How long can crushed grains keep?

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum:

Teufelhunde

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2020
Messages
376
Reaction score
302
Getting ready to do my first all grain within the next couple of weeks, but not sure precisely when. I don't have a mill, although I may eventually get one, so for now will be buying crushed grains from my somewhat (60 miles away) LHBS.

How long can crushed grains stay fresh and usable? Can freezing help keep them?

TIA for the input

Lon
 

BrewZer

The Waiting Is The Hardest Part
HBT Supporter
Joined
Jul 4, 2017
Messages
763
Reaction score
1,193
Location
SW Ohio
Can't speak for how long it takes in transit, but yeah, freezing crushed grain will slow down oxidation, retarding rancidity for as long as possible.

Slows it down; doesn't eliminate it. Once the grain is crushed, quicker is better. I'd use them within a month.
 

Leezer

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 18, 2014
Messages
475
Reaction score
307
I recently had crushed grains for a chocolate stout that I then couldn’t use for about 8 months. I kept them in the freezer most but not all of the time. I don’t usually let crushed grains sit that long, but fortunately the beer came out fine.
 
Joined
Oct 6, 2017
Messages
4,145
Reaction score
3,136
Location
_
When storing grains (whole or milled, cool and dry is the key.

Before the days of 'vacuum-seal-all-the-things', homebrewing oral tradition suggested 1) crushed grains keep for 6 months (or longer), 2) buying a grain mill if one is a 'super-taster'.

In the past, some maltsters had guidelines for the crushed malt they sell. IIRC, it's "store cool / dry in a warehouse, review periodically for damage, use within six months".
 

oakbarn

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Jun 23, 2011
Messages
1,896
Reaction score
395
Location
Bartonville
I had some crushed Grain that I thought was too old and gave it to a college brewers. It was months old. He said it made great beer.

I just bought a grain mill how ever as it is getting harder to get crushed grain locally in the DFW area.
 

MHBT

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2017
Messages
1,602
Reaction score
1,106
Generally id say few months if kept dry and cool, id imagine some grains would keep better then others, just a theory but id bet money that 2 row stores better then caramel malt but, to answer your question you are good I wouldn’t stress it
 

Dr_Jeff

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 13, 2011
Messages
1,928
Reaction score
1,464
Location
Henagar, Alabama
how old is the malt at your LHBS? the smaller the store, the older some of it might be.

How old is the stuff you get mail order?

One user on here that is a grain farmer, said that it can sit in a silo for years.

Freezing them can also potentially introduce problems, think about food that get freezer burn, odd flavors introduced from other foods while in the freezer, are just a couple of things that come to mind.
 

pdhirsch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2021
Messages
77
Reaction score
65
Location
South shore of Lake Erie
How old is the flour and corn meal in the store and in your cabinet?
Bakers will tell you to freeze whole wheat flour, else it can go rancid. See The best way to store whole grains for example. Those folks are flour experts, and they recommend an airtight container in the freezer. They say whole wheat flour will keep for up to six months in the freezer, compared to 1 - 3 months at "cool room temperature." They emphasize air-tight containers no matter where it's stored.
 

FloppyKnockers

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2014
Messages
2,217
Reaction score
2,115
Location
Fort Worth
my $0.02

Before I got a mill, I used to get two or three batches worth of crushed grain all the time. Never had a problem. I kept the milled grains in bags in Tupperware until ready to use - 1 day to 2 months after milling.
 

pdhirsch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2021
Messages
77
Reaction score
65
Location
South shore of Lake Erie
how old is the malt at your LHBS? the smaller the store, the older some of it might be.

How old is the stuff you get mail order?

One user on here that is a grain farmer, said that it can sit in a silo for years.

Freezing them can also potentially introduce problems, think about food that get freezer burn, odd flavors introduced from other foods while in the freezer, are just a couple of things that come to mind.
Whole grain definitely keeps for a very long time at room temperature -- I have a few pounds of whole red wheat (kernels) that I've stored for over a year, not in an airtight container, and it's still fine. I don't doubt that it would be OK in a silo for a long time. But when the grain is crushed or milled, the oils in the interior are exposed to the air, and that's when oxidation starts to happen. There's a really big difference between storing whole grain kernels vs crushed grain.
 

GodsOwnDrunk

Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
10
Reaction score
6
It too am "a ways" from a LHBS. In the past I have used grians that were crushed over a month prior to brewing and have not had a problem. I just made sure I stored them in a cool dry place (such as my mash tun)
 

Gorm

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2022
Messages
62
Reaction score
75
I have stored them for up to 1 month, but prefer grinding right before brewing. I can tell the difference
 
Top