Apple cider vinegar from any well known brand are quite expensive. Not only that this ACV do not usually contain the ‘Mother’. The ‘Mother’ found in raw ACV is rich in probiotics, minerals and various enzymes beneficial to our body. When you make your own ACV, you can retain the ‘mother’ and make large quantities within a fraction of the cost. Let us see how to make apple cider vinegar at home.
Click to skip directly to the section ‘How To Make Apple Cider Vinegar’. Here you can find photos and the video on the whole acv making process.
To know more about apple cider vinegar benefits and various recipes check out,
Why Make Apple Cider Vinegar At Home?
Good quality ACV with Mother like the brand Braggs costs around 450-499/- for just 500 ml.
Here i have used baby apples which cost around 115/- per kg. I did not even use the whole 12 apples(1 kg).
While with one kg of apples, you can easily make 1.5-2 litres of apple cider.
I have used 7-8 apples and a two litre glass jar to make acv.
That means you just saved your money. You also have raw acv unlike the ‘filtered and pasteurised’ ones in the market. Isn’t that great? 🙂
It is really healthy too as we are using honey instead of sugar in this recipe. 🙂
Also, do you think these companies clean the apples of pesticides by treating with baking soda solution? I seriously doubt that. 🙁
That is why it is always better to learn how to make apple cider vinegar at home.
How Apples Turn To Vinegar?
The process of making ACV undergoes two stages of fermentation.
Water To Alcohol – The sugars found in the apples are broken down by the bacteria and yeast to form alcohol. This process takes anywhere between 2-4 weeks.
Once the water turns in to alcohol, you can see that the apples have sunk to the bottom of the jar. Now as soon as this happen, it is time for you to filter the apples and discard them.
These apples are not required for the rest of the process.
Alcohol To Vinegar – This fermentation process takes around 3-6 weeks to complete. Stir every 3-4 days to allow oxygen circulation.
Here i have noted down the 9 main points that you absolutely have to keep in mind while making ACV. This is from my own experience and hope it makes the whole process easier for you. This also ensures that you end up with a good quality ACV without messing things up.
Use Baking Soda
Baking soda helps get rid of 96% of the pesticides in around 12 minutes. 🙂
So add baking soda to water and let the apples sit in it for 15 minutes.
How Much baking Soda Do We Add To Water?
For 2 cups of water you need to add 1 teaspoon of baking soda.
Avoid Metal Containers
if you use metal, the vinegar may interact with it and corrode the metal. The final product may also have a metallic taste to it. We certainly do not want that.
You may also go for wooden, ceramic, glass or enamel jars.
Grandma’s old pickle jars are perfect for making apple cider vinegar.
Make Sure The Jar Is Clean And Dry
This is to avoid other bacteria contaminating the ACV. Unwanted bacteria may cause molds to form and eventually it may ruin your entire batch of ACV.
You may clean the jar and let it air dry.
Always Make Sure The apples Are Submerged Under Water
If apples are floating on top of water, it will start to rot and may also cause molds to form. We need the apples to ferment and not rot and hence we have to avoid both of these from happening.
So keep a weight on top of the apples so that it will weigh the apples down.
Use A Breathable Cloth To Cover The Jar
Why use a cheese cloth?
It helps air to circulate easily.
We also need oxygen for the fermentation process to complete successfully.
Using a cloth to cover the glass jar make it possible for it to breathe. The gasses formed during the fermentation process can escape from the jar easily.
Why do we need to stir at all?
Stirring helps the oxygen to reach all parts of the liquid. Adequate oxygen is required for the fermentation process to continue.
- For the first 2-4 weeks (Until apples sink) – Stir everyday or once every two days
- For the next 3-6 weeks – Stir once every 3-4 days.
Keep It In A Dark Place
The ideal temperature for making ACV would be between 15-25 degree Celsius. Keep it far from sunlight and heat areas.
Higher temperature disturbs the formation of the ‘Mother’. So keep the jar in a cool and dark place.
The ACV will attract tiny flies to it. You may find them flying on top of the cheesecloth so, it is better to keep it inside the kitchen cabinet or any closed place.
It may take longer periods of time to make apple cider vinegar during cold climates and much lesser time during the hot summers.
White scum Formed On The Top Is Normal
If the scum is formed in the first 2-4 weeks, you need to remove it using any wooden utensil.
If the white scum if formed after you have discarded the apples (2-4 weeks later, refer to Step 8 below), it is quite normal. This white scum layer will turn to mother in a few weeks. So do not let it bother you.
