Adding orange peels is a great way to incorporate those fruity, fresh flavors into your next brew.
The flavor that comes from the orange peel or zest is similar to that of Grand Mariner or Cointreau. Many styles of beer pair well with citrusy aromas and flavors, including some darker beers.
Both citrus sinesis and citrus aurantium oranges add a citrusy flavor and aroma. But the sweet oranges make the orange flavor much more prominent. Many brewers also add ground coriander especially with the bitter types of oranges. This brings even more fruity aroma into the beer.
A general rule of thumb is to add ½ to 1 oz dried orange peel, or the zest of 1-3 sweet or bitter oranges to a 5-gallon batch of beer.
Experimentation is key to finding what works best for your brewing. Here are a few methods and mixtures for how much to add, and when to add it along with a few other suggestions.
Brewers use several variations when it comes to type, amount, and method of adding orange peel to beer. Some add it the last 10 minutes, others only put it in during the last 2 or 3 minutes, and others wait until flameout.
For 5 gallons of beer, add zest or peel of 1-3 oranges with ½ to 2 oz of ground, dried Indian coriander seeds to the wort 3-10 minutes before the end of the boil.
Zest 2 – 3 oranges and add it to the wort during flameout. Freshly zested Cara Cara oranges will give the best flavor.
You can also use 1-2 oz of dried, ground orange peel instead of fresh with ½ to 1 oz of ground Indian coriander seed.