Adding Apple Concentrate to Hefe

I was thinking about adding some apple concentrate at the end of the boil to the Bev Hefe. I noticed if I add 3 12oz cans to beersmith (based on a 1.200) it will up the OG to apx 1.170. The other option I looked at is halving the grain bill and that keeps it closer to apx 1.050.

I guess the question is has anyone done this?
Will the Wyeast 3068 be able to keep up?
Was planning on a starter, but limited to a 1L beaker, can I step up in this size, or should I make a starter split and then make two more starters?
If so would 3 12oz cans that make 1 gallon of apple juice be enough to impart some apple flavor?
Will half the grain bill still be enough to impart some of the beer flavors?

I figure worse case if I have to half the grain bill I can always try more the next time around.

I make an apple ale with a Belgian yeast, which would not be a lot different from how a hefeweizen yeast would turn out. The difference is, I use a gallon of fresh orchard cider in a 3-gallon batch. 3 cans of apple concentrate in 5 gallons should be enough to detect it without being overpowering. Mostly what I get in my own apple ale is a sort of tartness but then the apple flavor comes through more in the aftertaste. With a hefeweizen, you will still get that tartness but I’m not sure how much apple flavor will come through due to the spicy and banana flavors from that yeast strain. It would probably help to keep the fermentation temperature as low as possible, close to 61-63 F if you can manage that. Interesting… the clove flavors from the yeast should meld very nicely with the apple actually. If you want to assure good apple flavor, consider using 4 or even 5 cans, I bet that would turn out very nicely. I would cut the grain bill down as you have planned to keep specific gravity lower, good idea.

Please let us know how this turns out. Sounds like a pretty good plan to me.


Thanks for the input, was thinking of 6 cans at first but the OG was high so dropped to the 3. But splitting the grain bill will solve that. One other addition that I’m thinking is of course some pie spices or just cinnamon during the boil, and possibly 1oz cinnamon sticks in the primary after a week. Have seen recipes for tea and others where cinnamon apple and clove can actually make a good combo. Keeping temps that low isn’t going to be a problem will be brewing this with 1 week left on my VandalEye PA that is dry hopping so the cold won’t hurt. Now the regular recipe has this finishing at about 2 weeks should I push this one for at least a month because of the extra sugars? I know a gravity reading is the only way to tell, just don’t want to be popping the lid more than I have to.

Oh yeah, fermentation will be slow from the apple concentrate. Figure about 5-6 weeks in primary. Yes I’m serious.

Good to know, then I may want to do my Black IPA first that way I can have it going for 2-3 weeks at 65 in the fermentation chamber before throwing in the hefe and dropping it to 63.

OK so the plan is to brew this weekend. Here is what the recipe looks like atm. Thinking about making a starter with my Wyeast 3068 and then splitting and stepping up half, that way if it stalls I can make another starter to pitch. Plan on a 4 week fermentation and another 2 weeks with cinnamon sticks. Was thinking about molasses but might make this without and try another batch with. Suggestions welcome.

2lb 12oz Pale Wheat Malt
2lb German Pilsner Malt
1oz Tettnang @60
2tbsp Cinnamon Spice @5
5 12oz (3lb 12oz) Frozen Apple Concentrate @ flameout
1oz Cinnamon Sticks 2wks before bottling

If the math on the Apple Concentrate is correct (1.070, 0 IBU, 3 SRM) this will give me;
OG 1.077
IBU 25
Color 3.5
Est ABV 8.4

I might be wrong, but personally I’d use more restraint on the spicing with cinnamon or whatever. Sometimes they say “less is more” and this is likely a case where that might be true. So maybe only add 1 teaspoon, then soak 1 stick for just a couple of days, taste and see where it’s at, and remove if it tastes good. Just a suggestion. But I could be wrong. Good luck.

Yeah you are probably right. Think I’ll do just that.

Well it’s in the books. Hit my post mash Gravity on the nose. However I guess the info I got about the concentrate was waaayyyy off. It was nowhere near 1.070, it’s more like 1.016 per lb. I also calculated the lbs wrong I used the fl oz thinking normal oz to lb instead of using the grams of sugar to lbs so I missed my planned OG. In the end putting in this new info means I did hit what BS says the OG should be at 1.034 so it’s going to be a low ABV beer. I guess that’s OK I’ll just call it a session beer and have something light to drink this summer. Next time I’ll know.

Thought I’d give a little update. So it did come out really Lite about 3.5% ABV. Next time I think I’ll double up on everything. It does have a very clean flavor and I poured it with the yeast as a Hefe should be poured. I got the hint of the spicyness and clove. Think it would use maybe a little more cinnamon so will probably double that along with the grain and apple.

Awesome thread… Gonna have to bookmark this one and come back to it to try myself!!! …still recommending a long primary ferment?

That’s what I did, Dave seems to know his stuff when it comes to cider, graf

, and apple beers. Low and slow kept it at about 60ish for 3 weeks, then up at 63 for the remainder because I made a La Petite Orange. I think this way it doesn’t cause all the little yeasties to go bonsai on the sugar and apple and keeps some of the residual flavor and sweetness and keeps it from getting too dry.