Spent Grain Beer Bread

"I am a homebrewer and brew all grain beer. As a byproduct of mashing 10+ lbs. of grain to make wort for beer, you have 10+ lbs. of grain to use. I hate to dispose of anything, especially food, I wanted to find a good way to use this leftover grain. I use some of the grain for this bread recipe and put the rest into compost for my outdoor plants. Really there is no true combination of grain, I just use whatever I used to brew beer with. It all gets mixed together during the mash so it is never the same blend, but that keeps it interesting!"
photo by Mary M. photo by Mary M.
photo by Mary M.
photo by Hilary S. photo by Hilary S.
photo by DAX Dude photo by DAX Dude
Ready In:
1hr 35mins
1-2 Loaves


  • 3 cups of spent grain (wet)
  • 1 12 cups warm water (~100 F)
  • 1 (1 tablespoon) package dry bakers yeast
  • 13 cup sugar (white or brown)
  • 3 -5 cups flour
  • 1 dash salt (optional)


  • Proof yeast in mixture of water and sugar (make a starter). You should see krausen in less than an hour.
  • Put spent grain in large mixer bowl. Mix in starter, and start adding flour. Keep adding flour until the dough is smooth and no longer sticky. Place dough in a large bowl, cover with a clean towel, and let rise until doubled. Punch down dough, and either:.
  • A) Split into two loaves and place in greased bread pans.
  • B) Form into a round loaf and place on cookie sheet with a thin layer of corn meal under the loaf.
  • Allow loaf(ves) to double in size, bake in 375 F oven 30 to 40 minutes until browned and a long pin, such as a turkey pan, comes out clean after being inserted into the center of the loaf.

Questions & Replies

  1. What's the starter?
  2. My loaf has a nice crust but is quite wet inside. What is the expected internal texture?
  3. Does the spent grain need to be dried first? If so, how is that done?


  1. We made this recipe yesterday evening, after earlier in the day brewing an American Pale Ale. Since we had approximately 7.5 Gallons of Wort, in place of the water called for in this recipe we used the wort (Unfermented Beer), went together like a charm. As a matter of fact, once we'd added 7.75 measuring cups of flour, it doubled in bulk in about 30 minutes. The reason I'm not giving it 5 Stars is, it didn't brown like the recipe says it should. Luckily I've baked enough bread (all kinds) so I figured it out.
  2. I'm feeling like a medieval Martha Stewart after brewing my own beer and then making two beautiful loaves of bread with the spent grains. I won't know how the beer turned out for a few more weeks, but the bread is wonderful. Thanks for the recipe! My comments might be useful for people like me without much bread-making experience. The recipe was simple enough--a lot simpler than the beer making process! One instruction that was missing (maybe just assumed) was that you knead the dough as you add the flour, and that's what I did (for about 10 minutes), but I otherwise didn't make any changes to the recipe. I let the dough rise in the oven to keep away drafts after turning on the heat for about 10 seconds to get the temp up just a smidge. It took a while to rise. I was worried it wouldn't (my usual experience with bread making) It actually hadn't risen much after 2 hours so I figured it was a bust and left the house for 3 or 4 hours only to come back to perfectly risen dough. I punched it down and divided it into 2 loaf pans and then let dough rise again (in oven as before) a couple more hours. The dough probably could have risen more but at that point I needed to bake it so I could go to bed. So, possibly this bread could have turned out even better, but honestly for me it was a huge success. Before retiring for the night I did remove the baked loaves from the pans and leave them out on wire racks all night to cool (not that it takes all night to cool, but it doesn't hurt). It was so delightful to walk into my kitchen this morning and see the fruits of my labor sitting temptingly on the counter looking oh so gorgeous. I just ate 2 thick slices of my bread slathered with butter for breakfast and had to slap my hand to make me stop there. It tastes like fancy $5 a loaf bakery bread and all for the cost of 4 cups of flour and a teensy bit of yeast and sugar (beyond the beer investment of course--but that's another story). Now, if the beer turns out I think I'll have the skill set I need to open my fermentarium brewery/bakery!
  3. This was a really easy recipe to follow and it turned out great! We made two batches separately and both were consistent. Thanks for sharing! I'll definitely do this again instead of throwing them away! The only thing I did different was add an egg wash before baking and it made them nice and golden-brown!
    • Review photo by Hilary S.
  4. I made the pictured bread with a few additions. To help the bread brown I added 1/3 cup powdered milk and 2 Tbsp molasses. I used the sweet wort for liquid so I omitted the sugar. Since I used All-Purpose flour I added a heaping Tbsp Vital Wheat Gluten. The texture was lovely, no grit from the Oatmeal Milk Stout grains. Mary
  5. So I've made this four times now. The directions are pretty terrible, albeit simple. No need to pinch the dough down and let it rise twice, just put it in whatever arrangement you want the first time in whatever pan you're using and let it rise from there. I followed the directions the first time and let it rise twice and it wore out the yeast and made it pretty flat.. I first tried twice with two separate loaves and once with it all in one loaf. Every time it has come out wet and sticky in the middle. I would have to burn it half way through to get the middle to not be sticky. This last time I thought I would have it down right. Two loaves, let them rise once, 5 cups of flour to the three cups of wet spent grain, baked for 55min... Still wet and sticky in the middle.... like a good inch or more of the middle height is sticky... Kinda just annoyed at this point because the dough was pretty dry when I set it to rise this last time.. I will say it does taste good but the texture and quickness to mold due to the wetness just kinda ruins this recipe.. Needs better directions unless you're already an accomplished bread baker and know what you're doing from the start.



Find More Recipes