- Place your mash pot on its heat source and pour in 5 gallons of water.
- Heat water to 165 °F.
- Turn off heat source when you reach 165 °F and immediately stir in 8.5 pounds of Flaked Corn Maize.
- Stir mixture continuously for 7 minutes.
How do I make my own moonshine?
- An ounce of lime juice, half an ounce of orange juice, a teaspoon of granulated sugar, an ounce of moonshine, ice, a lime wedge, sea salt or margarita salt. First step: Combine lime juice, sugar and orange juice in a bar glass or cocktail shaker. Add in the moonshine and place ice in the cocktail shaker.
- 1 Is it illegal to create moonshine?
- 2 Why is making moonshine illegal?
- 3 How long does moonshine take to make?
- 4 Is making whiskey illegal?
- 5 What states allow home distilling?
- 6 Can you make moonshine at home?
- 7 How much does a gallon of moonshine cost?
- 8 Can you distill your own alcohol?
- 9 How hard is it to make moonshine?
- 10 How much moonshine will 5 gallons of mash make?
- 11 How much is a head of moonshine?
- 12 What happens if you get caught making moonshine?
- 13 How much does a distillery license cost?
- 14 What happens if you distill beer?
- 15 How to Make Moonshine: A Distillers Guide Corn Moonshine
- 16 How to Make Moonshine:A Distillers Guide For Corn Moonshine
- 17 Getting Started: Picking Your Type of Moonshine Mash
- 18 How to Make Moonshine: Corn Mash Recipe
- 19 How To Make Moonshine: Distilling
- 20 How To Make Moonshine: Collecting Your Distillate
- 21 Conclusion
- 22 How to Make Moonshine: An Easy to Follow Guide from a Master-Shiner
- 23 What Is Moonshine?
- 24 History of Moonshine
- 25 Choosing Your Type of Moonshine Mash
- 26 How to Make Moonshine: What You Will Need
- 27 How to Make Moonshine: The Process
- 28 Final Words
- 29 How to Make Moonshine the Old-Fashioned Way in 6 Easy Steps
- 30 It Requires:
- 31 What Is Moonshine?
- 32 What You’ll Need
- 33 How Does Distillation Work?
- 34 How to Make a Moonshine Still
- 35 How to Make Moonshine
- 36 Common Mistakes
- 37 Moonshine Mash
- 38 Fermenting
- 39 Frequently Asked Questions
- 40 How Commercial Moonshine Mash is Made
- 41 1- Corn Whiskey
- 42 2 – Thin Mash Whiskey
- 43 3- Sugar Shine
- 44 Is Making Moonshine Legal:
- 45 A Brief History of Moonshine:
Is it illegal to create moonshine?
The production of moonshine — or really any spirit — without a license is prohibited by the U.S. government and is very much illegal. Clear whiskey in the style of moonshine might be for sale, but technically speaking, moonshine is moonshine because it’s produced illicitly.
Why is making moonshine illegal?
So why is moonshine still illegal? Because the liquor is worth more to the government than beer or wine. It is kosher, however, to own a still and process alcohol—but only if you’re using the alcohol as fuel and you have a permit from the ATF.
How long does moonshine take to make?
As you can see, the process of fermenting and distilling moonshine is quite time-consuming. In general, you can expect it to take between 1-3 weeks to make moonshine, as the mash must ferment and the distillation process must be continued until the final shine is safe for consumption.
Is making whiskey illegal?
No matter what you may have seen on the Discovery Channel, home distilling in the United States remains very much illegal. It’s perfectly legal to own a still, and you can even use it, as long as you’re not making alcohol – so, you can make essential oils without a permit, or perfume, or distilled water.
What states allow home distilling?
This tax is built into every bottle of spirits you buy so it’s not a special tax on home made spirits. If you do the calculations, you’ll find your favourite spirits cost up to 90% less when you take the tax off.
Can you make moonshine at home?
While most states prohibit home moonshining, state laws sometimes conflict with federal law. But federal law trumps state law, and to the feds, distilling at home for personal consumption is illegal, period.
How much does a gallon of moonshine cost?
The selling price is around $25 a gallon if sold in bulk, or $40 for retail price. “They can make as much as $10,000 a month,” the task force said.
Can you distill your own alcohol?
Federal law provides no exemptions for the production of distilled spirits for personal or family use. Under no circumstances should an individual ever distill or sell alcohol without a permit. If an individual chooses to distill alcohol, make sure to obtain all applicable fuel or spirit permits (listed above).
How hard is it to make moonshine?
Technically, moonshine is a homemade, unaged high proof grain alcohol, typically around 190 proof. The process to make moonshine from scratch, starting with a corn mash to distilling is quite difficult and illegal without a license. The process is essentially the same for most fruit flavored moonshine recipes.
How much moonshine will 5 gallons of mash make?
A 5 gallon run will yield 1-2 gallons of alcohol. A 8 gallon run will yield 1.5-3 gallons of alcohol. A 10 gallon run will yield 2-4 gallons of alcohol.
How much is a head of moonshine?
The heads should total about 20-30%% of the final amount of your run. It’s always best to make this cut a little later, rather than earlier, and collect some of the hearts with your heads, instead of the other way around.
What happens if you get caught making moonshine?
Offenses under this section are felonies that are punishable by up to 5 years in prison, a fine of up to $10,000, or both, for each offense. 5601(a)(1) – Possession of an unregistered still.
How much does a distillery license cost?
At bare minimum, a distillery, including equipment, location, and permits can cost around $200,000. However, if you’re creating liquor that needs to age and be stored, this number increases very quickly. There are a lot of factors that can increase or decrease the cost of starting your own distillery.
What happens if you distill beer?
When you distill beer, there is also a grainy sweetness that does not exist in whiskey, possibly because there are unfermentable sugars in beer that make the beer desirable. The beer is not completely fermented out leaving that sweetness and smooth mouth feel behind in the beer.
How to Make Moonshine: A Distillers Guide Corn Moonshine
This book is a distillers’ guide to making moonshine. Moonshine made with corn
How to Make Moonshine:A Distillers Guide For Corn Moonshine
The most recent update was made on October 25, 2021.
