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Ice cubes in kettle

Just a thought here, but what could go wrong if I put ice cubes directly into the wort to chill it? I’m doing extract, so have to use top off water anyway. Also, I’d only use ice from my fridge that goes through a filter. No concern about contamination. Has anyone done this?

Youd be better off freezing a jug and sanitizing that prior to immersion in wort. Water and ice can still pick up contamination in the freezer. But then again people top off with tap water so as long as there is a healthy yeast pitch I can’t really see any difference between the two methods.

Lots of people used this method. I think the issue lies in that an ice maker is not 100% sanitary and you could still be introducing contamination. But I bet it’s no higher risk than tap water!

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Possibly less since you’d be putting it in 212 wort. When I need to top off it is ALWAYS at the danger zone temps.

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I wouldn’t use the ice maker. Sanitize some Tupperware and freeze some water in it. Less chance for contamination

Honestly I think there are too many variables to say yes or no. I mean you could break it down to what other crap you have in your freezer that could be blowing around onto the ice when the door is closed and the fan kicks on. Tap water vs ice… maybe not a huge difference other than one is exposed to air and the POSSIBILITY of clinging onto something nasty. I’ve worked construction for a long time before I switched to catching badguys. During that time, I’ve seen the insides of plumbing pipes that would make you puke.
Again, to be on the side of caution, I would probably get pre bottled gallons of water from the store, empty some out and freeze those. BUT, I’ve seen many batches of beer ferment just fine with the use of ice cubes and or tap water… I just personally wouldn’t do it. 1: I store lots of meats and fish in my freezer 2: My kids go in and out of there grabbing snacks and pop cycles etc 3: Not sure I trust the possibility of outside air being blown in with the freezer fan and into the ice … that’s just me

Why take the risk. It might work. Or not. Me use ice to cool the wort. We put the. Boil kettle. In a big ice bucket. Swirl it around. For. 10 min. And it comes down. To 78

Bacteria is not killed by freezing in case anyone thinks the bacteria count is reduced in any way by that process. So contamination will only get worse. I wouldn’t do it.

Specially with Pops cycle in there, kinda, well, just aint a good place to store it!:grin: Sneezles61

There’s a non-zero risk of contamination with any approach. Whether from the ice maker or the tap, you can find black mold. How often do you remove and clean the aerator on your kitchen faucet? I’ve topped extract batches from the faucet, from the ice maker, from “beverage grade” ice, and ice made in frozen storage containers. I never got an infection, but maybe I just got lucky? I will say, I think if any of the approaches were particularly stupid, my wife, brew partner, and professional microbiologist would have said so. She is generally very quick to point out when she thinks I’m doing something stupid.


We are soooo lucky to be reminded of some of the things we shouldn’t pass onto others, aren’t we? Sneezles61

That’s what I do brew cat. I sanitize 2 half gallon Tupperware containers and their lids. I fill them with bottled water and freeze them 3 days before brew day. No problems after 20+ brews.

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Isn’t every wife quick to point out when they think their husband is doing something stupid? :wink:

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Keeps them busy

Thanks for the input everyone. Will stick to ice baths until I get the wort chiller.

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