Blueberry beer recipe

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sictransit701

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I just got about 6 lbs of fresh blueberries from a relative. He also wants me to make a blueberry beer. I’ve never added fruit to a beer. How do I do it? How much? Initially thinking about adding the blueberries to an all liquid wheat extract, single bittering hop, and Us05 base beer. I do all grain, but I want to keep this simple. Any ideas? I’ve also gotten into sours. Never brewed a sour batch. Would it be too much for making a sour blueberry beer for the first time? But, that wouldn’t be simple, would it?
 

day_trippr

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Typically you brew a somewhat higher-than-normal gravity wheat beer (because the fruit addition volume vs gravity will lower the base beer's ABV), let it fully ferment out, then rack it on top of pureed fruit in a fresh vessel and let it sit for a few days before packaging. Light hopping and a neutral yeast will do well.

I don't do sours, and would advise you check with your relative before going there :)

Cheers!
 

dnr

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The only thing I would recommend is either freezing or heating the berries to prevent wild yeast.
I'm not sure if it's necessary, but everyone says bugs, pesticides and wild yeast strains can screw up a fruit beer (unless you want that).

I freeze, puree, heat, cool, add to secondary.
 

Transamguy77

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I have done a couple of fruit beers, for blueberries I started with a simple blond ale recipe and added a pound per gallon of beer. The last one I did I added straight to the keg in a bag and left them in there until it kicked. Oh and don’t add them to an already carbonated keg.

And I second freezing them first, and adding them frozen and letting them defrost in the beer.
 

Rob2010SS

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I did a blueberry wheat beer for my wife's baby shower. In a 6 gallon batch, I used 3lbs of whole berries and didn't get a whole lot of flavor. I then added an additional 1 lb of pureed berries and I thought that was a decent amount of flavor. If I were you, I'd probably try 3 to 4 lbs smashed berries in a 5 gallon batch. I think that would get you some good flavor. I second the freezing of them. My process for using fruit is...

1. Wash the berries. I usually just run them under cold water for a bit.
2. Smash or puree them.
3. Put them in a sanitized container
4. Freeze them for a couple of days
5. When you're ready to transfer the beer onto them, pull them out of the freezer and let them defrost for 1-2 days in the fridge. Add them to a clean, sanitized secondary fermenter and transfer the beer onto them.

You could do a kettle sour beer which wouldn't be too complicated. It adds a couple of days to the brew process, depending on how sour you want it, but that wouldn't be hard at all. Do your mash and lauter to the boil kettle on a Friday night and by Sunday, you're ready to finish the brew. I think a blueberry kettle sour sounds better than a blueberry wheat, but just my 2 cents.
 

Gnomebrewer

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I’ve also gotten into sours. Never brewed a sour batch. Would it be too much for making a sour blueberry beer for the first time? But, that wouldn’t be simple, would it?
Sours can be very simple! It's only when you want a complex, funky sour that the process is more complicated. Check out this thread
and this recipe
It's as easy, if not easier than, any standard beer recipe.
 

MIWI

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Does one need to transfer to a secondary or could the fruit be added to the primary after fermentation?
 

Rob2010SS

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If you're fermenting in a vessel with a big enough opening to get the fruit, you definitely could drop the fruit in primary. I did that on my blueberry wheat - fermented in an SS Brew Bucket and dropped the berries in after fermentation completed.
 
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