Many people saw my photos on Facebook and Instagram and wanted to know more about how I make apple cider (and apple juice) using an electric juicer. It really couldn't be easier! And I highly recommend the method. (But first: Let's clarify the apple juice vs. apple cider. Cider is just like apple juice, except it isn't strained - so bits of pulp remain in the liquid. Traditionally, apple cider is also left unpasteurized.)
Unfortunately, cider presses generally cost hundreds, and building one may take time, ingenuity, and money you don't have. It's possible to make apple juice by cooking the apples on the stove, as described by Ball, but it's pretty time consuming and heats up the house. But if you have an electric juicer? Quick and easy!
Now, juicers aren't always much cheaper than cider presses. I inherited mine from my brother, and it's a really nice piece of equipment. (It would cost about $350 to try to replace it.) But less expensive juicers work just fine, too - and there are plenty of them on the market. I'm sure you could even use a KitchenAid Mixer attachment. Also, juicers are a lot easier to find (used or new) than cider presses. And you're more likely to be able to borrow one.
How to Make Apple Cider with an Electric Juicer
1. Read the juicer manual thoroughly, since they don't all work the same. Mine has a handy dandy container for the apple pulp to go into, plus a pitcher for the juice. (Which is still packed somewhere, so this year, I used my batter bowl.) You basically plug the machine in, insert an apple or two, and turn it on.
|My juicer set up.|
3. Insert one or two apples (depending upon your juicer), and use the presser to slowly press the apple through the juicer. Slower is better because the machine will get more juice from the fruit than if you push the apples through quickly. Repeat until you have as much juice as you desire.
|Extracting apple juice.|
5. When you're done, you will probably see a lot of gunk in the juice. My creates a stiff foam that sits on top of the liquid. I spoon off this foam and dump it into my compost bins. (It does not blend into the juice, even after stirring or shaking.)
|When done juicing, there is a lot of stiff foam on top.|
|My juicer leaves a lot of pulp in the jars.|
How to Make Apple Juice with an Electric Juicer
1. Follow steps 1 - 5.
2. Line a fine sieve with coffee filters or a double layer of cheesecloth. Strain the juice through it.
|Straining the pulp away to make apple juice.|
|2 or 3 coffee filters (or a double layer of cheesecloth), combined with a fine sieve, do the trick.|
How to Can Apple Cider or Apple Juice
I follow Ball's directions.
1. Pour the cider or juice into a large pot placed over high heat. Bring the liquid to 190 degrees F., or just a bit hotter. Do not allow the liquid to come to a boil. Keep the liquid at 190 degrees F. or hotter for 5 complete minutes, adjusting the stove temp as necessary. This kills off any bacteria in the liquid.
|Pasteurize the juice or cider at 190 degrees F. for 5 minutes.|
|Jarring the cider.|
|The finished product!|
How to Preserve Apples: Canning, Freezing, Dehydrating, Root Cellaring
What to do with Crab Apples
Low Sugar, No Pectin Apple Peel and Core Jelly
Picking Unripe Apples for Making Apple Pectin
Apple Skillet Cake Recipe
Apple Spice Bread Recipe
Apple Butter Oatmeal Crumb Bars Recipe
Canning Apple Pie Jam
Freezing Apple Pie Filling
The Best Tasting, Easiest Applesauce Ever
Making Dried Apple Rings in the Warmer Drawer