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Frequently Asked Questions

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Recipe Questions
 
How long does it take to make a batch?
To start a 1 gallon batch it takes anywhere from 10 minutes to 30 minutes. After preparing the batch, it will need to sit for a period of 4-6 weeks.
 
Can I use juices that have sugar substitutes added to them?
No! Please do not use these juices, the batches we have tried have always turned out tasting terrible.
 
Can I use juice from concentrate?
Frozen juice from concentrate is fine. We recommend not diluting it too much. Non-frozen juices from concentrate in the stores will also work, there is very little difference in taste between the juices from concentrate and the ones not from concentrate.
 
Does organic juice make a difference?
Oh yeah, organic juices tend to have more pulp in them and in our experience have always come out more flavorful.
 
Can I use homemade juice with this kit?
Yes you can use any juice that you've squeezed yourself. Keep in mind that fruits that contain citric acid will kill the yeast we provide with the kits, so oranges, pineapples, lemons and limes are not recommended. Also for our recipe you must pasteurize your juice. Other recipes out there do not require pasteurization but with our recipe and kit please make sure you do. If you need instructions on pasteurization please click here.
 
Isn't there natural yeast in an unpasteurized juice that I could use?
Yes there is natural yeast in the juice and there are a bunch of different recipes for making cider using the natural yeast. The recipe we use requires pasteurization to allow the use of the yeast we provide to work properly. We know this recipe works and we know the yeast we provide works, but we cannot know that the natural yeast is the right yeast for creating alcohol. Nor can we know that the natural yeast isn't going to cause harm to you. That is not to scare you it is just to warn you. As we said there are many other recipes out there that use the natural yeast and many of them work perfectly, and who are we to judge? Some of those recipes have been around centuries maybe even millennia.
 
Can I add other ingredients to add more flavor?
Yes! Cinnamon works well with apple juice making it taste like fresh apple pie. We recommend using the powder rather than the sticks. Also real maple syrup will add a rich nutty maple flavor to your drink. Also do not be afraid to mix different juices, you could be surprised by the outcome!
 
How much Cinnamon should I add to a batch?
Keep in mind there is no "right" amount to add. I like to add 1 tablespoon of cinnamon powder per gallon. I have a friend who prefers cinnamon sticks and he uses 2 sticks per gallon.
 
When should I add any additives such as cinnamon or maple syrup?
You should add all your additional ingredients while you are heating the small portion of juice to dissolve the sugar.
 
How much sugar is recommended?
If you like dry wines we recommend that you add less sugar to the batch. If you like sweet wines we recommend that you add more sugar to the batch. If you do end up with a dryer batch than you would have liked you can add sugar to the glass you are drinking. We like our cider with about 4 cups of sugar, making it sweet with a great kick.
 
Can I substitute Honey or other natural sugars for actual sugar?
We have heard that you can use honey in place of sugar. However, we have never tried. We have also never tried natural brown sugar yet. We are interested in trying both the natural brown sugar and perhaps agave nectar. If you do let us know if and how it turns out.
 
Do I use the whole packet of yeast?
The packets of yeast that we provide contain about 2 teaspoons of yeast. The recipe calls for 1 teaspoon for 1 gallon. You can add more if you'd like. We use the whole packet though we have been told by others that it is a waste.
 
Can I stop the fermentation after it has started?
**Disclaimer** We have had a few customers try to stop the fermentation after making their batch, and most of them have had to start over or the cider did not turn out well. So it is not recommended that you try to stop the fermentation once it has started unless you are willing to throw the whole batch out. To stop the yeast from turning the sugar to alcohol you must kill the yeast. The only way to do that is to boil the juice from 5-30 minutes.
 
Can I add ingredients after fermentation has started?
It is not recommended that you alter the juice after it has started fermenting. If you do it is recommended that any additional ingredients are added slowly and over a sink in case the added ingredients cause the cider to bubble up and spill out of the jug.
 
When can I drink it/How long does it take to ferment?
You must wait until the bubble slows down to one a minute, at this time it will be safe to drink. This depends on how much sugar is in the juice and the amount of sugar that you added. The more sugar the longer the fermentation time. The yeast will continue to work after you've started drinking it as well.
 
What should I do if my airlock gets juice or yeast inside it while fermenting?
Sometimes cider or yeast will get into the airlock, if it does it won't hurt anything. If you want you can take it off the jug and rinse it out. If you choose to rinse out the airlock you should loosely put a lid on the jug while cleaning the airlock.
 
My batch of cider stopped bubbling before the 4-6 weeks were up, is this ok?
Your batch could finish under 2 weeks in some cases and everything would be fine. The amount of time it takes to finish fermenting is relative to the amount of sugar in the batch. The higher the sugar content the longer you'll have to wait.
 
 
If you were unable to find an answer to your questions here please contact us.
 
By Email: info@ciderup.com
By Mail: 9554 Renfair Dr. Plantersville, TX 77363
 

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