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What Temp Do You Heat Moonshine? (TOP 5 Tips)

The temperature inside the pot boiler will tell you about the boiling liquid in the mash. Keep it increasing, maintaining a range of 175 – 195 degrees Fahrenheit for as long as possible. Turn off the heat when it reaches 212 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • But generally the temperature range that you want to collect Moonshine within is between 78-82 °C and we generally stop collecting the distillate once we start getting fusels coming out. This is generally happens at a head temperature of 94 °C or higher. To Learn more about the process of Making Moonshine Head over to our Distilling 101 page.


What temperature do you cook moonshine at?

The alcohol that makes fine, high-quality moonshine, is ethanol, which boils at a temperature of 175 degrees Fahrenheit. Other chemicals and types of alcohols, such as methanol, boil at lower temperatures and will be collected in your cup or jar after being condensed in the coil.

What temperature does methanol boil?

The boiling point of methanol is approximately 148 degrees farenheit, which is quite a bit lower than ethanol (the good stuff). This means that methanol (148F boiling temp) will start to boil before the ethanol (174F boiling temp).

How do you make moonshine on the stove?


  1. Place your mash pot on its heat source and pour in 5 gallons of water.
  2. Heat water to 165 °F.
  3. Turn off heat source when you reach 165 °F and immediately stir in 8.5 pounds of Flaked Corn Maize.
  4. Stir mixture continuously for 7 minutes.

What temperature is best for moonshine mash?

The higher the temperature, the faster the rate of fermentation, but the lower the alcoholic yield. The optimum temperature is 78º F. Never exceed 90º F.

Can you drink the tails of moonshine?

Don’t drink the tails, either. They will contain the heavier, oilier compounds that are bitter and many are also toxic.

How can you tell if moonshine is safe?

How to Test for Purity. Folklore tells us one way to test the purity of moonshine is to pour some in a metal spoon and set it on fire. 6 If it burns with a blue flame it is safe, but if it burns with a yellow or red flame, it contains lead, prompting the old saying, “Lead burns red and makes you dead.”

How do you test homemade alcohol for methanol?

Add 25 drops of iodine solution to each alcohol. Add 10 drops of sodium hydroxide solution to each alcohol. Gently swirl the test tubes a few times. The dark colour of the iodine should start to fade.

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.

Does moonshine go bad?

Although different sources will say different things, the answer for whether moonshine can go bad or not is clear – a bottle of unflavored moonshine, much like other plain spirits, has an indefinite shelf life.

Can moonshine give you methanol poisoning?

Outbreaks of methanol poisoning have occurred when methanol is used to adulterate moonshine (bootleg liquor). Methanol is extremely toxic to humans.

Why does moonshine make you blind?

If you’re drinking moonshine, yes. Today the most common cause of blindness from drinking is methanol. Methanol, otherwise known as methyl alcohol or wood alcohol, can damage the optic nerve and even kill you in high concentrations.

Can you make moonshine on an electric stove?

An electric stove or a portable hot-plate are both excellent options, especially for moonshine stills of ten gallons or less. Avoid using natural gas or oil stoves indoors.

Why was moonshine made illegal?

So why is moonshine still illegal? Because the liquor is worth more to the government than beer or wine. Uncle Sam takes an excise tax of $2.14 for each 750-milliliter bottle of 80-proof spirits, compared with 21 cents for a bottle of wine (of 14 percent alcohol or less) and 5 cents for a can of beer.

What is the proof of illegal moonshine?

That’s because alcohol begins to attract moisture from the air at concentrations higher than 96% ABV, immediately diluting your moonshine. It’s worth noting that in most parts of the United States, it is illegal to distill moonshine above 160 proof (80% ABV) and it cannot be bottled at more than 125 proof (62.5% ABV).

Distillation Temperature

The article “How are Commercial Spirits Made? ” is highly recommended prior to reading this one, since it gives an excellent summary of the concept of distillation. Continue reading if you are already familiar with the fundamentals. Before we get started, here’s a little reminder: If you do not have a federal fuel alcohol or distilled spirit plant permit as well as the necessary state permissions, you are prohibited from distilling alcohol. Our distillation apparatus is intended solely for legal reasons, and the information contained in this paper is intended solely for educational purposes.

The Boiling Temperature of Ethanol

We receive a large number of queries concerning distillation and temperature control. According to a large amount of evidence, the boiling temperature of ethanol is 174 degrees Fahrenheit. The truth is that this is only half true. Pure ethanol has a boiling temperature of 174 degrees Fahrenheit. ethanol in a wash, which is to say ethanol combined with water, boils at a temperature that is fully dependent on the ratio of ethanol to water. The boiling temperature increases in direct proportion to the amount of water present in the solution.

