Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar from Scraps

It’s fall and it’s time for the visit to a local apple orchard, one of my favorite things to do. I eat apples year round, but autumn brings a fresh crop of so many different kinds of juicy apples. Apples to eat and apples to put in baskets on my table.  I don’t know about you, but I try to use all the apples.  I like to eat a crisp fresh apple daily. It has been reported it decreases the frequency and severity of asthma attacks, but the truth is, I don’t really need a reason.  Fall means apple crisps, apple pies, apple sauce, apple yogurt toast…. the list goes on and on.  Today let’s talk about all those apple peels and cores and even the whole apples that have sat in bowls and aren’t quite crisp.

Apples, Basket, Basket Of Apples, Apple Basket, Produce

I’ve read lots of blog posts over the years, and my favorite posts are how-tos.  I like the idea of being more self-sufficient and learning skills my great-grandmother knew.  One of my favorite ingredients in the kitchen is apple cider vinegar. It’s so tasty in salads and so good for you.  (See Apple Cider vinegar for its health benefits and uses.)  I use organic of course. I don’t like the nasty chemicals in regular vinegar. Nope not for me.  I’ve read more than one blog post on how to make apple cider vinegar. It sounded easy, and it’s time for me to give it a try. It’s also good to know red apples contain more sugar than green ones, so red apples make stronger vinegar. Do not use bruised or rotten apples. It is okay to use browned cut apple pieces. Like to eat a mix of apple varieties?  Save the scraps in the freezer and make a vinegar with a more complex flavor. Use organic sugar for best results. Honey and other natural sweeteners will slow down the process of fermentation.

Apples, Knife, Fruit, Peel, Skin

 Why not save cores and peels to give this a try?   Whether you make an apple crisp or apple sauce, save your peelings and cores. You can use them to make apple cider vinegar. You need enough apple cores and peelings to fill a jar.  This way you have virtually no waste!

I love the fact that making vinegar does not take great cooking skills. Anyone can do it with apples, glass bottles, sugar and water, and a little time.  The fermentation process time varies with the season – less during summer, a bit longer during colder months. You will know your vinegar is ready when you will notice a dark, cloudy bacterial foam – this is called the Mother and can easily be noticed when holding the vinegar to light. This mother can be used to jump-start future vinegar batches. You can remove it and store it separately, but I  just allow mine to float around in the vinegar as I store it. It’s full of enzymes and minerals that over-processed vinegars do not have.

Carol's Kitchen Red Fruit

NOTE:   It’s generally recommended that you do NOT use homemade vinegar for any sort of preservation. In order to ensure the safety of your home canned products, you need a vinegar with an acetic acid level of 5%. Since most of us don’t have a way to check the levels of our homemade vinegar, it’s best just to skip using it for canning or preserving– better safe than sorry!

Homemade Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

Use organic apples & sugar.  Quantity depends on size of glass jar and amount of apple parts to fill jar.


Homemade Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Whether you make an apple crisp or apple sauce, save your peelings and cores. You can use them to make apple cider vinegar. It's easy to make and great to use on salads.
Course condiment
Cuisine American
Keyword apple cider vinegar, organic raw apple cider vinegar
Servings 8 oz


  • 2 Sterilized glass jars – I used 8 oz jar
  • Red apple pieces/scraps including core & peel to fill 3/4 of glass jar
  • Cheesecloth or coffee filter
  • Filtered Water
  • Sugar 1 tablespoon per cup of water


  •  Fill glass jar with apples 3/4 of way to top 
  • Mix water and sugar & stir
  • Amount of water depends on jar size
  • Pour water over apples covering them completely
  • Cover jar with cheesecloth or coffee filter & rubber band
  • This allows ingredients to breathe but protects it
  • Place in a dark warm place to ferment for 3 weeks
  • Strain liquid removing solids
  • Return to jar & cover again
  • Return to dark warm place (my pantry) for 4 to 6 weeks
  • Stir with wooden spoon every few days
  • After 4 weeks taste vinegar
  • If not ready return to dark place
  • Taste again every week
  • Once it reaches an acidity you like, transfer it to a new bottle with a lid
  • Store in refrigerator

My vinegar was mild and quite tasty. I’m going to make more this year with all the wonderful apples I buy.


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I was raised in Tennessee but have lived in Florida for many years. Love my small home in the Tampa Bay area and its developing garden. My decorating style is eclectic - some vintage, some cottage, all with a modern flair. Pursuing a healthier lifestyle. Spent many years in social services but am happily retired.

28 thoughts to “Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar from Scraps”

  1. Someone has to really love homemade to make their own vinegar. It is so inexpensive. Very interesting, though, to learn how it is made!!

  2. I haven’t visited your blog for a while and happy to be back here! You’re right..it’s easy to make it at home and I think I can try it. I love using apple vinegar for salad..

  3. This sounds handy and pretty easy to make. I usually stay with Macintosh, Granny Smith and Honey Crisp, wonder how that combo would taste.

  4. Hi Carol, making vinegar has never occured to me before reading your post. I may just have to have a go. It’s a shame that in the last few weeks I used a fair few apples i baking, the leftovers do end up as compost, but I would have had plenty to turn into vinegar. I will start frreezing and saving until I have enough.

    Thank you for linking up with ‘#keepingitreal


  5. What a great use for an apple surplus. Thanks for sharing at the What’s for Dinner party – and have a wonderful week. Hope we see you next Sunday too!

  6. I had no idea it was so straight-forward to make apple cider vinegar at home, Carol! What a great way to use up apple peelings. I’m so glad you shared this helpful post. Thank you for sharing, and for being a part of the Hearth and Soul Link Party. Hope to see you again this week. Have a great week ahead!

  7. Apple cider vinegar is so handy, useful to be able to make your own. Thanks for sharing

  8. Perfect timing – I have a few rather soft apples lurking in the kitchen and I am about to make a batch of apple chutney so I have the ingredients at hand to try this. I use apple cider vinegar to rinse my hair and to have my own will be great. Thank you for adding this post to #GoingGreen and hopefully it will inspire others to make some too.

  9. Very good article. I love learning how to do DIY products and I had never actually knew how you made homemade apple cider vinegar but your explained it very thoroughly. Congratulations of being featured on #GoingGreen Linky. Have a healthy, happy & blessed Christmas and holiday season.

  10. Interesting!! Thanks so much for linking up at the #UnlimitedMonthlyLinkParty 5. Shared.

  11. We’re looking forward to trying this out- we’re just finishing up our apple canning for the year, and there’s only so much apple honey we can make with the scraps. I wonder if there is any potential for separating, though, during storage.
    Thanks for sharing on the Farm Fresh Tiesdays blog hop, and by the way, congrats on being a featured post!

    1. thanks so much for the feature Todd. I’m not sure what you mean by storing separately. Like I said I made my vinegar on a shelf in my pantry but there were lots of cans etc in there – nothing that making vinegar could harm. If you have a separate place for the jar, use it.

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