Tips & Tidbits –
Body Building for Extract Brews
I often get comments from extract brewers that their beer seems thin or how can they increase the body. The answer in a word is Dextrin. Dextrin is a chain of three glucose molecules that cannot be broken by beer yeast in the respiration or fermentation cycles of the yeast making it unfermentable. The presence of these unfermentables in the finished beers will increase the viscosity and smoothness adding body, foam stability and residual sweetness. Dextrin is naturally present to varying degrees in malt extract. All grain brewers control dextrin production through mash temperature.
The addition of Malto Dextrin, dextrin in a powdered form, to extract recipes will increase the body of the beer without adding color, odor or flavor. Just a small amount of residual sweetness and head stability.
Slowly add 8 ounce of Malto Dextrin to a five gallon batch of homebrew at the beginning of the wort boil, stirring to dissolve and you'll achieve that full-bodied brew. This is a case where more is not better or you may end up with a gummy almost glutinous beer.