Questions about storing ingredients

Hi all, Need some basic advice…

I want to buy a fairly large selection of different LME’s, yeasts and various hops. The point of which is to brew a bunch of different small batch (1 to 3 gal) beers to learn about different flavor profiles and combinations. You know, do things like same malt & hops but different yeast. Different combos of malts, etc. etc. I have equipment to ferment two small batches and two 5 gal batches at a time.

So what’s the general rule of thumb for storing the ingredients both partially used and sealed? How long are they good for? What’s the best temp to store them? I don’t think I would store partially used yeasts, but definitely would malt and probably hops too.

of course any other advice on this endeavor would be helpful as well.


Hops are best stored with as little oxygen, light, and heat as possible. Vacuum sealed and in the freezer is great. Ziplock with the air squeezed out, in the freezer is okay for a few months.

Grains should be stored so as to minimize light, air, and heat. Tupperware, ziplock bags, and sealable buckets work well. A dry basement where they’ll be cool and out of the light works well. Vacuum sealed and in the freezer wouldn’t hurt if you have the ability.

DME would be fine in an airtight container in a cupboard.

Opened LME would do well in a sealed container in the fridge. The freezer wouldn’t hurt. Unopened is ok at room temp for a few weeks, otherwise, I’d put it in the fridge.

Yeast would do best in the fridge when it’s not in use.

Awesome. Thanks for the info. Let the mass micro brewing begin… :smiley:

I store my hops in the freezer. Roll them back up tight in the foil packs they come in, then place in ziploc and in the freezer they go.

For grains, I store in my old fermentor buckets that I have retired. It seems that most of my 10 gallon recipe batches have 20 lbs of base grains; so I weigh out 20 lbs place in the “retired” brewing bucket, snap the lid shut and it is ready to go for my next batch - just add the specialty malts. (I just tape up the hole where the airlock went)

Also, at work we eat a lot of those large plastic jugs of “Utz” pretzels. They have wide mouths and store the 1 lb specialty grain bags perfectly. I have a pretzel container for each Crystal malt, wheat malt, etc.

Yeast - keep in the fridge. I always keep about 6 packets of dry US-05 yeast on hand for those days I did not plan ahead and make a starter but get the urge to brew.

Hops are best stored cold, away from light, and away from oxygen. My hops are vacuum-packed and in the freezer.

DME is best stored cool and dry. I don’t typically buy more than 3-5 pounds at a time, so they generally stay in their original container until they get opened, then I simply store it in a ziploc in my basement once opened. Ditto with whole grains.

Dry yeast goes in the fridge for me. I always have US-05, T-58 and 71B (for mead) in the fridge and will probably add S-04 to that list soon.

Liquid yeast, LME and crushed grains are fairly perishible, so I typically don’t plan on storing them too long. One exception is that I do keep a small amount of Munich LME in the freezer for impromptu extract brew days. I really wish someone would make Munich DME, though.