Ten Reasons to use Beer Brewing Software

by Brad Smith on March 1, 2009 · 29 comments

computer_webMany homebrewers are not aware of how brewing software can dramatically improve the quality and consistency of their home brew. Brewing without doing the math is kind of like shooting darts blindfolded, and software makes the math much easier. This week, we take a look at some of the ways brewing software can make a difference in beer design and how it can improve your brewing day.

Now as a disclaimer, I obviously am affiliated with BeerSmith brewing software, but even if you don’t choose our package, I highly recommend you try the various beer brewing software programs available and select the one that suits you best. Your beer will be better for it.

  1. Design Great Beer in Minutes – Building a recipe with beer software is as simple as picking the ingredients you want from a list. A typical package has several hundred varieties of hops, grains, yeasts and more that are pre-entered for your use. Picking from a list of ingredients is much easier than thumbing through a set of reference books.
  2. Brew Consistently Good Beer – By tracking your ingredients, recipe used, original gravity and taste of your beer you can improve your brewing process and make more consistent, better tasting beer. You can keep track of old recipes, see how changes affect your color, gravity and bitterness, and design better beers.
  3. Brew the Style you Want – Brewing software lets you select a target beer style and match the color, bitterness and suggest ingredients as you build the recipe. As you add ingredients, the software estimates each of these and lets you compare the current values to the style you selected. This will help you come much closer to your target beer style the first time out.
  4. Share Recipes – Brewing software that supports open standards like BeerXML give you access to thousands of recipes online that you can download, import and customize to your taste. Many of the popular packages have dedicated recipe sites available. You can also email recipes to your friends, post them on a web site or share them in a variety of formats.
  5. Get Step by Step Instructions – Software like BeerSmith will generate step-by-step instructions customized for your recipe, equipment and methods. No fuss, no worries. After you enter your recipe you can get specific brewing instructions generated by the program with a single click.
  6. Stay Organized – Keep all of your brewing records in one place. Keep a brewing log of your past brewing sessions, schedule your next brew, record new ideas and manipulate recipes from the web. Refine your favorite recipes to perfect your brewing technique.
  7. Match your Brewing Equipment – The equipment you use to brew has a huge impact on the taste of your beer. With brewing software you can set up your equipment settings once and apply that to any recipe to get accurate calculations and estimates.
  8. All Grain Made Easy – Modern equipment and ingredients have made all grain brewing more accessible than ever. Infusion mashing for all-grain brewing involves a fairly complex set of calculations to determine the amount and temperature of water to be added at each step. In BeerSmith, you just pick the infusion profile you desire and the software provides detailed instructions that match your equipment and ingredients.
  9. Manage Inventory, Track Prices and go Shopping – The best brewing software includes tools to manage your inventory of ingredients, determine the cost of each brew and even generate shopping lists for a particular recipe for your next trip to the store. This makes it much easier to keep track of what you need and avoid those “extra trips”.
  10. Software Costs Less than a Batch of Beer – Brewing software is cheap– typically from $20-25 for the top commercial packages. One bad tasting batch of beer costs more.

Want to try brewing software yourself?

Thanks again for joining us on the BeerSmith Home Brewing Blog. We appreciate your continued support, and will return to our regularly schedule beer brewing articles next week.

Related Beer Brewing Articles from BeerSmith:

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Good Burp May 9, 2009 at 9:28 pm

I completely agree with you. My brew buddy uses a brew program religously. It is easy to use, and any novice, they would agree. On my new adventure, I plan on using the software. It is all about quality and consitaancy. Don’t knock it until you try it.

chilemon1 December 29, 2009 at 5:40 am

Do you have BeerSmith home brewing software for a Mac?


Brad Smith December 29, 2009 at 9:05 am

Not yet,
I am actively working on a Mac version of BeerSmith and we have an early version running on my Mac now. We’re hoping to release a Mac product sometime next year.


teleskier January 13, 2010 at 4:55 pm

I have been brewing for far too long without brewing software. I have a mac computer. Is there any version, even an older one that woks on a Mac?



Brad Smith January 13, 2010 at 5:07 pm

A Mac version of BeerSmith is coming later this year – hang in there!

Glass Bottles January 15, 2010 at 11:22 am

I have been brewing for a while, and never even considered using software. I guess I thought that doing everything manually was more of a craft. But after reading this post, perhaps it would be wise for me to invest in some software.After all, I think every point resounded with me at some point in my brewing history. Thanks

tonyt April 8, 2010 at 11:38 am

I am going to use your BeerSmith home brewing software soon.
Also do you know any software for red and white wine out their?
Thank you

Andrew Murphy November 6, 2010 at 7:47 pm

don’t mean to sound like a broken record, but how’s that mac version of BeerSmith going? =]

Brad Smith November 9, 2010 at 8:51 am

Still working on it very hard – have a few major features to clean up and then will start testing.