Getting Started: Picking Your Type of Moonshine Mash
When preparing to make a batch of moonshine, we have a number of different mashes from which to pick. For purists, a corn whiskey mash is the only way to make moonshine that is faithful to tradition, smooth, and full of taste. Ingenious corn farmers realized that they might boost their income by distilling their own crop, and they took advantage of the opportunity. This insight paved the way for the development of our beloved booze. Following that is the “Sugar Shine” method, which is becoming increasingly popular, particularly among novices.
- As a result, flavored moonshine has risen in popularity, and it is becoming increasingly widespread.
- With the same amount of maize, you may increase your mash yield by a factor of two.
- In this lesson, we’ll take you through the process of making a classic Corn Whiskey Mash.
- Check out our apple pie moonshine recipe for a step-by-step instruction on how to make apple pie moonshine.
How to Make Moonshine: Corn Mash Recipe
- A five-gallon bucket of water, 8.5 pounds of flaked corn maize, 1.5 pounds of crushed malted barley, yeast, a mash pot, a fermenting bucket, a heat source, a thermometer, and a long spoon.
- Start by placing your mash pot on a heat source and filling it with 5 liters of water
- Heat the water to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. After reaching 165 degrees Fahrenheit, turn off the fire and quickly whisk in 8.5 pounds of flaked corn maize. Continue to stir the mixture constantly for 7 minutes. Check the temperature every 5 minutes and stir the mixture for 30 seconds each time until the temperature reaches 152 °F. When the liquid has cooled to 152 degrees Fahrenheit, add 1.5 pounds of Crushed Malted Barley and stir well. Check the temperature every 20 minutes and whisk for 30 seconds until the mixture has cooled to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. It takes many hours for this process to complete on its own, however the addition of an immersion chiller can dramatically shorten this timeframe. When the liquid has cooled to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, add the yeast. Allow for 5 minutes of aeration by pouring the mixture back and forth between two different containers. Fill the fermentation bucket halfway with the mixture. We provide entire kits for them as well as the supplies you’ll need to make them yourself. It is critical to have the bucket, cap, and air-lock on hand at all times. The use of a spigot also makes pouring more convenient.
George Duncan over at Barley and Hops Brewing also has a great video onHow To Make a Great Moonshine Mash.Check it out below!
- PH Meter (Advanced)
- Cheese Cloth
- Citric Acid
- And other supplies.
Store the mash at room temperature for 1-2 weeks to let it to ferment. The temperature is critical because if the temperature drops too low, the fermentation will halt since the yeast will become dormant. Make use of a hydrometer and verify the specific gravity at the beginning of fermentation and at the end of fermentation to confirm that all sugars have been used. This will tell you how much ABV (alcohol by volume) was created throughout your fermentation. Make a note of the specific gravity readings taken at the commencement of fermentation and at the conclusion of the fermentation process.
Watch this video to learn how to operate a hydrometer.
To correct pH, carefully siphon mash water out of the mixture, making sure to leave behind all solid material and sediment. Pour the mash water into a container and set it aside. It is advised that you strain the mashed potatoes through a cheesecloth at this point. The presence of solid debris in your mash water might result in headaches that you’d want to avoid. (Advanced) This is the stage at which some distillers may add 2 teaspoons of gypsum to their mash water. After that, they do a pH test on their mash water.
Use citric acid to lower the pH of the water, then calcium carbonate to raise it again.
How To Make Moonshine: Distilling
- Fermented and strained mash water, cleaning products, and column packing are all used in the production of whiskey.
You did an excellent job! You’ve finished the hard work of making mash water for your moonshine! Congratulations! Finally, distillation and separation of all of the alcohol content into a refined form are required. Similarly to the process of creating mash, distillation is both an art and a science. Exercising your distilling skills is the most effective method to improve. We encourage that you take notes during the procedure so that you can improve with each subsequent run. In the event that you are in need of equipment or supplies, we can help you out.
We have everything from the traditionalcopper still to steel reflux units to the newGrainfatherBrewing System, and everything in between. We also carry high-quality supplies, such as high-quality grains and a new carbon filter, among other things.
Prepping Your Still
Congratulations on your accomplishments thus far. Creating mash water for your moonshine has been a labor-intensive process for you. Finally, distillation and separation of all of the alcohol content into a refined form are required…. Distilling is an art as well as a science, much like mash preparation. Being an excellent distiller can only be achieved via experience. Making notes during the process will allow you to improve with each run, which is something we highly encourage. In the event that you are in need of equipment or supplies, we can accommodate your requirements.
Aside from that, we carry high-quality supplies, such as high-quality grains and a carbon filter for replacement.
Running Your Still
Now comes the exciting part! Distillation is a fantastic procedure that takes a long time. Those of you who are unfamiliar with the science may get the fast and dirty version by clicking on the link below. When distinct compounds are separated using distillation, it is done so by taking advantage of the differences in evaporation temperatures of the substances. Rather of producing alcohol, this procedure separates it from the rest of the components present in your mash water. During the fermentation process, you produced all of the alcohol (well, the yeast did).
If your arrangement includes a condenser, switch on the condensing water whenever the temperature reaches 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
Keep track of how fast your drips are increasing in pace until you reach 3 to 5 drips per second.
How To Make Moonshine: Collecting Your Distillate
Congratulations, you have progressed from researching How to Make Moonshine to actually creating your own moonshine! Make certain that you are pouring your distillate into a glass container as you are generating it. Never use plastic containers since they can contaminate your product with BPA, among other things, and cause additional problems.
In terms of percentage of your total productivity, the foreshots will account for around 5 percent. These are the alcohols that evaporate the earliest in your mash water and should never be consumed. Foreshots may contain methanol, and they should never be taken in any form. Methanol, among other things, has the potential to cause blindness. Gather the foreshots and place them in a separate container before throwing them away.
It is estimated that the heads account for around 30 percent of your total production. The heads, like the foreshots, contain volatile alcohols as well as other compounds. However, rather than causing blindness, the consequences are more mild – akin to having a bad hangover for many days.
Because to the presence of alcohols such as acetone, the heads will have a characteristic “solvent” scent to them. Similarly to the foreshots, place your heads in their own containers and discard the rest of them.
It is estimated that the heads will account for around 30% of your total production. Similar to the foreshots, the heads also contain volatile alcohols. Although the consequences are less severe than those that cause blindness, they are nevertheless unpleasant – similar to having a severe hangover. Because of the presence of alcohols such as acetone, the heads will have a characteristic “solvent” odor. As with the foreshots, collect your heads in their separate containers and toss them out the front door.
