Brewing with DME: The Versatile Ingredient

DME (Dried Extract) is a versatile and convenient ingredient for that has gained popularity among homebrewers and enthusiasts. It is made from high-quality malted barley that goes through a process of milling, mashing, and dehydration, resulting in a powdered form that is easy to handle and store.

One of the key differences between DME and its liquid counterpart, LME (Liquid Malt Extract), is the moisture content. While LME contains about 20% , DME has been dehydrated to a level of only 2% water. This removal of moisture not only extends the shelf life of DME but also makes it more concentrated, allowing for a higher extract potential.

The production process of DME is similar to that of instant . The hot wort, which is the liquid extracted from mashing malted barley, is sprayed through an atomizer into a heated chamber. This atomization process rapidly removes moisture from the wort, leaving behind a dry, granulated substance known as DME.

One of the advantages of using DME in brewing is its ease of use. Unlike working with malted barley, which requires mashing and sparging, DME can be simply dissolved in water to create a wort. This makes it a popular choice among beginner brewers or those looking for a more time-efficient brewing process.

DME offers flexibility in recipe formulation, allowing brewers to easily adjust the gravity or content of their beer. By adding more or less DME to the wort, brewers can achieve their desired level of sweetness, body, and flavor. Additionally, DME comes in various types, such as light, amber, and dark, offering a range of color and flavor options for different beer styles.

Another advantage of using DME is its long shelf life. Due to its low moisture content, DME can be stored for extended periods without significant degradation in quality. This makes it a convenient ingredient to have on hand for spontaneous brewing sessions or for those who prefer to brew in smaller batches.

To use DME in brewing, it is recommended to dissolve it in water at a temperature of 100°F – 120°F to create a slurry. This slurry can then be added to the boiling wort, ensuring proper mixing and dissolution. Alternatively, some brands of DME can be dissolved directly in tap water, further simplifying the brewing process.

DME is a valuable ingredient for beer brewing, offering convenience, flexibility, and a long shelf life. Its concentrated nature and ease of use make it an ideal choice for both beginner brewers and experienced craft beer enthusiasts. Whether you're looking to adjust the gravity of your beer or experiment with different flavors and colors, DME provides a versatile and reliable solution for achieving your brewing goals. So why not give DME a try and elevate your homebrewing experience?

What Is DME In Beer Brewing?

DME, also known as Dried Malt Extract, is a crucial ingredient in the process of beer brewing. It is essentially wort that has been stripped of most of its moisture. Wort, which is the liquid extracted from malted barley during the mashing process, serves as the foundation for beer production.

The production of DME closely resembles the method used for making instant coffee. Initially, the hot wort is passed through an atomizer, a device that breaks the liquid into fine droplets. These droplets are then sprayed into a heated chamber. Through this process, the majority of the water content is evaporated, leaving behind a concentrated form of wort known as DME.

DME offers several advantages to brewers. Firstly, it provides a convenient and easy-to-use alternative to traditional liquid malt extract (LME). DME has a longer shelf life, is less prone to spoilage, and is easier to store and handle. Additionally, DME is highly soluble, making it quicker to dissolve in water during the brewing process.

Moreover, DME allows for greater control over the brewing process. Brewers can precisely measure and adjust the amount of malt extract they use, resulting in more consistent and predictable outcomes. It also gives the flexibility to adjust the color, flavor, and gravity of the beer recipe, allowing for a wide range of beer styles to be brewed.

DME is a concentrated form of wort obtained by removing most of the moisture from the liquid. It offers convenience, stability, and control to brewers, making it a popular choice in the beer brewing industry.

What Is DME Powder?

DME powder, also known as Dry Malt Extract, is a versatile and convenient ingredient used in the brewing of beer. It is made from high-quality malted barley that has undergone a specific process. Firstly, the barley is milled to break it down into smaller particles. Then, it is mashed, which involves soaking it in hot water to extract the sugars. These sugars are essential for fermentation, as they are converted into alcohol by . Lastly, the liquid obtained from the mash is dehydrated to remove the water content and create a powdered form of malt extract.

DME powder is widely used in homebrewing and craft beer brewing due to its ease of use and consistent quality. It offers several advantages over traditional liquid malt extract, such as longer shelf life and reduced risk of contamination. Additionally, DME powder is highly concentrated, meaning that a small amount can provide a significant amount of fermentable sugars. This makes it an efficient and cost-effective ingredient for brewers.

DME powder comes in various forms, including light, amber, and dark, depending on the level of maltiness and color desired in the final beer. Brewers can choose the appropriate type of DME powder based on their recipe and personal preferences.

The convenience of DME powder lies in its long shelf life and ease of storage. Unlike liquid malt extract, which needs refrigeration and has a shorter lifespan, DME powder can be stored at room temperature for extended periods without significant degradation. This makes it a popular choice for homebrewers who may not have access to refrigeration facilities.

DME powder is a versatile and convenient ingredient made from malted barley. It provides fermentable sugars necessary for beer brewing and offers advantages such as longer shelf life and ease of storage. Its concentrated nature makes it cost-effective, and it comes in different forms to suit various beer styles. DME powder is a valuable tool for both homebrewers and craft beer enthusiasts.


Dried Malt Extract (DME) is a versatile and convenient ingredient for beer brewing. It is essentially wort from which nearly all moisture has been removed, similar to the production process of instant coffee. DME undergoes a process of mashing and dehydration, resulting in a powder form that is easy to handle and store.

One key difference between DME and Liquid Malt Extract (LME) is the water content. DME is dehydrated to about 2% water, while LME contains around 20% water. This difference affects the dissolution process, with DME requiring a slurry or warm water to dissolve properly.

DME offers several advantages in brewing. Firstly, it provides a concentrated and consistent source of fermentable sugars, making it easy to control the sweetness and gravity of the beer. It also contributes to the color, flavor, and body of the final product.

Another benefit of DME is its long shelf life. Being in a dehydrated form, it is less prone to spoilage and degradation compared to liquid extracts. This makes it a convenient option for homebrewers and craft brewers who may not use large quantities of malt extract at once.

Furthermore, DME allows for greater flexibility in recipe formulation. It can be used as a complete replacement for malted barley in all-grain brewing or as an adjunct to enhance specific characteristics of the beer. This versatility makes DME a valuable tool for brewers seeking to experiment with different styles and flavors.

DME serves as a reliable and efficient ingredient in the beer brewing process. Its ease of use, long shelf life, and ability to contribute to various aspects of the beer make it a popular choice among homebrewers and craft brewers alike. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced brewer, DME can help you achieve consistent and high-quality results in your brewing endeavors.

Photo of author

Thomas Ashford

Thomas Ashford is a highly educated brewer with years of experience in the industry. He has a Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and a Master Degree in Brewing Science. He is also BJCP Certified Beer Judge. Tom has worked hard to become one of the most experienced brewers in the industry. He has experience monitoring brewhouse and cellaring operations, coordinating brewhouse projects, and optimizing brewery operations for maximum efficiency. He is also familiar mixology and an experienced sommelier. Tom is an expert organizer of beer festivals, wine tastings, and brewery tours.