In this case, the boiling point of a solution containing 100 percent ethanol is 174 degrees Fahrenheit.

It is true that the boiling point (liquid) temperature of ethanol in a 50/50 solution of ethanol and water will be around 180 degrees.

Should a Still Start Producing Alcohol At 174 Degrees Fahrenheit?

Among the many questions we receive is this one: “Should I expect to see alcohol escaping from my still after the temperature has reached 174 degrees F?” No, a commercial distiller should not engage in this practice, according to the response. Why? Pure ethanol has a boiling point of 174 degrees Fahrenheit, as previously stated. The wash produced by a still is not pure ethanol. If such were the case, why would anybody bother distilling it? A first-run wash is typically no stronger than 20 percent ethanol in concentration.

  1. Rather of being 100 percent alcohol (ethanol), it’s more likely to be 90 percent water.
  2. A wash with a starting alcohol concentration of 10 percent ethanol will not boil anywhere near 174 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. For those who are unfamiliar with how to determine the alcohol content of a wash, we recommend that you read ourHow to Use a Hydrometerarticle.
  4. It depicts the liquid boiling temperature of ethanol as a function of the concentration of ethanol in a solution (in degrees Celsius).

It is also important to remember that the data in the chart above only pertains to distillation at sea level! The boiling point of water decreases with altitude, and vice versa.

Should a Still Maintain a Constant Temperature During Distillation?

The following is another question we receive: “Should I maintain the temperature of my still at exactly 174 F during a distillation run?” “No, certainly not,” is the response to this question. Why? The solution, as it turns out, has a lot to do with the chart above. A professional distiller, for example, may begin with a strong wash that contains a beginning alcohol concentration of 20 percent and may predict that ethanol will begin to boil out of the solution after the liquid temperature has reached around 190 degrees Fahrenheit.

Assume that halfway through the run, half of the alcohol has been removed from the wash and the wash has a 10 percent alcohol by volume content.

The basic line is that when a still is operated, the temperature continuously rises.

Where Should a Thermometer Be Installed on a Still?

If possible, we would want to at the very least place a temperature probe in the boiler. Always use a copper adapter that is 100 percent copper and a stainless steel thermometer to ensure that the temperature is accurate. It is also beneficial to include a secondary thermometer at the top of the column to measure the temperature of the vapor. Our recommendation is to have one in each site because it makes the distillation process a lot easier. Thermometers are located at the very top of the column.

Although both the boiler temperature and the vapor temperature are used to measure the temperature of liquid inside the still, the vapor thermometer is used to measure the temperature of vapor contained inside the column.

First and first, never attempt to measure the temperature of a motionless object using an infrared thermometer.

They monitor the surface temperature of a still rather than the temperature of the liquid or vapor inside.

Should Vapor Temperature and Wash Temperature be the Same?

The temperature of the vapor and the temperature of the wash should be quite different. As soon as vapor begins to develop in the pot and is forced to migrate up the column, the temperature of the vapor temperature probe at the top of the column (if one is mounted there) will climb from ambient to 175 degrees Fahrenheit in less than a minute. Hypothetically, the boiler thermometer may be reading something like 195 F (again, depending on the starting alcohol) at this stage, while the vapor probe may be reading as low as 175 F.

There will always be a significant temperature differential between the two temperatures (boiler and vapor), but this is not a significant issue.

How to Use Temperature During Distilling

Temperature is mostly useful in deciding when to seal the still, when it is about to begin producing, and when it is about to finish generating alcohol. When it comes to producing high-quality product, we continue to believe that adjusting heat according to the amount of product coming out of the still is the most dependable way. Rather than a stream of liquid, a commercial distiller should be looking for consistent, rapid dripping. Also, keep an eye out for evidence. If the proof is extremely low at the start of a run, either there is very little starting alcohol present or the still is operating at an excessively high temperature.

Still Temperature Guide For Making Moonshine – Learn to Moonshine

When distilling alcohol, it is critical to keep track of the temperature of the vapor condensing within your still since this will tell you a great deal about the quality of the product that comes out of your pot or reflux still. Below you will find some common boiling points of common materials found in your household, both in Celsius and Fahrenheit.

