8 Great Extract Beer Recipes for Beginners

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If you’ve already brewed a few extract beer recipes, you probably already know that finding a good extract recipe is difficult and you can never quite be sure if it will turn out well, but you don’t want to waste your time and money on a mediocre recipe. That’s why we’re sharing our list of favorite extract recipes that we’ve personally tried and loved.

» You might also like this Easy Homemade Beer Bread Recipe.

beer samplers

We can confidently say that these extract beer recipes will save you time and effort and they won’t leave you disappointed in the end. After you’ve brewed them once, you’ll most certainly want to try them again, and maybe even tweak a few things to make your own version.

If you’re a beginner, check out our guide to the homebrewing supplies you’ll need to get started, and read about the process of brewing so you know what to expect.

🍺 Have you read our post about the differences between the all grain and extract brewing processes, where we laid out the pros and cons of each method? See which one is right for you.

American Pale Ale Recipe

american pale ale

A good recipe to start out with for your first few homebrew recipes is an American Pale Ale. It’s a style that you likely already know well. It’s not too hoppy or high in alcohol, but it’s got a great balance of sweetness and hoppiness that is typical from American-style hops.

This is a great all-round beer to brew for the first time, and a perfect beer to have on tap during the summer. It won’t last long, so you may need to have a second batch going.

5 gallons, extract with specialty grains
OG = 1.053
FG = 1.011
ABV = 5.6%
IBU = 37
SRM = 11


  • 0.25 lbs. (113 g) Briess Light dried malt extract
  • 6.6 lbs. (3 kg) Briess Light liquid malt extract (late addition)
  • 1 lb. (0.45 kg) crystal malt (60 °L)
  • 6 AAU Magnum hops (60 min.) (0.5 oz./14 g of 12% alpha acids)
  • 3.5 AAU Perle hops (60 min.) (0.5 oz./14 g of 7% alpha acids)
  • 11 AAU Cascade hops (30 min.) (2 oz./57 g of 5.5% alpha acids)
  • 2 oz. (57 g) Cascade hops (0 min.)
  • 1 tsp Irish moss
  • Wyeast 1056 (American Ale) or White Labs WLP001 (California Ale) or Safale US-05 yeast (1.5 qt./1.5 L yeast starter)
  • 7/8 cup corn sugar (for priming)

Stone IPA Clone


Many beer drinkers know of and have tried Stone Brewing’s excellent IPA. If you like this beer – if you like IPA, in general – this is a good recipe to try. It has 77 IBUs, so it’s not light on the hops, and it ends up at around 6.9% ABV.

The tropical, citrusy flavor melds well with the piney bitterness and aroma of the hops. There’s a reason why so many homebrewers are looking for this recipe. It is one of the most popular IPAs in the U.S.

5 gallons, extract with specialty grains
OG = 1.065
FG = 1.012
ABV = 6.9%
IBUs = 77
SRM = 8


  • 5 lbs. light DME
  • 1 lb. 10 oz. light LME (late addition)
  • 1 lb. two-row pale malt
  • 1 lb. crystal 15L malt
  • 0.5 oz. Magnum hops at :60 (7 AAUs)
  • 0.64 oz. Perle hops at :60 (4.5 AAUs)
  • 2 oz. Centennial hops at :15
  • 1 tsp. Irish moss at :15 mins
  • 1 oz. Centennial whole leaf hops (dry hopped for 3-5 days)
  • 0.5 oz. Chinook whole leaf hops (dry hopped for 3-5 days)
  • Wyeast 1968: London ESB ale yeast (1.5L starter) or 1 pack Safale S-04
  • priming sugar (if bottling)

German Hefeweizen


Hefeweizen is a wheat beer that typically has flavors of banana and clove. It’s a great summer beer that is exceptionally easy to make, so it’s a good recipe to learn with and perfect. With a hefeweizen, the type of yeast you choose will have a significant impact on the flavor.

This recipe uses the typical hefeweizen ale yeast, which will give more banana flavors than clove, like other yeast strains will. If you use an American hefeweizen yeast, the banana and close flavors will be nearly non-existent. Try a few different ways to see what you like best.

5 gallons extract only
OG = 1.049
IBUs = 12-14


  • 6.6lbs LME Wheat extract
  • 0.85 oz Tettnager hop pellets (4.5%AA), 60 minute addition
  • WLP300 Hefeweizen Ale yeast

American Style Amber Recipe

Amber ale

An Amber beer is sort of a nebulous term used for a beer that falls into the color range of amber. This style of beer focuses on the malt, so it tends to be a medium to heavy bodied beer with noticeable caramel/crystal malt flavor.

American hops are used, do of course you’ll also get that floral hops aroma and slight bitterness. If you like malty, darker beers, this one is for you.

