Ginger Syrup Ingredients
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
Ginger Beer Ingredients
1/8 tsp active dry yeast or brewer's yeast
Ginger syrup (ingredients above)
3 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
7 cups filtered water
You will also need: clean 2-liter soda bottle, funnel
CAUTION: be sure to open the bottle every day to release the extra gas, otherwise the bottle might explode and you’ll have a big mess on your hands! The photos in the blog post above were taken using a glass bottle. Please keep in mind that home brew is volatile in nature. If you will not be "on top" of releasing built up pressure as it ferments, we recommend using a plastic bottle instead. Note that as the beverage ferments, sediment will settle at the bottom of the bottle. You can strain it out if you wish.
Peel a chunk of the ginger with the tip of a teaspoon—the papery skin scrapes right off—and grate it, using the fine side of your grater. Place the ginger, sugar, and water in a saucepan over medium heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to steep for an hour.
Making ginger syrup on stovetop for ginger beer.
Strain the mixture (discard the ginger solids) and allow to cool.
Straining ginger syrup on stovetop for ginger beer.
You’ve now made ginger syrup (or gingerette, as the Brits call it). Stop right here if you’re looking for a short-cut to ginger ale and you don’t want to mess around with the fermentation process. Pour three or four tablespoons (more or less depending upon how gingery you like it) of your syrup over ice and add 8 ounces of seltzer water or club soda. Bottle the rest of the syrup and store it in the refrigerator.
Combining ingredients for ginger beer in stainless steel bowl on cutting board.
For the full ginger beer experience, place a funnel in the top of the bottle. Sprinkle the yeast in, followed by the syrup, lemon juice, and water.
Sprinkling yeast into bottle through funnel.
Put the lid on the bottle and shake the concoction until the yeast is dissolved. Stow it on a shady shelf or in your pantry out of direct sunlight for 2-3 days, or until fizz is achieved. At this point it is ready to drink, and must be stored in the refrigerator to prevent further fermentation. Don't forget about the bottle, or the pressure will build up so much that it may explode!
As with any yeast-powered beverage, the fermentation process continues unless you prevent it from happening. Refrigerating will slow the process down but not stop it completely, that's why it’s best to treat ginger beer as a perishable beverage. Consume within 1-2 weeks.
Fizzy ginger beer in green glass bottle, close up.
Serve over ice and savor the spicy taste of your very own homemade ginger beer!
The Old Fashioned Way: Homemade Ginger Beer - Recipe and Video. Learn to make ginger beer (aka ginger ale) the old fashioned way, with fresh grated ginger and the power of active yeast. Step-by-step video below!
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