Simple Rice Beer Recipe

rice beer

I’ve made a few posts with my recipe for rice beer, but they were unnecessarily complex. After a few years of making it, I have it down to the absolute basics. I’s super easy to make with very little effort on my part and it’s fast. You can have ~18 pints ready to drink within about 6 days for about $12 with no expensive specialty equipment. It’s been made in China for about 9000 years.

While boiling 1-1/2 gal spring water in a 12 quart stockpot, I soak and rinse 12 cups of sweet glutenous rice 3 times. When the water is at a rolling boil i add the well-drained rice and stir constantly until it gets thick. I remove from heat and stir a little longer to make sure the bottom doesn’t burn. Cover and let sit overnight.

I use a sturdy metal spatula to layer the cooled rice (it’s thick and sticky) into a 2 gallon glass jar (walmart – $10 – cookie jar? with lid) with 2 crushed Chinese yeast balls. The temp doesn’t seem to matter as long as it’s cooler than 100F. I don’t worry about sterilization, and haven’t had a problem. Wet a white tea towel and put between jar and lid. Put in a cooler in a warm room for 24 hours.

Stir after 24 hours and then twice a day for 4-5 days. It should be bubbling merrily. When the floating rice gets thin, scoop 4 cups into a new, clean bucket (Home Depot) lined with a paint strainer (mesh bag w elastic) and squeeze liquid out, Toss waste rice. Continue until all rice is strained.

I use Grolsch bottles (about 18 of them) and a funnel. Leave room for expansion; stop where bottle narrows and cap it. Put in a soft-sided cooler (in case of explosions LOL) for 2 days to bottle ferment (I like it fizzy) and then put the cooler in the fridge until cold. Before opening a bottle, put in freezer for 15-20 minutes to reduce the pressure, It opens like a shaken champagne bottle – POW! Drape with a tea towel or open outside; sometimes you have to burp it.

Everyone LOVES this drink! I hope you enjoy my recipe

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2 thoughts on “Simple Rice Beer Recipe

  1. Mark P

    Hello, thanks for posting this recipe. I’ve been experimenting with different ferments and this looks like a fun one. But can you please ease my confusion? You said you get 18 pints of liquid from this recipe. The recipe only has you put in 12 pints of liquid, a lot of which will soak into the rice or be evaporated. So how the heck did you end up with 18 pints from this recipe? Did I miss the step where you added more water?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. TempestTcup Post author

    Funny, I never thought about it before. One reason might be that there isn’t a full pint in the Grolsch bottles; I quit filling when the bottle narrows because of the explosive nature when bottle fermenting, but that wouldn’t account for all of the additional liquid. The rice gets really liquid-y and there isn’t much to strain out; probably a lot of the rice ferments into liquid? It might be the mold in the Chinese yeast which turns the starch into sugar that the yeast ferments; maybe the starch to sugar process has something to do with it. It could also be that I rinse the rice 3 times while letting it sit about 10 minutes in the rinse water each time. The rice soaks up some of that water.

    I’ll have to try to accurately measure the total amount of water soaked into the rice, add it to the water used to cook, and see if it adds up.

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