a golden beer next to honey

Your Ultimate Braggot Recipe Guide: Brew Perfect Braggot at Home

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Have you ever heard of a braggot? No, it is not a fantastic beast in the Wizarding World. It’s not a bigot who brags about it, either – like Donald Trump. It is a fantastical brew that our medieval ancestors would have lapped up. Today, class, we will explore what the hell this braggot bad boy is and get ready to brew our very own with a mixture of braggot recipes. It’s not far from a Herbology class with Professor Sprout, so consider yourself a wizard, Harry.  

Understanding Braggot: What is a Braggot beer? 

So, what is a braggot? Braggot is a unique and historical type of beer that blends the elements of both beer and mead. It is traditionally made by combining malted barley with honey, which are both fermented together to create a beverage that shares characteristics of both beer and mead. The ratio of malt to honey can vary, which affects the flavour, alcohol content, and sweetness of the final product.

The History of Braggot

Historically, braggot dates back to medieval times and is often associated with Celtic traditions. However, it was known and enjoyed throughout various cultures in Europe. It is mentioned in several ancient texts, including some Welsh laws from the 12th century and Geoffrey Chaucer’s “The Canterbury Tales” in the late 14th century. This indicates its popularity and widespread consumption during those times.

Braggot was particularly valued for its nutritional content and energy-giving properties, which were important in times when the daily diet could be harsh and limited. The use of honey not only provided fermentable sugars that increased the alcohol content but also contributed vitamins and minerals.

Braggot Recipe - a beer in a flower field
Bees Make Braggot Possible! Without the,m it’s just “raggot”

The drink likely played a role in social and ceremonial contexts, much like other alcoholic beverages of the time. It would have been consumed during celebrations and feasts and possibly used as a currency or tribute.

Modern Day Braggot

Today, braggot remains a relatively niche product, with craft breweries occasionally experimenting with it to provide historical or unique offerings. Its revival in some craft beer circles reflects a broader interest in historical brewing methods and recipes. While you’re here, why not explore how to brew a medieval ale?

Braggot types to Try

If you can’t be bothered to brew your own braggot—and who can blame you? Here are five cracking brews to try!

  1. Honey Queen 7.5% (Samuel Adams – Boston Beer Company): This braggot showcases a balanced honey, malt, and hop bitterness blend.
  2. Big Ass Barrel Braggot 13% (Rogue Ales): In 2010, two large barrels were hand-crafted from Oregon White Oak by a local cooper using logs from the Oregon coast range. These barrels, Chuck and Nate, can each hold 1,500 gallons of beer and are used to age all Big Ass Barrel beers for at least 60 days.
  3. Brother Adam’s Braggot 11.8% (Atlantic Brewing Co.): This beer is named after Brother Adam, a Buckfast Abbey monk credited with saving the bee industry. It has a warm, rich body and a delicate, tawny honey profile, creating an incredibly complex beer.
  4. Eirik Bloodaxe 11% (Scarlet Lane Brewing Co.): Other than having a name that seems more like a weapon in World of Warcraft, this brew brings an ancient Viking beer recipe and merges it with a Double IPA to create a unique ale fit for a King. 
  5. Viking Blod 19% (Dansk Mjød A/S): Similar to the Bloodaxe, this braggot is a wonderful Nordic honey wine with ginger, hibiscus, and spices.

Essential Ingredients for Braggot Beer

Now that you’re fully clued up on what on Earth a braggot is, let’s check out its composition. The essential ingredients of braggot typically include honey, malts, hops, and sometimes spices or fruits. But let’s take a look at the complete list!

Malted Barley: Like traditional beers, braggarts use malted barley as a primary source of fermentable sugars and flavour. The amount and type of malt can vary depending on the desired flavour profile and strength of the braggot.

Honey: Honey is essential in braggot, providing the characteristic sweetness and flavour profile associated with mead. The quantity and type of honey can significantly influence the taste, smell, and alcohol content of the final product.