But if you find the scum to be of a different colour, remove it immediately. This does not usually happen if you use clean jars and utensils.
Use Wooden spoon/Ladle
We totally recommend using wooden ladles for stirring the ACV during its fermentation process as, wood does not interfere with the acids and enzymes in it.
Just make sure it is clean and dry before letting it touch the ACV.
What You Need
You need the below for making apple cider vinegar.
- Container – Any size but made of Glass/Ceramic/Wood
- Filtered/Boiled and cooled water
- Fermentation weight
- Rubber Band
- Cleaned Apples – 8-10
- Honey or Any Sugar – 5 Tablespoons
- Optional – Few tablespoons of ACV or Champagne yeast
The number of apples depends upon the size of your container. If you have a large pickle barrel, then sure go ahead and make use of it.
If you are making ACV for the first time, do a trial run using just three apples. That is what i did. It turned out well and hence i went ahead and made a larger batch.
How To Make Apple Cider Vinegar
Here are the 10 steps on how to make apple cider vinegar at home.
Step 1: Clean the apples.
Leave the apples in baking soda solution for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, scrub the apples with your hands and wash the apples under running tap water.
Do not skip this step as pesticides can adversely affect your health.
Now the apples are ready to be used.
Step 2: Cut the apples in to small bite sized pieces. You can cut it in to 6-8 pieces
Step 3: Transfer the apples to the glass container. Add filtered water to it until the apples are submerged under water.
How Much Water To Add?
Adding more water than necessary will make the fermentation process longer and adding less water will cause the apples to rot or cause molds to grow.
So add just enough water until the apples are completely covered.
Step 4: Add 5 Tablespoons of honey to it.
Step 5: This is completely optional.
Add 3 Tablespoons of ACV to it. It could be from the previous batch you made. You can also add the ‘Mother’ which is even better.
Add one Champagne Yeast sachet to it.
If you do not have it, skip it. It totally fine. We add either of the two to speed up the fermentation process.
Step 6: Place a weight on top of the apples to weigh the apples down.
Step 7: Cover the opening of the jar with a cheesecloth. Fasten with a rubber band.
Stir once a day or every two days till the apples sink.
After 2-4 Weeks
The apples sink down to the bottom of the jar like in the below picture.
Step 8: Filter the alcohol and discard the apples.
Step 9: Transfer it to a clean dry jar and cover with the cheesecloth.
Here the amount of acv appears to be less because, the glass slipped from my hand while transferring and i spilled some. You should have a glass or two more than what you see here.
Stir once every 3-4 days
After 3-6 Weeks
The alcohol has now turned to vinegar. It usually takes 3 weeks for me.
Step 10: Transfer the ACV to a bottle and close with a lid. Refrigerate.
Refrigerate to stop fermentation process or the acidity of the ACV will increase.
How To Speed Up The ACV Making Process?
Adding ACV or Mother to a new batch helps kick start the fermentation process at a faster rate.
Add a sachet of ‘Champagne yeast’ to it.
These two methods help avoid starting the fermentation process from scratch. It reduces the time taken to convert the sugars to alcohol.
whenever i am preparing a new batch, I always add ACV with mother and the first fermentation process takes only 2 weeks in summers. I have yet to try this in winter.
My First Time Making Apple Cider Vinegar
How to make apple cider vinegar at home, Trial With Just 3 Apples.
This was a couple of years back and the photos were taken on my phone. So please ignore the quality of the photos.
- Apples – 3
- Honey – 1 Tablespoon
I did not have baking soda with me so i just peeled the apples and used the flesh only.
Add enough water till it covers the apple pieces. I am using a 500 gram bottle here.
Add 1 tablespoon of honey to it.
Cover with cheesecloth. I did stir them once a day.
After 2-3 weeks, the apples sank to the bottom of the bottle.
Problem: The apples pieces were too small that within two weeks it kind of decomposed completely. So there weren’t much pieces left while filtering.
You can see in the picture below that the apple pieces are no where to be seen.
So lesson learned – Do not cut the apples in to super tiny pieces.
I filtered the liquid, discarded the apples and changed the bottle.
After 3 weeks, There we have our apple cider vinegar.
Hope these pictures and video was able to make things easier for you. Now you have learned how to make apple cider vinegar at home.
Try it as it is super easy and you can save lots of money. I will include ACV recipes (Health N Skin) in another article soon.
Till then, Have A Wonderful Time.
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