Categories Moonshine

What Temp Do You Need To Work Off Mash For Making Moonshine? (Question)

Heat 5 gallons of mash water up to 165F. Turn off heat when target temperature is reached and stir in the 8.5 pounds of corn. Stir the mash continuously for about 5 minutes then stir for a few seconds every five minutes until the temperature drops to 152F. Once the target temp is met, stir in the malted barley.

How long do you stir the mash to make moonshine?

  • Stir the mash continuously for about 5 minutes then stir for a few seconds every five minutes until the temperature drops to 152F. Once the target temp is met, stir in the malted barley. Cover and leave it be for about 90 minutes, uncovering only to stir every 15 minutes or so.


What temperature does mash turn into moonshine?

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.

How warm does it need to be for mash to ferment?

The correct temperature for infusion mashing is between 63 and 70 ºC (145 and 158 Fahrenheit). Mash temperatures at the lower end of this range produce more fermentable sugar and stronger beers. Higher temperatures produce more non-fermentable sugars and sweeter, fuller-bodied beers.

What temperature do you run moonshine?

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. These chemicals are poisonous.

What temperature do you add yeast to moonshine mash?

Optimal temperature would be about 77 degrees Fahrenheit. At temperatures higher than 77 degrees Fahrenheit, the yeast are going to produce more byproducts, giving your final distillate a slightly funkier flavor. So, as you can see, turbo yeast mashes are very easy and simple to do.

What temperature do you distill water at?

Distilled water usually has some of the mineral impurities removed and so you would expect it to boil at exactly 100 degrees C.

How much head do you throw away when distilling?

Always discard the foreshots — they make up around 5% or less of the product collected during a run. Throw out the first 30 ml on a 1 gallon run, the first 150 ml on a 5 gallon run, or the first 300 ml on a 10 gallon run. Heads come off of the still directly after the foreshots. Simply put, they taste and smell bad.

What happens if you mash at higher temperature?

Why your mash temp matters First, know that the normal mashing temperature range is 145 – 158F (63 – 70C). In general, mashing at the higher end of that range produces longer sugars which are harder for the yeast to eat. More sugar will be left over after fermentation resulting in a more full-bodied beer.

What is the best temperature for fermentation?

The optimum temperature range for yeast fermentation is between 90˚F-95˚F (32˚C-35˚C). Every degree above this range depresses fermentation. While elevated temperature is problematic in all phases of ethanol production, it is specifically hazardous during the later stages of fermentation.

Whats the lowest temp you can mash at?

By mashing low will give you more fermentable sugars, leaving the beer thin and dry. Leave the mash temp too low ( below 140 °F ) for too long, then you run the risk of ending up with a “watery” beer that does not taste good.

What temperature does methanol boil?

For the instant gratification seekers in the crowd, here’s the short answer: A 1 gallon run will yield 3-6 cups of alcohol. A 5 gallon run will yield 1-2 gallons of alcohol. A 8 gallon run will yield 1.5-3 gallons of alcohol.

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.

Should I stir my mash while fermenting?

Stir the Mash Stirring helps even out the temperature in a mash and mixes the liquids and solids more thoroughly. If you can manage it, you should always stir your mash at least a few times during the saccharification rest.

How much yeast do I add to 5 gallons of mash?

Distillers Yeast If there are no directions we suggest 1 tablespoon of yeast per 5 gallons of mash.

How much sugar do I need for 5 gallons of mash?

For example, for every 1 gallon of water, you would use 1 pound of sugar, and 1 pound of corn meal. So for a 5 gallon mash (which is recommended for your first batches of moonshine) you would use 5 gallons of water, 5 pounds of corn meal, and 5 pounds of sugar.

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. However, this is only partially accurate. 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.

  • Rather of being 100 percent alcohol (ethanol), it’s more likely to be 90 percent water.
  • A wash with a starting alcohol concentration of 10 percent ethanol will not boil anywhere near 174 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • 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.
  • 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.

