The Average Cost of a 5-Gallon Batch of Homebrew Beer (Recipe & Equip)

Once you start researching homebrewing, one of the first questions is likely to be what your new hobby is likely to cost. Although some costs overlap, such as basic equipment, others can vary depending on your preferred brewing style. In this blog, we’ll dive into potential costs by extract, partial mash, and all-grain brewing.

Depending on the style of brewing your choose, you should expect to spend an average of $40 per five gallons of beer for an extract kit. Beer brewing starter kits can start at $100, but you may also need to factor in the cost of the ingredients. Additional equipment for all-grain brewing can be an additional $170-215, plus $30+ per brewing kit.

Keep reading for a complete breakdown of the costs of homebrewing, including the likely costs of starter kits, equipment, and ingredients by style.

How much does it cost to make 5 gallons of beer?

The type of beer you are planning to brew and the method you’re using will determine the outlay per cost of 5 gallons of beer (the typical return for one batch).

Starting kits range from about $100 to $350, including ingredients for a beer.

Extract kits can range from $20 to $80, averaging about $40 per five gallons. The equipment needed for partial mash generally adds $10 to $50, depending on what your starting equipment contains.

Once you transition to all-grain brewing, you could spend an additional $170 to $215 on equipment. The average kit costs between $30 and $40 per five gallons. Buying your own ingredients can drive the cost down to $15 to $25. 

By using malt extract, you can save in your brewing time but pay somewhat more for ingredients. Extract kits tend to be more expensive than all-grain kits. Sourcing your own ingredients in bulk further decreases the total cost of ingredients. However, as you progress towards all-grain brewing, there are additional costs in time and equipment. 

StyleIngredients (per Gallon)Equipment/Kit
Partial Mash$9-13$10-50
Approximate costs of ingredients and equipment for extract, partial mash, and all-grain batches of homebrew

Please note that the prices in this blog are based on the current market rate. In addition, it is, of course, possible to find ingredients, kits, and equipment at other costs. I made an effort to include a range of prices to accommodate different budgets. 

How much does it cost to brew 5 gallons of homebrew with extract?

Extract brewing is a friendly and relatively easy way to start brewing at home. That does not mean that the resulting beer is “cheaper” – that depends on the quality of your ingredients.

It is, however, a great option for beginning brewers. Many begin with extract before progressing to all-grain brewing, as the process is easier and quicker. With extract brewing, you use malt extract, a condensed type of liquid wort

The average costs when brewing with extract are $100 to $350 for the equipment, plus $30 to $40 for an extract kit.  

For those just starting, it makes sense to purchase an equipment kit. If you have the time, you can research and purchase each item separately.

Kits range from about $100 to $350, some of which include ingredients for a brew. A more expensive kit does not necessarily mean a better one.  When you are just starting, stick with the basics.  You can add more equipment separately as you progress.

When buying the extract recipe and equipment

If you already have the equipment ready, skip to the next section. 

The malt extract is available in liquid (LME) or dry (DME) forms in extract brewing. Like malt, the extract is likewise categorized by the type of beer, like pale or dark ales.

Here is a basic list of equipment needed to brew five gallons of extract beer:

Just the equipment (to accommodate five gallons):

NameVendorCostEquipment Included
Gold Complete Beer Equipment KitHome Brew Ohio$95.89– 7.8-gallon fermenting bucket
– Drilled lid
– Grommet
– Racking kit
– 5-gallon glass carboy
– Fermentation thermometer
– Small drilled stopper
– Hydrometer
– Bottling spigot
– 3-piece airlock
– Bottle brush
– 8 pack of C-Brite sanitizer
Premium Equipment KitABC Cork Co.$100.00– 6-gallon bucket
– 6-gallon fermenter
– Airlocks
– 24” racking tube
– Rubber stoppers
– Hydrometer testing jar
– Triple scale
– Hydrometer

Equipment plus a brew (to accommodate five gallons):

NameVendorCostBrewIncluded Equipment
HomeBrewing Starter SetNorthern Brewer$89.99Block Party Amber– 6.5-gallon fermenter
– Spigot
– Kid,
– Airlock
– Bottling kit
– Bottle filler
– 21” stainless spoon
– 5′ siphoning tube
– Sanitizer
– Bottle brush
– Bottle capper with 60 caps
HomeBrewing Starter Set with Testing EquipmentNorthern Brewer$109.99Chinook IPA or Hank’s Hefeweizen– Triple scale hydrometer
– Testing jar
– Thermometer
– 6.5-gallon fermenter with spigot
– Airlock
– Bottling kit
– 5-gallon stainless brewing kettle
– 21” stainless spoon
– 5′ siphoning tube
– Sanitizer
– Bottle brush
– Bottle capper with 60 caps
Deluxe Homebrew Starter KitNorthern Brewer$229.99One of: 
Fresh Squished IPA, Bavarian Hefeweizen, Caribou Slobber Brown Ale or Irish Red Ale
– 6-gallon glass carboy
– 5-gallon glass carboy
– 2 bungs
– 2 airlocks
– Blowoff hose
– Funnel
– 2 adhesive thermometers
– Syphon with tubing
– Bottling kit
Bottle capper with caps
– Carboy brush
– Bottle cleaning brush
– Sanitizer
– Carboy dryer 
Premium Craft Brewery in a Box Northern Brewer$349.99Fresh Squished IPA or Caribou Slobber – 6.5-gallon plastic fermenter
– Bung
– Airlock
– Transfer tubing
Immersion wort chiller
– Faucet adapter
– 8-gallon pot
– Ball valve
– 21” stainless spoon
– Bottling kit
– Sanitizer
– Bottle capper with caps
– Thermometer
– Triple scale hydrometer
– Testing jar