When you reach the conclusion of the ethanol process and enter the final step of your manufacturing process, you reach the tails. It is estimated that the tails will account for around 35% of your total production. The tails will have a completely distinct flavor from the hearts. You’ll notice a significant decrease in sweetness, and you may even see an oily top-layer on your product at this point. The substance will start to feel slick between your fingertips at this point. This is because to the presence of water, carbs, and proteins.
Congratulations for completing the task. We hope you were able to produce a fantastic batch. The only thing left to do is thoroughly clean your whole equipment. Allow for complete drying before storing in a cold, dry location. Learning how to create moonshine requires you to take on the roles of both a scientific and an artist at the same time. There’s a delicate balance to be struck here, and it can take years to master. We urge that you keep meticulous records of your moonshine production at all times.
- Thank you for stopping by.
- Thanks for stopping by.
- If you enjoyed this advice on how to produce moonshine, you might also be interested in our instructions on how to make rum and how to make vodka.
- The most recent update was made on October 25, 2021.
a link to the page’s load
How to Make Moonshine: An Easy to Follow Guide from a Master-Shiner
When you watch movies, have you ever been curious about how they claim to manufacture moonshine in their bathtub at home? It’s not like it’s rocket science, after all! It’s actually rather simple to create at your own convenience. Make sure to read this article on moonshine, which includes some fascinating facts about the drink! How to Make Your Own Moonshine
What Is Moonshine?
When you watch movies, have you ever been curious about how people claim to create moonshine in their bathtubs at home?
So it isn’t like we are dealing with rocket science here! Creating your own version at home is actually rather simple. Please have a look at this instruction on how to create moonshine at home, which includes some fascinating information about moonshine!
History of Moonshine
Firstly, some pretty fascinating information about moonshine before we get started on how to produce your first batch of homemade moonshine will be shared with you. The word “moonshine” comes from the fact that it is unlawful to produce and thus must be done at night or under the light (or shine) of the moon. Farmers employed this to supplement their income throughout the historical period since low-value maize harvests could be transformed into high-value whiskey. Because of the high level of alcohol taxation in the United States, the government had a hand in this.
Illegal alcoholic beverages, such as moonshine, were transformed overnight into one of the most successful enterprises in the country.
When alcohol became once again legal, the good times came to an end.
Choosing Your Type of Moonshine Mash
Firstly, some extremely fascinating background about moonshine before we get started on how to produce your first batch of homemade moonshine. Due to the fact that it was unlawful to produce, individuals were obliged to do it at night or beneath the light (or shine) of the moon, thus giving rise to the phrase “moonshine.” Because low-value corn grains could be transformed into high-value whiskey during the historic run, farmers took advantage of this to make more income. This was made possible by the high level of taxation on alcoholic beverages in the United States.
Unexpectedly, illegal alcoholic beverages, such as moonshine, sprang to prominence as one of the most lucrative industries in the country.
Alcohol is once again permitted in the United States, bringing this successful streak to an end.
The Classic: Corn Whiskey
Before we get started on how to produce your first batch of homemade moonshine, let’s have a look at some extremely intriguing details regarding the process. Due to the fact that it was unlawful to produce, individuals were obliged to do it at night or beneath the light (or shine) of the moon, thus coining the phrase “moonshine.” Farmers exploited this to supplement their income during the historic run since low-value maize harvests could be transformed into high-value whiskey. Because of the high level of alcohol taxation in the United States, the government had a role in this.
Overnight, illicit alcoholic beverages such as moonshine rose to become one of the most successful enterprises in the United States.
This successful run came to an end when alcohol became once again permitted. But keep in mind that every time you take a sip of this alcoholic beverage, you are drinking something that has played a significant role in American history!
The Sugar Shine
Nowadays, many individuals like to use sugar to enhance the appearance of their food. This is the most popular choice for novices and people who want to truly play with the tastes of their shine because it does not require any mash and yet produces the same alcohol content. Moonshiners can manufacture anything they want with the right stilling kit, including apple pie and chocolate-flavored moonshine. It all depends on the recipe you choose to follow or develop on your own. The fundamental procedure is dissolving sugar in water and pasteurizing it (if desired), after which you add the yeast nutrient and yeast to the good stuff to ferment.
This concoction is simply a mashup of the two that came before it. There are a lot of individuals who utilize this method since it is a more easy and cost-effective way to make moonshine that comes quite close to the original taste of moonshine. It allows you to double your yield while utilizing the same amount of corn by substituting table sugar for a portion of the corn.
How to Make Moonshine: What You Will Need
- This concoction is simply a mash-up of the two preceding concoctions, with no additional ingredients. Many people choose to utilize this method since it is a more practical and cost-effective mash that produces something that is quite close to the original taste of moonshine while also being easier to make. It allows you to double your yield while utilizing the same amount of corn by substituting table sugar for portion of the corn.
Some recipes ask for a one-to-one substitution. For example, you will need 1 gallon of water for every 1 pound of sugar and 1 pound of corn meal you want to use for baking. Feel free to try different things and find what works best for you!
- Mashpot, fermentation bucket, heat source with temperature control, thermometer, long spoon, weighing scale, and two different containers
Make sure your bucket has a lid and an air-lock before you start.
For the Fermentation Process
- Water meter
- PH meter (optional
- For advanced students)
- Citric acid
- Moonshine still
- Mash water that has been fermented and filtered
- Cleaning supplies
- Column packing
- Mason jars
- And other items.
How to Make Moonshine: The Process
The first item you’ll need for brewing moonshine is a mash, which is a mixture of grains. What you use for this step will be determined on the flavor you desire.
- Prepare all of your components by weighing and measuring them. Installing the mash pot on top of the heat source and turning it on Pour in 5 gallons of water and bring it to a boil until it reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the temperature hits 165 degrees Fahrenheit, switch off the heat source. In a separate bowl, combine your measured amount of offlaked corn maize. During the next 7 minutes, continually stir the mixture. Make sure the temperature is correct and continue stirring numerous times. This should be done for 30 seconds every 5 minutes until the product cools down to 152 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the beer has cooled to 152 degrees Fahrenheit, add the calculated amount of crushed malted barley. Check the temperature one more time. Stir for 30 seconds every 20 minutes until the liquid has cooled to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, then stop stirring. While this can take hours, you can expedite the process by using an immersion chiller
- Nevertheless, this is not recommended. Once the mixture has been allowed to cool to the right temperature, addyeast
- Transfer the mixture back and forth between different containers for 5 minutes to aerate it. Fill the fermentation bucket halfway with the mixture.
