I am planning on trying this recipe - http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/04/red-ale-for-beginning-homebrewers-hoppy-red-ale-recipe.html, and calls for the following:

1 Liter starter of either White Labs WLP001 or Wyeast 1056.

After that is says:

You can substitute one 11.5 gram package of Safale US-05 for the starter of liquid yeast.

My question is, instead of making a yeast starter, can I just buy 2 packets of Safale US-05 (https://www.homebrewwest.co.nz/safale-us05.html) and add them?

Another options I was considering was using 1 packet of liquid CALIFORNIA ALE YEAST - WLP001 (https://www.homebrewwest.co.nz/california-ale-yeast-wlp001.html)

Would either of these options be a suitable alternative to making the yeast starter?


  • Is the problem that the note about the yeast is maybe ambiguous? I suppose that the recipe says to either use a yeast starter from 1 L using WLP001 or Wyeast 1056, or use 1 sachet of Safale US-05 instead of the starter.
    – chthon
    Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 19:18
  • Yeah, so the whole thing says "The yeast should be an American Ale strain, and you'll need a 1 Liter starter of either White Labs WLP001 or Wyeast 1056. You can substitute one 11.5 gram package of Safale US-05 for the starter of liquid yeast." Does that mean use 1 Liter starter OR just 1 packet of Safale US-05? I read that the using a yeast starter is used for higher ABV, and you can sub that for 2 packs of dry yeast. Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 19:33

1 Answer 1

  1. Words "1 liter starter" imply the number of active yeast cells that you're supposed to pitch. Number of yeast cells in one sachet of dry yeast will be roughly the same, especially if you re-hydrate that dry yeast in small amount of sterile water of room temperature (sprinkling dry yeast directly into wort is a bad idea, as ~50% yeast cells will die of osmotic shock).

  2. US-05 is the same strain as WLP001, so you should be fine.

  3. On "high gravity beers" and starters. For high gravity beers you need starters bigger than 1 liter. You can play with yeast pitch calculator at http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html to see for yourself.

  • Great, thanks for the explanation. So for that recipe I could use a 1 litre starter OR 1 packet of US-05? Also, what’s the thoughts on if you stir the yeast or not? I have read multiple conflicting ideas on this, some people say just sprinkle it and some say stir. Commented Jan 18, 2018 at 20:01
  • I'd say yes, 1 litre starter should be the same as 1 sachet of US-05. I normally make bigger starters, like 2 litres, then cold-crash them and decant the spent wort, so as to use only the yeast sediment from starters -- all because I'm cheap and don't buy a new sachet of yeast for every new batch.
    – Roman
    Commented Jan 18, 2018 at 22:09
  • @StewartDuffy I assume by "stir vs sprinkle" you mean stirring the wort after you sprinkled yeast in? You need to oxygenate the wort pretty well in the beginning, so as to give yeast lots of oxygen for healthy fermentation. My protocol is vigorously shaking the fermenter (with the lid closed!) for approx a minute. Other people use aeration stones with either pure O2 or just pre-filtered air. Also look what I said about rehydration of the yeast. It takes extra 5 minutes but makes a difference.
    – Roman
    Commented Jan 18, 2018 at 22:15
  • Fermentis and Lallemand recommend that you don't oxygenate wort before pitching. The dried yeast contains sufficient sterol for healthy yeast growth. Oxygenating will only increase lag time. Commented Feb 26, 2018 at 22:43

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