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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.

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!


  • Materials:


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. Calculate the amount of alcohol that was created using a formula. 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 also carry high-quality supplies, such as high-quality grains and a new 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.

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.

Next, turn your heat source up to its maximum setting until your still begins to produce. Keep track of how fast your drips are increasing in pace until you reach 3 to 5 drips per second. As soon as you’ve reached this pace, turn the heat down to keep it there (typically on the “medium” setting).

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’s likely that the foreshots will account for roughly 5% of your total production time. In your mash water, these include the earliest-evaporating alcohols, which should never be consumed. Foreshots may contain methanol, and they should never be ingested in any quantity. Some of the side effects of methanol include becoming blind. Separate and discard the foreshots, which should be kept in their own container.

Collecting Hearts

This is the good stuff, which is primarily composed of ethanol. The following approximately 30 percent of your total production is comprised of the hearts. You should be able to smell the harsh, solvent-like scent that was present during the heads at this stage. The flavor of corn mash moonshine should now be smooth and sweet, as it should have been previously. This is the level at which ability and experience are most important. It takes a certain amount of skill to keep your hearts well-isolated while simultaneously increasing their output.

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.


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.

Please let us know what you think of this tutorial by leaving a comment or giving it a star rating in the section provided below. The most recent update was made on October 25, 2021.

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How to Make the Smoothest Mash Recipe for Moonshine

I’ve been producing moonshine for more than two decades and have experimented with a variety of formulas and measuring techniques. In spite of the fact that I have tried with every sort of ingredient possible, the smoothest mash I have ever prepared is so basic that it will take your breath away. The following dish is also suitable for those who are new to cooking. This recipe does not rely on complicated components to break down starch chains into sugars, as is the case with many others. This dish is quite easy to make.

The key weapon is sweet feed, as you may have guessed.


Why is the mash recipe so important?

My moonshine-making experience spans over 20 years, during which time I’ve experimented with a variety of different formulas and proportions. My experiments have included nearly every sort of ingredient possible, but the secret to the smoothest mash I have ever created is so easy that you will be surprised. This dish is also suitable for those who are new to cooking. For the starch chains to be broken down into sugars in this recipe, you do not need any complicated components. Unlike other recipes, this one is quite easy to prepare.

The secret weapon is sweet feed, which you can find out here.

Check out my podcast where I talk about how to manufacture moonshine from start to finish, as well as how to market it!

Smoothest Mash Recipe Ingredients

  • I’ve been producing moonshine for more than two decades and have experimented with several formulas and quantities. In spite of the fact that I have tried with every sort of ingredient possible, the smoothest mash I have ever created is so easy that it will astound you. If you’re a novice cook, this dish is also ideal for you. This recipe does not rely on complicated components to break down starch chains into sugars, as is the case with most. This recipe is quite straightforward. It simply takes two ingredients (excluding the sugar and yeast) to make the smoothest whiskey run you’ve ever had. The secret weapon is sweet feed, which you can find out more about here. In this post, I share my favorite novice mash recipe, as well as easy-to-follow step-by-step directions on how to create moonshine, as well as some product recommendations. Check out my podcast where I talk about how to manufacture moonshine from start to finish, as well as how to market it.

Moonshine Batch Sizing Table

Gallons Grains (gallons) Yeast (Tbsp) Sugar (lbs)
30 5 6 25
20 3.5 4 16
10 2 2 8
5 1 1 4
2.5 .5 .5 2

Step-By-Step Guide To Making Moonshine

I’ve been producing moonshine for more than two decades and have experimented with a variety of formulas and proportions. Despite the fact that I have tested with every sort of ingredient possible, the smoothest mash I have ever prepared is so easy that it will amaze you. If you’re a newbie, this dish is also ideal for you. This recipe does not rely on complicated components to break down starch strands into sugars. This dish is quite simple to prepare. It simply takes two ingredients (not including the sugar and yeast) to make the smoothest whiskey run you’ve ever had.

