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Itching to brew again

Took some time off to welcome two new additions to our family. I’m looking to brew again but this time going small and brew 1-2 gallon all grain stovetop. Anyone have any tips/tricks for small batch all grain. Looking for an easy recipe maybe a pale ale or IPA to get things rolling. I’m ready to make steps in the right direction and stop over thinking everything. Looking to use my 3 gallon carboy instead of a gallon jug for fermentation so I’m looking to make the perfect batch size with the right amount of headspace. Anyone have an estimate on cost of a 1-2 gallon all grain batch? What size brew kettle will work for stovetop BIAB or this size? Any small batch brewers have any suggestions?

Maybe 2.5 gallons would be better if I’m going to spend the time doing all grain.

Get a food-grade 5 gallon bucket from your local box store. Omega lid, drill it out for a grommet and airlock. They’re perfect for 2.5-3 gallon stovetop batches.

Been there, and yes, I think it’s the right next step. Can do a batch on the stove with a 5-gallon stock pot and play with the kids during mashing, boiling, and so forth. It’s actually a pretty relaxed brew day.

Can’t go wrong with a 2-row and c-hop SMaSH. Good luck, and congrats!

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Only 5-5.5 gallons here but anyway, welcome back!

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I brew 2.05gal (so I can scale up) test batches. 3gsl carboy is perfect for 2-2.5gal batches. I do BIAB for test batches because it’s so easy and requires so little space at that amount.

Congrats on your new additions!

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Take a look at what @dmtaylo2 and @jmck said over here Small (2 or 3 gallon) batch brewing (2017).

Beer, Mead and the Best Beer Recipes from the National Homebrew Competition has lots of good recipes. Divide by two (or three). For standard OG, you can often pitch 1/2 packet of dry yeast - double check the pitch rate with mrmalty - he’ll keep you out of trouble :slight_smile: .

A while back, I said “f*ck it” to the idea that this hobby has levels. No levels - just new techniques to add to my hobby.

What about DME? Is “next level” thinking limiting your hobby?


Hey, didn’t you buy a Spike kettle some time ago? Congratulations on your new additions! I think you’ll do well tinkering with smaller extract batches, the little ones need alot of attention… I think I did whilst I grew up! Sneezles61

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2 new additions!? Mazel tov!

If you can already brew 5-gallons AG, you can do smaller. But there are a few considerations. Scaling recipes is theoretically just using the right proportions, but I often use BeerSmith’s “scale recipe” feature for the first pass, then I go in to shift amounts to ‘sane’ quantities.

You can only buy whole packets/vials of yeast, but there’s less need for a starter.

Most 5-gallon recipe “kits” are designed to minimize wasted hops. That can go out the window when you scale-down the recipe. So if you have a 5-gallon recipe that calls for 1-ounce each of 3 different hops, and you cut that in half; you still have to buy 1-ounce each of 3 different hops. So unless you do some planning ahead, you’re still paying for an ounce and a half of hops that won’t be used in that 2.5 gal batch.

If you buy in bulk already, the cost seems to scale more proportional to batch size; what holds true for any non-kit brewer holds true here: minimize cost by bulk buying your most-often used ingredients. I buy Centennial and EKG hop pellets in bulk (for my go-to IPA and Irish Red recipes respectively) I have big sacks of 2-row and MO for the same reasons. I usually head to the LHBS for yeast, specialty grain and other hops. This makes me feel like the brew only cost me under $10, but obviously I’m not considering the base malt or bulk hops in that.

If you’re used to outdoor brewing on a turkey frier; I would suggest boiling a pot filled with your target batch size just to get a feel for how long it takes to come to a boil. If you can get the timing down, it would be perfect to have the boil start at the same time as the afternoon nap. Play with the kids during the mash, so they’re good and tired.

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I do 1.25 gallons batches in a little big mouth bubbler. For recipes divide any 5 gallon batches by 4 . My all grain batches on done with a colander over a 3 gallon stock pot.

Are you brewing with “just” an airlock? or starting with a blow-off tube?

I use blow off for first week then go to the 3 piece airlock 2nd week .

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If you looking for some ways to keep it simple and brew 2 - 3 gallon batches with your existing equipment,there are a couple of good articles over that may be helpful:

Chris Colby has a number of some of slightly non-traditional ideas at his web site that may be of interest to you. The peeps I know who brew smaller batches and with DME have tried many of these ideas with good results:

  • Shorter mashes - they work;
  • shorter boils - they work;
  • adding minerals to water to get a “pop” in extract or partial mash IPAs - works. This idea isn’t breaking new ground (see Pale Ale back in 1999). Is it time for that “old wives tale” about DME having ‘all the minerals you need’ to die?

If you like his web site, there’s a lot more in his book Homebrew Recipe Bible.

Thanks everyone for all the advise! Great ideas. Reading into the posted links thanks @smallbatchbrewer.

Good to hear from you… once in a while! We’ll be here when it works! Sneezles61

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