sugar shine recipe

by Maynard

Here's a recipe for Sugar Shine

10 pounds sugar to 10 gallon water.

Cook to 145 degrees and stir till around room temperature, add yeast 2 packs, let it sit at room temperature for 3-5 days. When you cook it in your still try to keep the temperature between 179 degrees and 182 degrees.

What you end up with is a minimum of 160 proof. It is sweet and smooth and great for making mixed drinks. You ask why 179 degrees to 182 degrees?

Well alcohol turns to steam at 180 degrees. Water turns to steam around 220 degrees. Less water means better shine lol.


Many thanks for your recipe for sugarshine, Maynard! Much appreciated, as I know all our moonshiners out there are too!

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Jan 02, 2016
by: Anonymous

Read the directions on your super yeast pack. there for a reason. Measure the vapor at top of still, mash temperature will vary depending on the heat source. The vapor temperature of 173-175 will get you 140 + proof liquor out of 3/8 size 25 foot coil worm.

Experiment and good luck!

Oct 29, 2015
by: Anonymous

Water and Sugar wash cannot produce any appreciable volume of Methanol (Wood Alcohol) ... in fact pure apple juice will have more Methanol than distilled sugar and water wash.

Sounds like the OP was using turbo yeast it'll make 18% in 4 or 5 days easy.

One run through a Wok Still and it'll come up 55% easy .. but my experience is it tastes awful! :) ..

I still make it all the time though, I normally just drink the wash, mix it with some Mio or concentrated fruit juice.

Feb 22, 2015
Numbers are way off
by: Wingmanalive

Pure ethanol boils at 173 degrees. Water at 212. If you're boiling your wash at 220 then your product is almost certainly all water and NOT ethanol.

Also, you will NOT get 160 proof on a sugar shine's first run. To get high numbers out of a pot still you'll need 4 runs through your still.

Typically expect a good 40-60 proof on your first run. Yes 40-60 PROOF, not %. You will also want to add some nutrients as plain water and sugar does not provide the best environment for the yeast.

Either heat some raisins up and mix them into your wash or buy yeast nutrient at your brew store.

The temp you start to see product from your still will vary depending on the amount of ethanol in your wash and your relativity to sea level. I start to produce at around 194 degrees on my corn shine washes.

Finally if distilling for spirit only you should run your shine through a carbon filter to further clarify and clean it up for mixing.

Feb 09, 2015
The comments are more accurate than the original.
by: Anonymous

Umm yeah... Methanol boils off at 148F if you're around sea level, ethanol boils around 173F. You need to be measuring the temperature of the mix, not the gas above it. The reason for the plateaus in the temperatures is basically like having a lowest common denominator. Ethanol *can't* start boiling until the methanol is almost entirely gone. Water *can't* boil until everything else with a lower boiling point is almost entirely gone.

There will be some pre-boiling evaporation which is why it's good to distill it a second or even third time. If your setup allows for very careful temperature control and your condensation tube is very long, you might want to take the mix off the heat as soon as the temperature goes above 150-155F, then rinse out all the plumbing. When you put it back on the heat, it shouldn't plateau at 148 again. There are other icky things like acetone that can show up at other temperatures, they're usually minimal. It's still a good idea to separate anything you're getting before you reach 173F. I wouldn't throw it away, a lot of that stuff is pretty useful. Also, with a really good and precise setup, you can separate those different contaminants if you want.

Using bread yeast will work but it's slow and not very effective. Certain types of brewer's yeast will get you a much higher concentration of alcohol before it dies or stops eating the sugar. A higher concentration of alcohol in your mix means a higher yield after distilling.

While fermenting, I use a sealed container (none of this leaving it exposed to wild yeast and other things) with a tube coming out of the cover and going into a small container of water. The end of the tube goes below the surface. When it stops bubbling, I know the yeast has pretty much gone inactive. Not only does this prevent bugs and unwanted microbes from getting into my mix, it also keeps oxygen out of there, drastically reducing the chances of the mix becoming too acidic (turning to vinegar).

