Lighter Than Helium Light Lager Recipe

Light American lager is the hardest “nothing of a beer” you will ever make. Here is a simplified version.

Drew Beechum Aug 7, 2019 - 2 min read

Lighter Than Helium Light Lager Recipe Primary Image


Batch size: 5.5 gallons (20.8 liters)
Brewhouse efficiency: 70%
OG: 1.037
FG: 1.003
IBUs: 8
ABV: 4.5%


5.5 lb (2.5 kg) domestic Pilsner malt
2.75 lb (1.3 kg) flaked corn (or rice if that’s your jam)
BSG Amylo-300 or White Labs Ultra-Ferm


0.12 oz (3.4 g) Magnum [15% AA] at 60 minutes
0.25 oz (7 g) Willamette [4.5% AA] at 0 minutes


Fermentis Saflager W-34/70, White Labs WLP830, Wyeast 2124, or Wyeast 2007


Add a dose of BSG Amylo-300 or White Labs Ultra-Ferm according to package directions at the mash start. Perform a single-infusion mash at 148°F (64°C) for 60 minutes. Raise the temperature to mash out at 168°F (76°C) for 10 minutes.

Boil for 60 minutes following the hops schedule. After the boil, chill the wort to 48°F (9°C) and make sure the wort is at temperature before pitching the yeast! Ferment following either a traditional or modified Narziss lagering method (see “The Classic Appeal of the American Lager,” page 79). To achieve ultra clarity, use gelatin (or another fining agent) to clarify before packaging.


Use low-mineral water; ensure at least 50ppm calcium to convert the mash correctly. Be spot-on with your sanitation, yeast health, and temperature control. This beer won’t provide you any room to hide.