How To Make Hard Seltzer

Hard seltzer is hot right now and it’s a breeze to make. Having variety in your cellar is key to keeping everyone happy and a hard seltzer is pretty darn tasty on a hot day. We have the gear and recipe kits to make your very own delicious hard seltzers. The best part is, they don’t break the bank!

Making A Ruby Grapefruit Hard Seltzer

The Ruby Grapefruit Hard Seltzer blends mouth-puckering grapefruit, and “ahhhh”-inspiring effervescence. Bright bubbles dance across your tongue as the citrus incites smiles all around. A perfect sidekick to summer, you and your friends will be loving life while sipping this seltzer.

Total Brew Time: 6 Weeks (4 weeks fermenting, 2 weeks bottle conditioning)

Hard Seltzer Equipment & Ingredients

  1. 5 Gallon Fermenter w/ drilled lid (You can use a Brewing Bucket or a Glass Carboy
  2. Stopper & Fermentation Airlock
  3. Brewing Kettle
  4. Hydrometer & Test Tube to determine ABV
  5. Cleaner / Sanitizer for all brewing components
  6. Ruby Grapefruit Hard Seltzer Making Recipe Kit
  7. Approximately two cases of either 12 oz or 22 oz pry-off style beer bottles

Or get the complete Hard Seltzer Making Kit

Seltzer Making Instructions

Brew Day

  1. Heat 2.5 gallons of water.
  2. While heating, add the 4 lbs of corn sugar to the kettle and stir until dissolved.
  3. Bring to a boil for 10 minutes to ensure sanitary conditions.
  4. Cool the mixture. When the 10-minute boil is finished, cool the sugar solution to approximately 70°F as rapidly as possible. Use an immersion chiller, or put the brew kettle in an ice bath in your sink.
  5. Sanitize the fermenting equipment and yeast pack. While the sugar solution cools, sanitize the fermenting equipment – fermenter, lid or stopper, airlock, funnel, etc – along with the yeast pack. (Read More: How to Sanitize a Fermenter.)
  6. Fill primary fermenter with 2 gallons of cold water, then pour in the cooled sugar solution.
  7. Add more cold water as needed to bring the volume to 5 gallons.
  8. Measure the specific gravity of the wort with a hydrometer and record in the "BREWER'S NOTES" section. (Read More: How to use a Hydrometer.)
  9. Add your yeast once the temperature of the sugar solution is between 50° and 80°F. Sanitize and open the yeast pack and carefully pour the contents into the primary fermenter. (Read More: Pitching Yeast)
  10. Seal the fermenter. Add approximately 1 tablespoon of sanitizing solution to the sanitized fermentation lock. Insert the airlock into rubber stopper or lid, and seal the fermenter.

1-3 Days after Brew Day

  1. Active fermentation begins. Within approximately 48 hours of Brewing Day, active fermentation will begin – there will be a cap of foam on the surface of the seltzer, the specific gravity as measured with a hydrometer will drop steadily, and you may see bubbles come through the fermentation lock. The optimum fermentation temperature for this fermentation is 60°- 80° F. Move the fermenter to a warmer or cooler spot as needed.
  2. 24 hours after pitching the yeast, dissolve the contents of one yeast nutrient packet in a small amount of water and bring to a brief boil in the microwave. Cover, allow to cool and add directly to the fermenter
  3. 48 hours after pitching the yeast, follow the above procedure, and add another packet of yeast nutrient directly to the fermenter.
  4. 72 hours after pitching the yeast, follow the above procedure, and add another packet of yeast nutrient directly to the fermenter.

1-4 Weeks after Brew Day

  1. Approximately one to two weeks after brewing day, active fermentation will end. When the foam subsides and no CO2 bubbles are evident, bubbling in the airlock slows down or stops, and the specific gravity as measured with a hydrometer is stable, allow to rest for an additional 2 weeks to clear and then proceed to bottling.

How to Bottle Your Hard Seltzer (4 weeks after Brew Day)

  1. Sanitize siphoning and bottling equipment.
  2. Mix a priming solution (a measured amount of sugar dissolved in water to carbonate the bottled beer). Use the following amounts, depending on which type of sugar you will use: Corn sugar (dextrose) 2/3 cup in 16 oz water OR Table sugar (sucrose) 5/8 cup in 16 oz water. Bring the solution to a boil and pour it into the bottling bucket.
  3. Siphon into the bottling bucket and mix with priming solution. Stir gently to mix—don’t splash.
  4. Add 2 of the crystallized grapefruit packets to 1 cup of water until dissolved. Heat to boiling briefly. Gently stir into the primed seltzer. Taste, and add the additional packet of crystallized grapefruit according to your preference of flavor intensity.
  5. Fill and cap bottles. Click here to read the full guide on how to bottle beer.
  6. Condition bottles at room temperature for 1–2 weeks. After this point, the bottles can be stored cool or cold.
  7. Enjoy! Pour into a clean glass, being careful to leave the layer of sediment at the bottom of the bottle.