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Old 02-11-2013, 04:38 AM   #1
thisguy0605
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Default Substituting honey for malt in an all-grain brew?

So I have done some research and I am having a hard time finding any information on measurements for substituting honey for part of the grain bill. I know many people brew with the addition of honey, but is there any "conversion" from grain to honey...like pound for pound? For example, if I am using 20lbs of pale malt for instance and I wanted to substitute honey for part of it, how much of the pale malt would I sub out for say 2 lbs of honey?

Any information would be highly appreciated.

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Old 02-11-2013, 05:01 AM   #2
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I know that for applications that call for table sugar, the substitution is 1.25 times as much honey by weight as sugar to achieve the same gravity. I guess you could assume a certain efficiency and put a number on the malt substitution. I'm coming up with 9.75 ounces of honey to substitute for 1lb of two row in a 5 gallon batch, just by looking at some recipe's I have and extrapolating - I have not tested this so don't hold me to it.

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Old 02-11-2013, 05:10 AM   #3
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Can't really sub honey for malt. It's almost 100% fermentable. It will dry out a beer more than it will do anything else to it. So honey to corn sugar would be more appropriate.

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Old 02-11-2013, 05:18 AM   #4
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Just found this

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Old 02-11-2013, 04:39 PM   #5
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sneakymeade - I did read that and it makes enough sense to me.

What I want to do is brew a braggot, but I'm not looking to make it super high ABV. If I were to add honey to an existing recipe would I use less malt? I've read that for every one pound of honey used, I can expect to raise the ABV by 1 percent which is pretty significant. I just dont want it to turn out to be a mess.

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Old 02-11-2013, 06:39 PM   #6
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That sounds about right, because I use 12lbs of honey for 5 gallons of mead and it's about 12% abv.

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Old 02-12-2013, 12:29 AM   #7
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Thisguy,

It's a hard equation to make with an all grain recipe. Your efficiency with the honey will be about 100% since you throw it in the boil and it's 100% fermentable. Depending on you mash temp, mash efficiency, etc. you will have potential for a large variance in how much honey you'd need to substitute. Best bet is to use BeerSmith2 and tweak the recipe around based off of your efficiency, and what malts you'll be using. I know this isn't too helpful in getting you an answer, but if you have any other questions feel free to post them up.

Cheers!

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Old 02-12-2013, 02:38 AM   #8
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I will have to look into BeerSmith. After posting, I checked out several braggot recipes and it seems that there is anywhere from a 0.5-0.75 lbs honey to 1 lbs malt ratio. I guess it will be a game of experimentation, but I will make sure to let the forum know how it goes!

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Old 02-12-2013, 09:38 AM   #9
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Default Braggot

A brew recipe calculator can help a lot, especially as you are trying to keep your OG at a certain range. Basically, you just need to convert your malts & sugars into gravity points, so you can find the ratio.

My quick try with Beersmith2 shows that 75% honey weight to malt gives about the same OG points. So if you want to replace 10# of grain, use abou 7.5# of honey.

However, a better way to look at it is % of fermentables. In my mind, Braggots are around the 30%-50% honey area. So if your 5 gallon recipe is usually about 10# of grains, I would use 6# of grain and 4# of honey .. and you are in braggot territory.

I've not brewed a braggot. However, I do make meads and honey beers. On a 5 gallon batch of beer, I find 1-2# of honey give a nice honey flavor and dries out the beer. More than that, and you are off to braggot land.

I also recommend to add the honey post boil, during cool down.. heat drives off the nice aromatics, so add it while warm, but not hot. Some folks will even add the honey post primary, and let the yeast chew through it for a few weeks.

Good luck!
--LexusChris

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Old 02-13-2013, 11:38 AM   #10
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Honey's ferments from around 85-90% Not 100% Beersmith puts it at around 90%

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