Without a doubt, the number one beverage of choice for most Americans is coffee, and there’s hardly any home you get to that you won’t find a coffee maker. In fact, some have two or even three different types.
It’s not far-fetched to think that the introduction of coffee makers
caused Americans’ “bad habit” to quadruple in intensity since coffee could now be made on the kitchen countertop, and fast too. Home-made coffee even tastes better than Starbucks, don’t you agree?! Okay you don’t, but you get our point though.
Cider is another really interesting beverage that has a place in America’s long, rich history. It dates back to when almost every American owned apple trees in his yard. All sorts of apple recipes were in vogue then from tarts to pies, to juice, to cider. With modern civilization though, we kinda lost all that. All the trees were cut down, or at least most of them, and fewer people had apple trees in their yards.
With these events also came the slow fade of the home brewing fad. Industrialization took over and there was a manufacturing company for most anything. It worked because doing these things at home was pretty expensive and time-consuming, and since the world was moving forward from the subsistence kind of life fast, everyone had to follow.
Fast-forward to now, and everyone suddenly sees the need to bring home brewing back. There are now several companies that solely exist for this purpose. This has witnessed the entry of several home brewing products such as brewing kettles
, aging barrels
, cider making kits, and the likes.
Today, we are going to be zeroing in on cider making kits. If you love cider, you don’t always have to take the store-bought ones (that contain a lot of ingredients you don’t even know how to pronounce, if we might add). You can sit in the comfort of your own home and brew your very own cider just the way you want it, and to perfection too. Cider making kits have made that so!
If you promise to stay with us, we will unveil before your eyes, the tips and tricks to picking out a great cider making kit from others at a glance. Do you promise? Then let’s ride.
A good cider making kit can go for as low as $25 or as high as $100, depending on various factors. For instance, if you need a starter kit, you’ll have to spend more because you’re literally starting from scratch, getting all the materials. Someone who’s a regular brewer might not need to spend much, on the other hand, because he’ll basically just be adding to what he already has. So, let’s just say that the more items you need in your kit, the more you’ll have to spend.
There is always the option of a cheap cider making kit, but if you love your poison, we doubt that would be an option for you. Taste is supreme, and if the recipe is cheap, you can expect it to taste terribly and contain all manner of additives and preservatives that aren’t good for you. And then the other materials (like the jars) might just get damaged easily. It’s always far wiser to invest in a quality kit that will spare you the heartbreak and additional expenses.
Here are some features you must watch for before settling on any one cider making kit:
- Starter or not?
- Capacity of fermentor
- Fermenting jars
- Care and maintenance
Let’s get into the details already!
Construction and Design
Because fermentation is a process that involves the release of a lot of gas, you’ll want to get durable fermenting jars. The material of choice is usually glass, and the glass has to be clear enough for you to be able to observe what’s going on inside without opening the jar. Once it’s opened, the whole brewing process is compromised, because oxygen will be introduced.
In this same breath, we will talk about keeping your jar sealed. Most kits come with bungs and airlocks. A bung is not enough by itself; yes, it will seal the jars, but air is sneaky and it’s only with an airlock system that you can be 100% sure that oxygen won’t get in. Plus, CO2 also has to leave, so here your airlock comes in handy again. It lets CO2 out while keeping the oxygen out simultaneously.
Depending on how much cider you’re looking to make, there are several capacities of fermentors: one gallon, two, or even six. Of course, the higher the capacity, the bulkier the equipment. But then again, that’s a small price to pay for delicious cider, isn’t it?
Next, we will discuss the recipe. Cider isn’t always alcoholic as you know. If you want the non-alcoholic type, then it’s best to use pure apple juice. Avoid the kinds that come with additives; many of these contain dangerous chemicals you don’t know about that can be quite harmful to you.
You might notice that some recipe kits come with an ABV marking on them. ABV stands for “Alcohol by Volume”, so you should already know that such recipes will produce an alcoholic beverage. If you don’t like alcohol, then you can equally use normal apple juice. But beware, after a week plus, non-alcoholic cider will also ferment further to become alcoholic.
Performance and Ease of Use
If you’re just starting out home brewing, then it’s best to look for a kit that specifically says, “starter kit” on it. This is because most of these kits come with nearly everything you’ll need as a first-time brewer and will therefore save you the cost of having to buy these things singly.
As for bottling, most times, standard beer bottles work as do Grolsch bottles. Especially if you’re a beginner, it’s better to go for a kit that comes with bottles. It might cost you more, but some brands carry reusable bottles so you can always reuse them for many other subsequent batches of cider that you make.
