Adjuncts

Adjuncts are alternative sources of fermentable sugar that take the place of malted barley. Typical examples of adjuncts include corn, rice, oats and wheat. Adluncts are mainly used by mega-brewers to cut the costs by substituting cheaper grains for the more expensive malted barley. Other brewers use adjuncts to create special flavors, or to enhance or reduce a certian property of the beer. For example oats are added to oatmeal stout to create a unique flavor, unmalted barley or wheat is added to the brew to improve head retention, while while corn can be used to impart a fuller flavor to the beer.

Adjunct Forms

WHOLE GRAINS

Often called “berries” (rye berries, wheat berries, and so forth), whole grains are the least processed form of adjunct.

RAW & unmalted

Grains that have not undergone the malting process.

FLOUR

Flours are produced as by-products, during the manufacture of corn and rice. Flours must be cooked before being mixed in with the malt mash.

GRITS & MEALS

Grits and meals are prepared by removing the hull and the germ from the kernel, then grinding the product to the desired fineness. This processing saves the brewer the step of cracking the grains, but grits and meals still require double mashing.

GROATS

Groats are the hulled kernels of cereal grains such as oat, wheat, and rye. Groats are whole grains that include the cereal germ and fiber-rich bran portion of the grain as well as the endosperm.

STARCH

Starches can be prepared from many cereal grains. In commercial practice, refined wheat starch, potato starch, and corn starch have been used in breweries; corn starches, in particular, are used in the preparation of glucose syrups. Wheat starch has been employed in breweries in Australia and Canada, where local conditions make it economical to use. However, the most important source of refined starch is corn.

Flaked and rolled grains

There are two different manufacturing processes used to produce brewing flakes. In the traditional process, corn and rice grits or whole barley are steam-cooked to soften the endosperm, which is then rolled flat and dried. Gelatinization occurs during the steaming process. Another process involves “micronizing” these materials prior to flaking by subjecting the grain to internal heating by infrared heat.

TORREFIED grains

Produced by heating the grain quickly to 500 °F (260 °C), which makes the endosperm expand and pop, thus rendering the starch pre-gelatinized and easily milled. Once TORREFIED, grains can be added directly to the mash tun since the starch granules have been gelatinized. Most of the nitrogen is denatured in the kernel and is not solubilized, thus contributing little or no nitrogen to the mash..

Adjuncts

Barley

RAW, ROASTED, FLAKES, TORREFIED

Barley is used in all-grain brews to produce a lighter colored finished beer without lowering the original gravity. Used as a replacement for corn to eliminate the corn flavor, barley aids in head retention, imparts creamy smoothness. Especially good in Porters, Dry-Stouts and Stouts, but can be used in any beer.

Lovibond Color: 1.4°

Buckwheat

RAW, FLAKES, GROATS, TORREFIED

Buckwheat is a naturally gluten-free grain. Buckwheat groats are the hulled, starchy seeds of Fagopyrum esculentum and are not considered a cereal grain. Buckwheat is typically used to increase body and head retention and provide a warm, nutty flavors.

Lovibond Color: 2.1°

Cassava

FLAKES, GROUND, CAKE, FLOUR

Cassava, a.k.a. Brazilian arrowroot, or manioc, is one of the most popular staple foods in Africa. It is a tuber crop rich in available starch. Presently it is an underutilized crop in beer production. Nigeria, Brazil, Indonesia and Thailand lead the way in its production. In Africa, cassava is used either as a wet cake or as a purified starch. Although cassava is sometimes called yuca in Spanish, it differs from the yucca.

CORN (MAIZE)

RAW, GRITS, FLAKES, STARCH, FLOUR, TORREFIED

Corn grits are the most widely used adjunct in the United States and Canada. Corn helps to sweeten and lighten the beer without reducing the alcohol content. A “corn” taste may be apparent, making it generally more suited to the sweeter dark beers and American, light Bohemian and Pilsner lagers.

Lovibond Color: 0.8°.

