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Old 01-03-2013, 04:31 AM   #1
Dec 2012
Posts: 65

how much different is DME brewing compared to LME???

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Old 01-03-2013, 04:45 AM   #2
kh54s10's Avatar
Aug 2011
Tiverton, Rhode Island
Posts: 11,897
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Things I have experienced with DME and LME.

DME will not darken the wort as much as LME can.
DME can be a real sticky mess.
DME will clump up if you dump it into hot water too fast.

LME is more difficult to get to dissolve and can fall to the bottom of the pot and scorch.
LME can also be a sticky mess but if you pour it carefully out of the container it is easier to control.

I used LME with my recipe kits. I now use DME for yeast starters mostly.

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Old 01-03-2013, 11:31 AM   #3
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Feb 2011
Sheffield, Ohio
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I use DME in my extract beers since it doesn't get all the mailard reactions that LME does. Lighter color & cleaner flavor.
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Old 01-03-2013, 06:44 PM   #4
Nov 2010
Laporte, Indiana
Posts: 32

Most books advocate DME over LME for quality and stability. Years ago, I swapped to pale DME in 50lb. bulk packs, preferring its keeping qualities and lighter starting color in use (you can use additional grains steeped in a grain bag to attain any desired final color) and in bulk it costs a lot less per lb. Stored LME darkens over time quite quickly and attain a bit of a licorice taste. In contrast, I have kept DME for a year and it's not noticably altered.

To convert recipes, know that the ratio of LME to DME is 1.25:1, or in reverse the ratio of DME to LME is 0.8:1. Hence multiply any LME amounts by 0.8 to get the amount of DME to substitute.

Stir well off heat when first adding to make sure none sticks to the kettle bottom and you'll be fine! Clumps will dissolve in 5-10 minutes.

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Old 01-03-2013, 07:26 PM   #5
hoppyhoppyhippo's Avatar
Dec 2012
New Brunswick, NJ
Posts: 2,720
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I've used both. I'll tell you my experience with the 2

Pros and cons (not gonna touch on color or flavor since I didn't notice it)

DME is like adding flour to something, do it very carefully and try to avoid getting it wet.

As someone who just buys kits the 2 LHBS that I've bought from (one for my personal brewing the other is for my brewing with my brother) one used LME the other DME, both have positives (LME has virtually no chance of exploding and combines faster, while DME is much easier to get every ounce of extract out of the container) but I'd prefer DME myself since that's the one I've had more success with.

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