Please keep in mind that the components we listed above will vary depending on the formula you use if you are preparing something other than the conventional corn-barley-yeast moonshine.
Step2: Fermenting Your Mash
Now that you have your mash, let it aside to ferment for 1 to 2 weeks at room temperature before using it. Keep in mind that the temperature plays a crucial role in your achievement. Because the yeast will fall dormant if the temperature drops too low, the fermentation process may come to a halt. Keep in mind that yeast prefers a warm and wet environment. The yeast is responsible for consuming all of the sugar content and converting it to alcohol. The greatest results are obtained by using a hydrometer to measure the specific gravity of your mixture both before it begins fermenting and after it has finished fermenting to guarantee that your combination has completely used all of its sugar.
Record the specific gravity readings at the start of the fermentation process and at the conclusion of the fermentation process.
After the fermentation period has ended, remove the mash water from the combination using a siphon. By straining everything through a cheesecloth, you can ensure that all of the solid debris and sediment is left behind. Fill a jar halfway with the filtered mash water and set aside. Step 2 (Advanced): (Optional) Some distillers choose to add 2 teaspoons of gypsum to the mash water at this point in the process.
After that, they conduct a pH test on the mash water. The pH level should be between 5.8 and 6.0 under ideal conditions. By adding citric acid, you can lower the pH of the solution, and by adding calcium carbonate, you may raise it.
You’ve completed the most difficult phase in the process of creating mash water for your moonshine: boiling the water. Simply distill your mash water to remove all of the alcohol content and separate it into a pure form is all that remains. Keep in mind that, like the mash preparation process, the distillation process is both a science and an art form. Keep in mind that it will take a lot of practice and trial and error before you become proficient in this area, so be patient with yourself. Note-taking is strongly recommended throughout the distillation and moonshine-making processes so that you may identify areas for improvement when you start a new batch of moonshine.
Prepping Your Still
In order to maintain cleanliness, you must keep your equipment clean even when it is not in use. Though you leave it empty for a long period of time, even if you cleaned it after the last time you used it, you will need to wash it again since it has become dirty. This is crucial, especially if you are utilizing copper stills that have already begun to show signs of salt accumulation. Consequently, before to transferring your mash water, make certain that your still has been well cleaned and washed.
It should be packed with the appropriate amount of packing material for your particular arrangement.
After all of your preparation work, it’s finally time to fill the still with your mash water.
You should keep in mind that you want to limit the quantity of sediment in your corn mash water to the greatest extent feasible.
Running Your Still
It is the process of separating distinct compounds from one another by taking use of the differences in evaporation temperatures between the substances that is referred to as distilling. This method does not result in the production of alcohol, as the yeast has already done so for you throughout the fermentation phase. This is most likely one of the most critical phases in the production of your alcoholic beverage. It merely serves to separate the alcohol from the other constituents of your mash water, not to purify it.
Consequently, here’s what you must do:
- Slowly raise the temperature to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. You should switch on the condensing water if your arrangement has a condenser after you reach this point. Increase the heat to its highest setting until the still begins to leak. Maintain a temperature between the boiling point of water and the boiling point of alcohol (173°F and 212°F)
- Timing the drips as they increase in pace until you reach 3 to 5 drips per second is recommended
- Once you have reached this drip rate, reduce the heat to keep it constant. You may generally achieve this by turning the volume down to a medium level.
Temperature should be raised gradually until it reaches 150 degrees Fahrenheit. If your system includes a condenser, turn on the condensing water once you reach this point. Increase the heat to its highest setting until the still begins to leak. Maintain a temperature between 173°F to 212°F, which is the boiling point of water. Timing the drips as they increase in pace until you reach 3 to 5 drips per second is critical; After reaching this drip rate, turn down the heat to keep it constant.
If you adjust the volume down to a medium level, you can generally achieve this.
Step4: Collecting Your Distillate
You’ve successfully completed the process of manufacturing moonshine! All that is required is that you collect it together with the remainder of your distillation’s yield.
These are the initial 5 percent of the liquid separated by your distillation process, which is referred to as the foreshots. The foreshots have the highest concentration of alcohols that evaporate the earliest in your corn mash water. It is important to remember that this should never be consumed. Methanol may be included in foreshots, and ingesting it can be quite harmful. Methanol has the potential to make you blind as well as create other health concerns. If you’re going to do it, you might as well use rocket fuel to get it done.
The heads, like the foreshots, contain volatile alcohols, which you should aim to avoid eating as much as possible. While this will not cause you to go blind, it will cause you to suffer from a severe hangover, which is not really pleasant. After you have deleted the foreshots from your goods, the heads account for the remaining 30% of the total. This “solvent” fragrance is caused by the alcohols in them, particularly the acetone that is found in the heads. Once again, gather the heads in a separate container and dispose of them properly.
The remaining 30 percent, which is produced by your distillation process, is primarily composed of ethanol. This is the type of material you should be collecting and preserving. By now, the unpleasant, solvent smell that you detected in the heads should have vanished from your product. This is the time when the flavor of your moonshine, or whatever flavor you desire from your recipes, should emerge. Your product should have a smooth and pleasant flavor to it. It is at this point that your abilities and experience will be put to use.
With your product approaching the end of its lifespan, you will reach the conclusion of its ethanol lifecycle and go on to its last stage: the tails.. Tails account for around 35 percent of your total production. They will also have a distinct flavor due to the use of the hearts. You’ll notice that the sweetness from the sugar has been much reduced in comparison to before. Even the top layer of your alcohol will have an oily appearance. Because of the water, carbs, and proteins in it, it will also feel slick when you rub your fingers between your fingers.
Step5: Proper Storage
With your product approaching the end of its lifespan, you will reach the conclusion of its ethanol lifecycle and go on to its final step: the tails. Tails account for around 35% of your total output. A distinct flavor will be imparted to them by the heart. When the sugar is removed, you will notice a dramatic reduction in sweetness.
