Making Birch Beer from scratch

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Oct 7, 2012
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I love birch beer, and it is a huge part of the culture and history of the Pennsylvania Dutch. However, I can't find a recipe for it anywhere. There are extracts that one can just mix with water, but I'd really like to make it from raw ingredients. Does anyone know of a good birch beer recipe?
5 gallons of birch sap, wow

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Interesting. Sorta like making maple syrup. Wish I could find some of this so I could taste it and see what it tastes like. :)
Happen to find this today at the library. Non alcoholic... can type it out if you want.

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Shoot sorry been swamped. I'll get the title of it here in a sec... Was going to scan and pdf it

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The Complete Homebrew Beer Book, by Hummel

4oz birch root, shredded
1 oz wintergreen dried
2 to 3 cinnamon sticks
5 gal water

4 lbs turbinado sugar
1 cup blackstrap molasses
8 oz malto-dextrin powder

1 pack lalvin ec1118 dry (think this is for bottling)

1. birch, winter, cinn in hop bag
2. med pot, 1 gal water boil, add sugar, molasses and malto stirring to dissolve. Add hop bag and bring back to boil
3. turn off heat, cover and steep for 2 hours
4. sanitize
5. yeast going if bottling
6. add 4 gal water to bottling bucket, pour in steeping mixture, yeast if using bottling
7. fill bottles
8. store 2 to 7 days, drink

Guessing you can do 4 gal in your keg, add mixture, and carbonate if not bottling.
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That sounds pretty easy, theck. Thanks for typing it out. I may try a hybrid of that recipe and the birch sap recipe. Harvesting sap is pretty easy, but boiling it down can be a little inconvenient. Some really old-school recipes required birch sap to be distilled in a regular pot still, but that was before these kinds of things were illegal.

When the weather gets better I'm going to try and extract sap from one of my birch trees. I'll report back if it works/doesnt work/kills me.

My ultimate goal is to keg, but the process should be the same up until kegging/bottling.
Found this too:

Birch Bark Canoe Root Beer
(5 gallons/19 L)
4 oz. (113 g) birch beer extract
2 inches (5.1 cm) cinnamon stick
3.5 lbs. (1.6 kg) corn sugar
1.0 lb. (0.45 kg) honey
1/2 pkg (~5 g) ale yeast (optional)

Step by Step
Boil cinnamon stick for 15 minutes, add sugar, honey and birch beer extract and let sit for 15 minutes. Cool, add water and either keg or bottle condition.
4 oz. (113 g) birch beer extract


I have some birch beer extract, and it smells amazing, but I don't have an empty keg. I'll make that as soon as I can, but I'm really looking forward to an all-natural birch beer made in my kitchen. Spring can't get here fast enough. Extract feels like cheating. Like a Mr Beer kit.
I am definitely trying to make birch beer this spring. Looking out in my back yard, I have roughly 20 birch trees big enough to tap. Now, if only the temps would start climbing to at least above zero.