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Spent Grain (or other stuff) from Homebrewing — The Grow Network Community
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Spent Grain (or other stuff) from Homebrewing

bejer19bejer19 IllinoisPosts: 59 ✭✭✭
edited October 2020 in Ferments

We are avid homebrewers at my house. We've done beer, wine, mead, cider (and kombucha) and used all sorts of other additions to make our creations. I'm interested in using the leftovers from the process more at our little homestead. We have done some baking with spent grain and that's been pretty successful. It works well in quickbreads and some kinds of cookies. But I'd love to hear other idea for how to use spent grains.

Also, has anyone else successfully used spent fruits or herbs from other brewing for anything? We recently made a sage cider and a mint wine and with both of those I just ended up burying the leftovers in an unused patch of garden since I was worried they wouldn't go well in our regular compost. Is there anything else I could have done? What about with leftover fruits from fruit wines?

Would love to hear everyone's idea for how to make more use of these types of things!


  • VickiPVickiP Posts: 586 ✭✭✭✭

    I always gave anything left over to either my hogs or my chickens or divided it between them. The pigs have always been most appreciative. As you mentioned I have added some of the grains to my baking. I can't really think of anything else.

  • bejer19bejer19 IllinoisPosts: 59 ✭✭✭

    I should have mentioned that we don't currently keep any livestock. I know lots of people give spent grains etc, to animals. We have a very small area and while we might do chickens in the future aren't there yet.

  • shllnzlshllnzl Southwestern UtahPosts: 1,557 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @bejer19 Maybe you can donate the spent grains to a farmer nearby for the animals. It is possible that you could get vegetables in return, maybe start a cooperative arrangement.

    It is also possible that a rescue facility for large animals would appreciate the grain.

  • bejer19bejer19 IllinoisPosts: 59 ✭✭✭

    That's probably the best option. I have some neighbors with chickens but most other places with livestock are a haul. But maybe if they are in the area they would do a pick-up. I'll definitely ask around. I know a couple of farmers in the city with me who already work with breweries so not sure if they'd need more.

    Sounds like livestock really is the only real option, which gives me more fuel for my figure out how we keep chickens (or maybe quail?) fire.

  • EarlKellyEarlKelly Penn state master gardener Northeastern Pennsylvania zone 5bPosts: 230 ✭✭✭

    My daughter has a small craft brewery. I get the spent grains for my chickens, they just love them. Been feeding them the grain now for 5 years. Also another guy stops buy and gets the grain and make dog biscuits out of it. The dogs just love them. Know some guys that feed the grain to their cows and pigs. Just a few ideas of what some people are doing around here. Good luck.

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 789 ✭✭✭✭

    We have only ever used it for our chickens and as compost for our garden. Would actually love to know how you use it in bread or dog biscuits. I have never heard of any other uses for it. Hope you find other ways to use them if there are no other local farmers willing to come and get them from you.

  • EarlKellyEarlKelly Penn state master gardener Northeastern Pennsylvania zone 5bPosts: 230 ✭✭✭

    @vickeym the next time I am at the brewery talking to my daughter, I will generally see Mike who makes the natural dog biscuits. I will find out exactly how he goes about it and post it here for everyone.

  • bejer19bejer19 IllinoisPosts: 59 ✭✭✭

    To bake with spent grain we dry it (in a dehydrator) and store it whole in air tight containers. When I want to bake with it we run it through a food processor until it's pretty fine and then use it as a sub for up to 20% of flour. It works better in some recipes than others. Works best in cookies, cakes, and quickbreads.

  • vickeymvickeym Posts: 789 ✭✭✭✭

    @EarlKelly That would be great. Thank you.

    @bejer19 Thank you for sharing this. I will have to give it a try the next time we get some spent grain.

  • toreytorey Moderator Posts: 3,112 admin

    @vickeym We have a company in BC called Susgrainable that is producing baked good from spent grain. Following is a link to a cookie recipe they have shared.


  • kbmbillups1kbmbillups1 Posts: 579 ✭✭✭✭

    I've tried putting scobies in my compost but they draw a lot of ants! I dehydrate them first now, put them in a ziplock bag, and smash them up before sprinkling them around my plants. No more ants.

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