German Hefeweizen

A simple recipe for making a traditional German Hefeweizen. A nice introduction to beer brewing for wheat beer lovers. Please read all instructions before beginning.

To purchase this recipe as a kit, please click here: German Hefeweizen Kit

This recipe is for making 5 gallons.

Approximate OG: 1.044-1.048
Approximate FG: 1.008-1.012
Approximate ABV: 4.7%
Approximate IBU: 47


4.5 lbs Pale Malt (For extract version, replace the pale and wheat malts with 6.6 lbs of Wheat Liquid Malt Extract)
4.5 lbs Wheat Malt
4 oz Munich Malt


60 min - 1 oz Mt. Hood
15 min – 1 tsp Irish Moss (optional)
Bottle with 5 oz of priming sugar dissolved in 1-2 cups of boiling water.

White Labs WLP300. Safbrew WB-06 for dry yeast.


*IMPORTANT* - Before beginning, all equipment must be cleaned and sanitized according to the instructions on your preferred cleaner/sanitizer.

1. Start with at least 3 gallons of water in your brew pot or mash tun at a temperature of 160-165 F. Slowly add all of the (crushed) grains until they are completely covered by water. If you are not using a mash tun, place the grains loosely in a large bag to soak (like a tea bag) or be prepared to strain the beer during step 3. Break up any dough clumps that may have formed, then stir the mash and take a temperature reading. Adjust the temperature (by adding heat, or water) until it is 148-152 F, then place a lid on the brew pot or mash tun.

2. Check the temperature every 15 minutes or so, ensuring it remains between 148 and 152 F. Let the grains soak at this temperature for 60 minutes checking the temperature and stirring every 15 minutes or so, then raise the temperature to 155-160 F for another 30 minutes. The last 30 minutes are optional, but will result in a more complete beer and is recommended, especially if a full sparging of the grains is not going to be done afterward.

3. If using a mash tun, slowly drain 1/2 gallon of wort and pour it back on top of your mash. This process is used to clear your wort. You may need to run more than 1/2 gallon. When wort is clear, sparging is your next process. Sparging is no more than rinsing the sweet wort from the grains in your mash tun. You will want to pour 170 F water over your grains and SLOWLY collect your wort from the spigot at the bottom of your mash tun. This process should take one hour. If this is rushed, your gravity will be low...take your time! Be careful not to exceed the amount of total wort to be boiled (approximately 5 ½ gallons). It's better to be under than over because water can easily be added, but removing it requires having to extend the boil time.

*Brew in a Bag Brewers* - For brew in a bag brewers, lift the grains bag out and let it drain naturally into your brew pot (do not squeeze the grain bag!), then proceed to sparge. A thorough sparging should take about an hour to get the most out of your grains; the hot water (170 F) slowly trickling over the grains and draining back into the brew pot. Sparging can be skipped, but expect a lower original gravity if you do so. Even a quick sparge of ½ gallon can make a noticeable difference.

4. Throw out the “spent” grains (unless you plan to make spent grain dog treats) and bring your wort to a boil. The wort should be about 5 ½ gallons at the start of the boil. If you are under, top up with water. Be cautious as the wort approaches the boil because boil-overs are a common occurrence at this stage. They happen more frequently when making beer with malt extracts, but can still occur with all grain recipes.

5. Once the wort is boiling, follow the hop schedule below beginning with 1 oz of Mt. Hood hops that remains in the wort for the full 60 minutes. With 15 minutes left add 1 tsp of Irish Moss (optional).

60 min – 1 oz Mt. Hood Hops
15 min – 1 tsp Irish Moss (optional)

6. After the 60 minute boil is completed, remove the beer from heat. Remove all hop sacs (squeeze them to get the most out of them) and throw them out. Hops are very poisonous to dogs, so be sure and dispose of them properly if you have pets. Chill your wort to yeast pitching temperature as quickly as possible (use a wort chiller if you have one). Add your wort to a clean, sanitized fermenter. Top up to 5 gallons if needed, then take a hydrometer reading when the temperature is around 70 F (temperature is important) and write the resulting figure somewhere in your beer notes. Then aerate your wort aggressively and pitch your yeast according to the instructions on the packet. A yeast starter is always recommended if using liquid yeast. Tightly seal the fermenter with a grommeted lid, place an airlock snugly in the grommet, and pour water in the airlock up to the fill line. Leave for 7 days at room temperature (70 F).

7. After one week in the primary fermenter, transfer to a 5 gallon carboy (leaving behind the sediment in the primary fermenter). Leave for 7 days.

8. After 7 days take a second hydrometer reading, which is necessary to find the ABV and to ensure that the bulk of sugars have been converted to alcohol. If the second hydrometer reading seems high and the ABV seems low (see bottom of page for a link to our ABV calculator) then bottling should be postponed until a lower gravity is reached. When you are ready to bottle, dissolve 5 oz of priming sugar in 1-2 cups of boiling water for 3-5 minutes. Let it cool for a couple minutes, then pour it into your bottling bucket. Siphon the beer on top of the dissolved priming sugar in your bottling bucket. Once the beer is done siphoning, softly stir (NO SPLASHING) it to be sure the priming sugar is uniformly distributed throughout the beer. Proceed to bottle the beer.

*If kegging, skip adding the priming sugar and keg as usual.*

9. Let the beer carbonate for 2 weeks in the bottles at room temperature. After 2 weeks the beer is ready to drink, but an additional 6 weeks of maturation in the bottles will allow the beer to be the best it can be.


*IMPORTANT* - Before beginning, all equipment must be cleaned and sanitized according to the instructions on your preferred cleaner/sanitizer.

1. Steep the specialty grains (Munich) in 2 gallons of water at 160 F for 20 minutes. Then remove the grains and allow to drain naturally (NO SQUEEZING) into the brew pot.

2. Throw out the "spent" grains and add water to the brew pot up to the 2 1/2 gallon mark. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat (IMPORTANT to remove from heat to avoid a boil-over) and add all of the malt extract. Stir until it is completely dissolved.

3. After the malt extract is completely dissolved, bring the wort to a boil while carefully monitoring it. Brewing with extracts creates a concentrated wort that can very easily boil over and create quite a mess. When the foam on the top of the wort begins to rise, quickly remove the brew pot from the heating element and stir. Repeat this process (usually 2 or 3 times) until the foam dissipates and the wort can safely achieve a rolling boil.

4. You are now ready to add the hops according to the hop schedule at the top of the page or in step 5 of the all grain instructions. Continue to follow the all grain instructions from step 5 until the end.

To calculate the approximate alcohol by volume (ABV), please see our ABV Calculator page: ABV Calculator

Any recipe can be scaled to your preferred batch size. For example, if you prefer to all grain brew but lack the equipment to mash the 9+ lbs of grain required for a 5 gallon batch, a 3 gallon all grain batch can be done on most stove tops.