In fact, you will see an oily top coating on the surface of your booze. Because of the water, carbs, and proteins in it, it will also feel slick between your fingertips. Choose between keeping the tails for distillation later on or discarding them entirely.
As a word of caution, make sure you are aware of the laws in your country regarding the production of alcoholic beverages at home. While possessing a still for the purpose of manufacturing essential oils or distilling water is acceptable, things become more complicated when it comes to distilling spirits. Now, go ahead and test it out for yourself! Wishing you the best of success on your moonshine run! Karl S. is a marketing leader, brewer, father, and spouse. Basically, he’s an all-around great person.
How to Make Moonshine the Old-Fashioned Way in 6 Easy Steps
If you purchase an item after clicking on one of the links on this page, we may receive a commission. Commissions have no impact on the content of our editorial pages. See the full disclosure for more information. Have you ever seen the television program ” Moonshiners”? It’s one of my guilty pleasures, to be honest with you. I really enjoy the sense of humour that the characters finds in one another and in the woods. However, I admire their ability to produce a beverage and to carry on a history that was instilled in them from an early age by their parents and grandparents.
Keep in mind that while it is lawful to own a moonshine still, it is completely prohibited to distill any alcoholic beverages without a license.
Following my viewing of the show, I became intrigued by the moonshine production process and began doing some investigation.
Following your education in the distillation process, you should have a greater appreciation for the companies that produce the legal alcoholic beverages you consume, as well as for the original moonshiners who figured out how to do it with little knowledge of science, and in the middle of the woods no less.
- A total of 5 litres of water
- 8.5 lbs of cracked or flaked maize
- 1.5 lbs of crushed malted barley
1. Make the Mash
The method begins with the heating of 5 liters of water to 165 degrees Fahrenheit. As soon as the temperature reaches this stage, turn off the heat and carefully add the entire can of corn to the boiling water. It is critical to continually stir the corn for the entire 5 minutes. Continue to stir the corn every 30 seconds to a minute after the 5 minutes has gone, until the temperature has reduced to 152°F. After reaching a temperature of 152°F, it’s time to incorporate the malted barley into the mixture.
- During this time, however, make sure to uncover the mixture every 15 minutes and whisk it thoroughly.
- The ultimate objective of this stage of the process is to successfully convert all of the starches into sugar as quickly as possible.
- Allow the mixture to remain for another 2-3 hours after the hour and a half is up to ensure that it has completely cooled.
- As soon as the temperature hits 70 degrees Fahrenheit, sprinkle yeast evenly over the mixture.
- There is no fermentation if the yeast is not present.
- This is, without a doubt, a vital first step.
Continue to pour the mixture back and forth between the two containers until you are certain that everything has been well combined and aerated. After aeration, place a tight-fitting cover on the container containing the mash to keep out air.
2. Allow the Mash to Ferment
5 litres of water are heated to 165 degrees Fahrenheit to begin the procedure. As soon as the temperature reaches this stage, turn off the heat and carefully pour in the entire can of corn into the water. Maintaining a steady stirring motion for 5 minutes is critical. After 5 minutes, continue to stir the corn every 30 seconds to a minute until the temperature has reduced to 152 degrees Fahrenheit.. In order to add the malted barley to the mixture, it must attain a temperature of 152 degrees Fahrenheit.
- To ensure that the mixture is thoroughly mixed during this time, uncover the bowl every 15 minutes and stir thoroughly.
- Achieving success in this stage of the process will result in the conversion of all of the starches to sugar.
- Allowing the mixture to remain for another 2 to 3 hours will allow it to cool completely after an hour and a half.
- The temperature should reach 70°F at which point you should sprinkle yeast over the entire mixture.
- Fermentation is impossible to achieve without yeast.
- This is, without a doubt, a critical step.
- Continue to pour the mixture back and forth between the two containers until you are satisfied that everything has been well combined and aerated.
3. Ready the Still
If you’re distilling moonshine, I’m going to presume you’re also a legitimate distributor of the product. As a result, you most likely make use of your still on a frequent basis. Regardless of whether you use your still on a regular basis or not, it is crucial to keep it clean. Getting dust particles or debris into the moonshine you’ve worked so hard to create is something you don’t want to happen. Different stills operate in a variety of ways and contain a variety of components. There are also several ways for operating stills that may be used.
Some individuals opt to load their column because it produces a greater alcohol proof, which they find appealing.
Once the still has been set up and the mash has been strained and added, you’ll be ready to proceed with the distillation process..
4. Start the Distilling Process
You’ll start by turning on the heat to the lowest setting on the still. The ideal temperature is 150 degrees Fahrenheit. It is important to switch on the water at this stage in the procedure if your system still has a condenser. Using a heat source, gradually increase the temperature of your still until you begin to observe alcohol being created. It’s important to time the alcohol drops as they come out. When the alcohol is pouring at a rate of 3-5 drips per second, it is time to reduce the heat.
This isn’t the case, however.
This procedure allows for the separation of alcohol from the other chemical components present in the still.
By the interaction between the mash and the yeast, the alcohol was produced as part of the fermentation process in the first place.
Once the alcohol has begun to flow from your still, it is critical that you pay great attention to the next steps. This is what distinguishes the many distillers involved in this procedure.
5. The Different Parts of the Moonshine
Moonshine production is an art form. In order to improve, you must practice as much as possible (legally!). What, on the other hand, is the difference between one person’s moonshine and another’s? This is directly related to being familiar with the many components of the product you’re manufacturing. While studying and recognizing the many components of moonshine helps to generate better products, it also helps to assure the safety of such products. The foreshots are the first 5 percent of the moonshine that comes out of your still, and they are the most expensive.
- It has been linked to the development of blindness and should not be ingested.
- The heads still contain methanol, although in lower concentrations, and they have a strong fragrance that reminds me of nail paint remover.
- Despite the fact that it does not cause blindness, it might leave you feeling groggy in the morning in the majority of situations.
- The hearts are the remaining 30% of the product generated by the still after the heads are removed.
- The delicious perfume it emits will alert you that you have successfully reached the hearts.
- You’ll notice that this area doesn’t smell as pleasant and that it has a slick feel to it when you touch it.
- Additionally, you may discover that you’ve reached the tails of the run because an oily layer will begin to form on the surface of the product, indicating that you’ve reached the tails.
