How To Easily Make Your Own Apple Cider Vinegar

How To Easily Make Your Own Apple Cider Vinegar
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What’s a house without apple cider vinegar (ACV)? This wonderful cure-for-all has been used for centuries to cure our daily ailments. From soothing our stomach and improving nutrient absorption to aiding weight loss and treating diabetes, ACV does it all. Using ACV is also one of the 70 habits featured in the e-book 70 Powerful Habits For A Great Health which will guide you how to take positive steps to improve your wellness and overall health.

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Just as with many products out there, organic unfiltered, and unpasteurized (raw) ACV is best as it still contains the “mother” with all the good stuff. Depending on where you live, raw ACV may be hard to come by. Luckily ACV is super easy and cheap to make at home. The only downside, it takes some time to naturally ferment the apples.

There are 2 methods for you to choose from. One uses scraps like the cores and peels, and the other method uses whole apples. I prefer the scrap method as I get to eat the apples too or use them to make applesauce or apple pie!

Since apples are at the top of the list of the fruits and veggies with the most pesticides for 2015, it’s best to choose organic apples.

ACV from whole apples

What you need

  • 6 sweet apples (organic are the best)
  • Starter culture: 2 tablespoons raw ACV with “mother” or scoby (if you use your own mother, add 1/3 cup. Homemade ACV tends to be less concentrated)
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey or sugar
  • Water (non-chlorinated, as chlorine may halt the fermentation process)
  • 2 quart wide mouth glass jar
  • Cheesecloth (or dish towel, coffee filter, paper towel, or an old clean panty)
  • Rubber band

How to Make ACV

1. Wash your apples thoroughly, even when organic, to remove dirt and pesticides. Cut the apples into 8 to 12 pieces each. Place them into the jar or on the counter. Let them air until they turn brown.

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2. Add honey and raw ACV (with mother or scoby). The mother or scoby will add the useful, friendly bacteria to speed up the fermentation process. When making your second batch, you can use your own mother or scoby instead of store-bought raw ACV.

3. Cover the apples with water.

4. Cover the jar with a cheesecloth and rubber band to hold the cover in place. Air needs to come in contact with the liquid for the fermentation process. The air helps to ferment the apples, sugar, and water into a mild alcohol or cider. The harmless bacteria then turn the cider into vinegar in the presence of oxygen.

5. Place the mixture in a warm and dark place for 2 weeks. The top of your fridge is a good example of a warm and dark place. Room temperature also works, but will take longer. Bubbles and scum may form on top of the water as the bacteria are turning sugars and alcohols into vinegar. Every day, stir the mixture. Mold can form on top, but that’s okay. Nothing to worry about. Just spoon it off.

6. After 2 weeks (when the liquid has darkened) strain the liquid in a clean glass jar and discard the apples.

7. Cover again with cheesecloth and place back at the same warm dark spot. Stir every few days for 2 weeks to 1 month.

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8. Check the liquid regularly by tasting it. You’ll definitely know when it’s ready.

– A scoby (white film) may form on top of it. You can make a new batch of vinegar with it.

– When the vinegar is ready, stop the fermentation process by covering the jar and placing it in the fridge.

Note: do not use metal containers to store your ACV. The acids corrode metal, so it is best to use glass containers.

ACV From cores and peels

Love this method as you can do other stuff with the apples and use the scraps for vinegar instead of throwing them away.

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What you need

  • Apple cores and peels of 8 to 10 apples  (organic are the best)
  • Starter culture: 2 tablespoons raw ACV with mother or scoby (if you use your own mother, add 1/3 cup. Homemade ACV tends to be less concentrated)
  • 2 tablespoons raw honey or sugar
  • Water (non-chlorinated, as chlorine may halt the fermentation process)
  • 2 quart wide mouth glass jar
  • Cheesecloth (or dishtowel, coffee filter, paper towel, or an old clean panty)
  • Rubber band

How to Make ACV

You can use the same method as described above. Let peels and cores air until brown and top up with water, honey, and mother or scoby. You can continue to add scraps for a few more days. Stop when the mixtures starts to thicken and a scum is formed on top of it. Ferment for 2 weeks, strain and leave for another 2 weeks to a month. Stir and taste every few days. Stop the fermentation process by cutting the air off the jar and place in the fridge.

FYI: Do NOT use for preserving other food

Homemade ACV should not be used to preserve food. Its pH is unreliable and homemade ACV tends to be less strong or concentrated than the ones you buy.

You see, it’s super easy and cheap to make your own apple cider vinegar. The only thing you’ll need is time! Enjoy!

