Homemade Ginger Beer Recipe

June 1st 2008

The picture above is my ginger beer plant. This is my recipe:

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried yeast

  • 1 dessert spoon raw sugar

  • 1 dessert spoon ground ginger

  • 300ml water

  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon

I mixed this all together and set aside a lid. Each day for seven days I then added a teaspoon of sugar and a teaspoon of ground ginger. This was a thrill, another aspect of slow food that I just love.

So after seven days I strained the ginger plant. Here I am using a funnel and some scrap material. Recipes suggested muslin or a looser weave. This worked okay I think, just squeezed it out tight. You are left with a clay like substance that you can halve and continue to grow another plant. 

I suppose I could keep the plant and continue to grow it for 40 years. Maybe that could be the only inheritance for the kids. Or all the inheritance goes to the kid that took the plant. Oh well, I digress.

Next I added 3 cups of sugar to 20 cups of water. Our cold rainwater just dissolved the sugar fine after a bit of stirring. I used raw sugar for a nicer colour. I mixed in the ginger plant solution. Adding 1 tsp citric acid to the mix before bottling is a good suggestion for getting more bubbles. Sterilise the bottles (Thanks Matt), then fill them. Plastic ones can be used too, I just like these and my bottle capper.

I then capped them with my capping machine. Next is the 2-3 week wait till they are ready. I put them in a plastic crate in a cool, dark place. The crate has a lid, in case they decide to pop as so many people are happy to tell me will happen. I will update this when they are ready to tell you how it went. I hope this inspires you to have a go. This is what happened in times before Coca Cola.

UPDATE 23rd Oct 2008: This went well, it is this slow food mentality, because of the effort and time you put in, you savor the product more. My last batch was too sweet, this one had a nice sugar/ginger balance. I am a bit disappointed about the bubbles, I wanted more, I have to get the yeast consistently working. I remember my grandparents ginger beer, I suppose after many batches you get to a drink perfect for you, that is what they had done. Good luck.

Comments

This is very like the recipe my dear late mother used to make for us as kids. She would make ginger beer spiders for us inthe summer.......DEEELICIOUS.I'm looking to my first brew.

Dennis
May 12th 2011

The reason you arent getting the fermentation (bubbles) is because the bubbles are caused as the ginger 'Plant' ages....so if you start a new one every time then it has to start the fermentation process afresh each time....so that it doesnt have a head start for each batch. Also...dont leave it stand after bottling and before capping... if you cap it straight away you wont loose the initial 'bubbles' as the mixture settles.

Kaye
January 6th 2012

Be careful of sanitation - probably best to use a steriliser on everything that you are putting in contact with the brew. Another thing is that the jar is probably not best to be open to wild yeast as that could hurt the brew and add funky flavours depending on the yeasts and bacteria that come in. This is from a standpoint of brewing beer. Would be quite cool to try brewing this with a certain strain of yeast too like US-05 or similar which would make an alcoholic ginger beer!

Matt Downer
April 29th 2012

This is certainly not the ginger beer plant culture, because the real one consists of Saccharomyces florentinus and Lactobacillus hilgardii. You used only yeast.

alex
August 1st 2012

I wonder if anyone can tell me how to make diet ginger beer, I am diabetic and remember my mother used to make it but cant have the sugar now I thought maybe using powdered sweetner might work can anyone help me?

carol
December 20th 2013

Yes all that you need to do is substitute the sugar for sweetner, but you will still need to add a tea spoon of sugar to each 750 mil bottle or half that to 375 mil bottle for secondary fermentation. it will also not be as prone to popping if kept for any length of time as you will probably know. You will find that some sweetners are not as nice as others, so you will have to do it to your own taste. I have tried it in the past but not with the plant just ginger boiled with lemon yeast and some cream of tatre

John
January 31st 2014

For more bubbles you simply need to prime the bottles before filling, add around 1 teaspoon (5ml)to each bottle. This will allow the residual yeast in the liquid to feed and produce carbon dioxide dissolves into the liquid. You do end up with a small amount of sediment, but that gives you B vitamins without buying supplements (or you can be careful when pouring). After 7-10 days you have a nice fizzing ginger beer.

Kevin
October 14th 2014

Some of your feedback is just plain crazy. Having made homemade ginger beer for many years I can assure you that your recipe is exactly the way I made it, with the exception of the citric acid. Instead of the acid I used the juice of 1 or 2 lemons. My first plant was half of an old plant from a friend. The resulting mixture was quite volatile and had to be chilled in the fridge overnight or the contents exploded out of the bottle when opened. For the diabetic, maybe she could use a sugar substitute. I would like to know how this works.

Roy
June 12th 2016