6. Knowing the Difference
I’ve gone over how to prepare a moonshine mash, the fermentation process, and the distillation process in detail. The many components of the moonshine product have also been discussed. Still, what is it that distinguishes the flavors of two distinct distilleries? Well, the formula might be significantly altered, resulting in a product with a somewhat distinct flavor. Yet, the capacity to separate the moonshine between two distinct moonshiners is the most important factor in determining the quality of the moonshine produced by each.
- Because the more moonshine you create, the easier it becomes to separate the product from the rest with more precision.
- Developing your ability to distinguish the difference between the point where the heads stop and the heart begins will allow you to generate superior taste as your confidence grows.
- Also, don’t be afraid to ask for help from a mentor.
- However, I must emphasize that you should only seek the advice of a legal mentor.
- So, you’ve learned how to make moonshine and, hopefully, gained a better knowledge of the skill set necessary to become a better moonshiner throughout the course of your career.
Aside from that, after investigating this method, I have a far higher respect for the ‘original moonshiners.’ In the hope that you would share our reverence for the wisdom they were able to acquire and pass down without the aid of modern technology or (in many cases) formal schooling, we have created this website.
Was this article helpful?
I’ve gone through how to prepare a moonshine mash, how to ferment it, and how to distill it in my previous articles. The many components of the moonshine product have also been addressed. But what is the difference in flavor between two distinct distilleries? As a result, the flavor of the finished product may differ somewhat from the original recipe. Yet, the capacity to separate the moonshine is the most important factor in determining the grade of moonshine produced by two distinct moonshiners.
- It’s true that the more moonshine you create, the easier it becomes to separate out the product with more precision.
- Developing your ability to distinguish the difference between the point where the heads end and the heart begins will allow you to generate superior taste as your confidence in your ability to distinguish between them grows.
- In addition, don’t be afraid to ask for help from a trusted adult.
- Only a legal mentor should be sought, however, as I must stress again.
- So, you’ve learned how to make moonshine and, hopefully, gained a better knowledge of the skill set necessary to become a better moonshiner throughout the course of your life.
Aside from that, after investigating this method, I have a far higher regard for the ‘original moonshiners.’ In the hope that you would share our reverence for the wisdom they were able to acquire and pass down without the assistance of modern technology or (in many cases) formal schooling, we have created this website.
What Is Moonshine?
Maize liquor (also known as backwoods whiskey) is a transparent, unaged whiskey that is manufactured at home by the distillation of corn. It is mostly manufactured from maize, however it may also be created from other ingredients, and it contains a significant amount of alcohol. Moonshine was first introduced to North America by Scottish and Irish immigrants, and it quickly became a staple in the region. A prohibition against moonshine was passed in 1791 by Alexander Hamilton (yep, the same Alexander Hamilton from the musical Hamilton) that resulted in its manufacture being moved underground and onto the black market.
Even while illegal moonshine manufacture continues to be practiced today, licensed distilleries are now producing it for sale in liquor stores.
What You’ll Need
- Maize liquor (also known as bush whiskey) is a transparent, unaged whiskey that is produced by distilling corn. A high percentage of alcohol is contained in this beverage, which is mostly derived from maize (but other ingredients can be used). A popular alcoholic beverage in Scotland and Ireland, moonshine quickly gained popularity in North America. A prohibition against moonshine was passed in 1791 by Alexander Hamilton (yep, the same Alexander Hamilton from the musical Hamilton) that resulted in its manufacture being moved underground and into the shadows of society. Following this, it is said that individuals began creating and selling moonshine at night in order to avoid paying taxes on it, thus the term moonshine. Even now, illegal moonshine manufacturing continues, but licensed distilleries are also producing it for sale in liquor stores.
How Does Distillation Work?
Extraction and purification of alcohol from mash corn (or rye, barley, etc.) are two important steps in the process of moonshine distillation. In order to extract the alcohol from the mash, it is first heated to the point of vaporization. Once the vapor has been eliminated, the liquid is cooled until it returns to its liquid state, resulting in clear alcohol. It is not a difficult procedure, but it is extremely sensitive and does not tolerate change well.
How to Make a Moonshine Still
Despite the fact that there are several alternatives for purchasing a still, many individuals find it to be both cheaper and more fulfilling to create their own pot still. As you can see in the illustration above, it is not difficult to construct a still, and the majority of the materials can be obtained from your local hardware shop. Making a still for marijuana distillation is a pretty simple technique that takes only a few steps. It is not necessary to be an engineer in order to construct one; simply follow these basic procedures.
Step 1: Making the Lid
The very first step is to drill many holes in the mash pot cover to allow for drainage. You’ll need to drill two holes, one of 1/8 inch and one of 3/8 inch in diameter. Prepare the lid by drilling two holes on either side of it, about two inches from the edge of the lid. Use the file to smooth off any rough edges that may have formed.
Step 2: Adding the Thermometer
Put Teflon tape around the post of your culinary thermometer probe near the dial, and then put it back in its place. It is possible to use either digital or analog thermometers. Continue to do so until the thermometer is snugly fitting into the 1/8 inch hole. To complete the seal, put hot glue around the outside of the hole. Using high-temperature hot glue should prevent the adhesive from melting while the distillation process is in progress, according to the manufacturer.
Step 3: Adding the Compression Adaptor
Placing the male end (the part of the compressor adaptor that has its threads on the exterior) of its male end into a pot lid from the bottom up will work best. Make use of adhesive to keep it in place.
Step 3 ½: Shape the Coil
At this stage, you will need to form your coil to your specifications. The copper tube should fit snugly in the bucket with just a few inches of straight at the bottom end to serve as a spout, so make sure it is as long as the bucket. This is really crucial for the cooling process to take place. Straighten out the top end a little to create an arch that will span up from the lid, across the top of the bucket, and down to the bottom of the bucket. Take cautious not to cause the pipe to collapse.
Step 4: Attaching the Refrigerator coil
Place the female end of the compressor adaptor (the nut with the threads on the inside) onto the end of the refrigerator coil so that the open end is facing out. After that, insert the ferrule (the little bell-shaped object that came with the adapter) into the end of the coil and tighten the screw. In the end, screw the adapter together, making a connection between the coil and the lid.
Step 5: Setting up the Bucket
Make a hole about an inch from the bottom of the bucket’s base with the 3/8-inch drill bit and the 3/8-inch bit. Because here is where the coil will emerge, it is important to drill the hole at an angle that corresponds to the direction of the coil’s exit.