Braggot recipe - honey
Honey, I think I Brewed a Braggot

Water: Water is a crucial component in both beer and mead, serving as the solvent in which all other ingredients are mixed and the medium in which fermentation occurs.

Yeast: Yeast ferments the sugars from both the malt and the honey, producing alcohol and carbon dioxide. Different strains of yeast can be used to achieve various flavour profiles and alcohol strengths.

Hops (optional): While not required, hops can be added to braggot to provide bitterness, flavour, and aroma, much like in beer brewing. The use of hops helps balance the sweetness of the malt and honey.

Additional Flavourings (optional): Again, optional, but some braggot recipes may include spices, fruits, or herbs to add complexity and unique flavours to the beverage.

The proportions of malt and honey can vary widely in braggot, ranging from equal parts to predominantly honey or predominantly malt. The choice depends on the desired outcome regarding flavour, sweetness, and alcohol content. Braggot is a versatile beverage that can be adjusted to suit different tastes and brewing styles.

An Easy Recipe for a Homemade Braggot

Let’s get down to business. Get ready to roll up your sleeves and put on the Viking death metal because here’s a comprehensive, beginner-friendly guide to making your own braggot at home. 

This recipe will yield approximately 5 gallons of braggot.


  • Water: 4 gallons
  • Light Malt Extract: 6 lbs
  • Honey: 6 lbs (use a light variety such as clover for a more neutral flavour)
  • Hops: 1 oz (a mild variety like Fuggle or East Kent Goldings)
  • Ale Yeast: 1 packet (such as Safale US-05)
  • Optional Additions: Spices (e.g., cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg), fruit, or additional flavourings


  • Brewing kettle
  • Fermenter with an airlock
  • Sanitiser
  • Hydrometer
  • Thermometer
  • Siphon
  • Bottles and bottling equipment



  • Start by sanitising all your brewing equipment. Every item that will come into contact with your brew must be sanitised to prevent infection.

Brewing the Base

  • Heat the Water: Heat about 3 gallons of water to around 150°F (65°C) in your brewing kettle.
  • Add Malt Extract: Stir in the malt extract until fully dissolved. This prevents scorching at the bottom of the kettle.
  • Boil: Bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, add the hops. Continue to boil for about 60 minutes. This is known as the ‘bittering addition’.

Adding Honey

  • After the 60-minute boil, turn off the heat. Stir in the honey until thoroughly dissolved. The residual heat helps pasteurise the honey without boiling it, preserving its flavour.


  • Cool the mixture rapidly to about 70°F (21°C). You can use an ice bath or a wort chiller. Quickly cooling the wort is vital to reduce the risk of contamination.

Transfer and Fermentation

  • Transfer the cooled wort into a sanitised fermenter. Top it off with additional water to reach the 5-gallon mark if necessary.
  • Pitch the Yeast: Add the ale yeast once the temperature of the wort is around 70°F.
  • Seal the fermenter with an airlock. Allow the braggot to ferment at a consistent, cool temperature (ideally around 68-70°F) for about two weeks or until fermentation signs diminish (bubbling stops).

Secondary Fermentation (Optional)

  • For a clearer and more mature braggot, transfer it to a secondary fermenter after the initial vigorous fermentation subsides (about two weeks). At this stage, you can add optional ingredients like spices or fruits. Allow it to age for another two to four weeks.


  • Once secondary fermentation is complete and the braggot has cleared, prepare for bottling by sanitising your bottles and bottling equipment.
  • Prime the braggot with a small amount of sugar to ensure carbonation. Typically, about 2/3 cup of corn sugar for 5 gallons is sufficient.
  • Siphon the braggot into bottles, cap them securely and store them in a cool, dark place to carbonate for about two weeks.


  • After the bottles have carbonated for at least two weeks, chill a bottle and taste your homemade braggot.
Easy Beginner Braggot

Final Boss Level: Advanced Braggot Recipes

If you think you’re ready for the big leagues, braggot offers a versatile canvas for creative brewing. Why not tinker with various ingredients and techniques. Here are several advanced braggot recipes that vary from the basic recipe above to create different flavour profiles and strengths. 

