Advanced Home Brewing Books

Written by Simon in Beer Brewing
Image Credits: Pixabay.com

A great way to advance your homebrewing skills and knowledge is learning from experts in the field.

There are many home brewing books for both beginners and more advanced home brewers.

In this blog post I will review the following advanced home brewing books:

  1. (My Choice)How to Brew by John J. Palmer
  2. The Complete Joy Of Homebrewing by Charlie Papazian
  3. Homebrew All-Stars By Drew Beechum & Denny Conn
  4. American Sour Beers by Michael Tonsmeire
  5. Homebrew Beyond the Basics by Mike Karnowski
  6. Brewing Classic Styles by Jamil Zainasheff
  7. Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation by Chris White
  8. The New Ipa: Scientific Guide to Hop Aroma and Flavor by Scott Janish
  9. The Brew Your Own Big Book of Homebrewing: All-Grain and Extract Brewing
  10. The Brew Your Own Big Book of Clone Recipes: 300 Homebrew Recipes
  11. Methods of Modern Homebrewing by Chris Colby

Each book on this list will do the trick for the most part, but they are quite different depending on the author.

Continue reading this post as I get into a bit more detail on each book to help you decide if it has knowledge that is relevant to increase your own home brewing skills.

Why You Should Read Home Brewing Books

In pretty much any hobby or craft, reading material made by professionals is a solid way to give yourself new knowledge and adapt new methods into your craft.

For home brewing this is especially important.

It can be quite fun to experiment yourself and try to find your own personal recipe, but you might need some more advanced knowledge on various processes to help you get that unique recipe.

It is important to understand how the processes of homebrewing works, also depending on which type of beer you’re brewing.

It is also important to understand the characteristics of various ingredients.

The range of ingredients you can use in home brewing is almost endless. Pretty much all homebrewing books will have a large section about various ingredients and how they can amplify the properties of your beer.

Make it a goal to understand how ingredients affect your beer, this will help you enormously if you’re trying to find that personal unique recipe.

There are also some ingredients that don’t really go well together, reading about this before trying it yourself will save you the trouble of tossing out a batch because you didn’t know the mix of ingredients weren't compatible.

On another note, a good reason to buy home brewing books is - they are dirt cheap! As you may notice in the section where I review each book, the price is very low ranging from as low as $9 to the highest being $20.

Why Advanced Homebrewers Still Read Home Brewing Books

Even the top brewmasters will probably still make it a goal to achieve even more knowledge in homebrewing.

Just like the world of cooking, home brewing has an endless range of possible recipes, and new ones are developed every day.

The same thing goes for the processes in homebrewing. We live in a time where technology is playing a big part in any area of our lives. This development has already placed its footprints in home brewing, where new equipment has adapted various digital displays, apps and other technical aspects that were uncommon just 10 years ago.

Always make an effort out of bettering yourself, even though you think you know all about home brewing.

Trust me when I say that you will probably never understand everything about home brewing. You may be the master of all grain brewing method, but that doesn’t mean you can’t strive to master other methods as well.

Personally I wouldn’t settle for just one recipe that I’ve mastered, finding new and challenging recipes is why home brewing is one of, if not the greatest hobby!

Looking at the Price and Focus Area of Each Home brewing Book

To give you a sort of quick summary before we even begin, I made a table below which showcases the cost of each book, as well as what the book focuses on in terms of type of beer, processes, hops, science etc.

I also provided links to each books online page where you can buy it directly if you wish.

PriceFocus area(s)Where to Buy
How to Brew: Brew Great Beer Every Time~$11Good coverage on all aspects of homebrewingAmazon
The Complete Joy Of Homebrewing~$10Covers a wide range of beer types with included recipesAmazon
Homebrew All-Stars~$9Collection of 25 Pro Homebrewers' knowledge with their personal recipes and methodsAmazon
American Sour Beers~$14Goes in-depth on brewing American Sour beersAmazon
Homebrew Beyond the Basics~$5Focuses on the Advanced all-grain brewing method and processes for this methodAmazon
Brewing Classic Styles~$14A book mostly on extract brewing with 80 award winning recipes w/ instructionsAmazon
Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation~$15A book on everything about yeast and fermentationAmazon
The New Ipa: Guide to Hop Aroma and Flavor~$20A scientific approach to hop flavor and aroma and ingredients in generalAmazon
The Brew Your Own Big Book of Homebrewing~$15A book on the transitioning from extract to all-grain as well as guiding on kegging systemsAmazon
The Brew Your Own Big Book of Clone Recipes~$17Recipe book with 300 clone recipes from popular breweriesAmazon
Methods of Modern Homebrewing by Chris Colby~$15Focus on modern methods and techniques in home brewing, covers both extract and all-grain brewingAmazon


You may notice that all these books are quite similar in price, so if you are a rational buyer you may still be left wondering “what the hell do I buy?”.