Also, cappers, caps, and fillers are essential for an ideal bottling. The filler makes filling your bottles easier, and the capper makes capping faster and more efficient. If you don’t have these items already, then you best get a kit with them.
Care and Maintenance
Caring for and maintaining your kit is essential. Fermentation, by its very nature, requires the action of microorganisms, so ensure that your setup is washed regularly. Some are machine-washable, others are not. Above all, though, follow the manufacturers’ instructions and ensure that your gear is always kept clean.
Are you ready to get down to the reviews? Our guide has most definitely brushed you up on all things cider and its kit, so you are ready. Leggo!
Northern Brewer is committed to seeing home-brewing become as commonplace as vegetable gardening in America. Although a relatively recent brand, it is already doing a lot to make this vision come to pass; dedicating a significant percentage of profits to breed new homebrewers in every location in America. Because employees over here are homebrewers themselves, it makes work a joy for them as they each bring their own motivation to the job all by themselves. Northern Brewer is also all about the best prices available for miles. It makes it a point to make its products irresistibly functional, but also unbelievably affordable too.
Are you just joining the home brewing train? First welcome and second meet your new best buddy: the Northern Brewer Crooked Apple Hard Cider Starter Kit. It comes with practically everything you need for a first-time brewer. In this kit, you find:
Pristine glass fermentors that well… ferment the cider. But we know… you’re scared that continued brewing might make subsequent ciders taste like crap, but not so here, dear. These glass fermentors will never add an off color or taste or smell to your cider, ensuring that it always tastes like liquefied one-million dollars whenever.
Next, there’s the Grimhilde recipe kit which is pure apple juice, one hundred percent! No added sugar, preservatives, or additives. Just pure apple juice. Well, aside from the 6% ABV which you know is normal. And this recipe kit (which is gluten-free for the intolerant, by the way), produces one full gallon of cider.
Also in this kit, you’ll be getting bungs and airlocks for your fermentors to ensure that oxygen doesn’t get into them at all. You know we only need CO2 here. Then there’s a plastic stirring paddle for stirring. To aid bottling and make it easier, a bottle filler, capper, and caps have been included; now you don’t have to create a huge mess.
There’s also a tubing which comes with an auto-siphon through which your brew will flow into the other fermentor.
Finally, you’ll also be provided with a food-grade cleaner and sanitizer to make cleaning neater and easier.
So, do you now see that when we told you that you get almost everything you need in this kit, we weren’t messing with you? Wouldn’t you just go on and order already?!
Home Brew Ohio prides itself in its fully-stocked store that offers almost every supply needed for home brewing and wine making. Because of its super-intense interest in all things brew, this company subjects itself to continuous and arduous research in order to offer its loyal customers even better ways to enjoy their home-brewed drinks. Not only are its products functional, they’re made to be quite user-friendly for pros and amateurs alike. Beginners find it totally encouraging beginning with Home Brew Ohio products and of course, with amazing customer service, shopping anywhere at all hardly gets better than here.
If you love your cider, then you’re going to love the Home Brew Cider House Select Cider Kit. There are 6-gallon ways to love this guy. In case you didn’t catch that, this kit makes 6 gallons of refreshing cider. And not just any cider; this comes flavored with cinnamon and other spices.
Whatever your level of experience with home brewing, this guy is here for you. Its easy-to-follow instructions will see you brewing cider like you were born to brew. As long as you stay with the instructions, you will always make amazing cider back to back, so fret not.
Note though, that this is not a starter kit. It doesn’t come with a fermenting and bottling kit. You’d have to have that already, but then again if you’re looking at this product, from the name, it suggests that you’re probably already a pro that already has all the necessary equipment. If you’re a beginner, on the other hand, look elsewhere. This one is for the big boys.
In this kit you’ll also find some optional sweeteners, if you so wish to use them. Then don’t forget to get your dextrose, ‘cause you’ll be needing that and this kit doesn’t come with it.
So, you ready to make great cider, pro style? Order this now!
BrewDemon is definitely a name in the home brewing industry. It goes a ways to make innovative products that are durable and stand the test of time. A good example is the world’s first 2-gallon conical fermenter made by this brand which has encouraged small batch home brewing for beer connoisseurs. Aside from reducing the bulk that comes with standard fermenters, this invention also helped to cut down the costs of home brewing. With a solid base of customer care support, shopping with this brand is both easy and rewarding.
