Ginger Beer Home Brew "live Blog"

Introduction: Ginger Beer Home Brew "live Blog"

And now for my next trick I will attempt to home brew sparkling pink Ginger Beer "live" on the internet...over the course of four weeks...(The bottle pictured above is one I made about a year ago.)

The three basic steps to making ginger beer at home are;
Step 1. Making the ginger bug (Bug- 1 week).

Step 2. Mixing the ginger bug with sugar water (Brew- 1 day),

Step 3. Fermenting the mix (Bottle-2-3 weeks).

It takes about three to four weeks to make a batch of ginger beer from scratch and there are about 50 days left in the Homebrew contest so that should be just enough time to achieve fermentation, updating this instructable as I complete each step.

Complicating this challenge will be the fact that I recently moved and I don't have access to all the supplies/ utensils I would normally have. I'll be making it up as I go along, should be interesting :D

EDIT: I have exams next week so I may run a bit behind but for now, this is the tentative ginger beer schedule

Bug- June 9-17

Brew- June 18

Bottle- two weeks from June 18 to the first week of July

So, here we go...

Step 1: Make the Ginger Bug


Ginger bug is a culture made from fresh, grated ginger root and sugar. You will need three ingredients to make the ginger bug;

-one large ginger root

-approximately 1 cup of sugar

-one bottle (500mL) of bottled water.

(Don't use tap water as it has been treated and may kill the bacteria we are trying to cultivate in the ginger bug.)

You will also need the following utensils/ tools;

- grater

-wide neck glass jar

-a piece of fabric to cover the jar

- elastic band or piece of string to secure the fabric around the jar

-plastic or wooden spoon

To begin, grate about 2 tablespoons of ginger into the jar, add two tablespoons of sugar and two table spoons of water. Mix well, cover with the fabric and secure with an elastic band. Leave the jar on your kitchen bench or some other out of the way place where it wont be disturbed.

Every day for seven days you will need to add 2 more tablespoons each of grated ginger, sugar and water, stirring the mixture well with every addition.

By the third of fourth day you should start to notice bubbles forming in your bug. This is good :D

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PS. I have bought the ingredients and will start my bug tomorrow. Pictures to follow. Stay tuned.

Step 2: Ginger Bug- Day Zero


Get your ginger, peel it if you want to, I just washed mine. Grate enough to make two tablespoons. I didn't have a grater so I used a knife.

This amount of ginger made about one and a half tablespoons which is fine. Measurements don't have to be exact and I can make it up by adding more ginger tomorrow.

Add the grated (or chopped ginger) to the glass jar. Add two tablespoons of sugar and two tablespoons of water.

Mix well and cover with a cloth, secured with an elastic band.

Leave it in a corner somewhere and go about your day.


Days 1 to 7 will follow the exact same steps- add ginger, sugar, water. Mix. Cover and set aside.

Step 3: Ginger Bug- Day 1

11/ 6/ 2016

Added more grated ginger to the bug today, about 3 tablespoons.

Added two tablespoons each of sugar and water but the water barely covered the ginger pieces so I added a little more, just enough to completely cover the ginger.

Mix everything up, cover and set aside.

See you tomorrow :)


Step 4: Ginger Bug....Bubbles!!

So a few days have passed since my last update. I've added several lots of sugar/water/ginger to the bug but may have missed a day or two (due to having exams and stuff).

When I've made this previously I started seeing bubbles after three or four days but this time around I didn't see anything after four days and I was starting to worry that I would have dump this and start again but this morning I woke up to find bubbles! Yay!!

Now I need to buy some lemons for the next step (this weekend).

Step 5: Something Is Wrong With My Ginger Bug...

I was supposed to brew and bottle the ginger beer today but it looks like the ginger bug is not ready. I haven't seen an increase in the amount and size of bubbles (which I was expecting) so I think it needs a few more days, maybe another week :(

I have split the bug into two jars and will continue adding the ginger/water/sugar each day. Hopefully in a few more days more bubbles will start to form and I can begin the brewing.


Step 6: Disaster!

I woke up this morning and checked the ginger bug only to find this alien spawn had taken over... goodbye internet glory :(

This is the first time I've had a batch fail. I've only made 4 or 5 batches over the past few years but I've always tended to have beginners luck with anything I try- the first few times it is perfect and then disaster creeps in.

In this case I followed all the same steps so I have to guess that it has something to so with the ingredients I used, most probably the ginger...maybe it wasn't organic? I'm really not sure.

Unfortunately, if I have to restart the bug that messes up my schedule and I dont think I'll complete my ginger bug in time for the end of the Homebrew contest. I may start a new batch this weekend (after my last exam).

Thanks for reading this far. I'll add a link to a ginger beer instructable if/ when I start a new one.


Homebrew Contest 2016

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Homebrew Contest 2016

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    4 Discussions


    4 years ago

    Is it possible to use distilled water instead? I don't think it will kill off the process like you say tap water could.


    Reply 3 years ago

    Well there is osmosis


    4 years ago

    Nice. Can't wait to see how this unfolds. Good luck!