Ask somebody how to homebrew and they’ll probably say, “Get a kit.” If only it were that easy. After a quick Google search you’ll soon be asking yourself a dozen questions:
“Where’s the best place to buy from? Why are these starter kits all different prices? Which ones will make the best beer?”
ALL INCLUSIVE: Absolutely everything you need to brew authentic craft beer at home. THE ULTIMATE BREWING EQUIPMENT KIT: Built by world class brewmasters using the same ingredients and techniques as pro brewers.
The homebrewing market is flooded with all different types of kits from hundreds of companies. You just want to make great beer – not wade though confusing kit descriptions, crossing your fingers in hopes that you picked the right one.
Never fear: Below are homebrew kit reviews from popular suppliers along with our top picks.
The Best Home Brewing Kit
What can be better than a cold beer after a hard workday? Of course an “as you wish” cold beer at home, this article will present you the most recommended equipment for brewing your well-deserved beer.
After reading this article, you will know about ingredients, measures, tools, and other tips and tricks. They will help you choose the right beer brewing kit for your goal.
However, this is not a mandatory guide for you; this is only a briefing of the wide variety of tools and brewing methods you have for your desired result. We’re suggesting you check a few different products along with their advantages and disadvantages. Then, you can judge by the characteristics and functionality of each one.
What is a Beer Brewing Kit?
A home brewing beer kit is a group of tools and ingredients that you need to make beer for yourself. It gives you all you need to make beer out of your hand.
One of the primary tools that a starter beer brewing kit has is the Fermenter. It’s usually made up by a spigot, stopper and airlock. One different choice may be the food-grade Bottling Bucket.
Others can even include mesh bags for steeping grain, thermometer, hydrometer, transfer tubbing, bottling wand with shut off valve, sturdy bottle capper, bottle caps bottle cleaning brush and sanitizer. Those can be the basics instruments for a decent homebrew starter kit.
All of these instruments can push you to the next step for you to become the brewmaster of the century. They bring you the capability to learn more and improve your brewing skills. You can try new recipes, new ingredients, ingredient kits, and much more.
Sometimes, starter kits can be more complex depending on the needs of the brewer; every piece requires periodic cleaning, and you should replace them now and then. That is the case of the bottles; these must be replaced at least two months each. That is for preserving the quality at the moment of brew day.
Why do you need a Beer Brewing Kit?
Not many people think too much about an “actual kit”, yet the advantages of having one may surprise you. They can work as a mere hobby or a real business; you only need interest. If you’re reading this, you probably have it already. Read below a few reasons why you may need one.
Learning New Skills – It’s never a bad idea to learn something new. Many people have particular skills they think they’ll never use. Most are surprised to find out that’s not the case.
The more you learn, the more tools you have at your disposition.
A Fun Hobby –Brewing beer spans a vibrant community. It’s one of those cultures many people don’t come across, but those who do find a pleasant surprise.
Even if you don’t take part in it, it’s still a great hobby. You can feel your product improving, and it’s a great time to show your close ones what you’ve done.
Business – Of course, we couldn’t leave out the business possibilities. Being able to craft beer isn’t an accessible skill. Since almost everyone loves beer, then it’s easy to see how you can make money from it.
You can ease the stress of paying bills, or you may turn it into a living!
Homebrew Starter Kit Functioning/Characteristics
Many brands offer different beer brewing kits. While each gives their product a distinct feature, most share the same essential characteristics.
We can divide them into two groups, depending on how they work.
The first works with grains. These kits let the owner process the grain itself; it’s starting from scratch. Working with grain requires specific steps to extract the sugars from the grains.
The second type skips the grains and works with the extract directly. This option tends to be more expensive, but it’s better for beginners. You receive the malt extract already prepared.
Once you become more experienced, you’ll probably switch to grain brewing kits. They give you much more freedom to make your product special; the range of results you can obtain increases noticeably. But, what makes up these starter kits? No, you won’t need to dedicate a whole room for a laboratory.
Basic starter kits usually come with a fermenter, bottling bucket, an airlock, hydrometer, instructions, packaging items, and ingredients.
They also come with elements like cleaning equipment, but the essential parts of the kit aren’t many.
Also, the ingredients may vary in type and amount. That part varies depending on which kind of starter kit you acquire and from which brand.
Advantages – There are many advantages to home brewing kits, even if they aren’t noticeable at first sight. These are some of the benefits of having one:
Educational and Fun Hobby. Brewing beer on your own is a great way to acquire a new ability. The best part is that the process of learning and perfecting your craft makes you want to evolve and grow.
They Don’t Take too Much Space. You don’t need as much space as you think. You only need a room with enough free space for maybe a single bed or even less!
Business Possibility. As already stated, there’s little stopping you from making money out of your product. If you turn it into the best beer you’ve tried, why keep it to yourself?
Full Awareness. You won’t have to trust other people’s standards for quality and safety. You have the reassurance that the beer you drink meets your expectations.