Tank November 30, 2010 at 4:02 pm

Any idea when/if the MAC version of Beer Smith. I would love to buy it!

WimpyMarketShare December 9, 2010 at 9:00 pm

Beersmith: I want what you offer. I need what you offer. I will gladly pay for what you offer. Everyone again: when will it be offered for a MAC?

Brad Smith December 10, 2010 at 12:44 pm

I’m working full time on it now and close to getting a beta released within the next month. Once I’m into testing we’ll be in a better position to set a release date, but I’m shooting for early next year. — Brad

Scott Gjerdingen January 21, 2011 at 1:18 am

Brad –
If you are in need of beta testers, I have just jumped back into brewing after a 20 year hiatus…so I have some catching up to do and am pretty active. Software development is also my trade. Either way, please keep us posted!

– scott –

Brad Smith January 21, 2011 at 9:11 am

Drop me an email if you want to be added to the beta list (see contacts on the main page).


jeff March 13, 2011 at 5:23 pm

Any update on a release for mac?

Brad Smith March 21, 2011 at 8:50 pm

I just released the very first early Mac alpha version (yes it is real) to a handful of testers. There is still much to do before release (I’m writing about 170 help files this week) but I’m anticipating within two months if the testing goes well.


Paul April 7, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Sounds cool!! Please keep us posted on the status of the Mac release, I want to purchase the software and I’m sure thousands of mac users out there will also.


John Mills April 27, 2011 at 9:04 am

I have a PC and a MAC. I’d like to get on the Beta list if you need more samplers. But would like to know if I buy it for my PC now, will I have to buy a second copy for my MAC also when it comes out?

Just curious if I have to decide which machine I want to make my primary Brewing Computer. Because I am ton on putting it on my MAC desktop or my old PC which is portable.

iiiii March 16, 2012 at 1:57 am

Ten Reasons to use Beer Brewing Software | Home Brewing Beer Blog by BeerSmith I was recommended this blog by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as nobody else know such detailed about my difficulty. You’re amazing! Thanks! your article about Ten Reasons to use Beer Brewing Software | Home Brewing Beer Blog by BeerSmithBest Regards Lawrence

Chris Howard November 16, 2012 at 8:25 am

Does the software also support small batch brews? In other words can I setup an equipment profile for a 1 or 2 gallon batch and have the software adjust for quantities?

Veronica December 18, 2012 at 4:09 am

On the app for iPad, what is the size batch the recipes are made for?

Brad Smith December 18, 2012 at 8:24 pm

Hi – The app could be used for batches of any size, but the current “lite” app on the iPad requires a desktop version for creating/editing recipes. I’m working on a “full” app which will come out in a few months which will allow full recipe editing from mobile devices.

ljb December 23, 2012 at 4:34 pm

I m looking for a software simular to largemarge 9000, do you know where i can get it ?

Pick daddy December 29, 2012 at 12:16 am

Hey Brad

I currently have Beersmith 2 for PC and lite for IPAD. Will I be required to pay for full version on IPAD?

Ed April 8, 2013 at 12:35 pm

I stumbled up on this site by accident when I “googled” beer brewing at home. I am impressed with the amount of information and great tips I found here.
I will have a look at the software, because it can make life a lot easier.
Thanks for sharing.

REINERIO ÁLVAREZ SAN JUAN December 30, 2013 at 7:01 am

Buenos días Brad, ¿tienen este programa para elaborar recetas en ESPAÑOL?, si es afirmativo cuanto cuesta y como puedo adquirirlo.
Muchas gracias

Scottyjordy January 28, 2014 at 11:33 pm

Brad, thank you for the Mac version of Beersmith and all of the Podcasts. The amount of information you provide is a huge resource to the brewing community.

Olan Wade August 1, 2019 at 5:16 pm

After a few kits under my belt I jumped into all-grain BIAB. My first attempt was a learning experience and made me wonder if there was a good software tool out there to manage my brews. I’ve tried a few mobile apps then took the leap and purchased BeerSmith3. I used BeerSmith3 to correct my recipe and my next attempt at brewing BIAB was a success. I like the way BeerSmith3 predicts all of the important measurements, volumes, etc. used when building a beer recipe, brewing temps/times, pitch rates for yeast, and recommended days for each step in the process. Using the predicted measurements and my specific gravity readings I found BeerSmith3 near perfect. It’s now been 26 days and I have a perfect bottle of beer. This gives me the ability to save my profiles for my equipment allowing for a repeatable process that I can follow for all of my future brews regardless of the type of beer. Thanks!!

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