mini mash or extract?

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

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

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Well-Known Member
Jan 16, 2008
Reaction score
Fort Worth, Texas
please bare with me but im not real clear of the differences in mini mash kits and extract kits. coud someone please help clarify this for me. im about to purchase a leffe blonde clone from ahs and dont know if i should step up to the mini mash kit or if i even have the equipment to do so.
The AHS mini-mash kits have your mash in a big grain bag, so all you'd need to do it is a big (huge) mesh grain bag. They tell you to use your boil kettle and put the grains in a grain bag in 2.5 gallons of water (Or something very much like that- I'm going from my memory) at 155-ish for 45 minutes.

The basics of a mini-mash are very much like steeping except you're doing it for a longer time and at a certain temperature. The instructions also tell you do dunk the grain bag up and done occasionally, to make sure all the grains are wetted thoroughly.

What I am trying to say is that you can do it!
Many extract kits come with some grains, but these are 'steeping grains'. These grains just add some color, mouthfeel, and a little bit of flavor to the beer...but NO fermentable sugar.
you just soak em in 150 degree water for 20-30 minutes, remove, then proceed with a normal extract boil.

a mini-mash is slightly more advanced. these grains actually contain the enzymes to extract fermentable sugars. The temperature of the water is very crucial for extracting the right sugars and avoiding tannin extraction (which will ruin your beer). you also need to think about pH.
these grains are typically 'mashed' in hot water for up to 60 minutes, then the wort is drained off.
you then add extract to finish reachign your target starting gravity.

a mini-mash is just like doing all grain brewing, except you only boil a couple gallons instead of the entire 5+ gallon batch, and all grain brewers get all their gravity from grain, without having to 'top off' with extract.

mini-mash is the same as a partial mash, which you can do a search for to get more detailed info.
how should i store the kit until get ready to use it? i mean, what all needs to be kept cold and what is ok in a cupboard?
You don't want to store it very long, since AHS crushes the grains when they send it. But you can store it a couple of weeks if you have to. The yeast goes in the fridge, the hops in the freezer, and the rest in a cool dry spot.