You’ll know the exact process that generated the beer in your hand!
Meeting New People Making beer yourself is an excellent ice-breaker for any conversation. You can also meet people by offering your beers, and that’s not counting other producers you can reach down the road!
Factors to Consider Before Installation
- The Space Available. You don’t need much, but you still need to fit the kit somewhere. Try to find a space where everything can sit without the risk of something tipping over or breaking.
- Sanitary Conditions. Make sure the room is clean and doesn’t gather dust. It should also be free from animals or bugs that could contaminate your product. It’s also a good idea that the room isn’t hard to clean.
- Time Available. Take note of how much time you have for the hobby. The process isn’t complicated, nor it takes a lot of time. However, you still need to check now and then to see if everything’s under control.
- Traffic In The Room. Try to avoid placing your kit where you know people walk a lot. If you do, you’re allowing unnecessary risk. Someone may tip your fermenter; a sneeze can make you lose your product; a curious kid can open something and ruin the mixture. It’s best if the room doesn’t see much use.
- Illumination. Lastly, beer needs darkness for it to ferment correctly and ensure quality. Light from the Sun or even a light bulb can make your beer go bad. Try to limit its exposure for too long.
Craft Beer Kit, Premium Gold Edition by Mr. Beer.
Best beer Kit for Beginners - designed for the first-time brewer in mind Step-by-step instructions, simple ingredients and easy to use brewing equipment.
30 Minutes to Brew - Using our hopped Malt extract you can brew up a batch of beer in less than 30 minutes.
The kit provides buyers with the brand’s patented equipment. The starter kit includes the necessary ingredients; they come with the features needed to simplify the whole process. Another feature is a small fermenter: a lightweight version of Mr Beer’s equipment. The bottles are reusable, and you get eleven 25-oz shatterproof units.
This kit comes with a can containing the brewing extract. It’s a form of concentrated hops and barley, and its production takes place in a family-owned Australian brewery.
The last inclusions in the kit are a no-rinse cleanser and carbonation drops. You can find both the Oktoberfest and American light lager refills from the company.
Advantages – The kit’s target is beginner brewers. The step-by-step instructions go a long way in assuring that the process is intuitive.
It’s also fast. One only needs to wait 30 minutes before a batch is ready. It’s due to the malt extract that uses instead of grains.
All beer is ready to drink in less than a month. This starter kit focuses on efficiency, and crated beer can be ready for consumption in as little as three weeks.
Customer support is available to solve any issues. All customers are free to call the team to address any reason for unhappiness.
Lastly, the kit includes two refills. Besides the two already mentioned, Aztec Cerveza, Czech pilsner, Canadian Blonde, and Bavarian Wheat are among the options.
Disadvantages -The main issue with this one is its use of malt extract. Sure, it’s a great feature that simplifies the process considerably, and it’s the best option for complete beginners.
However, using extract instead of grains is known for taking away part of the experience. The extract is already prepared and ready, so you have little room to customize your beer.
Using grains is better if you want to make your beer really unique.
Brew. Share. Enjoy by Northern Brewer.
Before acquiring the kit, you need to specify the beer type you want to make. There’s Chinook IPA, Block Party Amber Ale, and Hank’s Hefeweizen. Your choice will result in a different recipe kit and ingredients.
The tools include a 5-gallon brew kettle made of stainless steel. The fermenter is translucent and holds 6.5 gallons. Bubbler airlock, a bottling bucket and spigot, and a bottle filler make up the accessories.
Smaller tools come as a stainless spoon (21″), siphon tubing, cleaning utensils and materials. Instructions and bottle cappers and caps come with the rest of the materials.
The ingredients depend on the beer type you choose, but they include hops, beer yeast, and the grain and malt.
Advantages – It comes with everything you ever need to brew your beer. Even if you go into other styles and use different ingredients, these tools will remain useful.
Another great feature is that grains and malt come raw. While it makes the process a bit longer, it gives you a more extensive range of opportunities.
Yes, it’s more complicated than extract-based kits, but experienced brewers gain much more room to experiment. You can play with the grains and malt to give different textures and feels to your beer.
Finally, the ability to choose a popular style of beer is a natural way to learn about how to make quality beer. You can analyze the recipes and adapt your own.
Disadvantages – Beginners may have a harder time with this kit than with extract-based ones. However, the instructions are clear. You need to sacrifice a little more time only. However, the translucent containers may be an issue for some inexperienced brewers.
Beer is susceptible to light, and those containers can put yours at risk. You’ll need to take special care of your mixture. Otherwise, you run the risk of spoiling it.
Oktoberfest Ale Brew Kit by Craft A Brew.
MAKE YOUR OWN BEER – Be more than a beer drinker; be a beer maker! This craft beer kit turns beer lovers into beer brewers and gives you all the independence, experience, and fun that comes with brewing your own home beer. HOME BREW STARTER KIT – Designed to help first-timers and hobbyists alike get the most of their beer experience, this beer maker starter kit teaches you about the art of brewing with our Craft a Brew Guide to Craft Brewing.