5 gallons, extract plus grains
OG = 1.051 (12.6 °P)
FG = 1.013 (3.2 °P)
IBU = 35  SRM = 10  ABV = 5.1%


  • 6.0 lb. (2.72 kg) Alexander’s light liquid malt extract (2 °L)
  • 0.75 lb. (340 g) Great Western crystal malt (40 °L)
  • 0.5 lb. (227 g) Durst Munich malt (8 °L)
  • 0.25 lb. (113 g) Great Western crystal malt (120 °L)
  • 6.5 AAU Horizon hops, (60 min)
  • (0.5 oz./14 g at 13% alpha acids)
  • 1.5 AAU Cascade hops, (10 min)
  • (0.25 oz./7 g at 6% alpha acids)
  • 2.25 AAU Centennial hops, (10 min)
  • (0.25 oz./7 g at 9% alpha acids)
  • 1.5 AAU Cascade hops, (0 min)
  • (0.25 oz./7 g at 6% alpha acids)
  • 2.25 AAU Centennial hops, (0 min) (0.25 oz./7 g at 9% alpha acids)
  • Wyeast 1056 (American Ale), White Labs WLP001
  • (California Ale) or Fermentis Safale US-05 yeast.

Red Ale Recipe

One of our favorite beers to brew has been this red ale recipe. It started out as a recipe for hoppy red ale from Serious Eats, but we’ve changed it around a bit and it’s even won us a few homebrew competitions.

We reduced the hops to make it a more well-rounded red ale, with a slightly sweet malt flavor from the specialty grains. This is a great extract recipe to try if you like red ale.

5 gallons
OG = 1.059
FG = 1.015
ABV = 5.7%
IBU = 29


  • 6 lb light pilsen DME
  • 1 lb CaraRed malt
  • 8 oz Crystal 60L
  • 3.2 oz Carafa I
  • 0.5 oz Centennial (60 minutes)
  • 0.5 oz Centennial (15 minutes)
  • 1 oz Amarillo (5 minutes)
  • 1 oz Amarillo (dry-hopping)
  • 1 tsp. Irish Moss
  • Wyeast American Ale (1056)

American Wheat Beer Recipe

American wheat beer

We’ve added some citrusy and herby notes to our American Wheat Ale recipe that helped us win the Wheat Beer category at a homebrew competition. This beer just gets better with age! It has orange peel and coriander in it, just like the popular Sunshine Wheat Beer from New Belgium.

You could also get creative and substitute those ingredients for others, like blood orange or even jalapeno. ☆ See the recipe here.

5 gallons
OG = 1.049
FG = 1.011
ABV = 4.8%
IBU = 17


  • 4 oz. Gambrinus honey malt
  • 3.3 lb. Bavarian wheat LME
  • 3.0 lb. Bavarian wheat DME
  • 1.0 oz. Hallertau Hersbrucker hops
  • 0.4 oz. dried bitter orange peel
  • 2 tsp. crushed coriander
  • 1 tsp. Irish moss
  • Wyeast 1010 American Wheat yeast

House Porter

House Porter beer

One of my favorite beer styles is Porter, and I love the Black Butte Porter from Deschutes in Oregon. It has the typical chocolate and roasted malt flavors, but it’s not over the top, and it balances nicely with the hops.

We’ve made many porters over the years, but this House Porter always turns out very tasty and is a favorite of our friends whenever we have serve our beer at parties.

5 gallon, partial mash
OG = 1.061
ABV = 5.7
IBU = 34


  • 6 Lbs of Dark Dry Malt Extract (DME)
  • 8 Oz of Crystal 40L Malt
  • 8 Oz of Black Malt
  • 8 Oz of Special Roast Malt
  • 8 Oz of Flaked Oats
  • 8 Oz of Torrified Wheat
  • 2 Oz of Fuggle Hops (30 Minute Boil)
  • 1 Oz of Hallertau Magnum Hops (60 Minute Boil)
  • 1 Pkg of WLP023 Burton Ale Yeast

Milk Stout Recipe

Milk Stout beer

If you’ve ever tried the Left Hand Milk Stout – one of the most popular milk stouts on the market today – you might be tempted to make one of your own at home. No, it doesn’t have milk in it, but it does have lactose in it. Lactose is a form of sugar that doesn’t get consumed by the yeast in the fermentation process.

It adds a smooth, creamy and sweet note to the beer, that you can’t really get any other way.

5 gallon extract
OG = 1.068
FG = 1.016
ABV = 7%
IBU = 19

  • 3.85 lb (1.74 kg) light malt extract syrup
  • 2 lb (0.9 kg) pale two-row malt
  • 1.0 lb (0.45 kg) lactose (15 minutes before end of boil)
  • 0.75 lb (340 g) 60° L crystal malt
  • 0.75 lb (340 g) Munich malt
  • 0.75 lb (340 g) chocolate malt
  • 0.5 lb (227 g) flaked barley
  • 0.5 lb (227 g) flaked oats
  • 0.3 oz (8.5 g) Magnum pellet hops, 13% a.a. (60 min)
  • 1.0 oz (28 g) E.K. Goldings pellet hops, 5% a.a. (10 min)
  • California ale yeast


This collection of recipes should keep you busy brewing for a while. Try them out, make some changes and see which ones become your favorites.

After you’ve brewed these beers, come back and let us know how you like them, and how you would change them to make your own unique home brewing recipe.

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Try these 8 great, tried and proven, homebrew extract beer recipes.

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