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How Many Ounces (of hops) in an IPA

I’ve been brewing for ~5 years now and believe it or not, I’m just starting to get into IPAs. IPAs seem to have missed my neck of the woods (except in homebrew circles) and I hadn’t had enough decent examples to see the point until I really made a point to buy some on trips to New England.

(and on my last trip I REALLY MADE A POINT TO BUY SOME).

Anyhoo, thanks to a couple of homebrewer friends who are real IPA appreciators, I’ve started trying my hand at them, and each time I’ve been upping the hops load. I think there’s a point where more bittering becomes pointless and I think most people enjoy more of the flavour and aroma hops, so my philosophy is to chuck a decent bittering addition in at 60 minutes (say, a 40 IBU baseline), and then load on more additions from 15 minutes onwards.

My last beer had 7 ounces of hops, or about $25 worth, buying in 1 ounce containers. I chucked in an ounce of Magnum at 60 minutes and the rest were at 15 min, whirlpool, and dry.

How are other people dosing their beer? I’m more interested in “favourite” IPAs, not blast your buds IPAs (I know of someone who made a 1000 IBU example, but that’s more of hop soup or pure extract as opposed to beer, IMHO).

The most I’ve used is 10 oz for five gallons. 8 oz were added in the last 15 mins, 1/2 oz every minute. Made for a lot of trub, but very drinkable.
If you’re going to brew hop forward beers, you might look into buying by the pound. Freshhops and hopsdirect are great. Much cheaper.

+1 to bulk buying - having plenty of hops on hand makes it possible to add one or two extra ounces or to double the dryhop on a whim. You also could try using a more aggressive bittering hop, like Cascade or Columbus, both of which will add a nice tongue-coating bitterness to the beer.

Hmmmm … I hop my Pale Ales to 38-50 IBU with mostly late additions like 30, 20, 15, 10, 5, 0 minutes left in the boil. So my IPA’s are probably over the top as they are more geared towards NW IPA’s. I tend to like the late hopping techniques much better even though it takes a crapload more hops to reach the desired IBU range. The beers are more drinkable and your nose knows what beer it is long before it ever touches your lips.

Typical hop amounts for my IPA’s are 2# per 22 gallons or about 8oz per 5 gallon batch.

Hmm, I guess i’m over the top in my bittering and IBUs as I try to achieve between 80 and 100 IBUs, I then dry hop to try and achieve the hop taste that I like.

[quote=“mppatriots”]Hmm, I guess i’m over the top in my bittering and IBUs as I try to achieve between 80 and 100 IBUs, I then dry hop to try and achieve the hop taste that I like.[/quote]That was for my pale ales. For IPA, I shoot for 75-80 IBU.

I typically top out at about 80 IBU’s with 50’s being the norm.

I probably should have added that i have been thinking that 80 IBUs is a better number than 100. But having said this, I feel that IBUs and their impact on mouthfeel is only half of the equation as I feel like the malt profile is a huge part of the equation.

I think it’s pretty hard to judge what an IBU is from one person to the next. I’ve had a friend’s beer that was supposed to be 80 IBU and I would have called it 50ish. The online calculator I use gives a bittering value of 0 to whirlpool additions, whereas my wort is still pretty hot when I’m doing the whirlpool (I don’t use a chiller), so for sure I’m pulling out some bitterness. I always enter those additions as 1 minute additions rather than 0 min into the calculator so that at least I get some indication of the bitterness they’re actually contributing.

Water hardness is also supposed to play a role in how sharp or smooth the bitterness comes out. And yeah, malt bill/residual sweetness.

Then there’s the issue of how much vegetable matter, tannins, etc are coming along for the ride, which is basically why I started the thread - to see if I was in the same ballpark as other brewers. Obviously you can get more efficient bittering by earlier additions of 20 % AA hops, but the real question is how far can you go in the other direction - 2 lbs at flameout?

My last two IPAs were 68 and 50 IBU’s and had 7 and 9oz hops respectively. I prefer to get more hops towards 15-flameout. Bitter with a baseline of high alpha, then rock the boat with your flavors. Dry hop generously.

For my hoppy Pale Ales and IPA’s I shoot for about a 1:1 BU:GU ratio (i.e., my 1.065 IPA gets 65 IBU’s). I put about 1/3 to 1/2 my IBU’s at 60 minutes from either Columbus or Chinook. The rest of my IBU’s go at 15 minutes. I do 3-gallon batches and usually do an ounce at flameout and 1 to 1.5 ounces as a dryhop (so double that for a 5-6 gallon batch).

That’s just my base “everyday” hoppy beer schedule. When I want massive hoppiness, all bets are off. I have an IIPA on the schedule for next week that I’m going to end up using 18oz of hops (plus 60IBU’s of Hop Shot) for a 4-gallon (preboil) batch.

Speaking of New England IPA’s - Harpoon IPA is one of my favorite all-time IPA’s and it’s pretty simple. Grain bill is 2-row, munich and victory (no crystal malt!). It’s about 1.060 with 40 IBU’s (all Cascade).

My average IPA has 5-6 oz of hops.
.5 to 1 oz at 60m
2 oz at flameout
2-3 oz dry hop

I’m in the 5 to 6 oz use as well.

I really don’t understand people using a pound in a five gallon batch. I really think that is over kill.

And I have never had an issue with hop flavor coming through on any ipa I have brewed.

I usually use 7 ~ 9 oz for a “standard” IPA. 90 % of the time I’ll go with an ounce or 2 for FWH/bittering and the bulk will be at flameout/DH.

That said, brew the Surly Furious clone (NB’s) or Vinnie’s Pliny recipe and you are going to BURN some hops! :shock:

I have the Pliny on tap right now and it is fantastic! :smiley:

Proof positive that more hops leads to happy drinking. :wink:


My last couple of IPAs had 10oz hops each. 2oz@60, 2oz@15, 2oz@5, 2oz@FO, and 2oz@DH. And these are some high alpha/high oil hops too.

If you are doing an 5 to 5.5gal IPA that is just not an IPA. That is an double ipa. Just saying.

For example, I went to the top end of an ipa 1.075 and at 5.5gal batch and just enough carmal to give me an srm over 6

14.5# 2-row, 0.375 C80 And 75% eff. OG 1.075

All single hopped varieties for math purposes.

Amarillo(8.6%) - 87.2 IBU
Cascade(7.8%) - 79.1 IBU And my cascade at home is actually higher than 7.8%’
Centennial (9.7%) - 98.4 IBU
Chinook (11.4) - 115.6 IBU
Citra (11.1) - 112.5 IBU
Columbus (14.3) - 143.9
Nugget (10.0) - 101.4

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