Steeping Grain To Enhance Your Beer Kit

Steeping Malts To Enhance Your Beer Kits

What is steeping? Steeping is the process of choosing a crushed grain and adding to hot water to draw flavour and colour out of the specialIty malt. For best results steep at 150° F (65.5°C) to 170° F (76.6°C) and "dunk" and agitate the grain and water to improve the extraction. Steep for about 30 minutes.

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Which Malts To Choose

What malts can be steeped? It is not recommended to steep Base Malts, Pale Ale Malt, Munich Malts or other malts with a mealy endosperm because starch could be extracted which would interfere later in the brewing process. These malts need to be partial mashed or mashed, which activates the malt enzymes and converts the grain starches into fermentable sugars.


Briess malts suitable for steeping include:

Carapils® Malt (a unique dextrine malt different than other dextrine malts on the market)

Victory® Malt

Special Roast Malt

Extra Special Malt

All Caramel Malts (Crystal Malts)

All Dark Roasted Malts

All Roasted Barley

The Process

The simple technique of steeping malts makes it possible for extract brewers to brew virtually an unlimited variety of beer styles. Put the 500 gram bag of crushed grains in nylon mesh bag or any fine mesh material to make it easier to separate the spent grains from the wort:

Fasten your mesh bag with a string, clothes peg.

Fill a stainless steel pot (a 10 to 15 litre pot is ideal) about one-half to two-thirds full of water. Heat the water to 65.5°C to 76.6°C. Turn off the heat.

Put the bag in the hot water and steep for 30 minutes. While the grain is steeping you can start to mix your beer kit ingredients with 1.5 litres of boiling water. The beer kit may recommend 3 litres of boiling water in the instructions, but as we will be adding the warm steeped wort, 3 litres of boiling water will be to much.

Remove the nylon bag from the water.

Sparge the remaining flavour and colour from the grains in the nylon mesh bag into the same fermenting vessel as the mixed beer kit ingredients. To do this, put the nylon mesh bag in a strainer or large sieve that will fit across your fermenting vessel, pour 1 litre of hot water ( around 75°C) over the bag of grains to wash out the remaining sugars and flavours from the grains.

Now top up the fermenting vessel with cold water to the required amount, making sure to keep an eye on the temperature, to hit a final temperature of around 20 to 25 degrees C. Before pitching the yeast you should check the temperature of the wort to make sure its not to warm or to cold for the yeast.