I was so excited when I learned I could make my own homemade apple cider vinegar from bits of apple waste we produce every day in the kitchen. While my apple cores and peels never get thrown away (the chickens eat them out of the compost bin), this gives me one more use for them. I love multi-purpose stuff!
I have to admit I was a little hesitant because keeping things in the cupboards instead of the fridge was new at the time I started making vinegar. However, after living without a fridge for over 6 months I know what to look for when food spoils.
The smaller you chop your apple leavings the quicker your vinegar will be done and the stronger it will be but I’m usually doing about a million things at once and chopping apple cores just isn’t on my list of important things to do so I just chuck them in the jars as I make snacks for the kids.
How to Make Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar
- Put bits of apple peel, core, or flesh in a glass jar. (These don’t have to be perfect, I’ve found that soft and bruised apples make better vinegar)
- Add a bit of raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar (ACV) as a starter. Or add a piece of the “mother” the white gloppy thing that you see in raw vinegar. (I’ll show a picture later). I like to put in a few tablespoons of ACV per cup of water. The more you put in the faster it will ferment.
- Cover the apples with water and either cover with a cloth, or make sure you open the lid every few days or so to let any gasses escape.
- Let sit for at least 6 weeks. (Longer won’t hurt).
- Strain out apple pieces for the compost or chickens.
- Use it!
There you go! Super easy, takes about two seconds to begin and you can produce yet another food at home in your kitchen AND use something that is otherwise considered waste.
What’s a “Mother”?
And as promised, the above picture includes a picture of the mother. The mother is on the bottom left. You can leave the mother in the jar or pull it out to jump start your next batch. Just in case you’re worried about knowing if your vinegar is spoiled I’ve included the picture on the bottom right. Believe me, you’ll know!
I started my first batch of fruit vinegar by purchasing a bottle of Bragg’s raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar from a local grocery store. If you don’t have a friend with an extra “mother” or vinegar to share and buying isn’t an option you can start your vinegar with a sugar water solution instead. Use one tablespoon of sugar per four cups of water. Once you get it going definitely add the mother into your batches!
Want some ideas on how to use your ACV or want to see how to do it in video? Check out Blake Kirby’s videos Apple Cider Vinegar Made In Your Own Kitchen and Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) Made From Scratch.
Want To Raise Happy Chickens?
Subscribe for our newsletter and get the free email course Intro To Backyard Chickens as well as a free printable checklist to walk you through step by step!