How to Make Moonshine:
21 Easy Steps using a Pressure Cooker Still
We show you how to make moonshine
at home using a pressure cooker still with our moonshine instructions,
we'll give you a peach moonshine recipe and a video for whiskey
moonshine. However, please check with
local authorities to see
if it is
legal to make shine in your area.
Some countries do not allow it at all, while some do, but only for
bootlegger moonshiners make $40 a gallon for traditional corn moonshine
or $100 a gallon for fruit
When it's summer and corn is cheap
and plentiful this is the more favored ingredient for making
However, in the winter, the corn is scarce and so fruit is used to make
a brandy instead.
Despite the blanket ban in
some countries in making shine, many people still
and many more are looking for instructions on how to
make shine at
home. So, for the good old economic adage of 'supply and demand' we
will oblige, and show you just how to make it.
For those of you who are in the know Popcorn Sutton
was a well known moonshiner who was arrested in 1998 for making
moonshine and sentenced to 18 months in jail in 2009. At 62 years of
age when he was arrested he didn't want to
spend the years in jail and sadly took his own life.
Old Popcorn Sutton was quite a
character and you can watch Popcorn Sutton in his moonshine documentary
making his last
batch of moonshine. His wife sold one of his recipes (Popcorn
had several) to Hank jr. who was a close friend.
However, please be careful when you are
making moonshine whiskey, and know
the dangers. If you don't control
temperature properly you could end up poisoning yourself, and the same
goes when you have not gotten rid of contaminates during the
distillation process, or drinking the first distill. You also need to
realize that your homemade
still has the potential to explode from a
build up of gases if you have added your fruit or corn too early.
Finally, you should only
use moonshine stills made from copper as many
people are unaware that they can get lead poisoning from using
contaminated metal containers for their distillation equipment.
see, there is a lot to learn on how to make moonshine.
Moonshine, is a term used to describe
making distilled alcohol at home, especially in places where it would
be illegal to do so. Where I come from, we call it "mampoer" or "witblits" (white
lightning), and it is
traditionally made with peaches, so basically a peach moonshine.
However, you can make distilled alcohol out of many fruits and
vegetables, and we will try and explain the process as easily as
possible and soon you will know how to make moonshine.
Old Moonshine Still courtesy Hfrentz | Dreamstime.com
THE BASICS OF MAKING
MOONSHINE AND WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
HOW TO MAKE MOONSHINE WITH INSTRUCTIONS
1) Corn meal
5) Malt extract
Now you also need
following Moonshine Equipment:
1) A Mash Tub, or Fermenter
2) A Still
3) A Condenser
Now, not everyone has copper moonshine
lying around in their own backyards. However, most kitchens have a
pressure cooker, a kitchen sink and a stove. And of course you will
need a 20 gallon container. Make sure that it is a clean container, and
should be copper or stainless steel. Do not use aluminum or other
this will produce a chemical reaction that will contaminate your
moonshine and will be dangerous to your health. Note I said clean!!!
a few other minor adaptions, you have yourself a homemade
moonshine still and...
1 x 5lb bag of cornmeal
1 x 5lb back of white,
10 gallons of hot water - at
120 degrees F.
1 cake of yeast
1 pint of malt extract
HOW TO MAKE MOONSHINE AND MOONSHINE MASH RECIPE
Fill your copper/ stainless steel 20
gallon container with 10 gallons of water. Make sure that it is at 120
2) You now need to
scald the meal by adding it to the water, a little at at time, followed
by the sugar. Stir well.
3) You will now need
to set the container on a very slow fire. Make sure that you
do not scorch your mash and the temperature must be kept below 145
degrees F. else the heat will prevent the starch from being converted
into sugar. Leave for about half an hour.
4) When your
moonshine mash is
a very thin gruel like consistency, take it off the heat and cook it
down by cooling the outside of the container with water. You can do
this by placing the container in the sink or the like, and filling up
the sink with water to bring the temperature down.
5) When your
moonshine mash is
cool enough to stir your finger through it without being burned, we
need to check that there has been enough conversion from starch to
sugar. To do this we need to do the iodine test.
6) Take a small
amount of moonshine mash and place a drop of iodine on the top of it.
If it turns
a dark purple we know that there are still starches present that
haven't been totally converted into sugar. If this is the result, put
the mash back on a low heat for another half an hour. If there is only
a light purple, then we can continue to the next stage of learning how
to make moonshine.
7) We now add about
a pint of malt extract and a cake of yeast that has been well crumbled
and mixed in a little cup of warm water to dissolve first.
8) You may find that
your moonshine mash is very thick at this stage. It is fine to add some
water to the mash to thin it out. Don't add hot water as this will kill
of the yeast.
9) Place your drum
of mash in a warm place - about 65 degrees and leave it for 3 days. At
this stage you may cover it with a cloth if you have a danger of rats
or insects falling into your mash. However, if you don't have these
dangers, leaving it open will encourage wild yeast to enter your mash,
giving it a distinct flavor.
10) You will see
your moonshine mash rising in the drum with a foamy head to it. This is
When the froth stops growing, your mash is ready. Too much acid in your
mash while it is fermenting will result in vinegar. Therefore, you will
need to check your mash with litmus paper to see if your mash is still
safe. If you find that the litmus paper turns blue on contact with your
mash, or only a slight tinge of pink, it is fine.
11) So, in the next
process of learning how to make moonshine you will want to build your
still, while your mash is fermenting. Take the old pressure cooker and
drill a 1/4 inch hole into the lid of the pressure cooker / pressure
canner. Now take your copper tubing and get it through the hole, making
sure that it is projecting no more than an inch into your pot. The
tubing should fit in very tight, without the possibility of it coming
out under pressure from the gases.
