Recipe Setup

Getting Started

https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/calculator

Before you start be sure login to save your recipe, then set defaults in General Settings and setup an Equipment Profile.

Recipe Name

Create a name for your recipe, if shared this will be used in the search.

Author / Source

Enter your name as the author.

Units

  • US - gallons, pounds and ounces

  • Metric - liters, kilograms and grams

Style and Style Sub Category

Select a style then sub style, these are BJCP styles.

Brew Method

  • All Grain

  • BIAB (Brew in a Bag) - Gives a Steeping grain option for adding fermentables.

  • Extract - Gives a Steeping grain option for adding fermentables.

  • Partial Mash

Batch Size

The volume of your batch dependent on the target options below.

  • Fermentor: how much wort made it into the primary fermentor.

  • Kettle: the ending kettle volume, right before being drained.

Est. Boil Size and Boil Time

Boil size is how much wort you will be boiling at the very start of the boil. This value is used for IBU calculations. For All Grain brewing (or any recipe set to batch target 'kettle'), start by entering an estimate. After the grain bill is setup, check the Recipe Tools -> Quick Water Requirements section to see what the system calculated as the actual starting boil volume based on the recipe and the selected equipment profile.

These settings impact the efficiency calculation. (See efficiency below for full description). Our way of calculating efficiency has changed, and this is noticed on the Recipe Builder page. You can choose your boil size, and the amount of wort at the end by choosing the volume going into the fermenter, or the volume at the end of the boil. Those choices do NOT impact your efficiency calculation, but are there to assist you in ensuring your volumes are correct for your brewing.

To understand the efficiency calculation, an example is best.

Let’s say your boil starts at 6 gallons. You have 120 points of fermentables (e.g. 5 pounds of 30 ppg at 80% efficiency). You boil down to 5 gallons. In this example, your system may lose 1 gallon to kettle dead space, hop absorption, losses to the way you transfer wort, wort left in the chiller, and so on. In this case, you up with 4 gallons in the fermenter.

In the old method:

You’d select the fermenter target, and enter 6 gallons as your boil size. Four gallons would be your batch size, since that is the volume going into the fermenter.

The software assumed that the difference from the 6 gallons at the beginning reducing to 4 gallons as the batch size was all boil-off.

As a result, the OG was calculated as: 1 + ( 120 / 4 ) * 0.001 = 1.030

That is clearly wrong because it indicates that all fermentable sugar was condensed into 4 gallons of wort. The reality is that it was condensed into 5 gallons of wort, and some of that was simply thrown away. The loss of wort does not increase specific gravity of the remaining wort, of course. The loss would have the same SG as the wort going into the fermenter.

So in our updated calculation, you would select the batch size of 4 gallons as the target into the fermenter, enter 6 gallons as pre-boil size, and 5 gallons as post-boil size.

You can also let the system calculate from your equipment profile’s boil-off rate.

Now the OG can be calculated correctly:

1 + ( 120 / 5 ) * 0.001 = 1.024

You will notice that it is a 20% difference. That seems small to some, but we wanted to give the most accurate OG predictions possible for our users, both homebrewers and professionals.

Efficiency

There are four main types of efficiency in the brewing world.

More details about the Brewing Efficiency Chart The type of efficiency used by the recipe editor for calculations is determined by the batch size target. Fermentor uses Brew House Efficiency, and Kettle uses Ending Kettle Efficiency. For Extract Brewing: For extract batches, the efficiency value only impacts steeping grains. Set the number fairly low to start with, say 25%, and raise it from there if you notice you are beating the target OG. The gravity impact from steeping grains in an extract batch is minimal, but the recipe editor gives you full control over how much of a sugar contribution they provide. In partial mash brewing, 50-60% may be more reasonable, but set it low until you start consistently beating it. For Partial Mash, All Grain and BIAB Recipes: Efficiency is based on the batch size target:

  • When batch size target is set to Fermentor: efficiency stands for 'Brew House Efficiency', which captures your entire system. It factors in sugar losses all the way to the fermentor.

  • When batch size target is set to Kettle: efficiency stands for 'Ending Kettle Efficiency', which is how much of the sugars from the grain were converted and made it into the kettle at the end of the boil.

Ending Kettle Efficiency is always higher than Brew House Efficiency because it does not count losses from trub, hops absorption, and kettle dead space. Thus ending kettle efficiency and volume happen to be more portable across equipment. If you are brewing with your friends, you may want to set the recipe into kettle mode and share it that way. The Brew Feature calculates four types of efficiency: If you are interested in tracking efficiency in detail, create a 'Brew Session'. It tracks conversion efficiency, pre-boil efficiency, ending kettle efficiency, and brew house efficiency! Each efficiency value flows to the next, and the value can only go down in subsequent steps. For more information see: How is efficiency calculated in a Brew Session? First time doing an All Grain batch? Congratulations! We suggest you start with a conservative efficiency value like 55-60% for your first All Grain batch. Raise it from there as you improve. If you exceed it, hey, you'll have a bit higher ABV - cheers! Recipe Design Notes:

  • Pre-Boil / Ending Kettle / Brew House Efficiency are NOT constant across recipes - it depends on your system AND the recipe. Efficiency is only constant for similar recipes (same amount of grain, same amount of hops), on the same equipment, with the same brewing practices.

  • For beers that use more grain (eg, high gravity beers), pre-boil efficiency, and subsequent efficiencies will be lower because of higher grain absorption. When brewing a high gravity beer make sure to pad in 5%, 10%, maybe even 20% efficiency loss depending on how strong your beer will be.

  • Hops absorption impacts Brew House Efficiency. A super hoppy beer may see a Brew House Efficiency reduction of 1-3%.

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