How many Lbs grain for 5gal? General process and equipment?

If I wanted say about 5gal of 5% ABV beer, about how many pounds grain would that take?

I’m thinking of maybe trying an all grain this winter sometime.

I did allot of reading up on all grain long ago, but forgot just about everything I read.

If I remember correct some people were using coolers and ice chests for mashing?

I’ll do some searching and reading up again, but what’s a general process and equipment needed?

Depends on type of grain, equipment setup (BIAB, vs 3V, vs RIMS, etc) and a whole bunch of other factors, but in general plan on 9-10lbs of grain for a 5-gallon, 5% batch.

As for your other questions, that response could literally fill volumes of textbooks; and those books have already been written. Read up on the forum here, also check out the all grain section of Palmer’s book:
. For the cooler method look into Denny’s batch sparge:
. Read up on BIAB here:

Good luck :cheers:

Take a look at

Thanks Guys.

That does not look or sound too hard, I thought there was a bit more to it than that.
I know there’s allot to learn about the grains and how to mix what for various beers and styles. but I should be able to do the Batch Sparge with a cooler.

I’ll start getting things together and look for a not too hard recipe to try while I brew up the 3 extract kits that came in today.

There is the simple and effective “denny brew” system.

Or a little upgrade.

After you do your 1st AG beer you will say, WFT was I worried about. Just like the 1st extract beer.

My process:

Start your water 20* warmer. Add to the cooler. Allow to “pre heat the cooler”.

When the water is 10* warmer, add the grain. Stir until the temp comes down to the temp you want.

Close the lid and wait 1 hour.

Recirculate to clear and drain. Add new water, recirculate and drain.

for water amounts, down load mashwater 3.3. ... tware.html

Choose any one of the kits and brew it up.

No disrespect intended toward the lustreking setup, but I tried a ball valve like that and decided I preferred my simple nylon valve. It just seemed easier to control. Also, when I installed a bulkhead like that, I found that it didn’t allow my braid to sit flat on the bottom of the cooler and it was difficult to get a good siphon to fully drain the cooler. That system obviously works for a lot of people, so I just wanted to point out the other side of things. Sometimes fancier may not be better.

I had a valve that leaked into the walls and out the side, so went to a valveless cooler, similar to this picture from Palmer’s book. I just submerge the tubing enough to fill with wort, and drop it over the edge to start the siphon.

I like the ball valve design only because the with the nylon hose/nylon valve design, I invariably ended up with a really narrow bottleneck at some point in the design.

There are a lot of variations on the Cheap-N-Easy system, and I think it often comes down to a matter of preference or convenience. My version has a ball valve and a slotted CPVC manifold because I had them and an unused 28-quart picnic cooler on hand. So, my move to all-grain cost me all of $5.00 for a nipple and an adapter fitting. That was almost six years ago and, though my system has changed and grown, I still use that same cooler MLT for most 5-gallon batches of beers up to around 1.060.

In any case, I think some version of the Cheap-N-Easy system and batch sparging is the easiest way to step up or into all-grain brewing. As long as you’re able to do a full boil and have a decent way to chill a full batch of wort effectively, all-grain isn’t much more difficult than extract brewing.

Oh ya, I hadn’t thought of the kettle for the full boil. Doing Extract I get by with the 4gal pot for a boil and add more pre-boiled water to the fermenter as needed.
I’ll be needing a larger pot I guess!

Would it work as well and I get the same result if I were to boil up say 3 gal wort just to sterilize it, then boil up 3gal with the hops and anything else and add that to the first 3gal boil in the fermenter?

What I used to do before moving to an outdoor floor burner and a 10 gallon kettle was to combine all of my wort (first runnings and second runnings) into a plastic bucket (with sometimes a little more than the bucket could hold that went directly into a kettle) then I drained the bucket into two kettles and proceeded to boil both – I split the hop additions equally between the pots. That system worked rather well for my condo set up for several years.

Are you boiling stovetop or on a burner?

If stovetop, you might consider doing something like the above split pot boil. I would hesitate to boil water and hops seperately from concentrated wort – first, you’d need to use more grain to concentrate the wort and secondly, I believe that hops boiled in plain water would be more astringent than hops boiled in wort (others will certainly correct me if I’m mistaken about that, but that is my memory of something I read about hop isomerization many moons ago). [EDIT: I think I misread your suggestion as being 3 gals of concentrated wort and 3 gal of hopped water – upon re-reading, I think you are saying 3 gal wort and another 3 gal hopped wort. Personally, I would want the wort in each kettle to be the same gravity and have each kettle get the same amount of hops spread between them – limiting the hop addition to only half the batch will not utilize the hops as efficiently as adding hops to the full amount, but that is just a preference and probably of negligible effect, given that that is precisely how stovetop extract brewing typically works.]

If you’re already boiling on a burner, I’d encourage you to make the leap and invest in a large kettle, if you are able – you won’t look back.

Very true. I couldn’t resist an oppertunity to tinker so i installed a valve. Anyway it wasn’t a big deal I just tilted the mash tun. One idea I’m going to try is leave a section of the tube inside so the braid lays flat to salvage the 50$ I spent on plumbing hardware when I could have spent less and had it work better :idea:

Using 2 pots and dividing the wort and hops evenly I had not thought about but sounds like a good idea.