When buying just the extract recipe

Once you have the necessary equipment, let’s focus on extract ingredient kits. Here, I’ll provide several options across the spectrum. (These do not include equipment!)  

Extract kits can range from $20 to $80 per five gallons, depending on the type of beer. The average falls between $30 and $40.

Here is a selection of extract beer kits, complete with ingredients and instructions. If you are a fan of Indian Pale Ales, have a look at this variety:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
Conundrum Session Indian Pale AleNorthern Brewer5$41.99$8.40
Kama Citra SessionIndian Pale AleNorthern Brewer5$46.99$9.40
Dead RingerIndian Pale AleNorthern Brewer5$49.99$10
Houblonmonstre Belgian TripelBelgian / Indian Pale AleNorthern Brewer5$59.99$12
Hazy Eights Double NEIndian Pale AleNorthern Brewer5$75.99$15.20

Other ales to consider:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
AmberAleABC Cork Co.6$30.00$5
Irish RedAleABC Cork Co.6$30.00$5

How about a crisp, refreshing lager?

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
BlondeLagerABC Cork Co.6$20.00$3.33
DraughtLagerABC Cork Co.6$30.00$5
PilsnerLagerABC Cork Co.6$30.00$5

For those, who prefer fruity or spicy undertones, try:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
WitbierWitbierBrewer’s Best5$41.64$8.33
LemondropSaisonNorthern Brewer5$41.99$8.40

If you are looking for a darker, bolder brew, here are a few options:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
StoutStout ABC Cork Co.6$30.00$5
Irish StoutStoutHome Brew Stuff5$37.99$7.60
Nut BrownBrown AleNorthern Brewer5$39.99$8
Caribou SlobberBrown AleNorthern Brewer5$46.99$9.40
Black Magic MildDark AleNorthern Brewer5$51.99$10.40
Bourbon Barrel Porter / Dark AleNorthern Brewer5$55.99$11.20
BrunchStoutNorthern Brewer5$59.99$12

Notes on the kit by vendor:

  • Kits from Northern Brewer contain malt extract, steeping grains, hops, dry yeast, priming sugar, and a muslin steeping bag.
  • ABC Cork Co. includes liquid malt extract, yeast and hops.
  • Home Brew Stuff provides specialty grains, a steeping bag, malt extract, and dry yeast. 

How much does it cost to brew 5 gallons of homebrew using partial mash?

Once you feel comfortable brewing with extract kits, you should consider moving to partial mash. Partial mash involves combining extract with wort from grain, either in liquid or dry forms. The added grain adds color and flavor, while the malt extract adds the rest of the sugar needed for proper fermentation.  

The equipment needed for partial mash brewing is mostly the same as with extract brewing.

The cost range is the same as before, plus $10 to $50 for missing parts, depending on your initial kit. At this stage, you can buy kits or hunt for separate ingredients to economize. 

You can create your partial malt using base malts and specialty grains, or just the latter, combined with your malt extract. 

When buying partial mash recipe and equipment

If you started with an equipment kit, check to see if you have the following items:

  • Thermometer
  • Grain (or brew) bag
  • Colander
  • Hydrometer
  • Test jar

You can continue using the same pot as before or switch to a smaller pot to fit your grain bag, leaving some room. You will also need a separate pot or kettle to sparge water.

Most commonly, kits are missing a brew bag. (I assume that you have a colander and small or mid-sized pot at home.)

Here are three options for brew bags:

When buying just the partial mash recipe or ingredients

If you are just looking for the recipe, here are some options to consider.

Try one of these for a medium-bodied brew with fruity or malty undertones:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
Carmelite Triple-Grain Belgian TripelBelgianNorthern Brewer5$49.99$10
Lakefront Brewery Bridge BurnerAle / Barley WineNorthern Brewer5$64.99$13

For that dark, full-bodied flavor, consider these:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
Midnight BeatdownPorterNorthern Brewer5$44.99$9
Tallgrass Buffalo SweatStourNorthern Brewer5$44.99$9

If you want to DIY, check out some recipes online and make a shopping list. Craft Beer and Brewing has a great selection of partial mash recipes

How much does it cost to brew 5 gallons of homebrew beer using all-grain?

