How to Make Grapejuice

This was our second year to get a good harvest of grapes and this one much bigger than the last year.  Since our Niagra White grapes are not seedless, the best thing for us to do to preserve them is turn them into juice that will have many uses through the year.

 I do not have any fancy juicing equipment, I just do it the somewhat "old fashioned" way - though I do not crush the grapes with my feet...yet...haha!

I start by rinsing my grapes and picking out any bad ones and leaves.

I then put the grape clusters, stems and all, into a big pot and put a shallow layer of water at the bottom, this is mostly to keep the grapes from burning. 

I place my big pot on the wood stove and mash for a bit with an old school potato masher.  I then cover with a lid and let simmer for a half hour or so, periodically lifting the lid and mashing more.

If using a conventional stove, I would say set it to medium heat.

Once the grapes have been mashed thoroughly, I remove the lid and let simmer for a few hours to cook off the excess liquid and condense the juice, stirring occasionally. This is also when I start picking out the loose stems now that they have been freed from the grapes.

With green grapes, the liquid will end up looking a lot like split pea soup at this point.

 Once it has cooked down to where I want it  I allow it to cool some and then commence the process of straining out the juice. 

You can choose to condense your juice as little or as much as you like by tasting it as it is cooking down to test for how strong it is.  The more you condense it, the less jars you will need to can it up and take up space.  You can always add water when opening the jars to make it less strong if you prefer.  I usually get mine somewhere in the middle where it is strong but I don't feel I have entirely cooked off all the nutrients.

 Using my batter bowl I place a large mesh strainer over it and on top of that I lay a single layer cheese cloth.  One may use any clean cotton cloth as long as it is big enough to not fall down inside the strainer and to be able to gather up the edges later on. 

I pour about two cups at a time into the cloth and allow to drain for several minutes.  I then gather up the edges of the cloth and squeeze out as much juice as I can from the pulp.

I find it is most effective to knead the ball of pulp inside the cheesecloth to get more of the juice out and to make the job go quicker.

Though I would normally take the fruit scraps to make vinegar, this pulp is pretty dense so I chose to give it to my chickens, besides, they love it and it is free, healthy food for them.

I pour the juice into quart jars.  To some of the jars, I add 1/4 cup of organic cane sugar but I left some unsweetened. Honey would also be a great option but since I am canning, I do not want to destroy the benefits of raw honey in the canning process.  I stir the sugar in with a chopstick.

I then put on my Tattler lids and process in a water bath for 15 minutes.  

I I ended up with a total of 16 quarts (4 gallons) of grape juice this year, our best year yet!

Juice from green grapes is not near as pretty as concord or other blue or purple grapes but it is still great stuff that will be used to make tasty natural sodas, healthy gummie treats, or for rehydrating dried apples when making a dried apple pie for an extra flavor boost.

 I do hope you found this article useful and thank you for your time Faithful Reader! 

Other posts you may enjoy:
How To Make Vitamin Gummies

How To Make A Fermentation Starter
Pansy Health Benefits

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  1. Replies
    1. I am sure you can and that is a great idea, especially for immediate use, but I like to condense mine down to take up less space in storage once canned. :)

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