  • Acetone is 56.5 degrees Celsius (134 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Methanol (wood alcohol) is 64 degrees Celsius (147 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Ethyl acetate is 77.1 degrees Celsius (171 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Ethanol is 78 degrees Celsius (172 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • 2-Propanol (rubbing alcohol) is 82 degrees Celsius (180 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • 1-Propanol is 97 degrees Celsius (207 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Water is 100 degrees Celsius (212 degrees Fahr

Boiling Temperature – Affected By Concentrations Within The Wash

The boiling temperature of “Pure” Ethanol is shown in the table above to be 172 degrees Fahrenheit. When distilling, however, this is not the case since the Ethanol in the wash is diluted by other products, primarily water, which makes it impossible to distill. This has a direct impact on the boiling temperature of the mash; the greater the amount of water in the solution, the higher the boiling temperature of the mash will be. Install a temperature gauge in your boiler and monitor the temperature of your mash as it boils to see what I’m talking about.

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This is seen in the figure below, which shows the boiling temperature of ethanol as a function of the concentration of ethanol present in your wash.

What’s the Difference between Vapor Temperature and Wash Temperature?

It is measured in the boiler, whereas the vapor temperature is measured in the Head or Column of a still right before the condenser, and the wash temperature is monitored in both places. During the distillation process, the Vapor temperature may be utilized to make cuts in the mixture.

Still Head Temperature For Making Moonshine – When To Start And Finish Collecting

Having a good understanding of when to begin collecting moonshine from your still and when to end is essential. When the temperature of the Head / Column hits 56 degrees Celsius, you may frequently notice some product trickling from the bottom of your still. However, the temperature range in which you want to collect Moonshine is often between 78 and 82 degrees Celsius, and we normally stop collecting the distillate once we start seeing fusels coming out of the distillate.

This is more common when the head temperature is greater than 94 degrees Celsius. Head over to ourDistilling 101page to learn more about the process of making moonshine from start to finish.

Distilling and Temperature Control

When distilling, it is critical to maintain precise temperature control. Don’t take a nap while on the job. Distilling alcohol at home is a fun and rewarding process that demands patience and ability to complete. If you want to be the best at something, you must be aware of several critical variables about temperature. Distillation necessitates the use of a lot of heat, and it’s critical to keep that heat under control so that you may distill safely and produce a high-quality product (known as the “distillate”).

Temperature Safety When Distilling

High temperatures are used in the distillation of alcohol, which is typically around 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Due to the high temperatures that will be present in your distillation environment, it is important that everyone who will be present is aware of how hot your equipment will become. Controlling and monitoring the temperature will assist you in maintaining the safety of your distillery.

How to Monitor Temperature

The temperature of your still fluctuates depending on where you are standing. There are three critical areas on your still where you should keep an eye on the temperature: the pot boiler, the top of the column, and the condenser coil (see diagram). The temperature of the liquid within the pot boiler will tell you how much liquid is boiling in the mash. Continue to raise the temperature, aiming to keep it between 175 and 195 degrees Fahrenheit for as long as feasible. When the temperature hits 212 degrees Fahrenheit, turn off the heat.

  • Keep an eye on this temperature, keeping an eye out for anything beyond 180 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • When working with a big column still, it is extremely vital to employ a built-in thermometer at the top of the column.
  • Cooling the coil with cold running water or ice packs should be done to keep it cool to the touch.
  • If the condenser coil ever becomes hot to the touch, immediately stop the distillation process.

Why is Distilling Temperature Important?

As you begin your run, the seams of your still will get tighter due to the natural expansion of the metal caused by the heat.

When the temperature hits roughly 100 degrees Fahrenheit, prepare your own flour paste so that you can easily seal the seams with it when the temperature rises. Unless you close the seams of the still quickly, the metal will burn both your fingers and the dough if you wait too long.

2: Tells you when to make your cuts

A variety of liquids boil at a variety of temperatures: while pure ethanol has a boiling point of 174 degrees Fahrenheit, there are additional trace components that boil at slightly lower or higher temperatures than ethanol. By adjusting the temperature of your still, you may gather trace elements in different cuts during your production process. The temperature of the alcohol vapor is used by experienced distillers to create cuts, which is the process of partitioning the distillate into sections.

3: Tells you when your run is ending

Water boils at a greater temperature than alcohol, and when the alcohol evaporates from the pot, there is more water being cooked in the pot overall. To summarize: The more water that boils into steam during your still’s final phases of operation, the longer you run your still and the hotter it gets. There is no need to allow the temperature to rise over 212 degrees Fahrenheit, because it is the temperature at which water boils. When the temperature reaches 205-207 degrees, many distillers will stop their run because they know that the final 10 percent or so of alcohol left in the mash will not be worth it.

4: Tells you about your distillate quality

As a general rule, the longer you run your distillation at temperatures between 175 and 195 degrees Fahrenheit, the more time you will have to produce a substantial volume of distillate of good quality. Without exception, this temperature range generates the purest ethanol, and it will often be the “hearts” cut of your alcohol run, unless there are certain deviations or exceptions.

