Ingredients

  • 3 large Stemilt apples (in the variety of your choice)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp sugar

A popular addition to dressings, salads, and even baking, this homemade Apple Cider Vinegar could not be easier to make.

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  • Prep time
  • In Category
    Apples
  • Level
    Easy

There’s a lot of buzz around apple cider vinegar right now, and our Kitchen Council member Sally is sharing how you can easily make it home with just a little patience.

Apple cider vinegar is a darling on the detox scene and touted as a weight loss miracle. The truth is, there’s no good scientific evidence that apple cider vinegar (or ACV as it’s known to fans) is the cure-all it’s made out to be.

But, there’s no doubt apple cider vinegar is a workhorse staple in the pantry, used in cooking (and even baking) well beyond salad dressings. And making your own is actually quite easy. It’s a fun and frugal kitchen project for using extra apples. And it’s a brilliant way to fight food waste: In lieu of chopped apples, you can also use cores and peels. So the next time you’re making an apple pie or a batch of applesauce, you can transform the scraps into a jar of vinegar!

Making homemade apple cider vinegar involves a simple fermentation process. The apples are soaked in a mixture of water and sugar (the sugar “feeds” the bacteria—though you can use honey, the process will just take a bit longer) and time works its magic.

A few important tips before making apple cider vinegar:

  • Use wide-mouth glass jars to make your vinegar (the acid can corrode metal containers). Just be sure they are clean and sterilized before using. To sterilize the jars, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Submerge clean jars in the boiling water and boil for 10 minutes.
  • Keep the apples submerged in water to prevent any mold from forming. The easiest way to do this is to place a clean (and sterilized) glass jar on top of the apples to gently press them down below the water’s surface.
  • To allow the mixture to breathe and oxygen to flow, cover the jars of fermenting apples with cheesecloth. Secure it with a rubber band.


 

Instructions

Wash apples and chop into 1-2” pieces (I removed the core and seeds but kept the peels on).

Mix water and sugar together and stir until sugar is dissolved.

Divide chopped apples between two clean, sterilized wide-mouth quart jars and pour the sugar-water over the apples until they are covered.

Place a clean, sterilized glass jar (I used pint-sized jars) on top of the apples to gently push them below the water’s surface so they don’t mold. Cover the whole thing with cheesecloth and a rubber band and place in a cool, dry place at room temperature (such as a pantry or cupboard) for 2-3 weeks.

After 2-3 weeks, remove cheesecloth, rubber bands, and pint jars. Strain out apples and discard or compost them. Place the liquid back into one of the quart jars. Cover jar again with the cheesecloth and secure with a rubber band, and place back in the pantry or cupboard for 4-6 weeks, stirring or gently shaking the jar every few days.

When vinegar has reached the desired flavor and acidity, replace cheesecloth with an airtight lid and refrigerate. Use as you would store-bought vinegar.