In this post, I share my favorite novice mash recipe, as well as easy-to-follow step-by-step directions on how to produce moonshine, as well as product suggestions.

Step Two: Mix the Mash

Pour the cracked grains into a 30-gallon container and whisk in 25 pounds of sugar until well combined. When the sugar has completely dissolved, add 15 to 20 gallons of cold water at a time until the mash mix reaches a total volume of 30 gallons (by volume). Sweet feed and yeast pack are added to chopped corn.

After hearing from a number of my readers that it can be difficult to get unpelletized sweet feed for this recipe, I developed an ingredients package that you can purchase that has everything you need to mash a 10 gallon batch. Take a look over there.

Step Three: Add the Yeast

When the temperature of the mash has cooled to the temperature advised by the yeast manufacturer, you can proceed to add the yeast to it. I’ve discovered that 1 tablespoon of yeast per 5 gallons of mash produces satisfactory results. The greatest results will be obtained with distiller’s yeast. I’ve discovered that the Red Star brand works really well and is extremely reasonably priced. Red Star Yeast is difficult to come by in your area, but you can order it from Amazonhere.

Step Four: Let the Mash Ferment

All that remains is for you to wait. Allow for approximately a week for the mash to do its thing. It is finished until you can no longer see the bubbling that is created by the yeast as it releases carbon dioxide from the mash. Once the fermentation process is complete, filter the liquid to remove the spent particles and transfer the liquid to your still for further processing. The wash is the name given to the last liquid. The only thing you want to do is put the wash into the still. That’s all there is to it!

In case you’re interested in making your own DIY project on a budget, I’ve created a two-part video lesson that you can watch: A prefabricated still kit for home usage, like as this one from Vanell, is also available on Amazon.


I hope you have liked this post and that you will find the recipe to be simple and enjoyable to prepare! You will thoroughly love the exceptionally smooth whiskey that is produced by this mash. Just keep in mind that moonshine production is both an art and a science, and your first batch will almost certainly not be flawless, and your second batch will almost certainly not be either. Nonetheless, if you persist with it and master the intricacies of your still, you will soon become an expert in the art of moonshining production!

Good luck with your stilling!

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?

In various parts of your still, the temperature varies. When it comes to temperature monitoring in a still, there are three critical areas to pay attention to: the kettle, the column’s summit, and the condenser coil. Using the temperature inside the pot boiler, you can find out how much liquid is boiling in the mash. Maintain a temperature range of 175 – 195 degrees Fahrenheit for as long as feasible by raising the temperature. When the temperature hits 212 degrees Fahrenheit, turn off the heat source.

Keep an eye on this temperature, keeping an eye out for anything higher than 180 degrees F.

Using a built-in thermometer at the top of the column is very useful when working with a long column.

Cooling the coil with cold running water or ice packs should be done to keep it comfortable to touch.

It is imperative to stop distilling if the condenser coil ever becomes hot to the touch. A constant drip of moonshine should flow from the condenser coil when all of the aspects of your temperature control come together – not a torrent, but a quantity that is consistent, rapid, and uninterrupted.

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

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 cycle. Depending on the temperature of the alcohol vapor, experienced distillers may typically create cuts, dividing the distillate into parts.

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.
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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

Making Moonshine

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.

Be the First to Share

Moonshine (also known as corn whiskey) is an alcoholic beverage with strong historical roots, particularly in American history, therefore it stands to reason that people would and should be knowledgeable about how to manufacture their own moonshine. When it comes to moonshine, if you are unaware of what it is precisely, please feel free to read this page, where you can gain some basic background and facts about the beverage. When people think about homemade alcohol, the word “moonshine” is frequently the first thing that comes to their minds.

Anyone interested in learning how to produce homemade alcohol, home distilling, or home liquor production should be familiar with how to prepare this legendary cocktail. And now that we have established the general procedure for creating moonshine, let’s get down to business.

