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Priming Sugar Calculator

Created by Julia Żuławińska
Reviewed by Purnima Singh, PhD and Adena Benn
Based on research by
Beer Styles Guide published by the Brewers Association; CraftBeer.com; 2018See 1 more source
Hall ML Brew by the numbers - Add up what's in your beer; Zymurgy magazine; 1995
Last updated: Jan 18, 2024


The priming sugar calculator is here if you want to drink a perfect homemade, bubbly beer! With our calculator, bottle priming has never been easier. Read on to learn why you should prime your beer and how much priming sugar you should use for that perfect fizzy mouthfeel. 🍻

After you brew your favorite style of beer, go to the chilled drink calculator. You can check how long it takes to cool the bottles for the most refreshing taste.

How to brew beer?

Here is an overview of what you would need to do to prepare your own batch of beer:

  1. Prepare brewing equipment and sanitize it.
  2. Make a wort - boil chosen grain, hops, and water. Cool down to the desired fermentation temperature.
  3. Ferment it with yeast (you might find our yeast converter helpful).
  4. Add priming sugar and bottle.

The entire process takes four to eight weeks. Most of that time, your brew is fermenting because of yeast and refermenting with priming sugar. The style of beer, yeast quality, and temperature of storing are some of the factors affecting the time of fermentation. So if you plan on drinking a homemade beer in June, you better start brewing at the beginning of May.

What is priming sugar?

Priming sugar is any sugar you add to your brew to initialize the re-fermentation process. It further carbonates your beer and gives it more aroma. With priming sugar, yeast is less likely to die out too soon and cause carbonation failure.

You can prime beer with many sweeteners, such as table sugar, which won't add flavor, or honey, for a much more flamboyant taste.

How to use priming sugar for beer carbonation?

After you calculate the proper amount of a chosen type of sugar, combine it with water and boil it. That sterilizes the sugar. Use just enough water to dissolve the sugar. Remember that it doesn't have to be an exact amount - you don't want to dilute your beer. Pour the sugar solution and beer (in that order) into previously cleaned bottles. Cap the bottles and store them in a cool and dark place.

How to calculate the how much priming sugar you need for beer?

To calculate the amount of priming sugar you need for your beer, you need to consider the following:

  • The amount of beer you are priming (beer volume);
  • The beer style you want to achieve; and
  • What is the pre-priming carbonation level.

Our priming sugar calculator uses this formula:

PS=15.195BV(FCIC)S\footnotesize\text{PS} = \frac{15.195 \cdot\text{BV} \cdot (\text{FC} - \text{IC})}{\text{S}}

, where:

  • PS\footnotesize\text{PS} - priming sugar (in grams);
  • S\footnotesize\text{S} - sugar type factor;
  • BV\footnotesize\text{BV} - beer volume (in US gallons);
  • IC\footnotesize\text{IC} - initial carbonation; and
  • FC\footnotesize\text{FC} - final carbonation.

The initial carbonation, the amount of CO2 that is in your beer before priming, depends on the temperature of the beer:

IC=3.03785.0062102T+2.6555104T2\footnotesize\text{IC}=3.0378 - 5.0062\cdot10^{-2} \cdot \text{T} \atop+ 2.6555 \cdot 10^{-4} \cdot \text{T}^2

, where T\footnotesize\text{T} is the temperature in Fahrenheit (°F).

The factor S\footnotesize\text{S} in the sugar priming equation is a factor correlated to the fermentability of the chosen priming sugar type:

  • 1 - for table sugar;
  • 0.91 - for corn sugar;
  • 0.68 - for dry malt extract; and
  • 0.78 - for honey.

Brewing beer is a complex process. Here are some articles that we found useful while making our priming sugar calculator:

  • Brew by the numbers - Add up what's in your beer - Michael L. Hall, PhD; and

  • 2018 CraftBeer.com - Beer Styles Guide published by the Brewers Association.

Don't worry if you don't brew the most delicious beer - you can always use it for a fun game of beer pong! Check how much beer you would need in our beer pong calculator!

FAQ

How much corn sugar do I need for 5 gallons of beer?

You need about 4 oz (110 g) of corn sugar. The amount of corn sugar you need depends on the current temperature of the beer and the desired beer carbonation level.

How much priming sugar do I need per gallon of beer?

You need about 10 to 30 grams of table sugar per gallon of beer. The amount of priming sugar for beer depends on more than the volume of the beer. It also depends on the current temperature of the beer - as it's an indicator of how much carbon dioxide is already there and on the desired beer style (which has a specified carbonation level).

How to find the amount of sugar I need for bottle priming?

To find out how much sugar you need for bottle priming:

  1. Measure the temperature (T) of your beer and calculate the initial carbonation (IC) with the formula:

    IC = 3.0378 − 5.0062 × 10−2 × T + 2.6555×10-4 × T2

  2. Measure the volume (BV) of your beer.

  3. Choose a desired style of beer or final carbonation level (FC).

  4. Calculate how much priming sugar (PS) you need with this equation:

    PS = 15.195 × BV × (FC - IC)

  5. Bottle, chill, and enjoy your homebrewed beer!

This instruction works mostly for table sugar. If you want to use another type of sweetener (honey, corn sugar, or DME), check out how to alter the equations in our priming sugar calculator.

Julia Żuławińska
What style of beer would you like to make?
Style
Custom
Input some numbers:
Final CO₂ volume:
Volume of your brew:
US gal
Fermentation temperature:
°F
How much priming sugar do you need?
Priming sugar type
Table sugar (sucrose)
Priming sugar
oz
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