Honey can be used throughout the brewing process for many reasons in many of our beer recipes. Adding honey to the boil can increase the final alcohol content, add a light honey flavor, or lighten the body of a beer if used as a replacement for malt extract. If added to the end of primary fermentation it can increase the alcohol content and add a more intense honey flavor and aroma. Honey can also be used to bottle condition and carbonate beer. You can add up to 50% of your total fermentable sugars as honey; it all depends on how much honey character you want in your beer.
When you add honey to the boil has an affect on the final flavor:No Flavor- Adding honey at the beginning of the boil will add fermentable sugar to the wort but no honey flavor.
Light Flavor- Adding honey to the middle of the boil will add fermentable sugar and a light honey note.
Stronger Flavor and Aroma- Adding honey at the end of the boil will add a stronger honey flavor and aroma.
Adding honey to the fermenter:
Warm your honey to make it easy to pour by placing the container in hot water for 20 minutes. Add the honey directly to your fermentor, perhaps a Big Mouth Bubbler, and stir gently, expect a renewed fermentation within a day or two. This will leave more residual sweetness and a more intense honey character in your beer.
How to carbonate your beer with honey
Use 1 cup of honey per 5 gallon batch to replace the priming sugar, follow the same procedure outlined in your beer recipe kit instructions to prime your beer and put it in beer bottles. Boil the honey in 8-16 oz. of water and pour it into the bottom of your bottling bucket and rack your beer into the honey solution.
Honey is composed of 25-35% water by weight and is nearly 100% fermentable. You may add honey as a substitute for malt to lighten body and color.
SG - 1.030-35 per lb./gal.
Degrees Balling - 7.6-8.8
Percent Yield - 65-75