Each recipe yields approximately 5 gallons.

Dark & Spicy Braggot

Flavour Profile: Rich, malty, and spicy, perfect for colder months.


  • Water: 4 gallons
  • Dark Malt Extract: 7 lbs
  • Dark Honey (like buckwheat): 5 lbs
  • Hops (like Northern Brewer): 1.5 oz for bittering
  • Mixed Spices (cinnamon, cloves, allspice): 1 tbsp at the end of boil
  • Ale Yeast (such as Safbrew S-33): 1 packet

Brewing Instructions:

  • Follow the basic braggot recipe steps.
  • Add spices during the last 5 minutes of the boil to extract flavour without overpowering the brew.
  • Consider a secondary fermentation period of up to 6 weeks to fully develop flavours.

Adjustments for Strength: To increase the alcohol content, add up to 1 extra pound of honey. Monitor gravity with a hydrometer to ensure fermentation completes.

Fruit-Infused Braggot

Flavour Profile: Fresh, fruity, and slightly tart or sweet, depending on the fruit.


  • Water: 4 gallons
  • Light Malt Extract: 6 lbs
  • Light Honey (like orange blossom): 6 lbs
  • Mild Hops (like Citra): 1 oz
  • Fruit of choice (berries, citrus peel, apples): 3-5 lbs, added during secondary fermentation
  • Ale Yeast (such as Safale US-05): 1 packet

Brewing Instructions:

  • Follow the standard process for making braggot.
  • Add fruit to the secondary fermenter and allow an additional 2-4 weeks for fermentation and infusion.

Adjustments for Flavour:

  • The type and amount of fruit can drastically change the flavour profile. More fruit will result in stronger, fruitier flavours and potentially higher alcohol content due to additional fermentable.

Imperial Braggot

Flavour Profile: Strong, complex, and intense. Suitable for ageing.


  • Water: 4 gallons
  • Heavy Malt Extract (such as amber or imperial stout mix): 10 lbs
  • Rich Honey (like chestnut): 8 lbs
  • Robust Hops (like Warrior): 2 oz for bittering
  • High-tolerance Yeast (like Wyeast 3787 Trappist High Gravity): 1 packet

Brewing Instructions:

  • Adjust the boiling time to ensure full utilization of hop bitterness, potentially boiling for 90 minutes.
  • Due to the high gravity of this brew, ensure vigorous aeration before pitching yeast and consider using a yeast nutrient.

Adjustments for Strength: Adjust the malt extract and honey quantities to modify the alcohol content. More malt and honey will produce higher alcohol content, requiring careful fermentation control.

Herbal & Medicinal Braggot

Flavour Profile: Earthy, with herbal tones that may offer perceived medicinal qualities.


  • Water: 4 gallons
  • Light Malt Extract: 6 lbs
  • Wildflower Honey: 6 lbs
  • Mild Hops (like Saaz): 1 oz
  • Herbs (such as chamomile, lavender, or sage): 1-2 oz, added during the last 10 minutes of boil
  • Ale Yeast (like Safale S-04): 1 packet

Brewing Instructions:

  • Follow the basic recipe, adding the selected herbs at the end of the boiling process.
  • Secondary fermentation is recommended to refine the herbal notes.

Adjustments for Flavour: The choice and amount of herbs can significantly influence the final flavour. Experiment with different herbs in small amounts before scaling up.

Tips, Hints & Tricks for Brewing Braggot

Perfecting your braggot involves mastering a few key aspects of brewing that uniquely apply to this hybrid of beer and mead. Here are some best practices, tips for brewing great braggot, common pitfalls, and troubleshooting advice.

Best Practices in Brewing Braggot

1. Ingredient Selection

Honey: Choose high-quality honey, as it is the soul of your braggot. Different kinds of honey have distinct flavours; lighter honey (like clover or orange blossom) is more neutral, while darker ones (like buckwheat) are more robust.

