Best Extract Beer Kits: Embrace Your Inner Brewer

We’ve all met someone who boasts that “I can make a better version of this” regardless of the craft. 

This is particularly very common when it comes to beer brewing. But on the off chance you have no idea what to do- we have your back.

So how do you make the best beer from scratch? Well, that’s where our guide on the best extract beer kits comes in.

There is a lot of information circulating the web about this particular issue. 

But we’ve done your homework for you, and presented to you this post on the top extract kits available on the market. We’ve even added little extra info points below the reviews for your convenience.

Our research team was positively hungover from researching this topic. So you know this post is top-notch as it’s backed up by hours of research.

So get put on your reading glasses and let’s get to it-

Comparison Table

Northern Brewer’s “Brew. Share. Enjoy” Starter Kit

Product Overview

The first on the list is Northern Brewer’s “Brew. Share. Enjoy” starter kit. The “Brew. Share. Enjoy” is the best one on the list, without question.

So why is this starter kit, the top dog, when it comes to brewing?

For starters, this particular kit is the easiest one to make. Its instructions are so simple that even a 5-year-old can follow them. 

Not to say we condone underaged drinking, please drink responsibly. The “Brew. Share. Enjoy” is the perfect brew for beginners to experiment with. This way you can test out which brewing methods suit you and which don’t.

Moreover, the “Brew. Share. Enjoy” goes above and beyond when it comes to the variety of tools included in it, especially for its price range. 

It even comes with an extra stirring spoon, hydrometer, and a 5-Gallon stainless-steel kettle for brewing.

However, it’s recommended that you buy some extra sanitizer as it is intended for one gallon only. So if you’re planning on using this recipe over and over again, you should keep that in mind.

Room For Improvement

One of its main problems despite being the easiest to use is the number of provisions (sanitizer and yeast) in it. It hampers the reusability factor of the kit. If that’s the case, we suggest you use Mr. Beer’s Premium Gold Edition for its reusability factor.

Mr. Beer’s Premium Gold Edition Craft Beer Kit

Product Overview

Next up, we have Mr. Beer’s Permium Gold Edition Beer Kit. Now, this is no surprise as it is one of the best and easiest beer extract recipe kits you can follow.

Mr. Beer is only second to the Northern Brewer’s “Brew. Share. Enjoy” in terms of capacity. It has a 2-Gallon Fermenter in contrast to the “Brew. Share. Enjoy’s” 5-Gallon kettle.

However, other than that Mr. Beer is pretty good when it comes to the brewing game. For starters, Mr. Beer is one of the fastest beers that you can make, as you’re done with the brewing process within half an hour!

This will save you a lot of time down the line as most extract beer’s steeping time requires hours. Also, this allows you to invest that time in the fermenting process.

Speaking of the fermenting process, another cool feature about the Mr. Beer is that it comes with a built-in airlock. So it’s one less thing you have to worry about.

It also comes with a bottling mechanism and since you can make 2-gallons at a time, it’s great at being reused over and over again. Plus along with all these, it comes with Carbonation Drops which will help to make your beer less flat.

Room For Improvement

Ironically, Mr. Beer’s Permium Gold Edition isn’t that premium when it comes to the Fermentation Keg. It tends to leak which is a big issue when it comes to brewing. We suggest you use Craft A Brew’s Homemade brewing kit in that case.

Craft A Brew’s Homemade Brewing Starter Kit

Product Overview

Coming in third place is a pretty well-known brand in the Extract brewing game. It’s “Craft A Brew’s Hefeweizen-Flavored Starter Kit”.

This brings an end to our top 3 list. So what earned the Craft A Brew the last coveted spot on the top 3 list? Let’s find out-

For starters, it comes with an exceptionally durable and well-built Glass Carboy, with a capacity of 1 Gallon. It also comes with an airlock, racking cane, plastic tubing, and funnel.

However, unlike some kits on the list, the Craft A brew does not provide a brewing kettle or bottling provisions.

But other than those missing provisions, the Craft A Brew is pretty easy to make and the recipe is very easy to follow. This makes it an exceptional choice for its price range.

Plus if you’re into German Beer, this recipe is one of the best approximations you can get to Authentic German Beer.

