Yeast starters

Proper Yeast Pitching Rates

  • Ales & Lagers
  • The Math
  • Pitching From Tubes, Packs, or Dry Yeast
  • Starters and Stir Plates
  • Repitching Yeast

There is quite a lot of information and discussion on the web and in books about proper yeast pitching rates. Maybe it is the wealth of information that makes it so confusing, but I run into many people that are completely confused about how much yeast they should pitch. Hopefully, the following won’t just add more confusion, but instead it will make it a little easier to understand the math behind pitching rates and what is really required.

Fourteen Essential Questions About Yeast Starters

  1. Q: Do I always need to make a starter?
  2. Q: When shouldn’t I make a starter?
  3. Q: How do I make a starter?
  4. Q: Should I add hops when I make my starter wort?
  5. Q: Should I add oxygen to my starter?
  6. Q: How much yeast or how big a starter do I need?
  7. Q: Does a starter need to be kept at the same temperature as it is going to ferment the batch of beer later?
  8. Q: At what point do I pitch the starter into the wort?
  9. Q: I’ve heard that too small or too large a starter can be bad for the yeast. How is that possible?
  10. Q: If I’m making a high gravity beer, shouldn’t I make a high gravity starter so the yeast become acclimated?
  11. Q: When increasing a starter in steps, should the steps be a certain size?
  12. Q: Don’t I need a stir plate to make a starter?
  13. Q: Can I pitch just a portion of the pack/vial into the same sized starter and get the same amount of cells at the end?
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