how to make alcohol with juice

Making alcohol is not as difficult as you might think. You can make your own home-made wine, beer, or hard cider at home with just a few ingredients and some patience.

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How to make alcohol with juice
Fruit juice cider is simple to make, for a delicious, sparkling homemade hooch.

This simple fruit juice cider was my first attempt at home brewing. It’s a sparkling and flavourful cider that is so easy to make that it is still one of my favourite recipes.

A Simple Recipe

Normally alcohol production requires sterilization, precision and large vats of fermenting liquids. Depending on what you want to make, it also involves a small chemistry set of sulfite, ph testing strips, a hydrometer, etc.

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This simple recipe for fruit juice cider only requires a bottle of juice and a packet of Champagne yeast (which can be found for cheap at most winemaking stores.)

There are only a few tips and tricks for making hard fruit juice cider:

  1. Add the packet of yeast directly to the bottle of juice, so you don’t have to worry about sterilization.
  2. Make sure the juice is preservative-free (see the example below.) Preservatives can stop the yeast from multiplying and slow down the fermentation.
  3. Use juice that comes in a glass jar because metal, plastic or wax interiors can deteriorate during fermentation. If you want to use tetra pak juice, then transfer it to a very clean bottle for fermenting.
  4. It’s important to keep out unwanted yeasts and bacteria. Airlocks are cheap and easy, just buy a bung that fits the juice jug (see below). Alternatively, you can make real fruit juice hooch by using a balloon with a single pinhole pricked in it. The pinhole will allow CO2 to escape without letting anything in. Just be sure to wash the balloon first to get rid of the talc.
Simple homemade fruit cider from fruit juice and yeast

Bottling Fruit Juice Cider

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This recipe provides the simplest method for finishing fruit juice cider. That’s because it’s designed for beginners, who might not have the sanitation supplies nor bottles for proper bottling.

Simply putting the cap back on the juice bottle will work! However, it won’t allow the cider to fully carbonate.

Here are the additional steps required to prime and bottle the fruit juice cider. If you want more details about any of these steps, check out my basic homemade cider how-to guide.

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  1. Prime the carbonation by mixing a 1/8 cup of white sugar in 1/4 cup of boiling water. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Then mix the sugar-water into the cider.
  2. Use either flip-top beer bottles or plastic pop bottles. Sterilize the bottles and the siphon.
  3. Fill the bottles, leaving all sediment at the bottom of the juice jug.
  4. The bottled cider will need to ferment at room temperature for another 1-2 weeks until it is carbonated. Then store the cider in the fridge and enjoy within 2 months. Because this recipe is a sulfite-free recipe the cider is not shelf-stable and will continue to ferment, even in the fridge. So if you like sweet cider, drink it within 1 month.


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