Room For Improvement

The Craft A Beer’s only issue is that it doesn’t come with a Brewing Pot. In that case, we suggest you go for the Northern Brewer’s “Brew. Share. Enjoy” as it comes with all of the provisions.

Northern Brewer’s Irish Red Ale Home-Brewing Starter Kit

Product Overview

Number 4 is a familiar name in the Extract-Brewing Circuit. It is none other than Northern Brewer’s Irish-Red-Ale Brewing kit. 

However, this shouldn’t be a surprise as Northern Brewers were always made good beer extracts.

This is pretty similar to the first one on the list in terms of beer quality and directions. It’s also lighter, inexpensive, and more reusable than the first one.

But why did it get bumped down the list?

It’s because the Irish Red Ale doesn’t come with a brewing pot and a lot of other provisions. Its siphon-less bubbler is also reported to have a lot of issues and it doesn’t provide a good brewing experience, especially for beginners.

Room For Improvement

The Glass Bot is prone to cracking, especially if you pour hot liquids. If that is a concern for you, we suggest you use Craft A Brew’s Homemade Starter Kit

Craft A Brew’s (O.G Orange Golden Recipe) Starter Kit

Product Overview

In 5th place comes another familiar name. It’s “Craft A Brew’s O.G Organe Recipe Kit”.

Overall, this kit is pretty similar to number 3 on the list. The only difference is that the number of provisions or tools needed isn’t included. 

The O.G Orange also has a different and much more intriguing flavor compared to number 3 on the list. And, if you’re a seasoned beer maker, this is the one for you. 

This provides you with all the essential ingredients that you need for beer-making. Moreover, if you’re done with all the ingredients you can always get a refill!

This includes the malt extracts, steeping bags, sanitizer, hops, and yeast strains too.

Room For Improvement

The O.G Orange’s instructions are a bit too basic and it can cause a lot of confusion for un-seasoned brewers. The “Brewer’s Best Brewing Kit” should be your go-to recipe kit in that case.

Brewer’s Best’s Mexican Cerveza Home Brewing Starter Kit

Product Overview

Lastly, we have the Brewer’s Best home brewing starter kit. It may be the last on our list, but write it off so soon. It’s quite the interesting flavor (Mexican Cerveza) and packs quite the punch.

The Brewer’s best is similar to the Craft A Brew’s O.G Orange. It’s a recipe kit just like the O.G orange, meaning you can refill it. However, it has enough supplies for 5 gallons instead of just 1 gallon.

Other than these, Brewer’s Best is known to have one of the best-tasting beers. 

Its instructions are also very clear to follow and are the perfect choice for seasoned beer-makers with access to the tools needed.

Room For Improvement

Some of the ingredients in the packet are a bit delicate and may get ruptured if handled without care. For a more durable list of ingredients, we suggest you choose the “Craft A Brew’s O.G Orange Recipe Kit”.

Things To Know Before Diving Into Extract Brewing

The main purpose of this section below is to arm you with the information to determine what works for you. Every person has a different taste after all.

So stick around for a while, you might learn a thing or two. And, without further ado, let’s get to it-

Can You Make Good Beer With Extract?

Homebrewing can be quite a daunting task, especially for beginners. However, everything that is worth doing in this world is on the other side of fear.

With that being said, you can easily make good beer with extracts if you follow specific steps properly. Along with all of the steps using different types of substances and methods yield different results.

Down below we’ve jotted down a few important processes and elements that you need to keep an eye out for.

Water Type

One of the raw ingredients in making homemade beer is water. And yes, while it might seem obvious, using different types of water lead to different results in the beer.

Since the process of beer making results in you boiling the water, there is almost no risk of infection in any scenario. However, the type of flavor extracted from the water is a different story.

Using distilled water may leave your final tasting beer, flat and bland. This is due to the absence of minerals in the distilled water.

Here, tap water is a quick and easy way to brew your beer. It doesn’t make your beer taste bland since it does have some minerals dissolved in it.

However, the best option per our recommendation would be bottled water. Since bottled water has a lot of minerals dissolved in it, it adds to the final flavor of the beer.

Boiling The Water

Now, boiling is a process that people tend not to think about when it comes to brewing. However, the main differentiation in boiling arises when it comes to your skill level as a brewer.