If the small focus area section wasn’t enough to give you a clear indication as to what each book is about you will find more details about each book in the section below.

Disclaimer: All the prices provided both in the above table and in the section below are the prices as of writing this blog post, prices may vary!

The 11 Best Advanced Home Brewing Books

In this section I will provide a more detailed description on each book to help you get a clear understanding of whether or not each book might help you in your home brewing endeavours.

You may notice that many of these books are also focused on beginners, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t concern the more advanced home brewers.

Most of these books will have a section for beginners where they talk about the essentials of home brewing, but they then lead on to sections on more advanced topics.

These advanced topics range anywhere from recipes, fermentation types, equipment and so on.

A good way to judge the quality when it comes to literature, is the customer satisfaction.

I’ve made sure that each book has an overwhelmingly positive amazon customer rating, to make sure that the quality of each book is actually what it claims to be.

Each book reviewed in this blog post will have an overwhelmingly positive customer rating, making all of these books very solid choices if you trust the majority of the buyers/readers.

Note: Keep in mind, that some books are more heavily reviewed than others, the bigger pool of customer reviews the more trustable the rating will be.

How to Brew by John J. Palmer

Price: ~$11

Store Page: Amazon.com

If you are a seasoned homebrewer there is a good chance that you’ve heard about this book.

This book is an enormous collection of quite literally everything you need to know about homebrewing.

At first glance it seems as a beginners homebrewing book judging by the title but it actually suits any type of homebrewer on any level.

It goes into detail about many different brewing methods all the way from extract kits to the advanced all-grain brewing method.

This is what makes this book quite special, it caters to both beginners and veterans in the homebrewing craft.

Picking up this book whether you are a beginner or an advanced homebrewer will without a doubt provide you with some new knowledge you didn’t know beforehand.

Amazon Customer Rating: 4.5 Out of 5 Stars

The Complete Joy Of Homebrewing by Charlie Papazian

Price: ~$10

Store Page: Amazon.com

Describes itself as “the homebrewers bible” and is similar to the first book since it covers everything you need to know to make homemade beer from start to finish.

This book is quite heavy as well as it goes into detail about pretty much everything.

It even has a section on specific guides to different beer styles and recipes including ales, lagers, stouts, pilsners, dubbels, Tripels and Homerun specialty beers as well as meads.

These recipes come with easy to follow instructions to give you an easy way to make delicious beers in all kinds of beer styles.

This book will also guide you through setting up a home brewery if you are a beginner and give you details regarding equipment needed.

This book includes:

  • A Beer style and homebrew recipe formulation chart with descriptions of key flavor and aroma characters
  • Ingredient information for 53 different beer styles
  • A list of more than 75 beer types going into detail on strength, hop aroma, bitterness, flavor, color, sweetness and alcohol content
  • Chart on 68 hop varieties with descriptions and their uses
  • 80 new and revised beer and mead recipes
  • Tips on beer kits
  • Key information to understanding and using hops
  • And much, much more!

Amazon Customer Rating: 4.5 Out of 5 Stars

Homebrew All-Stars By Drew Beechum & Denny Conn

Price: ~$9

Store Page: Amazon.com

A home brewing book with a bit more comical aspects, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t full of great information on home brewing at all.

This book is a collection of the knowledge of 25 very talented homebrewers, who have shared their recipes, brewery setups and their vast knowledge on home brewing in general.

The 25 homebrewers are quite different in the way they do things, where some focus on the gear used, some are traditionalists and some are more interested in the science behind homebrewing.

This results in a book that is quite broad and gives you the views from many different types of homebrewers.

The 25 brewers in this book go over their favorite hops, malts and yeasts and describe their personal beer recipes that ranges from IPAs to stouts to saisons and lagers.

If you are a homebrewer in search of new knowledge this book is definitely suited for you!

Amazon Customer Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

American Sour Beers by Michael Tonsmeire

Price: ~$14

Store Page: Amazon.com

The first book on the list that focuses on a certain type of beer. This book goes into detail on american sour beers.

American sour beers are fermented with wild yeast or fruit, giving it a more exotic taste and aroma.

The book goes into depth about the processes and ingredients that can be used for sour beer production, for both commercial breweries and homebrewers.

It contains the gathered knowledge from some of the best sour beer brewers in America to give you information directly from the experts in the field.

Amazon Customer Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

Homebrew Beyond the Basics by Mike Karnowski

Price: ~$5

Store Page: Amazon.com

A book that goes in depth about the popular and advanced all-grain brewing technique.

The all-grain brewing method is often what advanced homebrewers tend to adapt to give themselves a bigger challenge as well as a different tasting beer.

Judging by customer reviews this book really does cover everything there is to know about all-grain brewing, so don’t hesitate to pick it up if you are trying to get into this method of home brewing!

