Quick directions for brewing 5 gallons of beer with malt extract, specialty grains, hops, yeast, and priming sugar.
When you receive your kit: If you upgraded your recipe kit with Wyeast Liquid Yeast or White Labs Liquid Yeast, refrigerate the yeast ASAP until you are ready to brew.
Before brew day:
If you're using Wyeast, activate the Smack Pack the night before your brew day. To do this, place the pack on a hard surface and break the inner pouch with the palm of your hand. Wait 3-6 hours (room temperature) for the pouch to expand. At this point a yeast starter should be prepared and the contents of the expanded pack pitched into it. With White Labs and Wyeast Activators, simply warm the yeast to room temperature, 4-5 hours prior to brewing.
- Start heating 2-5 gallons of water in your brewing kettle. Place the specialty grains in the muslin bag, tie the open end in a knot and steep the grains for 20 minutes or until the water reaches 170 degrees (whichever comes first).
- Remove grain and allow liquid from the bag to drain into your kettle. Discard grains and bag, then bring your water to a boil.
- Once a boil is achieved, remove the kettle from the burner and add the malt extract while stirring. When the extract is added and dissolved, return the kettle to the burner and bring to a boil.
- Boil for one hour adding the hops as specified by the kit instructions.
- Chill and pour the wort (unfermented beer) into the sanitized primary fermenter. Top off with cold tap water to the 5.5-gallon mark on the side of the fermenter.
- Add the yeast.
- Seal up the fermenter, insert airlock, and wait for the fermentation process to finish. (usually 10-14 days).
- Siphon the beer into the bottling bucket with the priming sugar solution in the bottom and bottle.
Patience is a virtue! Wait 3-4 weeks and sample.