Step 1: Understanding the ProcessBasic Terms

Making moonshine involves three basic processes:1) preparing the mash; 2) fermenting the mash; and 3) distilling the mash. We will go over each of these processes in more detail later on, but first, let’s go over a few quick and basic terms related to moonshine:1) mash; 2) fermentation; and 3) distillation.

  • Mash is the material that is created, which is subsequently fermented and distilled to produce moonshine
  • It is also known as mash whiskey. a still is a piece of equipment in which the mash is distilled, where the mash is boiled and then condensed to produce the liquid
  • Distillation takes place in the still, and it is this process that transforms the low-alcohol mash into high-alcohol moonshine. *For further information about distillation, please see this page.
  • Fermentation is the process of turning a mash into an alcoholic beverage by converting the carbohydrates in the mash into alcohol. This is a natural occurrence
  • There is nothing to fear.

Step 2: The IngredientsEquipment

While the components used to manufacture a moonshine mash might range significantly from one another, there are hundreds of distinct varieties and tastes of moonshine available, each with its own unique formula. However, one thing that is consistent throughout all moonshine ingredients is the requirement for yeast, a nutrition (typically grain or sugar), and water. Many recipes also include a malted component, such as barley or rye, which is common in beer. The following instructions will teach you how to manufacture a simple corn-based mash that will provide an authentic form of moonshine liqueur.

  • In order to manufacture moonshine, the materials must be mixed together in a certain manner. There are many various varieties and tastes of moonshine, each with its own set of instructions. The presence of yeast, a nutrition (typically grain or sugar), and water is a constant among all moonshine components, though. A malted component, such as barley or rye, is used in many recipes as well. The following instructions will teach you how to manufacture a simple corn-based mash that will provide an authentic form of moonshines. It is necessary to have the following materials.

You will require a still to make moonshine, or any other type of liquor for that matter; it is the single most critical component of the process. If you want to create numerous batches of moonshine or other homemade whiskey, I HIGHLY suggest investing in a still; believe me when I say that it will save you a great deal of time, work, misery, and money. It is feasible to construct a still; however, a still constructed incorrectly will be useless and even harmful. Please see this page for further information on the pros and cons of purchasing vs renting a still.

  • An airlock
  • A container for fermentation
  • A heavy-bottomed metal saucepan for boiling your potatoes
  • A thermometer with an adhesive strip (optional, but useful)

Step 3: The Recipe

In this lesson, we’ll be utilizing a recipe that I refer to as the “1 for 1 recipe.” This recipe creates a normal moonshine corn whiskey, and the formula is really simple to learn. It is referred as as the 1 for 1 because all of the components are used in a one-to-one proportion. One gallon of water, for example, would require one pound of sugar and one pound of maize meal to be substituted. Using this formula, you would need 5 gallon of water, 5 pounds of maize meal, and 5 pounds of sugar to make a 5-gallon mash (which is suggested for your first few batches of moonshine).

Moonshine is more of an art than a science, and it takes time and patience to perfect.

Step 4: Making the Mash

Here is where we will really start putting the components together and putting the moonshine together for the first time. Making this moonshine mash is not difficult or time-consuming; all you need to do is the following:

  1. Preparing the water: Bring the water to a mild temperature, around 90-100 degrees Fahrenheit. Add the corn meal to the water and stir for a couple of minutes (if you’re doing this while the heat is still on, make sure it’s lukewarm and swirl the bottom well to avoid burning any of the cornmeal)
  2. Add the sugar to the mashed potatoes and continue to stir for a few more minutes. Continue swirling until the mixture seems to be mostly dissolved.

*Tip* If you don’t have a large enough pot for the mash and don’t want to spend the money on a larger one, simply divide the mash into two or three batches.

Yes, believe it or not, that is all there is to creating the mash. Isn’t it rather straightforward? Now we may begin the fermentation process, which will result in the production of alcohol! This is really amazing stuff!