Pass the end of the coil through the hole until an inch or two of it protrudes from the other side. Make sure there are no leaks by applying glue all around the opening. This will be the condenser for your system.
Optional Step 6: Extra Security
If the coil shifts around too much in the bucket, clamps or brackets can be used to keep it from moving about.
How to Make Moonshine
While there are a variety of moonshine recipes that use various oats and grains, classic moonshine is created solely from corn and a few other basic components. To prepare a traditional moonshine mash, you’ll need maize, granulated sugar, yeast, and water, among other ingredients. Start by grinding the corn into a meal or purchasing flaked corn maize to use as a starting point. After that, soak it in water in the still for a few minutes before adding the sugar. Finally, add the yeast and thoroughly mix it up.
Step 2: Ice
Fill the condenser with ice to prevent overheating. This ice is essential because it will aid in the conversion of the alcohol vapor back into liquid. Using a coil that is too short or not using ice can result in a large portion of the moonshine being lost to vaporization.
Step 3: Heating
Set the hotplate to a temperature slightly below boiling. The actual evaporation temperatures are a matter of personal choice, but the goal is to evaporate the alcohol slowly, thus generally speaking, lower temperatures are preferable. The recommended temperature range is 172-210°F (78-99°C), however I recommend keeping the temperature around 200°F (93°C) for the best results. Consistently raise and lower the cooking temperature.
Step 4: Sit Back and Wait
Now that you have completed the necessary preparations, all that remains is to wait. As the mash boils, the alcohol will evaporate and climb to the top of the pipe system. Ice will chill the liquid as it goes down the length of the coil, causing it to revert to a liquid state. The liquid will then gently drain out of the end of the pipe and into whatever glass container you have waiting for it at the other end. Here it is, the high-quality product you’ve been looking for. Tada!
We all make errors from time to time. Even though making mistakes is nothing to be embarrassed of, when those mistakes might have life-threatening repercussions, you might want to do some research before getting started. A few of the most common blunders distillers make are listed below.
When it comes to distilling, math is not everyone’s strong point, and neither is following recipes, but you may want to double-check your calculations if you want to do it right. The use of too much or too little of any component might completely derail the delicate process.
Lack of Testing
If you are utilizing a handmade still, you must put it through its paces. It should be put through its paces. It should be tested again. There are a plethora of problems that untested stills can create. Trust me on this. You don’t want to discover a leak in the middle of the distillation process or have a connecting point explode.
Using the Wrong Materials
Test your homemade still before using it for any purpose. Put it through its paces and see how it works.
Make a second attempt to see what happens. So many problems might arise when stills are not thoroughly evaluated. Believe me when I say that A leak discovered halfway through distillation, or a connecting point that explodes, are things you don’t want to happen to you.
Too Much Heat
Although it may be tempting to accelerate the process by increasing the temperature, this is not a good idea. Not only would increasing the heat destroy the brew and leave it with a burned flavor, but it can also cause pressure build-up and explosions in the surrounding area. Also, use caution if you are need to handle a functioning still. Any skin that comes into contact with a scorching hot still will suffer the consequences.
After each batch of moonshine, make sure to thoroughly clean your whole set-up. Those of you who are exceptionally lazy and don’t want to bother with cleaning your still after each run should reconsider their position. Leaving residue in your next batch, particularly around the adapter, might result in undesirable tastes in the following batch.
There are several corn moonshine mashrecipes to choose from. In traditional mash, cornmeal is the most important element, as I already said. Corn mash is used to create a smooth, full-bodied, and powerful whiskey. Despite the fact that this is the traditional procedure, some individuals do not appreciate the mild maize flavor tones in the whiskey. There are several ways to prepare mashed potatoes, as well as numerous recipes to pick from. If you are proficient in the production of moonshine, you may experiment with other flavors.
- The following are some more common flavored moonshine recipes: sugar shine mash, hybrid mash, and fruit mash.
- This helps to balance out the corn flavor without detracting too much from the original flavour.
- For those who wish to add sugar to a fruit mash, there are several excellent resources for balancing the quantity of sugar added to each fruit with the amount of sugar that each fruit starts with, among other things.
- Too much sugar might give your end product a cidery flavor if you use it too often.
Ten pounds of cornmeal, ten pounds of sugar, and half an ounce of yeast will be needed to prepare a hybrid mash, according to the recipe. In addition, you’ll need ten gallons of water and a pot that’s sufficient for the task. Bring the water to a boil, then add the cornmeal. Cook, stirring constantly, until the meal becomes a paste, then add the sugar and yeast. Cook after properly mixing the ingredients. Removing the mash from the heat and covering it with a towel will begin the fermentation process in your home.
As fermentation progresses, brown or tan foam will begin to rise to the surface.
This should take around two weeks, but you’ll know when it’s finished when it hasn’t bubbled for a couple of days in a row.
Once the mash has fermented, strain it through a cheesecloth to remove the yeast. The residual solids can be disposed of as waste. In a distiller, add the filtered mash water and you’ll be ready to start manufacturing moonshine right away.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you still have unanswered questions about the moonshine-making process, have a look at the following commonly asked questions.
Why is moonshine dangerous?
Because of the presence of methanol in moonshine, the most dangerous aspect of consuming it is the risk of getting alcohol poisoning (methyl alcohol, also known as wood alcohol). If you do not correctly distill moonshine, you may end up with traces of methanol in your product. A single alcoholic drink of methanol can induce lifelong blindness, and a single drink of 30ml can result in death.
Can I buy ready-made moonshine stills?
When it comes to drinking moonshine, the presence of methanol is the number one factor that makes it potentially detrimental to one’s health (methyl alcohol, also known as wood alcohol). You may leave traces of methanol in your moonshine if you do not distill it correctly. A single 10ml dose of methanol can result in lifelong blindness, while a single 30ml dose can result in death if consumed in excess.
Can I distill other things in the moonshine still?
Yes. When using a moonshine distiller, you can distill nearly any alcoholic beverage. It should work as long as there is alcohol to be extracted from the mixture. There are many different grains and oats, as well as wines and liquors, that fall under this category.
Can I make fermenting any faster?
