Last updated on January 26th, 2022
When I’m am willing and able to eat sugar, made-from-scratch ginger beer is one of my favorite treats. One of the best things about this treat? Being able to make it from scratch at home.
Because I like to mix things up a little bit differently, this is not your classic ‘simple syrup steeped with ginger’ drink. To be fair that’s a great drink and is deserving of its own place on my shelf. For something a little darker and a little richer – I’ve changed the formula around a little.
The story with the different sugars
My recipe calls for “Turbinado sugar”. The best way to describe what turbinado sugar is exactly is to quote Wikipedia:
Natural brown sugar, raw sugar or whole cane sugar are sugars that retain a small to large amount of the molasses from the mother liquor. (The partially evaporated sugar cane juice).
By definition, Turbinado sugar is not truly “raw” sugar and it’s also not truly “brown” sugar. It’s sort of it’s own kind of sugar that’s delicious and wonderful and can (and should) be used in many more things. The benefit of using Turbinado sugar in this recipe, is that it adds a depth and complexity that I just love – and with less sugar than is called for in the typical recipe. Any time I can have less sugar is a good time for me!
Ginger beer is normally fresh ginger steeped in hot simple syrup. The typical simple syrup recipe calls for a ratio of 1:1 of sugar and water. Instead of this formula, my recipe calls for 1/2 cup Turbinado sugar, 1/3 cup white sugar and one cup of water.
Tips & Tricks for the best made-from-scratch ginger beer
Mix sugars well in a medium saucepan with the sliced ginger before adding the water.
Once well-combined add the water and stir over medium heat until the water is bubbly. You should notice the sugar has mostly dissolved and the heady smell of ginger aroma infusing your home by now.
After steeping for the allotted time, Strain through a mesh strainer.
Prepare the empty glass bottles and mix the sparkling water with the ginger beer syrup – ratios are in the recipe card below.
Fill the bottles, seal the top and store in the refrigerator. Store chilled for up to a week. This is a strong-ish drink, I highly recommend serving over ice with a sprig of mint. If you’re feeling adventurous, add a shot of vodka for a fresh and crisp Moscow Mule.
(Someday, I’ll remember to buy a funnel!)
Made-From-Scratch Ginger Beer
- 1 cup Water
- 1/2 cup Turbinado Sugar (sugar info in post above)
- 1/3 cup White Sugar
- 1/3 cup Fresh ginger, peeled & sliced thin
- 33 oz Sparkling Water
- Combine sugars and ginger in medium size saucepan.
- Add water and simmer on medium heat until sugars are dissolved.
- Remove from heat and steep for at least 2 hours and for as long as 12 (or overnight).
- In prepared bottles with stoppers or sealing lids, combine sparkling water with ginger beer syrup. (see note about exact ratio).