Tips for Temperature Control:

  1. Make use of a number of thermometers. The most accurate information comes from monitoring both the boiling temperature within the still’s pot and the temperature at the top of the still’s column. Never use a thermometer that is powered by laser (or infrared). They can bounce off highly polished surfaces (such as copper) and provide erroneous readings, and they also only monitor the surface temperature of the still, not the inside temperature of the vessel. Insulated gloves should be used. Never attempt to grip or make modifications to hot metal without first ensuring that you are safe.

When you keep track of your still’s temperature along with other pertinent information such as your mash recipe, your still’s model number, the distillate’s description and other pertinent information about the run, you can replicate batches that were outstanding and avoid repeating costly mistakes in the future. Make the most of your moonshine still by getting the most out of it every time. Jim Thomas contributed to this article. Photograph courtesy of Eli Christman

Controlling Your Heat and Boiler Temperature vs. Vaporization

It is important to monitor the temperature of your still in addition to documenting the mash recipe, the kind of still, a description of the distillate, and other facts about the run. This will allow you to replicate batches that were great and prevent repeating errors in the future. Utilize your moonshine still to its full potential on every occasion. Jim Thomas wrote the article. Eli Christman is the photographer who took this photograph.

Boiler Temperature vs. Speed of Vaporization

Phase Diagram for Ethanol Consequently, let’s begin at the beginning. To boil your mash, you want to take advantage of the fact that alcohol boils at a lower temperature than water (and a lot of other chemicals that you don’t want in your final distillate), resulting in something with a greater alcohol by volume (ABV). It is entirely dependent on the alcohol distillation temperature that the mash will boil at, and based on this ABV, the mash will boil somewhere between the boiling points of ethanol (173 F) and water (212 F), unless you are 9000 ft above sea level like we are, in which case it will boil somewhere in the middle.

  • The lower your alcohol by volume (ABV) is, the closer your temperature will be near 212 degrees.
  • Please refer to the chart on the right for an illustration of this, and feel free to print it for future reference on the suggested boiler temperature range!
  • In most cases, increasing the temperature of your boiler will not result in an increase in this temperature (unless your mash has not yet begun to boil).
  • If you still don’t believe me, consider the process of boiling a pot of water on the stove.
  • Once it reaches that temperature, it begins to boil, but it does not rise over 212 degrees Fahrenheit.

Does that make sense? It is for this reason that you must be able to regulate your heat input; you must be able to regulate the rate at which the vapors flow up your column or into the still head.. In the case of a pot still, the explanation is slightly different than in the case of a reflux still.

Why you need to control the rate of vaporization

The rate of vaporization must be controlled in a pot still in order to avoid pushing vapors through the system at such a rapid pace that the condenser cannot condense it all back into a liquid. When this occurs, you will have vapor coming out of the end of your still, which you should already be aware is quite dangerous! In the case of a heat source that cannot physically provide too much heat for your condenser, you will not be required to limit the rate at which the water comes to a boil. For example, our 1500W heating elements may be utilized without the need of a controller since our condensers are capable of condensing all of the vapors that a 1500W element will create, allowing the element to be used without a controller (as long as your water is cold enough).

In the event that you insert a 4500W or 5500W heating element into an all-purpose reflux still, a couple of things are likely to occur, among them: First and foremost, you would run into the same difficulty as with the pot still: the condenser would not be able to manage all of the vapor, resulting in the blowout of the still’s tail end.

Due to the lack of reflux in the column, the vapor exchange in all of your column’s packing is inhibited, and the “blown” vapor will typically pool on top of your column’s packing until it reaches the lyne arm (at which point the clear distillate will surge out every once in a while).

Ways to control your heat source

First and foremost, if you haven’t already, watch our video on the advantages and disadvantages of electric versus gas heat sources. Most novices begin with a propane burner setup since it is less expensive, and this is perfectly OK. However, one of the most common issues we have with propane burners is that they have difficulty operating at a low enough temperature to produce a slow, continuous trickle of distillate from your column. Their built-in venturi helps to draw in new air for combustion, but when you set the still down this low, the venturi no longer functions effectively, causing the flame to burn yellow instead of blue (and to deposit a thick layer of soot on the bottom of the boiler) owing to a lack of oxygen.

Thermostat controllers are the first to be discussed since they are the ones that are most frequently mishandled.

As previously stated, the temperature of the boiling wash is controlled by the ABV in the wash, not by the heat source you are using.

Even if you manage to dial it in to the exact temperature at which the wash will boil, it will cycle on and off, creating surges of distillate that will cause havoc with the way a reflux still runs, leading it to malfunction.

