Pumpkin beers: Discussion, developing recipes, tips tricks, and a good practices
It is that time of year... Fall is approaching and pumpkin beer is on our minds.
I thought it would be good to have a collective thread for us to discuss pumpkin beers, and all our respective recipes.
To start, here is a great article to read about using pumpkin:
Brew Your Own: The How-To Homebrew Beer Magazine - Brewing with Pumpkin: Tips from the Pros -
Boerderij Kabouter's Pumpkin Beers 2009
Here are my two recipes I am developing and will be brewing this weekend. I am not settled on which will be my pick yet.... thoughts?
Well let the discussions begin. Please post your recipes and give others good feedback!
The best pumpkin beer I have ever had was used making sweet potatoes. It imparts that same pumpkin flavor without mess in the fermenter. You cub up some sweet potatoes and spice them up the bake them. Giving them a nice caramely cooked outside is very nice.
Interesting idea with the sweet potato...
Links to other pumpkin beer threads:
Recipes from our database:
Any reason for a lager? I think the spices might stand out too much in a clean beer. Thats really why I detest most spiced "Christmas" beer.
I've only brewed one pumpkin beer. It was a Scottish Ale base with pumpkin in the mash and the traditional spices. It was great. The maltiness of the Scottish Ale really accentuated the pumpkin spices. I'm thinking a Pumpkin Dunkelweizen might be good too.
I used canned pumpkin in the mash. Honestly, I don't see a reason not to use canned. If you look on the ingredients, the only thing listed is "pumpkin". Sounds ok to me. If you want to use the real thing, make sure not to use the run of the mill "Jack-O-Lantern" pumpkin. They arent the sweet pumpkin used in pies.
I really don't know what the actual pumpkin added to my flavor. I'm sure more of it came from the spices. It probably added some body. It sure makes for a sticky mash. Make sure to use rice hulls liberally. If I do another one, I'll probably use it just so I can call it a pumpkin beer.
Finally, I stayed away from "pumpkin pie spice". It has some extra anti clumping agent I wasn't so sure about. I used Nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon and allspice. When I get home, I'll look up the recipe.
I'll just add the link to how I did mine last year, and how I hope to do mine again this year, if I can get it together.
This year I plan on upping the spices and adding pumpkin to the mash.
My wife really loves Pumpkin beer in the fall and her favorite is usually Lakefront brewery's offering. They change the recipe every year but it is always a lager.
So that is what I will try this year.
The spices will only be overpowering if you add too many. :D
:EDIT: Thanks Revvy!!!
Do This, Not That
Give me suggestions and I will update this.
When using pumpkin in beer...
1. allow a LONG time for your lauter, it will be comically slow
2. use a bunch of rice hulls
3. bake the pumpkin first if you are using fresh pumpkin, then use it in your beer.
4. consider using some 6-row barley for more conversion (diastatic) power
5. start brewing your pumpkin beer EARLY. They can take a while to blend the spice and pumpkin notes seamlessly with the base beer.
6. use later additions to maintain the aroma of any spices (under 30 minutes, I split my additions between 30 minutes and 5 minutes)
7. use a secondary or a clearing tank to remove the large amount of trub this beer will throw
1. use your pump to transfer wort from the mash to the boil kettle, it WILL compact the bed
2. use jack-o-lantern style pumpkins, use a baking pumpkin
3. brew a pumpkin beer for your first AG batch
4. brew your beer in the beginning of October and expect to drink it for Halloween
5. combine pumpkin in the boil with whole hops, the ensuing sludge is not manageable
I am going to do a decoction mash this year in the hopes that I will get more out of the pumpkin and that my lauter will be significantly easier. Any one think that is a good or bad idea?
I use at least some 6 row in my pumpkin ale. It's higher diastatic power helps with the conversion of the pumpkin.
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