September 24, 2023

5 Gallon Mead Recipe: Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

5 Gallon Mead Recipe: Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

5 Gallon Mead Recipe: Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners


  • 15 pounds of honey
  • 5 gallons of water
  • 5 grams of champagne yeast
  • 5 grams of yeast nutrient
  • 5 grams of yeast energizer
  • 1 packet of wine tannin
  • 5 campden tablets


  • 5-gallon carboy or fermenting bucket
  • Airlock and stopper
  • Auto-siphon
  • Hydrometer
  • Large stirring spoon
  • Glass measuring cup
  • Sanitizing solution
  • Racking cane and tubing
  • Bottles and corks

Step 1: Sanitize

Thoroughly clean and sanitize all equipment and utensils before starting the mead-making process. This helps prevent any unwanted bacteria or wild yeasts from interfering with the fermentation process.

Step 2: Mix Honey and Water

In a large pot, bring 1 gallon of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add all the honey, stirring until completely dissolved. Transfer the mixture to your fermenting vessel and add the remaining 4 gallons of water.

Step 3: Add Yeast and Nutrients

Sprinkle the champagne yeast over the honey-water mixture and add yeast nutrient, yeast energizer, and wine tannin. Stir well to ensure everything is thoroughly mixed.

Step 4: Fermentation

Fit the airlock and stopper to your fermenting vessel. Place the vessel in a cool and dark place, maintaining a temperature between 65-75°F. Allow the mixture to ferment for approximately 2-3 weeks, or until the airlock stops bubbling.

Step 5: Racking

Using a sanitized auto-siphon, transfer the mead from the fermenting vessel to a clean carboy or fermenting bucket, leaving behind any sediment at the bottom. This process is known as racking. Seal the new vessel with the airlock.

Step 6: Aging and Bottling

Allow the mead to age for at least 2-3 months, or longer if desired, to improve its flavor and clarity. Once satisfied with the taste and clarity, use a sanitized auto-siphon to transfer the mead into bottles. Seal the bottles with corks and let them sit for another month before enjoying.


Is it necessary to use specific yeast for making mead?

Yes, using specific wine or champagne yeast is crucial as they can tolerate the high alcohol content that mead fermentation produces.

How long does mead need to ferment?

The primary fermentation typically lasts around 2-3 weeks, but the aging process can take several months to develop the desired flavors.

Can I adjust the sweetness of the mead?

Yes, you can adjust the sweetness by adding more or less honey during the initial mixing process. Keep in mind that the yeast will consume some of the sugars, so a slightly sweeter mixture than desired is recommended.

Can I add fruits or spices to the mead during fermentation?

Absolutely! Adding fruits or spices can enhance the flavor profile of your mead. It's best to experiment with small batches to find the right combination for your taste preference.

What is the best storage temperature for aging mead?

The ideal temperature for aging mead is between 55-65°F. Avoid exposing the bottles to direct sunlight as it may affect the taste and quality of the mead.

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