When only using canned malt extract, the brew day will be shorter, and less work is involved. It is basically just boiling, cooling, and adding yeast.
Before starting, gather all of your equipment, clean and sanitize everything, and lay out the ingredients. For a simple kit, this may only be the can of malt extract and dry yeast.
Some canned malt extract is already hopped. All ingredients have been added and boiled by the manufacturer. With unhopped, the process is the same, except that hops are added according to the recipe timeline.
The concentrated syrup must be diluted with water because of the high sugar content. This is part of the process.
Before and after using any equipment, make sure it is thoroughly cleaned and sanitized.
1. Boil 1.5 to 2.5 gallons (5.6 to 9.5 L) of water in a brewing kettle. Do not add malt extract. This is to dilute it.
2. Remove kettle from heat.
3. Open canned malt, and slowly pour all the extract in. Stir vigorously while pouring it in, otherwise it will burn to the bottom of the kettle.
4. Return kettle to heat and bring to a full rolling boil. Leave the kettle uncovered during the boil.
5. Boil for approximately 30 minutes. Because most canned kits are already hopped, a full hour boil is not necessary.
6. After 30 minutes, turn off heat, and allow to cool to below boiling temperature. A wort chiller may be used if available.
7. Pour between 1 to 2 gallons (3.8 to 7.5 L) of cold water into the fermenter.
8. Slowly pour the entire contents of the kettle into the fermenter.
9. Add adequate cold water to the fermenter to bring it to a total of 5 gallons (19 L). This will dilute the concentration and help cool it down.
10. Check the temperature to make sure it is under 80F (26C). If above 80F, put the lid on, airlock and rubber stopper on, and wait several hours for it to cool. If below 80F, go to the next step.
Optional: An immersion wort chiller can be used to speed up the cooling.
11. Once cooled below 80F, place the hydrometer in the fermenter and note the reading, then remove it. Add yeast, cover with lid, put water in airlock, place airlock and stopper into small hole in lid, and allow to ferment.