Brew Dudes

Homebrewing blog and resource

Rice Hulls

The great thing about summer is the fact that friends will come and see you at a moment’s notice.  In the winter time, they are slow moving.  Visits take planning.  In the summer, they are at your doorstep as soon as you hang up the phone.

If they visit, they will drink beer.  If they drink beer, you will need to brew again…soon!

I am getting my thoughts together for the next brew.  Since I am brewing a wheat beer and the first all grain brew had a stuck sparge, I was thinking I should buy some rice hulls.

Rice hulls are the coverings of rice that protect the grain during its grow.  When it’s harvested, it is removed.  I don’t think we can digest them.  Although we can’t (shouldn’t) eat them, the hulls can be put to good use.

We can put them into our mash so it does not get stuck.  They will act as a sort of internal strainer/separator to keep glue-y grains like oats and wheat from becoming an impenetrable clump.

Rice hulls can be added right to the mash.  They add no color, flavor, or fermentables.  They are just your “inside the tun” helpers.

Just be sure to rinse them thoroughly before use.

Here’s a photo of our rice hull pals:

Rice Hulls

For the record, I don’t think I absolutely need rice hulls for my wheat beer recipe since I think I have enough barley malt to keep things a-moving. I just want to try them out.

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5 Comments

  1. What percentage wheat are you using in your recipe? We’ve never used rice hulls since we haven’t had a stuck sparge yet. But we usually go pretty low on the wheat, around 20%. I’ll be curious to see how the rice hulls work out for ya!

  2. Between 40 and 50%. I haven’t really solidified the recipe yet, but it’s going to be half of the base malt contribution.

  3. I made a wheat recently with only 40%, but it sparged slow…. I could have used some hulls I think. Although in the past I’ve gone to 50% with no problems. I think I had some wheat crush issues this past time around.
    I do use hulls in my O.Stout all the time.

  4. dal

    Where do you purchase your rice hulls from??
    -Dal
    Eugene, OR

  5. I got them from this place:

    <ahref=”http://www.beer-wine.com/product_info.asp?productID=1126&sectionID=1″>Rice Hulls at Beer & Wine Hobby</a>

    I am sure you can find them in other places but this is my local homebrew shop.

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