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Homemade Apple Cider Recipe From Scratch

Last week, I had a taste of fall’s cool weather and found myself in the kitchen the entire weekend trying out a few new recipes! In Friday’s Fab Five, a list of my fall favorites, I decided that I was going to take on apple cider from scratch and the very next day I had simmering apples on the stove top and the entire house smelled like the holidays! I finally found an apple cider recipe that doesn’t start with a base ingredient of apple cider lol.

Yields: 1/2 Gallon (8 cups)


8 -10 gala apples
1/2-1 cup sugar
4 cinnamon sticks
4 tablespoons allspice


Cut your apples into wedges {I used an apple corer and divider to blaze through the chopping process}. I did toss the cores; however, there is no need to remove the peel or any seeds that may have been left behind from coring the apples. In a large stock pot add your apples, fill with just enough water to cover the apples, and then add the sugar {I used only 1/2 a cup and it was plenty sweet}.

Wrap your cinnamon and allspice in a doubled up cheese cloth, tie {I tied it with a twisted strip of cheesecloth}, and add this to the apples and water. Boil on high for one hour uncovered checking on it frequently. Turn down heat and let simmer for two hours covered. Take off the heat and let cool. Remove the spices and mash up the apples to a pulp like consistency. A potato masher works well for this.

Once cool, pour into a strainer over a large bowl. When most of the juice has drained away, put the remainder of the pulp into a doubled up cheese cloth and squeeze over the bowl until no more juice comes out. It’s easier to strain the pulp in small batches, using new cheesecloth for each batch, so you can squeeze out as much juice as possible. At this point you can either re-strain the juice to get out the little bits of pulp that remain with a cheese cloth draped inside the strainer, or just leave it for extra flavor.

Store cider in an air tight container in your refrigerator for a week, or freeze it for later use. Reheat in the microwave or on the stove. If you end up with less than half a gallon and the flavor is a little strong, feel free to add water to taste. Add 1 cup at a time, simmering for 20 minutes and tasting between each cup until you reach desired flavor.

homemade apple cider recipe – altered from food.com

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Your Thoughts?

  • Thanks for this! I looked it up and couldn’t find out how to do it anywhere. :) Can’t wait to make this!!


    • jennifer

      you’re so welcome. if you give it a try, please comment back to let me know what you think :)

  • Ah! You found a recipe, must try!
    Xo Megan

    • jennifer

      yes, and it was SO good! it really wasn’t difficult either. i wasn’t a huge fan of squeezing all the juice, since i felt i probably could have got more juice out of the pulp another way, so i may try a juicer next time, and then just simmer that with the spices. :) all i know is it was pretty easy, really good, and made the house smell amazing all day :)

  • ashley chan

    what a great recipe! this looks delicious, did you do anything with the leftover apples?

    • jennifer

      it was very delicious :) there actually wasn’t much left over except for dry pulp, so i just tossed it. i thought i could use it as applesauce at first, but after squeezing all of the juice out, it was dry and super matted into the cheesecloth, so i just threw away the pulp and cloth. i hope this helps. if you try it out, please let me know what you think :)

  • I saw this post and though that making my own cider sounded like a great idea. I used to live in a small town with a locally famous apple orchard. However, now the nearest orchard is almost 2 hours away, so making my own would be much cheaper if I wanted it fresh.

    I read through the ingredients and went shopping to find out the store didn’t have cinnamon sticks. At that point, I gave up on the directions too.

    I peeled my apples and tossed the peels in a pot a third full with water, a little (less than 1 teaspoon) freshly grated nutmeg, and about 3-4 Tablespoons of ground cinnamon.I thought the apples would break down easier during cooking without the peels on, but wanted the flavor and nutrition.

    I halved and cored, then thinly sliced each apple halve. Next, I added the apple slices to the pot and let it boil for 20 minutes before turning it down to a simmer.

    It simmered for 2-3 hours, before I turned off the heat.

    In small batches, I pureed it in the blender then strained through a seiv and returned to the pot.

    Once it was all blended and strained, I’d stirred it thoroughly than adjusted the sugar (adding about 1/2 cup) and water (added a quart). It will vary depending on sweetness of the apples.

    Lastly, I served it up with a little caramel sundae syrup mixed in.

    Doing it this way, the cider turned out thicker and will more pulp than store-bought. I wasn’t a big fan of it cold, but it was fantastic hot.

    I hope this helps and thanks for the inspiration!!

    • jennifer

      thanks so much for letting me know how you made this. i always love hearing tips on how other people try a recipe. sounds amazing with the caramel sundae syrup. i’ll have to try that next time. i’m thinking of trying this with a juicer for the next batch, and then simmering the juice with the rest of the ingredients. when i squeezed the apple pulp in the cheesecloth, i just felt like there was more juice to be had than what i was able to get out of it.

      i’m so happy you enjoyed your first batch of homemade apple cider. doesn’t it make the house smell amazing!?!? that fall smell is exactly why i was on a mission afterwards to find apple cider candles lol. they actually have some apple cider candles at bath and body works that have a hint of caramel scent to them :) thanks again for the feedback. it’s so nice to know that im inspiring some kitchens out there :)

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