The book is quite broad on the various methods you can use as well, and adapts some fun methods that you may not have heard of before like whirlpool hopping, making beer using captured wild yeast and much more.

Amazon Customer Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

Brewing Classic Styles by Jamil Zainasheff

Price: ~$14

Store Page: Amazon.com

I was debating whether or not to add this book to the list, since it focuses mostly on extract brewing, which I know most advanced homebrewers tend to stray away from.

Nevertheless, if you are a beginner or seasoned homebrewer using extract this book will provide you with 80 award winning recipes that has easy to follow instructions.

You can also use this book as an all-grain brewer, however you will have to do some guestimate work and convert the recipes from extract to grain.

A great recipe book for extract brewers, that can also be used for all-grain brewers, solid choice if you want to explore new recipes.

Amazon Customer Rating: 4.5 Out of 5 Stars

Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation by Chris White

Price: ~$15

Store Page: Amazon.com

A book that is a bit more on the science/nerdy side of home brewing. This book covers everything there is to know about yeast and fermentation in home brewing.

No matter your experience level with home brewing this book will most likely have some knowledge on fermentation you didn’t know beforehand.

The book covers yeast selection, the correct storing and handling of yeast cultures, how to culture yeast and the art of washing yeast cultures.

It also has a section on how you can set up your own yeast lab and will give you the basic science behind fermentation and how it affects your beer.

Amazon Customer Rating: 4.5 Out of 5 Stars

The New Ipa: Scientific Guide to Hop Aroma and Flavor by Scott Janish

Price: ~$20

Store Page: Amazon.com

In this book you will find all there is to know about hop science in home brewing.

The information provided is gathered through experiments, lab tests and discussion with researchers in the field, which gives a solid background for the data provided.

Reading this book will give you a different view on the brewing process, and make you a bit more considerate about what ingredients you select.

If you enjoy beer with a rich hop flavor and aroma, this book is well suited since it will give you information on all aspects of hops in home brewing.

Amazon Customer Rating: 4.5 Out of 5 Stars

The Brew Your Own Big Book of Homebrewing: All-Grain and Extract Brewing

Price: ~$15

Store Page: Amazon.com

Another great book about the all-grain method of home brewing.

This book will provide you with detailed instructions on how to transition into all-grain brewing easily as well as setting up a kegging system.

This book is packed with recipes with step by step guides and photos to make it easy to follow these more advanced all-grain recipes.

It goes into detail about ingredients you can use to make your all-grain beer tastier and more unique as well.

A great book overall for the home brewer who wants to get into all-grain brewing or even just gain some more knowledge on all-grain brewing if You already use this method.

Amazon Customer Rating: 4.5 Out of 5 Stars

The Brew Your Own Big Book of Clone Recipes: 300 Homebrew Recipes

Price: ~$17

Store Page: Amazon.com

Also a book from Brew Your Own, this time featuring over 300 homebrew clone recipes from various breweries.

The book features tons of IPA, stout and lager recipes from award winning breweries such as Brooklyn Brewery, Deschutes, Firestone Walker, Hill Farmstead, Jolly Pumpkin Modern times and many many more.

There are also clone recipe from european breweries.

A great book for replicating existing craft beer brands, but also good for giving You some inspiration as to what recipe to mix up yourself.

Amazon Customer Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

Methods of Modern Homebrewing by Chris Colby

Price: ~$15

Store Page: Amazon.com

In this book, Chris Colby talks about the modern brewing methods homebrewers use to make beer.

It covers both extract brewing and the more advanced all-grain brewing technique.

Comes with step-by-step instructions with added photos to give you a better chance to follow the recipes and techniques properly.

This has a great transitioning, where it starts off on a semi-beginner level and goes more and more advanced as you read through it. A great read for homebrewers on any level.

Amazon Customer Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

My Personal Preference of Advanced Home Brewing Book

I am a sucker for simplicity and straight-forwardness and I may be a little biased since this is also the only home brewing book I really use, but nevertheless my choice of home brewing book has to be “How to Brew: Everything You Need to Know to Brew Beer Right the First time - by John J. Palmer”.

This book has helped me through the start up phase of home brewing but also gave me tons of ideas and guides as to how to perfect the craft.

When it comes to an all around home brewing book, this one is quite unbeatable. If you don’t want to take my word for it, just check out the hundreds of reviews on Amazon! This book is praised highly by its readers, and for good reason.

Keep in mind that this is just my personal preference, but I really believe that this book is suited for any home brewer due to its very broad spectrum that covers nearly everything there is to know about home brewing.

About Us

Hello, my name is Simon. Together with a group of writers I write about brewing beer and making wine. We all share a passion for the great things in life, such as making stuff from scratch.

The business of HomeBrewAdvice is to bring you great information, stories and product reviews from brewing at home, and making wine