While there are methods for expediting the fermentation process, the majority of them will not work with moonshine mash. The one advice that can truly assist you in speeding up fermentation is to mash the ingredients together as the name indicates. Using a fork, mash the corn. The fruit should be mashed. Anything that is going to be fermented should be mashed. This increases the amount of surface area available for fermentation, allowing for more sugars to be fermented at the same time.
How Commercial Moonshine Mash is Made
Firstly, a quick reminder that distilling alcohol is unlawful unless you have an approved federal fuel alcohol or distilled spirit plant authorization in addition to the appropriate state permissions. Our distillation apparatus is intended solely for legal reasons, and the information contained in this paper is intended solely for educational purposes. We encourage you to read our comprehensive legal statement for further information on the legality of distillation. Moonshine mashes can be made in three different methods, according on the experience of a commercial distiller.
The third approach is inexpensive and simple (and is a suitable starting point for new commercial distillers), but it is not advised for anyone who is serious about producing a high-quality product of consistent quality.
Beginning with the third recipe on this page, a rookie commercial distiller or a distillery that specializes on producing rapid, inexpensive liquor for the purpose of flavoring would be well advised (sugar shine).
A distillery that is more concerned with producing higher-quality spirits with more complex qualities would be more likely to adopt the “corn whiskey recipe,” which is made entirely of grains. The “thin mash” recipe might serve as a good middle ground.
1- Corn Whiskey
Please keep in mind that distilling alcohol is unlawful unless you have a federal fuel alcohol or distilled spirit plant permit as well as any necessary state permissions. Let’s get started. Our distillation apparatus is intended solely for legal reasons, and the information included in this page is provided solely for educational purposes……………………………. For additional information on the laws of distillation, please see our entire legal statement (PDF). Moonshine mashes can be made in three different methods, according to the preferences of a professional distiller.
The third approach is inexpensive and simple (and is a suitable starting point for new commercial distillers), but it is not advised for anyone who is serious about producing a high-grade product of exceptional quality.
Beginning with the third recipe on this page, a rookie commercial distiller or a distillery that specializes on producing quick, inexpensive liquor for the purpose of flavoring would be well advised (sugar shine).
The “thin mash” recipe might serve as a good halfway point.
- The following ingredients: 5 litres of water
- 8.5 lbs of flaked maize
- 1.5 lbs of crushed malted barley
- Yeast- Read this article to find out how much yeast a professional distiller would need in their process.
Bring 5 gallons of mash water to a temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. When the desired temperature is attained, remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the 8.5 pounds of corn. The temperature should decrease to 152F after 5 minutes of constant stirring. After that, stir for a few seconds every five minutes until the temperature reduces to that level. Once the desired temperature has been reached, add in the malted barley. Cook for 90 minutes, uncovering only to stir every 15 minutes or so, until the vegetables are tender.
Allow it to sit for a few hours, or use an immersion chiller to cool the mash to 70 degrees Fahrenheit in minutes.
Fermentation will be completed in a week or two at most.
Siphon the stillness out of the room.
Tips for Advanced Distillers
Advanced distillers might consider adding 2 teaspoons of gypsum (CaSO4) to the mash water and altering the pH of the mash water to a range between 5.8 and 6.0 before adding any other additives to the mash water. Following the addition of gypsum, the pH of the mash water should be adjusted lower using citric or tartaric acid. Calcium carbonate should be used if the pH has to be raised (CaCO3). Using tincture of iodine to evaluate if all starches have been entirely transformed into sugar is a second tip for expert distillers who want to improve their skills.
Drop a drop or two of the tincture of iodine onto the sample on the plate and allow it to dry. If the mixture becomes blue, this indicates that there is still starch in it. Rest it for a longer period of time. Remove the sample from the container.
2 – Thin Mash Whiskey
Cooking a thin mash is a simple method for doubling the amount of mash produced while maintaining part of the natural grain taste of corn whiskey produced. Making it involves beginning with a puree, such as the one seen above, and then adding additional water and granular sugar to enhance the amount of wash produced.
- The following ingredients: 10 gallons of water (5 gal to begin with, then 5 more)
- 8.5 pounds of flaked maize
- 1.5 pounds of crushed malted barley
- 6-8 pounds of sugar
Yeast-Read this page to learn about the proper processes for pitching yeast.
You may learn about yeast pitching processes by reading this page. Yeast-
3- Sugar Shine
Genuine maize whiskey is becoming increasingly difficult to get these days. Modern moonshine is almost always little more than plain sugar with a dash of flavoring added in for good measure. Although it is not as smooth as maize whiskey, what it lacks in flavor and smoothness is more than compensated for by the ease with which it may be consumed. In addition, some people are not fond of the flavor of maize. They would choose apple pie, peaches, or other fruit tastes over anything else. This recipe is perfect for making that particular concoction.
2 gallons of water (no hotter than 120 degrees) should be heated before adding sugar a few pounds at a time. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved, then add additional sugar. Continue to add sugar until all of the sugar has been added and dissolved. Pour this mixture into a fermenter and top it over with 3 more gallons of water. To get a final temperature of 96 degrees, increase the heat of the extra water by a small amount. Once the final liquid temperature reaches 70 degrees, add the yeast.
In order to get the quickest fermentation period and the best alcohol output, aim for a steady fermentation temperature of 70 degrees.
Allow it to rest for one week to ferment and another week to settle before serving.
Is Making Moonshine Legal:
Keep in mind that this information is provided solely for educational purposes. The process of making beer is lawful since it is substantially the same as making beer, which is now permitted in all 50 states, however distilling alcohol is illegal unless an individual obtains a fuel alcohol plant permission or a distilled spirit plant permit, respectively.
A Brief History of Moonshine:
The Great Depression, Prohibition, and limited access to the mountainous region of Appalachia all contributed to the creation of moonshine, a beverage that is now practically forgotten yet has a legendary reputation. The phrase “Moonshine” used to be used to refer to any type of homemade whiskey. In part, the word came up as a result of the fact that early “bootleggers” frequently brewed their whiskey in the middle of the night, under the light of a full moon, in order to keep their activities hidden from neighbors and the authorities.
In the case of moonshine, there is no conventional formula; it can be produced using any mix of grains in any style of still. Moonshine produced in the highlands of Appalachia, on the other hand, was originally manufactured from unaged corn whiskey and was produced in copper pot stills.