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Time spent on extract brew day

how much time do you spend on brew day from start to finish. extract brewing

2 hours, maybe a little more

Probably 2.5 hours when cleaning and wort cooling are factored in for me.

Around 2-2.5hours on the average. (got in TWO brew days this weekend!!!)

I brewed this morning and it took 3.5 hours including clean up but the recipe also called for steeping specialty grains which I did for 30 mins. What are some things you do to save time? I’m looking into buying an outdoor burner to speed up boiling process.

Get a turkey fryer/burner. That will speed you up a lot. Add the extract before your kettle starts to boil, after steeping the grains. This way you won’t need to wait for it to boil, remove it, add extract, then bring up to a boil again. (the extract is already prepared, so boiling it does not affect the fementability, the boil is for getting the hop oils into your wort). I use a glass top indoor range and get a brew day done it about 2-2.5hrs using this method.

Of course re-hydrate, or smack your smackpack, to get the yeast ready while your boil is going.

Sanitize all fermenting equipment during your boil. (gotta do something while the clock counts down)

Get an immersion chiller…worth every penny

Listen to some good tunes, have a homebrew, and for the love of all things good—Enjoy!!!

I guess this old man is doing something wrong. Since I started brewing back in the early two thousands, I have never brewed a batch of beer in two hours. My average time to brew a simple batch of extract is three to four hours start to finish. Most of my brew days start to finish is closer to five hours. Maybe I need some help, when I’m finished all of my equipment is clean, dried and stored in it’s proper place. I don’t see how I can do it any quicker.

Cheers,
Jazzman

Nothing as fast as 2 hours. I usually do at least 1 extract batch during the winter just to stay inside. I don’t know but it will run into at least 3-4 hours.

When I started I used an ice bath to cool a partial boil and it took forever. I made a immersion wort chiller and it cut the time considerably.

I am right in the 3 hour range start to finish give or take 15 min each way. Never just 2 - 2 1/2 hours

When I brew indoors I steep the grains in a 1/2 gallon of water for 20 minutes, remove the bag and then bring it to a rolling boil. In the meantime I am boiling 2-2 1/2 gallons of water in my main pot with the LID ON. Since both pots come to a rolling boil in about 1/2 hour, I throw the steeped water into the larger pot. It probably saves me about 30 minutes because trying to bring 3 gallons of water to a rolling boil in an UNLIDDED pot takes forever on a gas range.
Even with this shortcut, I have never finished less than 3 1/2 hours.

[quote=“Jasperjuice”]When I brew indoors I steep the grains in a 1/2 gallon of water for 20 minutes, remove the bag and then bring it to a rolling boil. In the meantime I am boiling 2-2 1/2 gallons of water in my main pot with the LID ON. Since both pots come to a rolling boil in about 1/2 hour, I throw the steeped water into the larger pot. It probably saves me about 30 minutes because trying to bring 3 gallons of water to a rolling boil in an UNLIDDED pot takes forever on a gas range.
Even with this shortcut, I have never finished less than 3 1/2 hours.[/quote]

I also split the water when steeping grains but use a gallon per pound. It really helps to speed up the boiling process. Steeping with less water also reduces risk of tannin extraction because the smaller volume will have a lower pH.

Back when I used to brew extract, it would typically take me 3-4 hours. That included everything from prepping ingredients to clean up, though it did NOT include chilling time. I used an ice bath back then, and that would add an additional hour or two to the process.

After the second AG brew I did, I bought a chiller, which brought my total time back to what it had been for my extract brews.

Helped to justify the switch, as it took no extra time…

2-1/2 - 3 hours start to finish.

Part of my deal is having equipment ready the night before. Using the NB kit instructions with 2.5 gallons water for the steep/boil, chilling only to 100, then pouring onto cold water in fermenter to bring wort to mid 70’s. As such, I rarely go much over 2 hours, including cleaning…which I drip-dry.
I can get a basic all grain batch done in 3.5 hours - it’s about cleaning as you go…knowing when you can walk away from a stable boil to clean a mash tun, for instance.

My brew days with extract kits are about 2 hours from cold start to finished clean up. I can finish up a few minutes sooner with shorter boils - I do 30-minute boils for my “house” brew - on up to a glacial 3.5 hour day when I brewed my Plinian Legacy kit (90-minute boil).

Things that I feel speed up my day:

  1. full-volume boils - no need to have top-up water boiled/cooled at the ready
  2. wort chiller and whirlpool used in two stages: first, tap-to-washing machine until about 120*, then fountain pump drawing from a 5-gallon Igloo cooler with ice bath (I re-freeze the used water a few times due to CA drought conditions)
  3. turkey fryer setup - gets water hot and ready quickly

If the recipe on a particular day has long times between additions or other attention that needs to be paid, I get my sanitizing prep work completed then. I also use 5-gallon buckets for Star-san and other clean-up. I can get done even faster if I brew during daylight hours and can rinse stuff outside with a hose rather than my cramped kitchen or when I need to take care to be quiet due to sleeping kids.

A brew using a 30 minute steep and 60 minute boil takes me 3 hours from deciding to do it until I’m cleaned up and moving onto the next part of my day. I feel that’s being pretty efficient. You add 15-20 minutes to cool the wort and you’re already close to 60 minutes remaining. It takes at least 20 minutes to get the water up to temp… 2.5 hours would be very quick.

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