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Smashing Pumpkin Ale

I am doing the extract kit. I wanted to add some canned pumpkin and some extra spice. Does anybody have any good recommendations on how to do this? These are the instructions for fresh pumpkin, but I was looking to simplify it. Would you do basically the same thing as this or is there another way? And importantly, is it even worth putting pumpkin into this beer? I’ve read numerous times that it doesn’t change the taste.

If you want to incorporate actual vegetables in this
recipe, you’ll need to purchase an additional 2 or 3
pounds of Rahr 6-row (#G002) and provide your own 8
to 10 pound pumpkin (winter squash like butternut or
acorn will work if pumpkin is out of season). Cut up the
gourd, discard the innards, and roast or microwave the
pieces until soft and cooked through, then peel. Mash the
peeled, cooked pumpkin flesh with upto 3 gallons of hot
water, the 6-row and the included grains at 152°F for 1
hour. Then strain the liquid off and add it to the water in
the boil kettle, topping up to achieve 3 gallons.

Just make sure you get 100% pumpkin, no preservatives. You also need a couple of pounds base malt to drive the mini-mash, and a bag; the video on the product page describes the process.

I’ve never had a great pumpkin flavor from it, and I didn’t even try to make it this year; I’m over the pumpkin-spice everything craze.

I made the smashing pumpkin all grain kit not to long ago. I put 2 cans (soup can sized) of 100% pumpkin into the mash and then another 2 cans into the boil. The color and aroma was fantastic! It did give a hint of pumpkin flavor too.

Since your doing the extract kit, you can follow the directions on NB’s video for the mini-mash. If your not comfortable doing that then just add the pumpkin to the boil. It will be fine.

Really? So you can just put a can or two into the boil and call it good? What exactly does it do at that point? Is the starch in the pumpkin able to be used by the yeast?

I did a partial mash with 3 lbs of Libby’s canned pumpkin, 2 lbs 6 row, 1 lb caramel 40L, 1/2 lb biscuit in a bag

in an old boil kettle with the recommended 3 gallons of water on my stovetop for an hour. I decided on these grains based on reading multiple posts here and on homebrewtalk forums and gauging people’s recommended additions for this beer. I had never done a partial mash before and I definitely wanted to try incorporating real pumpkin into my first pumpkin beer. Why? Because I figured I’m making a pumpkin beer, why not use some of the real thing? :wink: I don’t like overly spiced pumpkin beers so I just stuck with the spice pack that came with the kit. I also added two vanilla beans split, quartered and scraped into some vodka for a week then put that in the secondary for a week before kegging. Mine turned out really well.

If you want to try the partial mash, rather than fiddling with the stove to keep temp stable over the course of the hour, I found a smaller pot that fit into my oven with the top rack taken out. Then I heated the oven to 150 (my oven’s lowest setting is 175 sadly so I couldn’t leave it on whole time) then shut it off. I did this once at the beginning of the hour and once at the 30 minute mark on my last partial mash I tried and it worked out really well. Give it a shot, it sounds intimidating but it’s really not that bad.


By adding it to the boil, your going to extract color and flavor. Same as any boil addition. It’s not going to bump the OG. After cooling, any residual pumpkin will be at the bottom of your kettle with hops and other trub. You can add an additional 1/2 gallon or so of water to the boil and/or additional top off water at the end to make up for the pumpkin.

Here’s a pic of my pumpkin. :cheers:

Awesome. Thanks guys.

Shoot. Forgot to ask. When would you recommend adding it to the boil?

Went with 10 minutes to go based on other stuff I found on the interwebs.

I forgot to put the dry malt in at the start. Whoops.

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