How to Brew Beer With No Kit

Homemade beer brewing is a lot less difficult than many believe it to be. Although there are a wealth of expensive kits available, you can successfully brew beer without them. Many of the ingredients needed to brew your own beer are common household items while others are more specialized and expensive, but will likely be good investments if you plan on brewing at home often. Another perk of home brewing without kits is the freedom to personalize your brews.

(Image: Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images)

Things You'll Need

  • Bleach

  • 10 gallon plastic bin

  • 22 quart or larger pot

  • 40 oz. can of malt extract (in the flavor of your choice)

  • 8 cups of either white sugar or corn syrup (corn syrup is preferred)

  • 12, 2 liter plastic bottles

  • Thermometer

  • 1 packet of brewer's yeast

  • Hydrometer

  • 24 tsp. of white granulated sugar

  • Hose clamp

  • 74 inches of vinyl tubing

Sanitize and Brew

Step 1

Wash and sanitize all of your tools in warm soapy water. Rinse well before combining 1 tbsp. of bleach with 1 gallon of water and soaking materials in the solution. Rinse away all traces of bleach.

Step 2

Fill your bin with 2.7 gallons of cold water. Fill the pot with 7.5 quarts of water and put it on the stove to boil.

Step 3

Pour the malt extract into the pot of boiling water. Stir and allow to continue boiling for about 20 minutes. Add sugar or corn syrup to the mixture and continue to stir. When that ingredient dissolves, immediately pour the solution into your bin of cold water.

Step 4

Fill the bin with liters of cold water (you can use your 2 liter bottles for this) until the temperature of the brew reaches about 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Add the yeast to the bin and stir.

Step 5

Place the top on the bin. Allow the beer to brew for six days at room temperature. Do not open the bin during that time.


Step 1

Find out if your beer is ready after six days. Use a hydrometer to determine the relative density: light beer should be about 1.008 while darker beers will be between 1.010 and 1.015.

Step 2

Place the bin on a steady table. Arrange old newspaper or other protective materials around the base of the table to catch spills. Arrange the 2 liter bottles on the floor near the table in preparation for bottling.

Step 3

Add 2 tsp. of white granulated sugar to each 2 liter bottle. Attach the hose clamp to the vinyl tubing and siphon beer from the bin to the bottles. Be sure to leave a small amount of space at the top of each bottle for air.

Step 4

Tightly cap off each bottle. Invert each bottle to dissolve the sugar in the beer.

Step 5

Store the 2 liter bottles in a warm, dark place for two days before drinking. Keep them in a cooler, dark area after the two-day period.

References & Resources