It is primarily for this reason that thermostat controllers are useful: they allow you to bring the still up to almost-boiling temperature and maintain it there until you return to complete the run, or they allow you to shut the still down once it reaches a temperature that indicates you are into your tails.

  1. These controls are not perfect, just as the thermostat controls are not perfect.
  2. However, they do have the advantage of being programmable.
  3. Even though these relays are rather sophisticated, I’ll make an attempt to explain them.
  4. Because we are using 60 Hz electricity, we are essentially cycling the heating element on and off 60 times per second without having to actually turn on and off the SSR 60 times.
  5. It is vital to remember, however, that as you boil the ethanol out of your wash, the amount of energy required to generate the same column of vapor increases (since the water content is increased and water takes more energy to vaporize than ethanol).

Sorry for dumping so much information on you all at once, but I hope it was helpful in clearing some things out for you. Let us know if you have any further questions in the comments section below!

Using a Pot Still: Where To Make Your Cuts

Because there is a Quick and Dirty Cheat Sheet at the bottom of this blog, if you need to get anything done quickly, just scroll down until you reach the bottom of this page. Just keep in mind that manufacturing moonshine with a pot still is a skill that will only improve with time and experience. The temperatures listed here are excellent guides, but the more you distill, the better you’ll be able to determine when to make your cuts depending on your own personal preferences in flavor and scent.

A cut is essentially the point at which you begin and end the process of collecting your distillate.

It is also beneficial to name and number each jar because this will assist you at the end of the procedure when you are combining the ingredients together.


The first substance to emerge from the still is the undesirable substance. Foreshots include methanol and other toxins that you do not want to be present in your finished goods. Not only do foreshots contain relatively little ethanol, but they’re also the source of the headache you experience when you’re hungover, as previously stated. In other words, this is what you want to collect—and then toss away. To collect the foreshots, you’ll need to wait until your vapor temperature hits around 175°F (80°C), and Rick suggests collecting at least 4oz each 5 gallon of distillate that you’re distilling.

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Once again, this is the bare minimum that we propose for collection and disposal.


The heads are the next step, which you may keep for mixing or re-distilling at a later time. When the heads begin to appear, the vapor temperature will be more than 175°F (80°C), and this will continue until the vapor temperature is around 196°F (91°C). Heads are normally approximately 80 percent abv (160 proof) or higher in alcohol concentration. They contain a lot of evidence, but they’re not nearly as smooth as the hearts, which will be served next.


This is where the action is at its most effective. Hearts, also known as your Middle Run, start off at roughly 80 percent alcohol by volume (160 proof) before dropping to 60-65 percent alcohol by volume, or even 40 percent alcohol by volume if you want it stronger.

Hearts provide you with the fresh flavor you’re seeking for. You’ll begin collecting hearts when the vapor temperature is around 196°F (91°C) and end when the vapor temperature is approximately 203°F (95°C).


In distillation, tails are the last component of the distillate, consisting of everything that comes out after the temperature of the vapor rises to 203 degrees Fahrenheit (95 degrees Celsius) – 207 degrees Fahrenheit (98 degrees Celsius) The use of tails for blending is popular, although Rick does not suggest it for palatable alcohol owing to the combination of lower alcohol level and increased congener content in tails used “as-is.” It is possible, however, to combine the tails with the heads that aren’t being used and re-distill the mixture to produce neutral spirits.

Again, the temperatures indicated here are excellent guides for beginners, but the more you distill, the more you’ll be able to choose when to make your cuts depending on your own personal preferences in flavor and scent.

More Distilling Info For Beginners

More articles containing tried-and-true advice may be found here. Take a peek if you have the luxury of leisure to go into the rabbit hole. Alternatively, you may view our full blog by clicking here.

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.


  1. Start by placing your mash pot on a heat source and filling it with 5 liters of water
  2. 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!

Preheat the mash pot on the stovetop over medium heat and add 5 liters of water; Bring water to a temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. After reaching 165 degrees Fahrenheit, turn off the heat and whisk in 8.5 pounds of flaked corn maize right away. Continually stir the mixture for seven minutes. In order to reach 152 degrees Fahrenheit, check the temperature every five minutes and stir the liquid for 30 seconds; Add 1.5 pounds of Crushed Malted Barley when the mixture has cooled to 152 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • It takes many hours for this process to complete on its own, however the addition of an immersion chiller can substantially shorten this time frame.
  • Fill two separate containers halfway with the mixture and dump it back and forth for five minutes.
  • The ingredients to make your own may be found in our store, as well as entire kits.
  • Pouring is also made easier with a spigot.
  • PH Meter (Advanced)
  • Siphon
  • 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