Here’s another excellent way to join the home brewing bandwagon: The BrewDemon Hard Cider Kit Pro. This guy comes stocked with almost everything you can think of (and probably don’t even know you need) to make a great brew.
First, just to put it out there, it makes 2 gallons of cider in 14 days flat. No jokes. Are you interested? Then let’s dive in a little further.
Its recipe kit comes as hard cider (not apple juice, if that’s your preference) with 5.5% ABV plus a nice blueberry flavor. The end result is a beautiful hard cider that tastes like heaven.
Perhaps the most unique thing in this package is its conical fermenter. With this shape, bottling has never been easier. Now you can easily fill your bottle without making a mess. It just passes straight from fermenter to bottle without making a mess or wasting your “hard-earned” drink.
Another advantage of going for this particular kit is that it comes with bottles, and these bottles are reusable. This saves you a lot of cost. So, instead of having to buy new bottles or collect bottles for every batch of cider you make, you can always wash the old ones and reuse. Pretty wise, if you ask us.
Other things you find in this package include a bottle filler, with caps and labels for your bottles; a mixing spoon to stir; a tubing for your brew to pass through during the whole fermenting process; a temperature gauge for you-know-what, and lastly an adjustable spigot to stop your fermenting jar and lock the air out.
And even with the plethora of equipment, the entire setup is pretty easy. So, do you like or like? Order it now!
For close to a decade now, Craft a Brew has been perfecting its technique, and working hard to reinvent its offerings in order to turn craft beer lovers into craft beer brewers. It strives to design its products in such a way that they are user-friendly and breezy to use even by first-time brewers. Also sourcing the best and the freshest ingredients possible, this brand has afforded hobbyists a one-stop-shop for all they need to brew their own beer right at home. Backing all this with unbeatable prices and a top-tier customer care system, Craft a Brew has already forecast its future in this industry and of course, it’s a brilliant one.
If you need a great cider making kit that delivers on the basics and shuts up, then come around and see the Craft a Brew Hard Cider Kit. It delivers on the basics well and is pretty pocket-friendly too. So, if you must home brew but you’re hard-pressed for cash, you’ve just met the one.
Its recipe kit is hard cider and it produces up to one gallon of hard cider from one kit. It might also interest you to know that this kit also works with any other apple juice or cider, so you’re never barred from trying something else for a change.
Its carefully prepared guide helps anyone achieve great-tasting cider with this kit. And it doesn’t matter how much or how little the person in question knows about cider-brewing. The guide is straightforward and s/he will brew like a pro with the easy instructions.
Also in this kit, you’ll find a glass jug where your delicious cider will brew, a tubing through which it will climb into the second fermenter, a rubber stopper and air lock (we don’t want any intruding oxygen anywhere near our baby… we mean the cider, not your real baby), a funnel for bottle filling, and then a racking cane.
For a basic kit, this guy sure comes stocked. Order it now, and enjoy fantastic home-brewed cider later!
Go Ferment! hopes to encourage people around the world to make their own fermented food and drinks by supplying them with really innovative products that make fermenting a much cleaner and more-appealing process. Knowing the hassles of fermentation, it has taken up the challenge of solving those challenges by introducing new and user-friendly products that help individuals ferment in their own homes with ease and convenience. Being a small company, customer care is not an issue. Every single customer is cherished and knows it too.
The Go Ferment! Fermenting Kit is a great way to go if you need something versatile that doesn’t split your pocket apart. First off, disclaimer: this doesn’t come with jars. Don’t expect that in the package. But here’s what it comes with though:
This product comes as two-wide mouth fermenting lids with stoppers and airlocks. The fantastic thing about these lids is that they lock up your wide-mouth jars and with their airlocks; they let CO2 out through the back but will, on no account, allow oxygen in.
How does this translate to money in the bank? Well, it doesn’t, but it does mean that your fruit or veggies will not grow moldy (yuck!). Plus, you won’t need to burp daily. Hallelujah!
And for your safety, these lids were carefully made with safe materials to prevent it from poisoning your ferment in the jar.
In the package, you’ll also find an instruction book. This will help you find your way around these guys even if you’re a beginner. Plus, you even get online access to several recipes in its recipe ebook. So, more ways to enjoy healthy fermented foods!
Sauerkraut, pickles, and even cider are all waiting to be enjoyed and you can make them in your house. Why not order these guys?!
Now that you’ve found the one, place that order and get ready to drink up! If you’re still on the lookout for cider making kits after reading our review, go ahead and see what else these brands have on offer!