What Is Hemp Beer? Does Hemp Beer Make You High?

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Yes, a beer brewed with hemp exists, and it’s legal in the U.S., but before rushing to conclusions, be aware that the commercialized version doesn’t contain THC, so it won’t get you high. This uprising form of beer infused with elements of the hemp plant is gaining popularity as many breweries throughout America are producing it. Read on to understand what hemp beer is and if it’s safe to drink.

What Is Hemp Beer?

Hemp beer is a type of beer that is brewed with hemp as one of the ingredients. The hemp plant, specifically the hemp seeds, and leaves, adds flavor, aroma, and other unique characteristics to the beer.

Hemp beer is brewed using a similar process as traditional beer, which involves steeping grains, boiling the mixture, adding hops, and fermenting the beer with yeast. However, hemp is added to the mixture instead of grains and hops to provide a distinct flavor and aroma.

Hemp beer is brewed using a similar process as traditional beer, which involves steeping grains, boiling the mixture, adding hops, and fermenting the beer with yeast. However, hemp is added to the mixture instead of grains and hops to provide a distinct flavor and aroma.

Most hemp infused beer that you may find in the market nowadays do not contain THC, the active ingredient in cannabis with a psychoactive effect. These hemp beers blend hemp with hops focusing on obtaining the flavors. The only part allowed to be used by commercial breweries is the hemp seed heart, which contains no THC or CBD.

Drinking most of the hemp-infused beers available on the market will not give you any high effect, nor the therapeutic effects of CBD, but you may feel adistinct flavor. Many brewers are currently experimenting with cannabis terpenes, the flavor compounds. Terpenes can be found in many natural foods and ingredients like hops, coffee, fruits, and hemp seeds. This means that the hemp infused beer you see everywhere can have an intense marijuana smell and flavor, but there are no cannabinoids in this product.

Hemp beer is not psychoactive and does not contain significant amounts of THC, the psychoactive compound found in marijuana. Instead, it is made using industrial hemp, which contains very low levels of THC and is legal to use in brewing.

Can A Beer Brewed With Hemp Contain THC?

While the commercial production of any alcoholic beverage that contains THC is unlawful in the U.S. at a federal level, some companies are investing in THC beers. In the states where cannabis is legal for recreational use, companies are creating alcohol-free THC beers. Still, these will not likely reach the liquor stores anytime soon because of the regulations.

Home-brewed beers can contain high amounts of cannabinoids

On the other hand, in the states where home-brewing is legal, along with the recreational use of cannabis, many people are creating beers at home with THC. These cannot be commercialized, but you may find them in that friend’s house who likes to brew artisanal beers at home. Many different recipes are used by homebrewers who are enthusiastic about cannabis, including THC or CBD.

What’s The Secret Of The Best Hemp Beer Recipe?

Hops and cannabis can be considered close cousins, as they belong to the same botanical family, the Cannabinaceae. The similarities between the two plants include a couple of shared terpenes and a similar aroma and flavor. The molecules responsible for the fragrance of the hops are also present in hemp and are the ones that give the smell qualities such as skunky, earthy, or citrusy. These flavors are usually related to hoppy IPA beers. That said, the best hemp beer recipe should incorporate the flavors of hemp and hops.

Although many home-brewers differ in the best way to brew a beer with hemp, there’s consensus about using female plants, as it does not contain seeds. Hops are used to stabilize the brewing process and enrich the final flavor of the beer, but hemp flowers can do a similar job. During the home brewing process, you can replace the hops with hemp or add it when the wort begins to boil to extract cannabinoids. It is crucial to soak the hemp buds before adding it to the process as it can remove unwanted toxins.

Here’s a recipe for a simple and refreshing hemp beer that you can try at home:


  • 2 lbs of malt extract (light)
  • 1 lb of crushed hemp seeds
  • 1 oz of hops (Cascade)
  • 1 package of beer yeast
  • 4 gallons of water


1. Heat 2 gallons of water in a large pot until it reaches 160°F.

2. Turn off the heat and add the crushed hemp seeds. Let them steep for about 30 minutes.

3. After 30 minutes, strain the mixture into another pot and discard the hemp seeds.

4. Bring the hemp seed-infused water to a boil and add the malt extract.

5. Stir until the malt extract has completely dissolved, then add the hops.

6. Boil the mixture for 60 minutes, stirring occasionally.

7. After 60 minutes, turn off the heat and let the mixture cool to room temperature.

8. Once the mixture has cooled, transfer it to a fermenter and add the beer yeast.

9. Seal the fermenter and let it ferment for about two weeks.

10. After two weeks, transfer the beer to a bottling bucket and add a priming solution (a mixture of water and sugar).

11. Bottle the beer and let it condition for at least a week before drinking.

The Best Hemp Beers

Most commercialized hemp beers will suit your taste if you are a fan of hoppy IPA-style beers. You can expect beers with sweet flavors but mild bitterness at the end, medium body, and a strong cannabis aroma. Here’s a list of some of the most popular hemp beers according to the app Untappd (none of the following contain THC or CBD):

The Hemperor IPA: This beer, crafted by the New Belgium Brewing Company, uses hemp seeds in the brewing process, and the flavor is considered highly dank. You will feel the aroma of cannabis and the taste of the hops.

Dubhe Imperial Black IPA: Created by Uinta Brewing Company, this imperial black IPA presents the flavors of coffee, vanilla, and pine. Brewed with hemp seeds, it has high amounts of hops and roasted malts for high bitterness.

Humboldt Brown Hemp Ale: This beer was initially called a hemp ale and used toasted hemp seeds in brewing. Created by the Humboldt Brewing Co., this brown ale beer has a unique herb-accented flavor and darker malts.

Hemp Hop Rye Amber Ale: Crafted by the O’Fallon Brewery, this amber ale has toasted hemp seeds used in the brewing process to bring a smooth beer with a nutty flavor. With a taste resembling caramel, you can also feel the rye and hops.

Hemp Gose: This beer style requires it to be light and refreshing as a sour gose beer. The hemp added when Goodwood Brewing brews this beer brings an herbal aroma to the beer, along with the malt body.

Now that you know all the fuss regarding hemp beers, you can choose the one that best suits your drinking style and try it safely. Overall, hemp beer is a unique and flavorful beer that is becoming more popular among craft beer enthusiasts. It is an excellent option for those looking to try something new or those who enjoy the taste of hemp. Don’t forget to drink responsibly.