  • Discard any solid material or sediment that remains after squeezing the mash water out of the combination. Transfer the mash water to a container for pH adjustment. After that, it’s advised that you strain the water through a cheesecloth. The presence of solid matter in your mash water might result in headaches that you’d prefer not have. (Advanced) When adding gypsum to mash water, some distillers may use 2 teaspoons per gallon of mash water. The pH of their mash water is then determined. The pH ranges from 5.8 to 6.0, which is considered optimal. Bring the pH of the water down with citric acid while raising it with calcium carbonate

You did an excellent job! You’ve finished the hard work of producing mash water for your moonshine! Congratulations! Finally, distillation and separation of all of the alcohol content into a purified form are required. Similarly to the process of making mash, distilling is both an art and a science. Exercising your distilling skills is the most effective way to improve. We recommend that you take notes throughout the process 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 also carry high-quality supplies, such as high-quality grains and a replacement carbon filter, among other things.

Prepping Your Still

Maintaining a consistent level of preparation for your still is essential. However, even if you cleaned and let your still to sit for a bit after your last run, it is still advised that you clean it before transferring your mash water. This is especially true for copper stills that have a salt deposit on their surfaces. If you want to include packing in your column, now is the time. Fill your column with the amount of copper packing that is appropriate for your particular arrangement and use it as a filter.

Last but not least, it’s time to fill the still with your mash water.

If you want to avoid including solid material in your mash water, you may use a cheesecloth or an auto-siphon to transport it into your still. The goal here is to reduce the amount of sediment in your mash water to as near to zero as you possibly can.

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.

Collecting Foreshots

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.

Collecting Heads

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.

Collecting Hearts

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.

Collecting Tails

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. You can either store your tails aside for later distillation or discard them completely.


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.

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  • 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.

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Making Moonshine

Making Moonshine Isn’t That Difficult After All Jason Stone contributed to this article. Disclaimer: The material contained in this guide is intended only for general informational purposes. The material contained in this handbook is not intended to be legal advice. Whiskey Still Co. makes no representation or warranty that the information is complete or correct in all respects. In no event will Whiskey Still Co. be liable for any mistakes, omissions, or inaccuracies contained in this guide, or for any outcomes obtained as a consequence of the use of the information contained herein.

  1. nor any of its affiliates shall be liable in any way for any direct, indirect, special, or consequential damages or losses of any kind that may result from the use of this guide or the product.
  2. shall not be liable for any losses that you may sustain as a result of your inappropriate use of the product, regardless of the cause.
  3. A million and one different ways to go about it, and almost all of them are accurate in their own way.
  4. The goal of this tutorial is to assist a total newbie moonshiner in successfully producing their first batch of moonshine from beginning to end.
  5. Whether you are interested in whiskey, rum, vodka, or gin, there are many wonderful individuals, websites, and publications available that are chock full of useful knowledge about anything you are interested in learning about.
  6. Water, sugar, and yeast are the only three components in this recipe, to put it simply.
  7. The distillation process is based on the following principle: once you have a solution of water and alcohol, you must separate them.
You might be interested:  Gallon Of Mess Makes How Mich Moonshine?

It is theoretically possible that when the temperature of a water-alcohol combination is raised to 174°F (79°C), the alcohol will begin to boil out, but the water will remain too chilly to boil.

Dangers Alcohol flammability:Alcohol is very flammable, and when vaporized, it has the potential to cause an explosion.

Although distillation may be carried out inside, it is not recommended unless you have prior knowledge in the process.

Optic nerve injury caused by methanol: Methanol is a lethal toxin, and even low levels of exposure can induce optic nerve damage (blindness).

While doing so as a precaution and to improve the flavor of your goods is not uncommon, it is recommended that you do so.

Legality: Unless you have the right official authority, distilling alcohol, even for personal consumption, is prohibited (both state and federal).

If you choose to distill unlawfully, you should be aware that if you are found, you may face fines and/or imprisonment as a result of your actions.

If you just want to create 5 or 20 gallons, you may simply half or double the ingredients in the recipe.

If you have a Costco or Sam’s Club nearby, shopping in bulk can save you a lot of money.

There are a couple of choices accessible in this situation.

Another option is to look for old filling buckets that are being given away or sold by local doughnut businesses; they are food quality and incredibly inexpensive; try to find them in 5 gallon quantities.

*Please keep in mind that when producing a 10 gallon mash, mixing is considerably simpler in a container that can hold the entire 10 gallons; but, lifting and transferring the container becomes a massive undertaking.

Making the mash is as follows: 1.Boil approximately 2.5 pounds of potatoes until tender, then mash thoroughly.