12) Now we need to
run the copper tubing from the pressure cooker on the stove to the
sink. At least 3 feet of the copper piping should be left in the sink.
13) To condense the
vapor into moonshine, we now need to convert a thermos jug for this
purpose. Take a 1 gallon thermos jug with a tap / faucet and remove the
tap. Now take the excess copper tubing beyond the three feet that is
sitting in the sink and coil it by wrapping it around an object
multiple times so that it will fit snuggly into the jug. Have an
extension of copper tubing coming out from where the faucet used to be.
14) During the
distilling process the thermos jug will be placed under an open cold
tap where the jug will always be filled with cold water, and excess
water will flow through the space where the faucet used to be, flowing
over the copper extension through this gap.
15) In learning how
to make moonshine you will soon notice that after 3 or 4 days the foam
on the mash has stopped frothing and being active and you are left with
a light golden-brown liquid called still-beer. We will use this to fill
up our pressure cooker.
16) Fill the
pressure cooker up to only 4/5ths of its capacity, but make sure that
you strain it first using either a clean, open-weave tea towel or some
17) Place the lid on
the pressure cooker and heat up the still-beer over a very low heat.
Make sure, that at this point you have the water running through your
thermos jug and you have a receptacle below the end of the copper
tubing to catch the alcohol vapor.
18) Allow at least
1/2 cup of moonshine to accumulate in the cup and then throw it away
down the drain. This is a vital step when learning how to make
moonshine. NEVER drink this first distill. It is not just paint
stripper to your insides, but is highly toxic to your system
are putting your life in danger by drinking this liquid. People have
lost their sight, damaged their organs and worse, even died, from
drinking this first distill.
19) After each lot
of still-beer in the pressure cooker has been distilled you will be
left with about a gallon and a half to two gallons of alcohol known as
20) What you need to
do now, is to re-distill this liquid as it contains too much water. The
pressure cooker needs to be rinsed out and dried before we add our low
wines back in to the pressure cooker.
21) Again, place
over a very low heat and wait for the vapor to emerge. Again we have to
throw the first lot of vapor away. About 1/2 cup again. When the first
appearance of a white liquid emerges then we know that we are the path
to having made our first batch of hopefully, drinkable moonshine!!!
22) However, before
we get too excited, what we have made is probably rocket fuel, as it is
about 140% proof. What we need to do is to find a hydrometer, and mix
enough water with the whiskey to get it down to a more drinkable 100%
If you don't have a hydrometer, do it
the old fashioned way.
Take a quart jar and fill it half with moonshine. Now shake it gently
and sit it on a flat surface. If there are bubbles half above and half
below the liquid, then you have the right proof.
A final word about learning how to make
moonshine, don't be tempted to use plastic tubing to replace the copper
tubing as the heat and activities of the distillation process will
cause chemicals from the plastic to be leached into your moonshine.
Lastly, use your common sense when making this stuff, and adopt safety
procedures at all times, knowing that what you are working with is a
volatile substance, that needs attention and concentration at all
times. This will give you a 60% proof shine.
HOW TO MAKE MOONSHINE and a Peach Moonshine Recipe
Take a large barrel, or two, of very
ripe yellow peaches and mash them up in large drums. There is no need
to clean them. Now leave them for about 2 weeks to rot and ferment.
During this time the fruit will give
off a lot of gas, so there is no
point in putting any lids on here at this stage, however, you should
have a cover or some sort that will still allow the gases to escape and
keep the insects out.
When the bubbles subside, the mash is
ready to distill. Don't leave the mash too long or it will go sour and
you'll end up with peach vinegar.
Heat the mash in the still, which is a
big copper kettle, and heat the fermented peaches to just below
boiling, so that the alcohol comes off.
The alcohol boils off before
the water and is trapped by a condensation pipe. The condensate is
collected in a bucket and, for really top quality peach moonshine, it
may be re-distilled.
Well, we hope that you have had fun
learning how to make moonshine at home and seeing how it was made in
the past, and how it is still being made clandestinely around the
world. But be aware that it is an illegal activity in some countries
with severe penalties.
THE PROCESS OF A SIMPLE HOMEMADE MOONSHINE STILL
A simple still can be made from a test
tube, some heavy rubber
hose, and an ordinary bottle. When making moonshine, you will
a far bigger contraption, but the purpose of putting this here is so
you can see the process. This still is for distilling water.
a stopper for the test tube, and bore a hole through the center of the
stopper, into which fits a small piece of tube. The bottle is also
fitted with a stopper containing a piece of tube, and both bottle and
test tube are connected with the rubber tube.
The test tube is partly filled with water and supported or held over an
alcohol lamp. The
bottle should stand in a basin of cold water. When the water in the
test tube begins to boil the steam passes over to the bottle, where it
condenses. The basin should be supplied with cold water as soon as it
begins to get warm. The rubber tube will not stand the heat very long
and if the still is to be used several times, a metal tube should be
supplied to connect the test tube and bottle.
you will have noticed, there is a lot of moonshining
used in the process that may be unfamiliar to you. Worms,
oil, condensers, dropping the bead, or even revenuer maybe some of
those terms that as a beginner moonshiner you may want to know the
Do you have a great moonshine recipe or moonshine story to share? Feel free to share it .here We hope that you will share your stories or recipes with all of us, so that others may benefit from your moonshining experiences, or just have a laugh or two.
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