Improve your homebrew success rate by properly cleaning your mini keg or growler!
If you think that cleaning and sterilising your mini keg sounds like a faff that only needs to be done by germophobes, listen up! We learnt the hard way that it’s really important to do this properly. Or you’ll be throwing your precious brew down the sink when it goes off. Which isn’t just a criminal waste of what would be good beer, but it will also make you question your awesome beer brewing skills.
The good news is that it’s SUPER EASY and SUPER QUICK. So don’t skip this step.
Here’s how to clean and sterilise your mini keg or growler.
Before your first use
Clean your mini keg or growler well before first use with hot water; if you notice any marks inside the keg these are usually due to residue left over from the passivation process during manufacture. If hot water doesn’t remove them try shaking some uncooked rice in warm water in the keg to scrub the inside. You can use sodium percarbonate to clean your mini keg if you choose. Then sterilise using a good no-rinse sanitiser just before filling.
Before each use
We recommend cleaning your growler just with hot water if you use it every day, and rinse it as soon as it’s empty. Before each use (including the first time you use your mini keg) sterilise it with some no rinse sanitiser (2ml per litre) and leave it for 2 mins before emptying. Don’t worry about any remaining bubbles – they are flavourless and non-toxic.
If your keg has been left with beer in it, has caked-on yeast residue, or has visible dirt then use some sodium percarbonate cleaner. Dissolved in water this breaks down deposits and is safe to use on steel, aluminium and copper. It breaks down to a non toxic, flavourless liquid; however it is best practise to clean using this and then still rinse and sanitise as above.