Pour hot water into the fermenter until it is half full; any water that you can drink is OK for this recipe, even tap water.

Stir until the powder is completely dissolved.

Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved.

Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved.

7.Add enough water to fill the tank to 9 gallons.

A temperature range of 70–90°F (21–32 °C) is OK, but do not exceed 95°F (35°C) or you will kill your yeast.

Stir until the powder is completely dissolved.

You want to make it easy for carbon dioxide gas to exit while also preventing pests from getting in.

11.The mash should begin to fizz or bubble within the first 24 to 48 hours of preparation.

13.Distillery as soon as possible (within 3 days).

The technique begins with a thorough cleaning of the still with hot, soapy water in order to remove any remaining residue.

A vinegar run is the name given to the second phase.

a 1 gallon mix for a 5 gallon still).

It may be necessary to repeat this procedure if the liquid that comes out of the condenser does not appear to be completely clear.

There are a variety of factors that might contribute to discolouration and off-tastes in food.

All have been shown to be non-toxic, however they should be eliminated before preparing a batch of drinking water.

The sacrifice run is the penultimate cleaning step before the final cleaning process.

You will proceed in the same manner as if you were making a drinking run, but you will discard your whole first batch of moonshine in the process.

This is also regarded a rite of passage for young distillers, and it is the all-important christening of the still, for reasons that are not scientific in nature.

2.Never consume alcohol while distilling.

It is possible that this will result in overpressure and an explosion.

It is always preferable to distill in the open air.

2.Pour in the mash, taking care not to allow any sediments that have accumulated at the bottom of the container to enter the still, since this might generate off-flavors in the finished product.

3.Seal the onion top in place with a rubber band.

Another method is to cover the bottom of the onion head with plumber’s Teflon tape before inserting it into the bottom half of the still, as seen in the photo.

5.Keep the condenser at a comfortable temperature.

It’s as simple as inserting the supply line into the condenser and either allowing it to overflow naturally or directing the flow to a kitchen sink or flower garden.

Keep in mind that, while certain plastics are suitable for usage, the majority are not capable of withstanding high quantities of alcohol in a safe manner.

The Runner’s Run Heat the mash until you can hear it bubbling, then reduce the heat to a low setting.

After reaching this position, reduce the heat to half its previous setting and keep an eye on the temperature indicator.

Drips, as well as broken or intermittent streams, are acceptable; nevertheless, a continual stream indicates that the temperature is too high.

When you get your product as near to 173.3°F (78.5°C) as possible, it will be more pure, but it will take longer to distill and will have less flavor.

When you go for your first run, divide the difference in half and aim for 190-194°F (88-90°C) by increasing or decreasing the heat.

Fourth, keep an eye out for leaks.

If any are discovered, just seal the holes with the flour-water mixture, taking care not to burn yourself on the hot vapor that is escaping.

Water that is cold or cool is ideal; water that is lukewarm is a signal that it needs to be colder.

Sixth, you will observe that if you have your heat adjusted appropriately, you will require very little tweaking to bring the run to an end.

At the conclusion of your run, you will note that the temperature of your onion top will quickly drop, as will the amount of moonshine pouring out of the condenser.

This will occur regardless of whether or not the heat is turned on.

7.After the still and mash have been allowed to cool, discard the mash.

8-Wash with dish soap and hot water, then dry with a towel immediately after washing.

A short rinse with water might sufficient if you were planned on running another batch immediately after this one.

I’m simply going to go through a handful of the more prevalent ones right now.

The major goal of this is to increase the amount of alcoholic beverages.

Re-distilling: This is the process of enhancing the proof of a moonshine that has previously been distilled.

Unfortunately, it also destroys the tastes that are pleasant to the palate.

It is just the process of adding tastes and/or sugar into a jar of moonshine in order to improve the taste.

Using a coffee filter, strain the mixture after it has been sitting for a few weeks to remove the debris.

It is part of the procedure that it is held in a charred-oak barrel for a predetermined period of time after it has been distilled.

As the moonshine ages and darkens in color, it will eventually transform into a very basic whiskey.

Do you require further information?

The Alaskan Bootlegger’s Bible, written by Leon W. Kania, is a reference book for bootleggers in Alaska. Online: Wishing you success and happy distillation! -Jason Stone, author

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Corn whiskey, corn liquor, hooch, rotgut, stump, or white whiskey are all acceptable names for this spirit. Whatever you choose to name it, you’ll agree that moonshine is a drink that is enjoyed and drank all over the world. However, the issue remains as to how this widely consumed alcoholic beverage is created. Continue reading if you enjoy moonshine and would want to learn how to create moonshine. When it comes to manufacturing your own mash moonshine recipe at home, this comprehensive guide will walk you through all of the basic stages and safeguards you need to follow to ensure a successful outcome.

