Cocoa nibs are the pure and raw form of chocolate with nothing added or processed. The flavorful inner part of the cacao bean, nibs are cured after gathering and then carefully roasted to bring out the full chocolate flavor and aroma. Great for brewing cocoa flavored beer, wine, mead, liquors; they also double as a great snack! If you like dark, bittersweet chocolate, you might have to be careful about getting addicted!
Cacao Nibs are a great way to introduce rich chocolate flavor into any beer. Impress your friends with a unique tasting experience!
Cacao nibs (crushed seeds from the Cacao plant) are the key ingredient in chocolate. While not technically chocolate themselves, they have a wonderful cocoa smell to them, and will provide a very subdued cocoa-like flavor to any beer.
You can use these nibs like you would a dry hop, by adding the nibs to your secondary fermenter or keg for a couple of weeks (4 ounces per 5 gallons is a great place to start), allowing the beer to draw out the subtle flavors and aromas of the cacao nibs. They can also be used in the boil or mash - wherever you would like to experiment with them. Adding the nibs pre-boil will impart some bitterness, so use a lot less than you would when adding them to a keg. (Recently, our friends at Stone Brewing Company made a stout using cacao nibs in the boil to actually replace some of the hops in the recipe!)
These super high quality nibs go great with darker beers like porters and stouts, but could blend with any beer - perhaps a wit or a saison! These nibs are used widely in commercial breweries and are one of the best ways to get chocolate flavor into your beer.
Suggested usage is similar to dry-hopping, add the nibs in your secondary or keg. 4 oz of nibs per 5 gallons is a good starting point. Nibs can also be used in the boil (they will impart some bitterness), in the whirlpool, or made into an alcohol tincture and added to the beer.
In brewing they can be directly added to the boil or added during secondary fermentation and allowed to steep for 5 to 10 days. If boiled, some of the natural bitterness of the Cocoa will be extracted, and as such can potentially be used to replace bittering hops. The Cocoa flavor is naturally great in porters and stouts, but the possibilities are endless!
Notes of Walnut, Banana, and Toffee.
Storage: Keep in a cool, dry place between 60-70ºF. Keep out of heat, humidity, and sunlight.