Let's Make Some Pineapple Beer!

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Introduction: Let's Make Some Pineapple Beer!

I've been making pineapple beer from a young age. Whenever I managed to salvage some pineapple peels before it went to the compost heap, I would drop it in a bowl with some water and sugar and let it stand. A few days later I had some sweet, pineapple flavoured water with a few bubbles. Delicious.

Forward a few years and things got a bit more precise. I started to experiment with quantities and different flavours to get the recipe just right — not only flavour and taste wise, but also to get a bit of buzz from the brew.

In the past I've used an enamel bucket my mother bought years ago for brewing ginger beer. It has a lid with a dome for ventilation and I got about 6 liters of brew from it. But for this Instructable I'm going to upscale everything and go for around 25 liters.

So let's begin...

Step 1: What We Need

Ingredients

4 Pineapples (about 600g each). Make sure they are nice and ripe. Remove the crown and any loose leaves, but do not peel!

1 cup of sugar per liter of water, about 22 cups or 4kg

22 liters of very hot water

2 x 20g packets of granulated yeast (Brewer's yeast)


Equipment

25 liter container/fermentation tank

Blender (sort of optional)

Measuring cup and funnel

Cutting board and knife

Enough 2 liter plastic softdrink bottles to bottle your brew. I never fill my bottles to the top, so keep that in mind. (I do not recommend glass bottles. They can explode.)

Hydrometer (optional)

Step 2: Before We Start...

Clean everything.

Use hot water and soap and clean everything. Your work area, your cutting board, knife and especially your fermentation tank, blender and bottles. Make sure no soap remains in the tank and bottles. Wash the pineapples under running water too.

We do not want unnecessary things to grow in our brew that can alter the flavour or even destroy the brew.

All set? Let's go!

Step 3: Prepare the Pineapple Base

Note: using a blender is optional. I like to get as much flavour and juice out of the fruit. If you do not have access to a blender, just finely chop up the pineapple and collect as much juice from the cutting board.

Chop up a pineapple and put the pieces in the blender. Add 500ml boiling water and, starting with the Pulse function, blend into a smoothie. Pour into the fermentation tank. Repeat the process until all the pineapples are pulped and in the container. Now boil another liter of water and "wash" the blender to get every last bit of pineapple into your tank.

By now we have used 3 liters of water (4 x 500ml + 1 liter). That means we need to add 3 cups of sugar to the tank (since we use 1 cup of sugar per liter of water).

Step 4: Filling the Tank

Now we can start adding the sugar and water. I start by adding 10 cups of sugar to the tank, followed by 10 liters of very hot water. *The water from your hot water tap is fine (if you can drink your tap water of course). The reason we use very hot water is that all chlorine has been evaporated (chlorine can kill the yeast). It also helps the sugar to dissolve.

Continue adding water and sugar until you reach the desired level in your tank. Do not overfill, when the brew starts to ferment, the gasses need to go somewhere.

Before we can add the yeast, the mixture needs to cool down.

* EDIT 2016/07/25: Online forums are divided whether you can use hot water from a tap or whether you should boil the water. I asked a homebrewer I know and he says boil. I've never had any problems with very hot tap water. So... up to you.

Step 5: Adding the Yeast

When the temperature of the mixture reaches about 25-26°C you can add the yeast. If the mixture is too hot it can kill the yeast, too cold and it will not activate.

Put the cap loosely back on the tank. Do not tighten it — the gasses need to escape somewhere. An alternative is to put a clean dishcloth over the opening and keep it in place with a rubber band.

Optional: if you are using a hydrometer you need to take an Original Gravity reading after cooldown but before adding the yeast. (For interest sake, my brew's OG was 1.040.)

Step 6: Ferment

Find a nice warm space for your fermentation tank. Leave it there for at least 7 days.

Step 7: Bottling

After 7 days your brew should be ready for bottling. Take a bucket or any other container and cover it with a cheese cloth or clean dishcloth. I discovered something called mutton cloth and it works really well. Securely fasten the cloth with string. Put the bucket under your fermentation tank and drain your brew through the cloth.

If the bucket becomes full, transfer the liquid to the plastic bottles using a funnel. I use 2 liter bottles and fill it to where the neck part starts. After bottling, fermentation continues. If you want to vent the bottles from time to time or open a bottle to drink, this space will allow you some time to control the venting. Otherwise the brew will just explode out like a geyser.

After bottling, screw on the caps tightly. I leave the bottles outside for another few days to continue fermenting and only put it in the fridge before drinking.

Step 8: Enjoy!

Put your brew in the fridge to cool down. Remember to take your time opening a new bottle. It needs to vent very slowly. Please take my word on this — I've spent too much time cleaning the floor, the roof, myself after rushing the opening. (Those "flowers" you can see on the photo means a lot of fermentation happened after bottling).

Enjoy!

Step 9: One Last Note...

I'm adding an air lock (for venting) and a temperature strip to my fermentation tank. I've ordered it, but it has not arrived in time.

Since you've read this far, here's a bonus: you can use this recipe for ginger and apple beer as well. Substitute the pineapples for 750g fresh ginger or 2,5kg red apples (I haven't tried green apples yet). When making ginger beer, add 2 or 3 chillies to the mix. Well worth it.