Malt: The malt should complement the honey in flavour. Choose your malt based on the desired beer style, whether light and crisp or dark and robust.

Hops: Select hops that will balance the malt and honey sweetness. Typically, milder hops are used in braggot to avoid overpowering the honey’s nuances.

2. Fermentation Control

Temperature: Maintain a consistent and appropriate fermentation temperature. Ales typically ferment best between 68-72°F (20-22°C). Temperature fluctuations can lead to off-flavours.

Yeast: Use a yeast strain that can handle higher alcohol levels, especially for stronger braggots. Ensure the yeast has enough nutrients, as honey alone might not provide enough. Consider adding yeast nutrients at the start of fermentation.

3. Flavour Balancing

Testing and Adjusting: Regularly taste your braggot during brewing and before bottling. Adjustments might include adding more honey for sweetness, malt for the body, or water to dilute if it is too strong.

Ageing: Allow your braggot to age like a fine wine. This can significantly improve flavour, particularly for higher alcohol versions. Ageing allows the flavours to meld and mellow, reducing harshness.

4. Sanitation

Sanitise like it’s 2020 all over again. Maintain strict sanitation practices to prevent contamination. Thoroughly sanitise any equipment that comes in contact with the braggot.

Common Mistakes and Troubleshooting

1. Overpowering Honey

  • Problem: The honey in your braggot dominates all other flavours.
  • Solution: Use less honey or a lighter variety, or increase the malt component to balance the sweetness.

2. Fermentation Issues

  • Problem – Stuck Fermentation: If fermentation stalls, it might be due to insufficient nutrients for the yeast or low temperatures.
  • Solution: Add yeast nutrients and ensure the fermentation temperature is stable and warm enough.
  • Problem – Incomplete Fermentation: The yeast sometimes needs help handling the alcohol content.
  • Solution: Use a high-alcohol tolerant yeast strain and consider aerating the wort well before pitching the yeast.

3. Flavour Imbalance

  • Problem: Too bitter, too sweet, or too flat.
  • Solution: Balance bitterness with fewer hops or milder varieties. If it is too sweet, increase the hop usage slightly or add spices to counterbalance. Enhance a flat flavour profile by adding speciality malts or additional flavourings like fruit or spices during secondary fermentation.

4. Contamination

  • Problem: Off-flavours or visible mould.
  • Solution: Ensure all equipment is sanitised before use. If contamination occurs, assess whether the batch is salvageable by taste; if not, it’s safer to discard and start over with stricter sanitation.

5. Clarity Issues

  • Problem: Your braggot is too cloudy.
  • Solution: Use fining agents, ensure a good cold crash after fermentation, or allow a more extended ageing period to let particulates settle naturally.


Braggot is a traditional hybrid beverage that combines the characteristics of beer and mead, using malted barley and honey as its base ingredients. Originating from medieval Europe, it was valued for its nutritional benefits and enjoyed in social and ceremonial settings. Modern craft breweries occasionally produce braggot, experimenting with historical recipes and techniques. Essential ingredients include malted barley, honey, water, and yeast, with optional hops and flavourings like spices or fruits. For home brewers, braggot offers a versatile platform to explore different flavours, from fruity and spicy to strong and herbal, allowing for creativity in crafting unique brews.


What is the Difference Between Braggot and Mead?

Braggot is a blend of beer and mead, made from both malted barley and honey, whereas mead is purely made from fermented honey, water, and sometimes added spices or fruits.

How Long Does it Take to Brew Braggot?

Brewing braggot typically takes about 4-6 weeks, including fermentation and optional ageing. This can extend if additional ageing is desired to develop deeper flavour.

What Percentage of Honey is in a Braggot?

The percentage of honey in braggot can vary widely depending on the desired flavour and alcohol content. Typically, honey can make up anywhere from 30% to 50% of the fermentable sugars. The ratio of honey to malt influences the sweetness, flavour, and strength of the braggot.

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