Millet

RAW, FLAKES, TORREFIED

Millet is a group of highly variable-seeded grasses, widely grown around the world as cereal crops or grains. The most widely grown millet is pearl millet, finger millet, proso millet, and foxtail millet are also important crop species. As a gluten-free grain, millet has gained popularity as a beer adjunct due to its suitability for people suffering with Celac disease.

Oats

RAW, STEEL-CUT, FLAKES, Rolled

Oats add body, and a creamy mouthfeel to oatmeal stouts, porters and some Belgian Wits. Oat Flakes have a very distinctive “sticky” mouthfeel, noticeable even in small amounts, and are the preferred choice, as the other kinds, whole oats, steel-cut oats, rolled oats, and quick oats all require some form of cereal mash before being added to the main mash.

Lovibond Color: 2.5°

QUINOA

RAW, GRAIN

Quinoa is considered a pseudo-cereals, that does not belong to the grass family, but like other cereal grains, quinoa consists predominantly of starch. Quinoa has a starchy endosperm and a non-starchy aleurone layer. At present quinoa, not commonly used in the brewing industry, but in recent years it has become of interest due to its gluten-free status.

Rice

RAW, FLAKES, HULLS, GRITS, STARCH

Rice is currently the second most widely used adjunct in the U.S. in the production of light-colored lagers, used in several premium brands, including Budweiser. Rice has hardly any taste of its own, and does not interfere with the basic malt character of the beer. Favored by some brewers due to its lower oil content than corn grits, it promotes dry, crisp, and snappy flavors.

Lovibond Color: 1.0°

Rye

RAW, FLAKED, HULLS, ROLLED

Rye tends to add a bready, spicy rye character as well as a slick, drier mouthfeel and a full body to any beer. Rye is especially appropriate for use in the traditional German Roggenbier (rye beer), Finnish farmhouse Sahti beer, and in the low-alcohol (0.5 to 1.5% abv) Russian Kvass. Rye can also make an interesting addition when used in smoked and wheat beers.

Lovibond Color: 2.0°

 

Sorghum

RAW, FLAKED, GRAIN, GRITS

Sorghum has been successfully used to replace malted barley in African countries such as Nigeria, but more recent interest in the area of gluten-free beer has highlighted sorghum as the leading adjunct for the production of gluten-free beers. Sorghum can be used either in malted or unmalted form.

Lovibond Color: 3.0°

Spelt

RAW, FLAKED, TORREFIED

Originating in Iran around 6,000 to 5,000 BCE, spelt also known as dinkel wheat, is a low-fat grain that’s high in protein. It is widely available and may be tolerated by people with allergies to wheat starch. However, it is not tolerated by people with celiac disease.

Lovibond Color:  1.7° – 3.2°

Triticale

RAW, FLAKED, GROATS, TORREFIED

Triticale (Tritisecale) is the oldest artificially created hybrid cereal, which was obtained by crossing of wheat (Triticum) and rye (Secale), first bred in laboratories during the late 19th century in Scotland and Sweden. It properties are similar to brewing with wheat.

Lovibond Color:  2.1° – 3.0°

Wheat

RAW, FLAKED, TORREFIED

Wheat can be used in both malted and unmalted forms. Since malt is packed with protein, it helps give a beer a thick, foamy head with a smooth, refreshing taste. American hefeweizen and German weizen highlight malted wheat, while Belgian witbier (unmalted) has a hazier appearance and slightly sharp tartness.

Lovibond Color:  2.0°

MISCELLANEOUS BEER ADJUNCTS

AMARANTH

Amaranth, an ancient grain used by the Aztecs and enjoyed in Central and South America is rarely used in U.S. beers. Gluten-free, Amaranth produces a slight earthy, nutty flavor with no aroma.

BULGUR

Pressure cooked at a high moisture content with the grain structure intact; yields results similar to those of malted wheat without the malty taste. No aroma. Bland, grainy flavor.

EMMER

Emmer belongs to the spelt family, a group of hard-kernel heirloom wheats. A cross between Einkorn and wild grasses, emmer was first used in beer and bread by the Mesopotamians, circa 8,000 BCE.

Potato

Naturally low in fat and protein, popato is used in small amounts to add body to the beer. It imparts little potato flavor or body, with no aroma.