The box comes with the tools necessary to brew traditional Oktoberfest ale.
It comes with a glass carboy container. Funnel, racking cane, and rubber stopper also make parts of the kit.
You’re also given the necessary tubings to transfer the contents and an airlock to seal them. It includes a thermometer together with a sanitizer to care for your equipment.
The recipe kit, as the name suggests, contains the ingredients necessary to craft an Oktoberfest Ale, and it uses extract instead of grains. Besides the recipe for the beer, a general guide for craft brewing makes up the rest of the package.
Advantages – The beer you can craft with this starter kit is one of the most recognized among beer enthusiasts, and the package makes it easy to craft it. Not only do you learn how to craft the Oktoberfest Ale, but you also learn about beer brewing in general.
The kit includes all the utensils you’ll need to craft both the featured ale and many others. It’s a “one size fits all” solution. Professionals craft the kit, so the quality of your product is guaranteed. You only need to follow the instructions. The extract also makes the process seamless and fast.
Disadvantages – The extract makes it easier to craft your beer. However, it limits your ability to personalize your beer.
The description says it: you only need to follow the instructions and quality is guaranteed. While it’s great for beginners, experienced brewers can feel it boring. You have less room to experiment than you’d have with grains.
Another issue with this kit is the glass containers. As with the previous product, the glass container makes it easier for light to reach your mixture.
You’ll need to pay extra attention to your brewing room and completely isolate the container from light sources.
Everyday IPA Beer Making Kit by Brooklyn Brewshop.
It includes everything necessary to brew an IPA beer made from Columbus hops.
The kit comes with an all-grain mix to create the Everyday IPA, and it also gives you the yeast. The included hops are both Columbus and Cascade.
When it comes to the utensils, you get the glass jug for fermentation and racking cane. You receive both tubing and its clamps, as well as a screw-cap stopper. Finally, you get the Airlock and sanitizer to keep everything under control.
Everything’s reusable, so you only need to renew your ingredients and sanitizer.
Advantages –Its creators back the quality of the ingredients; they’re published, award-winning authors in the subject. Additionally, the brand itself has appeared as a feature in many magazines. The New York Times, Vogue, and even Martha Stewart make up the list.
The kit doesn’t use malt extract but pure grains instead.
While it makes things a bit more complicated, it grants you the chance to craft your beer entirely from scratch. That means that almost the entirety of your results is thanks to your skills.
Disadvantages -First off, we have the obvious: grain kits are more complex than those with extracts. As such, beginner brewers can have a tougher time getting good results. The glass container is also an added handicap for those who don’t pay enough attention.
However, the real issue with this kit is that it’s missing some noticeable features.
You’ll need to provide some pots for yourself to make things easier, and it doesn’t come with a strainer. These issues are easy to bypass, luckily.
However, the kit doesn’t come with bottles. You’ll be stuck with the wort unless you purchase bottles before it’s ready.
Northern Brewer – Homebrewing Starter Kit with Recipe
It comes with all the ingredients and tools needed to craft an original Chinook IPA.
You get carboys and the extract kit; it isn’t a grain kit. Both a thermometer and temp gauges come with the package. As standard, you’ll also find a bottling bucket, the bottle capper, and even an auto-siphon.
The kit comes with everything you need, so you won’t have to worry about complementing it with further purchases. You can use it to craft other beer types than the one included. It includes a funnel, brushes, and sanitizer, so it’s almost self-cleaning.
Advantages -The kit offers everything you need. Unlike similar packages, you can count on not having to buy anything additional.
It lacks the bottles, but it makes up for it by providing you with a funnel, cleaning utensils, and even an auto-siphon.
The extract makes it easier and faster to make your beer. Additionally, the ingredients for Chinook IPA offer high quality, and the flavor follows suit. That’s as long as you follow the instructions, though!
Even better for beginners, the instructions are intuitive. It’s hard to get them wrong.
Lastly, the customer support is outstanding. It’s not difficult to find comments praising it, even if they complained about the quality before!
Disadvantages – As mentioned, the quality seems to be somewhat of a lucky draw. While most people state that their kit arrived flawlessly, it’s also easy to find others saying the contrary. As with similar products, using extract does make it faster, but it takes away part of your influence over the results. Also similarly, it offers glass containers, so it’s something else to watch out.
Leaking during the bottling process also seems to be somewhat commonplace.
Overall, crafting your beer at home is something you should, at least, try.
It’s spanned a thriving subculture among alcohol enthusiasts and taking part can bring you many benefits. You can meet new people, make friends, or even find a source of income!
Additionally, homebrewing is an excellent hobby for both individuals and for sharing with others. You can use it to strengthen your relationships with others who may also enjoy the practice. The best part is that it doesn’t require too much space. Using extracts can even make the process easier and faster.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve done it before or if it’s your first time, it’s always a fun experience. Pick up a homebrew starter kit today!