Remember to check your local laws and regulations regarding the production of alcoholic beverages.

All you need to know about How to make Moonshine

Are you prepared to get started and follow the simple steps? Great! Let’s take a look at the steps involved in manufacturing homemade moonshine whiskey.

Step 1: Choosing Your Preferred Type of Mash

When attempting to manufacture a batch of moonshine at home, there are several different types of mashes from which to pick. A distillers yeast, granulated sugar, and water are the three primary components in this recipe, in that order. Brewer’s yeast is a microbe that lives in water and eats sugar, producing alcohol and carbon dioxide as waste (byproducts) in the process. You’ll discover how to make the famous corn mash whiskey and moonshine ingredients from our tutorial in this section.

Step 2: Making Moonshine Mash

  • Ingredients: Water (5 gallons), flaked corn maize (8.5 pounds), crushed malt barley (1.5 pounds), yeast, fermentation bucket, mash pot, heat source, long spoon, and thermometer


  1. Put the mash pot on the stovetop and fill it with 5 liters of water. Allow the temperature to rise to approximately 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature should reach 165 degrees before turning off the heat and beginning to mix in the flaked corn maize right away. Continuing to stir regularly for around 7 minutes at this reduced temperature is recommended. After every five minutes, stir the liquid for approximately 30 seconds to ensure that the temperature decreases to approximately 152 degrees. As soon as the temperature has reduced to 152 degrees, add the malted barley and continue to stir constantly. To guarantee that the temperature reduces to roughly 70 degrees after every 20 minutes, stir the liquid for approximately 30 seconds every 20 minutes. It is crucial to know that this process might take many hours to complete
  2. Thus, plan accordingly. The yeast should be added after the temperature has reached 70 degrees. In order to aerate the mixture, pour it from one container to another for approximately five minutes.

Fill the fermenting bucket halfway with the mixture.

Step 3: Fermentation and Straining Process of making Moonshine

  • Citric acid
  • Cheesecloth
  • Siphon
  • PH meter
  • Hydrometer
  • And other supplies.


Allow the mash to ferment at room temperature for approximately 7 to 15 days. Check the gravity of the fermented product at the beginning and conclusion of the fermentation process using your hydrometer.


Remove the mash water from the combination with your siphon while ensuring that you leave all of the sediments behind. Cheese cloth should be used to filter the mash water. Check the pH of your mash water to make sure it’s alkaline (it should be 5.8 to 6.0). If necessary, increase the pH with calcium carbonate and reduce it with citric acid to get the desired result.

Step 4: Distillation process

What You’ll Require

  • Fermented mash water
  • A moonshine still
  • Copper piping or tube
  • Column packing
  • And cleaning chemicals are all options.

Prep the Still for Moonshine

Clean your moonshine still thoroughly before using it to guarantee that no dirt or dust particles wind up in your booze. Different stills operate in a variety of ways and come with a variety of accessories. Copper stills may be operated in a number of various ways as well. If your moonshine still includes a cooling unit, make sure it’s set up in such a manner that cold water is being fed into and exiting it. In addition, you must ensure that your column packing is appropriately configured. After you’ve set up your still, strained your mash, and mixed it all together, you’re ready to go on to the next stage.

  1. Turn on the heat source if necessary. It is recommended that you use a temperature of 150 degrees. At the same time, make sure to turn on the water. Increase the temperature until you begin to notice drips pouring out of the faucet
  2. Reducing the heat when the distillate is pouring 3 to 5 drips per second is a good idea.

Once you observe pure alcohol erupting from the bottle, you must pay close attention to the next step.

In this procedure, it is actually what distinguishes the various distillates from one another.

Step 5: Collecting Your Moonshine

If you are collecting the drips that come out of the still, be sure you are doing so in a glass container. The foreshots are the initial five percent of your distillate that you distill. Methanol is included in this product. It is toxic and should not be consumed since it can result in blindness. The remaining 30% is referred to as heads. This product also includes trace amounts of methanol and other potentially dangerous chemicals, albeit in minute amounts. As a result, this product should also not be consumed in any form.

The hearts make up the remaining 30% of the body.

Tails are the last portion of the distillate to be produced.

It has an oily texture and a slick feel to it when touched with your fingertips.

You now know How to Make Moonshine

And there you have it, the finished product! Hopefully, you have learnt how to distill alcohol and how to make moonshine, and you have created a wonderful batch of alcoholic cocktails or alcoholic beverages to share with your friends and family. Using your distillation spirit responsibly is important!

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