How to Brew Your Own Beer

Have you ever considered learning how to brew your own beer? Homebrewing is relatively easy and inexpensive to get started, and making your own beer is usually cheaper, too. Includes helpful step-by-step instructions for homebrewing.

| October/November 2008

Learn how to brew your own beer with this helpful guide. Homebrewing is a lot of fun, and it’s a great way to enjoy flavorful, affordable drinks.

How to Brew Your Own Beer

The revolution has happened. Chances are good that you live within a short drive of a brew pub, microbrewery, or — at the very least — a store from which you can purchase quality beer. In fact, the craft brew industry is so strong right now, you may wonder, “why even bother trying to brew my own beer?”

There are a few compelling reasons. First, you are in full control of the ingredients you put into your brew. This leads naturally to the second: Given that you have full control, you can brew beers to completely suit your own tastes, beers that commercial breweries would never risk brewing. Want to brew an American pale ale? Sure. Want to brew a chocolate cherry ancho pepper-flavored porter? Hey, I’m not here to judge. Third, while the initial cash outlay — though minimal — may intimidate some, it is far cheaper in the long run to brew your own beer than to buy microbrewed beer.

Beer Brew Tools

To get started brewing your own beer, you’ll need a few essential pieces of equipment. You can find all kinds of brewing supplies at local homebrew supply shops, or mail order online at sites such as Northern Brewer and William's Brewing.

The brew kettle. This can be a regular stainless steel, enameled iron or aluminum stockpot, preferably 12 quarts or larger. For advanced brewing, the kettle must be at least 6 gallons in size, but for the purposes of this article, 12 quarts will do. This is the most expensive piece of brewing equipment, but you can get it for about $40. Altogether the rest of the equipment may run you another $50 or $60.

A soup spoon. This can be plastic, wooden or steel; it doesn’t matter.

10/23/2013 11:10:31 AM

A friend and I brewed our Fourth of July celebration beer. It was a dark stout and we used 10 lbs of Bing Cherries in the mix. People went crazy for we brew beer at least twice a month, sharing expense and splitting the booty!! I wouldn't mind a keg set up and will have to look into that. Luckily, I have a great root cellar and store all my beer there. Maybe wine is the next logical step...I planted grape vines last year...hhhmmmm!

5/6/2013 12:26:40 AM


Just like most things... beer is better when it is home made. I use a crawfish pot and burner for the boil kettle, an old ice chest (with a few modifications) for a mash run, and old icing buckets (I got for free from a grocery store) for fermentation. I keg everything I brew. 5 gallons of beer for $20... can't argue with that logic. 

Patrick Klungle
11/1/2012 12:21:42 PM

I brewed by own beer and find it a lot like cooking. Having some one in joy the bold fresh taste of my beer is like having somebody enjoy a cake I just made. He gives a sense of pride and accomplishment as someone might find in baking or cooking. The techniques and style vary from individual and at the end you truly have a handcrafted beer. I think it's an enjoyable experience and fun to try. Author of the book - Beer Ingredients II, The Ultimate Beer Ingredient Guide, What Does What.

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