I'm waiting for the mango season, because I really want to try mango beer...

Homebrew Contest 2016

Runner Up in the
Homebrew Contest 2016

22 People Made This Project!

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307 Comments

0
JacoG1
JacoG1

5 years ago

Hi everyone, just a quick update. Today is Day 4 so we are halfway through the fermentation phase. Things are merrily bubbling away and it smells awesome. I am a bit concerned about the temperature, after all it is winter down here in South Africa. But as long as the yeast don't go into hibernation I'm happy.

0
dylanvanderwalt75
dylanvanderwalt75

Reply 1 year ago

Hello Jaco .
Thank you so much for the receipt .

If i left my fermentation only for 4 days and then drink the beer will it work ?

0
JacoG1
JacoG1

Reply 1 year ago

Yes, but the longer you let it stand, the more kick you'll get.

0
geraldinecb78
geraldinecb78

Reply 1 year ago

An old thread I know but my best friend said I should put brew in sun for a bit with a towel over it! Started bubbling more aggressively. We are going into winter now so brought them inside after sunset.

0
JacoG1
JacoG1

5 years ago

Update #3. I won a runner-up prize in the Homebrew 2016 competition with this Instructable! Thanks for all the views, the comments and everybody who voted!

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JacoG1
JacoG1

5 years ago

Hi everyone, quick update #2. Yesterday was (a very messy) bottling day. I updated the relevant step with photos. The spigot eventually clogged up, but I got a siphon just in case. Everything look and taste really good.

0
K2128569
K2128569

3 months ago

Has anyone figured out how many mangos it would take to make this?!

0
Garouda
Garouda

4 months ago

Thank you, we have plenty of pineapple and mangoes now, I'll give it a try. Use star-san to sanitize your utensils great product no need to rinse it! I will make a calculation to adjust the sugar content, full fermentation up to zero gravity, then add some sugar for carbonation in the bottle, I kept some beer bottles and cap because I want to brew beer as well... Fresh pineapple does have 9.85 gr of sugar for 100g of fruit...

0
smileywayne80
smileywayne80

Question 9 months ago

Hi do I remove the ginger pulp before adding to container for the ginger beer?

0
smileywayne80
smileywayne80

9 months ago on Step 9

Hi there, when making the ginger beer this method, must I leave the pulp of ginger in the container or remove when before adding to container???

0
Aussie Brewer bill
Aussie Brewer bill

9 months ago on Step 1

On the glass bottles exploding if you use a hydrometer measure the OG original gravity record this then measure daily after about 4 days until you get a stable SG specific gravity reading for 2 days that means all the suger had been brewed out .make sure the fermentation has not stopped because it’s to cold .then the glass bottles won’t explode if the fermentation is over as no more gas production.
This stable reading is the FG final gravity. So for alcohol content use (OG-FG)divided by 7.46= alcohol content
Note drop the decimal point from the OG. And SG say 1.008 becomes 1008.
Though I think you want the sugar not all consumed by the yeast so the brew remains sweet . The way I brewed like this is very dry taste. So maybe if you want it sweet you can’t put it in glass as whilst there is still unbrewed sugar exploding bottles are definitely a risk .
You could pasteurise the mix to kill the yeast but that’s a bit hard

0
Janine Scheltens
Janine Scheltens

Question 1 year ago

Hi there.
We made a batch a while ago, bottled and left them to ferment on the countertop for probably about near 2 months now...it's a gorgeous clear yellow colour and smells lovely...but do you think safe to drink still?

IMG-20200715-WA0040.jpg
0
sailingcompromise
sailingcompromise

Answer 10 months ago

i go with smell if it looks bad and taste or smells bad chuck it

0
Dabshepherd
Dabshepherd

Question 1 year ago on Step 9

Hey man, I'm really keen to try this out it looks great, would it be possible to make this with oranges instead of pineapple? If so would it be the same process?

0
JacoG1
JacoG1

Answer 1 year ago

Somebody here made it with lemons which apparently turned out great. I've always wondered about oranges.

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quintinvanschalkwyk
quintinvanschalkwyk

Reply 1 year ago

Well Im now making mine with naartjies (Mandarin). Used 3L of water, 2 1/2 cups sugar and yeast. Smells good just have to see how it turns out. Wednesday (20/05/2020) it will be 5 days. Wonder if I should bottle it on day 5 in 2l bottles and leave them to go till Friday day 7 and then put them in fridge and drink?

0
22caseydn22
22caseydn22

Reply 1 year ago

How did it turn out?

0
djinniusdjinni
djinniusdjinni

Question 1 year ago

How do I make it less sickly sweet? (other than making a reverse shandy using Bavaria non-alcoholic beer - which tastes great btw)

0
atlindsay75
atlindsay75

Answer 1 year ago

There's 2 ways, use less sugar or a higher alcohol tolerance yeast. Personally I'd go for less sugar, let it run dry and back sweeten to taste.

0
Lee-Anne10
Lee-Anne10

1 year ago

We made this but with less yeast and with bakers yeast as we could get brewers yeast. Still tasted great but barely had any gas? Is it suppose be like that? How can I get it to be more bubbly?