a boil and a 10 min addition would mean add the hops at 10 minutes remaining in the boil.

8. You must sanitize any equipment that will come into contact with the wort including bucket, lid, airlock, funnel, thermometer, stoppers, and anything else that will come in contact with the wort. Put all this equipment into the sanitizing solution. Also, take the time at this point to finish sanitizing the fermenting bucket or carboy and fill it with 2 gallons of cool water.

9. After the boil is complete, it’s time to chill the wort. Fill your sink half full of cold water (and ice if available). Remove the pot from the heat and place it in the sink with cold water. Gentle stir wort with sanitized plastic or metal spoon while in the cold water bath. Remember to not let anything into the cooling wort as this is the most vulnerable time for the beer. If the water in the sink becomes hot, drain the water and fill the sink again. When the wort is at 100 degrees or under, pour wort into your fermenter. Check the total amount of wort in the bucket/carboy. Most fermenting buckets have gallons marked on the side to easily check wort amount. You should top up the fermenter with cool water to a total of 5 gallons.

10.  With a sanitized instrument, take a sample of the wort for a hydrometer reading. Never return the sample wort to the fermenter. Also, make sure your wort is 80 degrees or under before pitching yeast. If using liquid yeast, open the vial and pitch it into the fermenter. If using dry yeast, re-hydrate according to yeast packaging instructions. After re-hydrating yeast, pitch it into the wort. Seal the fermenter and attach airlock. Don’t forget to add the water into the airlock!

Fermentation will start within 6 to 12 hours.



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Customer Reviews

Can corn sugar get old? Made two brews that turned out cidery, a wheat and stout. Have made beer 20+ times never had cidery beer. What was the problem?

Usually when someone describes a beer as “cidery,” that points to a high volume of sugar that was used in the fermentation. Table sugar, cane sugar, beet sugar and Belgian Candi Sugar all can leave a “winey” or “cidery” taste when to high of a percentage is used compared to your other malts. I would not recommend using more than 10 to 15 percent of sugar in your beer.
As far as I know, corn sugar can not go bad. There shouldn’t be an issue with using old sugar as long as it hasn’t been contaminated in some way. Usually the boiling process can take care of all harmful bacteria.
Hope this helps!


I didn’t add any sugars, just the corn sugar at bottling. The thing is that both the wheat and the stout have similar strong cider tastes. Could I have missed something while sanitizing causing it?

Just to be clear, the three gallons of wort is added to the two gallons of cool water in the fermenter?

Yes. After cooling the wort in the kettle, add it to the water in your fermenter.