AmyThis is a guest post written by Amy Goodrich, biologist, natural nutrition expert, and holistic health coach who loves living a natural, eco-friendly, and healthy lifestyle. Visit her website http://www.body-in-balance.org and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/bodyinbalance.org

To learn about the fantastic uses of ACV read the previous articles:

1. 10 Uses for Apple Cider Vinegar for Great Health and At Home

2. 11 Ways Apple Cider Vinegar Can Revolutionize Your Health

3. How to Remove Skin Tags and Warts Naturally and Cheaply at Home

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26 Responses to How To Easily Make Your Own Apple Cider Vinegar

  1. Sunita Mahtani says:

    what is scoby or starter???? and how & where do we get that

    • Jenny says:

      The term “scoby” is used to describe the “mushroom” that forms during the production of fermented beverage called combucha. This is actually not a mushroom, but a culture of bacteria and yeast present during the production of the fermentation. It usually forms on top of the fermented liquid and can be removed and preserved for another batch. Since scoby is not easy to find (you can grow it yourself though), use instead 2 tablespoons of raw ACV with “mother” as the starter. This will speed up the process of fermentation as without the starter it will take a very long time to ferment. For your next batch, use your own mother, but add 1/3 cup of the homemade ACV you’ve previously made as it tends to be less concentrated the the store bought raw ACV.

    • robin bleau says:

      Where do i get mothers. For apple cider viniger.

      • Jenny says:

        For the first time that you make your own ACV you will need a starter which is 2 tablespoons raw ACV with “mother” or scoby. You can buy raw ACV with “mother” in health food stores or online (like Amazon). When you have your own first ACV batch, take 1/3 cup of it and make the second batch and so on.

  2. carlo catacutan says:

    is it ok to use honey instead of sugar when making the ACV? and thanks for this info…

  3. ASHA DEVI says:

    What is starterculture to make acv at home?

    • Jenny says:

      2 tablespoons raw ACV with “mother” or scoby or if you use your own ACV with mother from previous batch, add 1/3 cup (see in the recipe).

  4. Marcia says:

    Because I have no mother or scoby, do I follow the recipe as above but without the “mother/scoby” and from this concoction I put together will I end up with the “mother/scoby for my next batch is that correct…..Just a little confused…..

    • Jenny says:

      Hi Marcia, you need a “mother/scoby” even for the first time. If you don’t want to use the “mother” for the first batch, it will take you 6 months (!) until it is ready – see instructions here: http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Apple-Cider-Vinegar. But because it is not so viable, the best thing is to buy a good quality raw ACV for the first time and use it as the mother. After the first time you will have your own ACV which will serve as the starter for the next time. Another option is to buy a starter in a wine shops or online (like “Amazon”) for the first batch.

  5. shilpa says:

    Please tell me where easy to buy apple cider vinegar… which shop?

  6. Rahul Ranadive says:

    I have a bottle of Heinz filtered ACV. Can I use it to make my home-made ACV. Thanks for your wonderful website.

    • Jenny says:

      Hi Rahul, filtered ACV is not suitable. you need raw ACV (with mother or scoby) as the mother or scoby will add the useful, friendly bacteria to speed up the fermentation process. When you make your second batch, you can use your own mother or scoby instead of store-bought raw ACV.

  7. Zohra says:

    I made it it turned out fine but i didnt get the mother on top the articles says aftr straining it you shod stir it every few days it used to white stuff on top but would go away after stiring and i never got a mother

  8. Shah says:

    I started making this last week but within a few days the apple pieces at the top of the jar have turned very brown (like they’re spoiled) while the pieces underneath them are still normal colour. So I have a layer of brown apples at the top of the jar (about 8 pieces of apple) while the rest of the apple pieces below are fine (about 25 pieces of apple).

    Should I remove the brown apples at the top of the jar or leave them in?

    • Jenny says:

      It probably happened because you didn’t stir the mixture every day (see in the instructions). When fresh apples are peeled or cut open, the apple’s cells are exposed and react with the oxygen in the air which is what turns the apple brown. You can leave the brown apples and stir the content, unless you see that a mold was formed on them and then you need to discard them.

      • Shah says:

        Thanks Jenny, great advice and you’re right I didn’t stir the mixture so that was probably what caused it as you described. I’m making another batch today so I’ll be sure to stir frequently this time. Is it ok for some apples to poke out above the water at the top of the jar or should they always be under the water somehow (with a weight or something)?

        By the way, I didn’t get an email telling me that you had replied to my original message, I think there might be a setting on your side which needs to be changed so that people get notified about messages on this page?

        • Jenny says:

          I think you didn’t get my reply because it probably got into your spam. As for your question, the apples should be completely covered.

  9. Tianna says:

    Hi, I have an old store bought acv with mother but it has been stored with no lid and hasn’t been in the refrigerator and is probably more then a year old, the mother is floating on the top and it has a musty, vinegary smell. I think it could be off… I read somewhere that the mother could be dead if it is floating in the top.
    Should I throw it out or can I make a batch of vinegar out of it? Thanks

    • Jenny says:

      I have read that a bottle of vinegar should be tightly sealed when not in use as any contaminants (even dust particles) that will get into the bottle might cause the liquid to deteriorate faster. I would not take any risk and throw it.

  10. simpo says:

    Jenny for how long can this homemade ACV last and how do you store it?

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