Fermentation can be sped up quite a bit by keeping the mix around 110-120F. You don't want it much higher than that or you'll kill the yeast (around 140F). If you have some cheap aquarium heaters for tropical fish, I suggest a trial run with plain water in your fermentation container so you can adjust the settings and verify with a thermometer. Some aquarium heaters are high tech and won't even go that high, that's why I suggest a cheaper/older sort and a decent thermometer.

Feb 02, 2015
Tried & True Moonshine Reccipe
by: Anonymous

This is a perfect recipe for beginners. However, temperature is a VERY loose way of going about making 'shine...

For example I have an 8 gallon pot, but only do 5 gallon runs at a time. Since my temperature gauge is at the top of my pot, the temperature is NEVER the same as the liquid!

I NEVER get a single drop until around 184 degrees F. I always throw out my first 175ml just to be safe, but it is a FACT that when running a 5 gallon batch, you simply are not creating enough methanol for it to be dangerous.

It's not about how much methanol you consume, it's more about the concentration of methanol.

I run from 184 to 197 degrees, keeping the final 400ml as "tails". I end up with about 3/4 gallon of "hearts" of AMAZING 'shine!!

Jan 24, 2015
methanol in moonshine
by: Anonymous

Methanol is not an issue in a straight sugar wash. And if you are using bakers yeast, 3 to 5 days is nowhere near long enough to ferment 10 pounds of sugar. You need a turbo yeast such as Alcotec48. Regular bread yeast would need a minimum of 2 weeks.

I'm not going to lie, I've made only a few runs. They were a great success. But I've done reams of reading and research and forum talking to get the most comprehensive data that I could before starting. If you're worried about the methanol just toss the first 200ml.

Aug 15, 2014
making small quantities of moonshine
by: Anonymous

How much water, yeast and sugar should you use if you just want to make a quart jar of moonshine and not buy huge amounts?

Jun 24, 2014
racking your mash
by: Anonymous

Please don't forget to rack your original mash (i strain mine as well) before putting it in your boiler or you end up with bread tasting moonshine. Yuck

Jun 08, 2014
temperature for moonshine recipe
by: Anonymous

I agree that temperature is key here but your information is wrong. Alcohol boiling point is 148F for methanol and 173F for ethanol. Also water boils at 212F. I only make this comment because your shine will be cloudy when water boils into it. The 220F you suggested would ruin a batch before it ever got close to that. Sorry to be "that guy" but I just wanted your readers to enjoy your recipe. Thanks..

Dec 29, 2013
Safety First when Making Shine
by: Anonymous

Oh geez.. Seems Maynard has forgotten to mention that methanol (that crazy stuff that makes you go blind and kills) boils at about 148.4F, and this MUST be discarded. It only takes 4 ounces to kill you!!!

Ethanol, the "moonshine" vaporizes at about 173F. DO NOT make moonshine without first reading up thoroughly about it!

An easy way to look at it is that there will be two important plateaus (times when the temperature stays at a certain degree). Once your temperature reaches 148, this is methanol.

Discard everything that has come out during this stage, and up until the temperature has reached about 173 and has plateaued there!

This is NOT child's play and not to be taken lightly.

Sep 28, 2013
yeast amount for moonshine making
by: Anonymous

I don't have that big of a pot to put my water and sugar in. What size yeast packets are you using, or can you tell me how much to use for 2 gallons water and 2 lbs sugar.

Mar 25, 2013
Cooking wash
by: Ol dawg

I cooked for 7 hours ( 5gal. ) and only got I/3 of gallon. Cooked at 95c. What did I do wrong ? Used sugar shine recipe . 8.5# sugar 5 gal. Water . Used whole pack of super yeast express . Can anybody help me ?

Feb 08, 2013
Smaller batches of sugar shine
by: Anonymous

Hi, Thanks for the sugar shine recipe.

Do I have to distill the entire wash mixture at once or can I use a smaller still and distill smaller batches at a time?

Feb 04, 2013
Moonshine Mash and Worm
by: Anonymous

The pot where your mash is. You can't judge the temperature of the cooling "worm" as it is in its transformation process back to liquid.

Dec 31, 2012
sugar shine
by: Anonymous

Hey, I am a newbie to this, I am trying your sugar shine recipe, and have to ask, am I measuring the temperature of the alcohol vapor on my 3/8 copper going to my worm or the mash temperature in my pot?

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