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Shelf Life of Extract Kits

Hi All,

I purchased an extract kit back in Oct and never got around to brewing. Now that the snow if starting to melt, is it still ok to brew? I put the hops in the freezer, so they should still be fresh, I just not sure about the malt extract or the grains (which were crushed).


If the extract was sealed up tight and wasn’t stored at elevated temperatures, it shouldn’t have aged too much since October. The crushed grains are likely stale though. Taste a pinch of the grains, and see how it tastes; you’ll know immediately if it is still good.

What about the hops, (in sealed original bags and stored at room temp.)?

I have a little experience on this. I live about 4 hours away from any kind of decent brew store, so we stocked up when we visited Northern Brewer. It generally went that the longer I waited, the worse the beer turned out. I have since refined my brewing and making sure to brew in a timely manner is one of them. I had a number of harsh batches…and I blame them on a couple things…steeping grains past 170 and the kits being old. Some of the beer mellowed with time (4+ months sitting), but I now make sure to brew everything I buy within two weeks. I drink everything I make no matter how it turns out, and I just don’t want to drink any more bad beer!

My uneducated guess would be crushed grain is good <30 days, should be pretty good <45 days, but is really pushing it past then. I would think sealed extract is good for a very long time.

I agree with you on the extract, it will keep for a long time, but it will also darken over time and could pick up flavors from the container it is in or become less fermentable.
The grain life is dependent on how well it is sealed, and particularly on any exposure to humidity. Uncrushed grain will keep pretty much indefinitely if it is kept dry. Crushed grain is much more vulnerable to moisture, and can go stale in a matter of just a few days if allowed to.

Agreed in full. I’ve got a cool, dry room in the basement where I store my kits.

Brew it
What’s the alternative? Throw it all out? No way!
Disclaimer: I am a novice brewer but an master tightwad.

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I haven’t had a problem with year old Northern Brewer kits. Brewer’s Best tends to seal their steeping grains a little better and those seem to be good for about 2 or so years. Obviously the yeast may need to be fresher.

[quote=“Lost Hop”]Brew it
What’s the alternative? Throw it all out? No way!
Disclaimer: I am a novice brewer but an master tightwad.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk[/quote]
The alternative is to replace just those ingredients that have gone bad, and use the other stuff like the extract, which is the most expensive stuff in the kit. You do NOT want to spend a lot of time brewing something that you won’t be happy with in the end.

Just purchased my yeast! I’m going to brew and see what happens. I figured the additional cost was yeast and propane. In my mind, worth the chance that 5 gallons of beer turns out pretty good.

If its crappy, I will have a party and give to my friends. :lol:

Thanks for the advice

Atta boy!

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