Step 5: Fermentation

Fermentation is the final process before to distillation and is the most time-consuming. In this phase, we will turn our mash from a non-alcoholic to an alcoholic beverage by adding alcohol. All alcoholic beverages, including beer, wine, whiskey, brandy, moonshine, and other specialty beverages, are produced through this naturally occurring process. Fermentation is the starting point for all alcoholic beverages, including beer. So let’s get this party started!

  1. The first step is to pour your mash into your fermenting container, which may be anything that has an airtight cover that can be secured with a rubber band or other type of airlock. A 5 gallon water cooler jug serves as an example of a low-cost fermenter. If you’re a novice, I recommend investing in a bucket fermenter. They’re affordable and really handy because the entire cover comes off, making it easy to pour in your mash, and it already has a space for an airlock.

2. At this point, you must add your yeast. Because the yeast is responsible for converting the sugars in the mash into alcohol, this is the most critical phase in the fermentation process. All that is required is the addition of a package of yeast (distilling yeast recommended because you will get more alcohol, moor moonshine, and a better tasting product). It only takes a little sachet of yeast (roughly 2.5 teaspoons if you have one large package). Once the yeast has been incorporated into the mash, all that is required is a gentle stir or a gentle shake of the container.


If you do not already have an airlock, it is highly suggested that you get one as soon as possible; they are not costly (usually around a dollar a piece you canpick one up here.) ***Please keep in mind that while the airlocks are virtually universal, the bungs are not.

Please see this page for more information on airlock and bung sizes.

At this stage, the mash and yeast should be in a fermenting container with an airlock on it.

Once the fermentation process has been completed for about a week, you may check the gravity of your mash using a hydrometer, and if you obtain the same result for 2 or 3 days in a row, you know the fermentation process has been completed.

Even while it is not required to have one from the outset, it might be a beneficial tool later on (especially for knowing the alcohol percentage of your finished moonshine).

Click here to view a mash recipe, and here to view an aliquor/moonshine recipe.

Step 6: Distillation

Now that your mash has been fermented, the alcohol content should range between 8 and 20 percent, depending on the type of yeast you used. After that, it’s time to transform your mash into some good ol’ fashioned moonshine whiskey! Distillation is the process of separating the alcohol present in the mash from the water. If you are still uncertain about how distillation works or how a still works, please have a look at the rest of this webpage.

If you have a properly constructed still (for more information on still construction, please see this still guide), you are ready to begin; all you need is a source of heat. The procedure is rather straightforward.

  1. If possible, leave the bottom sediment in the fermenter since it includes yeast, and it is preferred not to have yeast in the mash during distillation. Pour your mash into the pot of the still, being sure to leave the bottom sediment in the fermenter. This is made significantly easier by using an auto siphon (which can be obtained on Amazon for roughly $10). Make certain that everything on the still is securely fixed and sealed
  2. Pressure and steam will be passing through it, and you cannot have any leaks. Inspect the still to ensure that something (ice/cold water) is cooling down the worm or condenser
  3. Apply heat to the saucepan of mashed potatoes that is still heating up. Make certain that the temperature remains between the boiling point of alcohol and that of water (173 degrees Fahrenheit and 212 degrees Fahrenheit). 185-195 degrees Fahrenheit is an ideal temperature range to maintain. As the still is running, make sure to eliminate the first ounce and a half of moonshine for every gallon of mash since this portion of the moonshine includes the highest quantity of methanol (which is not something you want to consume)
  4. The only thing left to do once the initial bit has been tossed is to keep an eye on the temperature and make sure it stays between 185 and 195 degrees. The still run is complete when there is no more liquid going out of the end of the still into the collecting jar
  5. You should have some moonshine corn whiskey that is ready to use at this point.

It’s time to celebrate because you just completed your first still runmade some good homemade moonshine!

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