If you’re a beginner, we suggest you use a partial boiling method (a fancy way of saying using a 12 Quart pot). Boiling in a low-volume pot will allow you to get a hang of the process.

It’s also great when it comes to the convenience of chilling and resting the wort. This is particularly helpful if you have a conventional stovetop and not an electric stove. 

However, it will darken your wort and lead to a lower hop utilization (your beer will be a bit sweeter). Using a 5-6 Gallon pot will help with better hop utilization and won’t darken your wort. It can even be used for all-grain brewing.

Malt Extract Type

There are two types of Malt extracts and it depends on the type of kit you’ve chosen. The first one is the Dry Malt Extract (DME) and the latter is Liquid Malt Extract (LME).

Using a Dry Malt Extract can be a problem sometimes especially if you mess up the proportions. It can lead to clumps in the wort. However, it has a considerably longer shelf life.

LME, on the other hand, oxidizes and spoils quickly. But it does result in a smoother tasting beer.

Hops And Specialty Grains

Hops and Specialty grains are the flavor-imparting components in a beer. Bitterness, fragrance, and flavor are all provided by hops in beer. 

Homebrewers can choose from hundreds of different hop varieties, which are generally sold by the ounce. You can always experiment with the different types of hops to see which best suits your style.

Specialty grains are responsible for imparting the taste and color in the beer. You can do this by steeping the grains in the wort to produce almost any variety of beer. The steeping procedure leaves the grain with no fermentable sugar.

However, a pro tip before you use any specialty grains is to make sure they are pre-crushed.

What Are The Pros Of Extract Beer?

Using extracts results in a lot of advantages. Firstly, you don’t need a huge operation to mash down large volumes of grain. This means that you won’t be blowing a hole in your wallet by gathering so many types of equipment.

The method is also easier since you don’t have to mash the grain to make the wort or sparge the grain to extract the residual sugars. 

Secondly, extract brewing is a simpler procedure for individuals who aren’t familiar with the brewing process. In other words, fewer moving parts result in fewer error sources.

Lastly, you’ll save a ton of time because you just have to steep a little quantity of grain, add the boil/hop addition(s), and let it cool down. There is no need to mash and sparge the sugar out of the grains.

What Is The Difference Between Extract Brewing & All-Grain

The key difference when it comes to Extract and All-Grain brewing is that All-Grain brewing is a bit more complicated. In simpler terms, All-Grain Brewing is making beer from scratch. Extract brewing uses a premade kit, recipe, and extract to make the beer.

All-Grain brewing, while being a bit complex, is also one of the best ways to make beer. If you’re a perfectionist and you want to control every aspect of your brew, you should opt for All-Grain brewing.

With All-Brewing you can genuinely influence each and every aspect of your beer. This is because you don’t have any access to a ready-made malt extract and you get to make your own. Plus, this way you’re saving up on the costs too as the malt extract is the most expensive component in Extract brewing.

However, there are certain issues with All-Grain brewing too, compared to Extract brewing. In All-Grain brewing you have to use at least an 8-gallon pot to get started, and not to mention all the cooling equipment needed to cool down the wort. 

In contrast, extract brewing requires less equipment to get started and is also one of the quickest ways in which you can cook up a batch.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does making your beer from scratch cut costs?

Yes, brewing your own beer helps in cutting costs when it comes to beer. In contrast to buying commercial beers, you can save up to 50%, if you brew your own beer, using extracts.

What’s the average life expectancy of my home-brewed beer?

When it comes to booze, time is a good thing. However, for your homemade beer, its life expectancy is for about a year.

Is it wise for me to refrigerate my beer before consumption?

Yes, it’s recommended you refrigerate your beer for a minimum of 48 hours. This allows the sediment to settle at the bottom of your bottle, which allows for a smoother beer.

Final Remarks

Well, that’s all we could muster up on the best extract beer kits available on the market. We sincerely hope that this post came to your aid regarding this particular predicament. After all, everyone’s taste is a bit different.

However, if you’re feeling indecisive and indifferent to the choices above, then go with our top pick. Choosing the top pick won’t lead you astray as it seems to be our consensus. Plus it always feels good knowing you’ve made your own brew.

Till then, take care and stay safe! And don’t drink and drive!

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