Holiday Pumpkin Ale

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This beer recipe is featured in the November/December 2008 issue of Zymurgy magazine. Join the American Homebrewers Association or start your 30-day free trial to access the Zymurgy digital archive and other exclusive member benefits!

Mark Pasquinelli’s holiday pumpkin ale recipe will have you craving warm fires, fresh baked cookies, and possibly some turkey! Your own preferences to spice level will come into play to make this brew your own, so bring your best taste buds to the brew day.

Holiday Pumpkin Ale | Christmas/Winter Specialty Spiced Beer


  • For 6 US gallons (22.7 L)
    • MALTS
    • 8.0 lb (3.6 kg) Maris Otter malt
    • 4.0 lb (1.8 kg) Munich malt
    • 2.0 lb (907 g) Aromatic malt
    • 10 oz (284 g) CaraMunich malt
    • 8 oz (227 g) brown sugar
    • 5 lb (2.3 kg) pumpkin prepared as directed, boil 90 minutes
    • 1.25 oz (35 g) Fuggle 4.6% alpha pellet hops, 45 min
    • 3.0 tsp cinnamon, 5 min
    • 1,9 tsp nutmeg, fresh, 5 min
    • 1.0 tbl ginger root, 5 min
    • 4.0 tsp vanilla, secondary fermenter
    • 3.5 oz (100 g) priming sugar
    • YEAST
    • White Labs 002 English Ale Yeast


    • Original Gravity: 1.071
    • Final Gravity: 1.015
    • ABV: 7.4%
    • IBU: 19
    • SRM: 12


    Use a single step infusion mash. Add 19 quarts (18 liters) of 168° F (76° C) water to the crushed grain to establish a mash temperature of 155° F (68° C). Hold for 60 minutes. Collect 7.5 gallons (28.4 L) of wort. Add pumpkin and bring to a boil. Add brown sugar and hops at 60 and 45 minutes, respectively. Add spices with five minutes remaining and allow to steep for another five minutes. Ferment for one week. Rack to secondary fermenter. Taste, add vanilla and additional spices if needed. Allow two weeks in the secondary. Prime with sugar, bottle or keg.

    Extract Version

    Substitute 6.5 lb (3.0 kg) Maris Otter liquid extract and 4.5 lb (2.0 kg) Munich liquid extract for Maris Otter, Munich and aromatic malts. Steep CaraMunich malt for 30 minutes in 160° F (71° C) 3 gallons (11.3 L) of water. Increase boil hops to 1.75 oz. Remove from heat, add extract and pumpkin. Proceed with boil following the All-Grain recipe. After boil, strain into fermenter with enough cold water to make 5 gallons. Pitch yeast when temperature drops below 70° F (21° C).