The best home brewing kit could mean the difference between stale beer and an ice-cold glass of fine brew. Brewing your own beer also helps save money over buying beer at the supermarket, especially in an age where premium beers can get costly. Our evaluation focused on ease of use, taste, kit contents, and capacity.
After more than 15 hours of research and testing, our top pick goes to the Mr. Beer Premium Home Brewing Kit. This fast brewing malt extract can be prepared for fermentation in under 30 minutes with an airtight sealed fermenter jug and a wide spigot for easy pouring. Keep reading to learn more about the Mr. Beer Premium Home Brewing Kit and three others that met our strict grading criteria.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This is the best home brewing system for beginners, thanks to a preparation time of 30 minutes or less and a two-gallon fermenter, good to bottle up to 20 standard size beer bottles.
Read Full Review: Mr. Beer Premium Home Brewing Kit
Aside from the Coopers Brewery name, we appreciate this home brewing kits’ straightforward process. Its included hopped malt brews in under 30 minutes before being passed to a 2-gallon fermenter, where it sits for up to 14 days before bottling in eleven shatterproof bottles (included). This process takes up to four weeks. Once we finished brewing, the taste was pretty good – heavy on the wheat side with its combination of barley and hops. The alcohol content is on the lower side at 3.7%.
We really like this best home brewing kit’s 2-gallon fermenting jug, which comes with a well sealed built-in airlock to help prevent debris and air from contaminating. The wide spout also makes it easy to fill. Once fermented, a sturdy locking spigot also makes it easy to pour into bottles or cups for consumption. All in all, we were really impressed with this kit’s overall build quality and accessories. If you prefer a glass of wine at night, grab some of the best wine bar accessories too.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This is the best IPA homebrew kit, made using malted barley extract (Long Play IPA), a good choice for people who prefer a bitter finish and a stronger alcohol (5.5%) content.
Read Full Review: Mr. Beer Long Play IPA 2 Gallon Home Brewing Kit Review
Our favorite thing about this home brewing kit is its delicious malted barley brewing extract, which produces a nice hoppy taste with a tinge of caramel and a bitter finish. Its Long Play IPA formula also contains 5.5% alcohol, which is pretty strong, making it one of the strongest home brew beer kits.
With a 2-gallon fermenter (not included), this extract is good for roughly 20 servings. For the average drinker, it should last up to 3 months depending on how much you drink. Like our #1 pick, brewers should expect to finish the fermentation process in as little as 3 weeks. Note, this kit only contains a refill, with home brewing kit gear like fermenters and reusable bottles sold separately. Now you’ll have home-brewed beer to have alongside your best wine fridge.
Award: BEST FLAVOR PROFILE
WHY WE LIKE IT: This home brewing kit consists of a Block Party Amber extract and a full starter kit set equipped with a 6.5-gallon fermenter and all essential accessories, making it a great choice for people who enjoy a sweeter taste.
Read Full Review: Northern Brewer Home Brewing Kit
This home brewing kit’s Block Party Amber has a very toasty taste, with an inkling of floral, herbal hop, and caramel which we really enjoyed. We can easily see ourselves sharing this batch of beer with a group of family and friends, which is not bad for a starter home brewing kit.
Like most homebrewing starter kits, prep time for this Northern Brewer brew is roughly four weeks and is relatively easy. The first two weeks are dedicated to fermentation and bottling starts at the beginning of the third week. Everything needed to start brewing is included, including a 6.5-gallon fermenter with airlock sealing, a brew kettle, a stirring spoon, and an auto-siphon. It even comes with a DVD with helpful instructions if you prefer to learn visually. While you’re at it, you might want to pick up the best electric wine opener while you’re at it.
Award: HIGHEST CAPACITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: This home beer brewing kit includes a 7.8-gallon fermenting bucket for a 5 gallons of beer, with the ability for consumers to add their own malt extract, making this a great choice for anyone who prefers to add their own recipe kits or use their own ingredients.
Read Full Review: Home Brew Ohio Home Brewing Kit
All of the equipment needed to prepare your own brew is included in this kit, including a hydrometer, beer bottle brush, and bottling spigot. Its 7.8-gallon fermenting bucket is also the largest on our list, good enough to fill 50+ standard size beer bottles. Note, although this kit is pretty comprehensive, reusable beer bottles need to be purchased separately.
Unlike our first three picks, this home beer brewing kit does not include any malt extracts. It is designed for intermediate to advanced level brewers who purchase their own recipe kits separately. This has the added benefit of being able to use and mix different flavors. With homemade beer to offer, you may be putting your best wine decanter to the side for now.
In determining the best home brewing kit to buy, we explored kit contents, taste, ease of use, and capacity.. Look for home brewing kits with fermentation containers to produce a minimum of 5-gallon batches and tightly sealed bottling buckets to pour your concoction into for fermentation.
Other accessories, such as mixing spoons, a flow tap to control pours, and no-rinse cleaners are also helpful. The more all-inclusive the kit is, the better.
Taste is an important consideration. Our recommended brewing kits span all kinds of tastes and alcohol content percentages. Our #2 pick Mr. Beer Long Play IPA 2 Gallon Home Brewing Kit is known for its bitter finish and higher alcohol content (5.5%) whereas the #3 pick Northern Brewer Home Brewing Kit has a toastier, floral taste.
Ease of use is critical. Look for kits that feature detailed, well-written instructions that explain each step of what could be a long and drawn-out process. We especially like the #3 pick Northern Brewer Home Brewing Kit for its instructional DVD and print instructions, which bodes well for visual learners.
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