All-grain brewing is commonly associated with an advanced level, but it does not require extensive additional equipment. (You can make it more complicated if you want a challenge.)

The average all-grain kit costs about $40 per five gallons of beer. As you become more confident in all-grain brewing, you might choose to source all of your ingredients in bulk. This way, you can drive the cost down to $15 or $20 per five gallons. 

On the flip side, the cost of additional equipment rises. You can mitigate this increase by buying standard, necessary items. These costs should average around $200. For those with a higher budget, there are all-inclusive advanced systems at $500+.

When buying all-grain recipe and equipment

With all-grain brewing, you brew your own wort, rather than boiling extract. 

All of your fermenting equipment remains the same, but you need some additional items.

Start with this traditional setup:

8+ gallon kettleBrewers Best Basic Brewing Pot
Northern Brewer – Megapot 1.2, Kettle
GasOne 32QT – Stainless Steel Kettle
Mash tun or 7-10 gallon cooler 
+ false bottom
Cooler Mash Tun, False Bottom, Tube Filter & Valve
Igloo Mash Tun, False Bottom & Valve
Homebrewers Outpost AG330, False Bottom & Valve
High temp tubingSilicone Tubing 3/8″ ID x 1/2″ OD 10 
Sealproof 5/16-Inch ID 9/16-Inch OD
Vinyl Tubing 3/8″ Id 1/2″ Od 25 Feet

If you don’t have a siphon already, add it to the list. Without the kettle, as you probably have one, additional equipment adds $170 to $215 to your setup. 

Optional upgrades:

Sparge armStainless Economy Sparge Arm
Imperial Sparge Stainless Steel Arm
BE950 The Ultimate Sparge Arm
Pump110V Magnetic Home Brewing System Beer Pump
BACOENG Stainless Steel 115 Volt Inline Beer Pump
FERRODAY Magnetic Drive Pump Wort Pump
Propane burnerGasOne B-5300 One High-Pressure Propane Burner
Northern Brewer, Dark Star Propane Burner
Concord Deluxe Banjo Single Propane Burner

If you are new to all-grain brewing, you might want to start smaller than five gallons. Smaller batches encourage you to brew more often, thereby improving your technique. Smaller batches are also more comfortable to brew in smaller kitchens.  

When buying just the all-grain recipe ingredients

For a flavorful ale, some with citrus undertones, check these options:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
Strange Brew AlchemyAleStrange Brew5$32.00$6.40
Cream AleAleNorthern Brewer5$35.99$7.20
Centennial BlondeAleMy Brew Supply5$38.99$7.80
Kama CitraIndian Pale AleNorthern Brewer5$44.99 $9

A couple lager alternatives:

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
German BlondePilsner / LagerMy Brew Supply5$40.99$8.20
Marzen OktoberfestLagerAfford-A-Brew5$57.99$11.60

Looking for a creamier feel?

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
Bavarian HefeweizenHefeweizenNorthern Brewer5$36.99$7.30
Twisted MonkWitbierBrewDemon2$27.60$13.80

Rather have a darker, “baked” brew?

NameTypeVendorGallonsTotal CostCost per Gallon
Caribou SlobberBrown AleNorthern Brewer5$43.99$8.80
Bourbon BarrelPorterNorthern Brewer5$54.99$11

Notes on kits per vendor:

  • Strange Brew includes crushed grains, hops, yeast, bottle caps, priming sugar, a muslin bag, and irish moss. 
  • My Brew Supply includes specialty grains, malt, pellet hops, and yeast. 
  • Northern Brewer comes with crushed malted grains, hops, priming sugar, and yeast. 
  • BrewDemon includes malted wheat, malted barley, hops, natural essence, natural flavor seeds, and yeast. 
  • Afford-A-Brew comes with milled grains, yeast, and hops. Priming sugar at an additional cost.

After looking through some forums, I noted some feedback from fellow brewers on their average costs. One user provided helpful insight into the cost of his ingredients per five gallons, saying, “It will depend on the beer, and hoppier or bigger beers will cost more. I try to buy in bulk to reduce the cost as much as possible, so I get 55 [pounds] of grain for roughly $35 and 1.25 [pounds] of hops for anywhere between $8 and $16.” 

The breakdown:

~11-12 pounds of grain~$7
~2-3 ounces of hops (non-IPA)~$1.50
One packet of yeast$2.50
50 caps$1
Approximate cost of homebrew beer ingredients per batch when buying in bulk

This amounts to ~$15 for five gallons of beer. Other users claimed an average of $20 to $30 per five gallons when buying ingredients separately.