Apple Raspberry Wine Recipe

Red apples in basket on dark wood
Westend61 / Getty Images
  • 60 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 2 gallons (50 servings)

Fermenting is a natural process; making wine is an attempt to control that process. Using a few simple techniques, anyone can make a delicious country wine at home using very few ingredients and supplies.

Wine making is often intimidating for beginners, so let's keep it simple. It's fermented juice, made using 4 basic ingredients: fruit, water, sugar, and yeast.

Over time, I've discovered that despite owning all the fancy equipment, I prefer making small batches and most often will use 1-gallon milk jugs as carboys, a chopstick (for agitating), cheesecloth, a siphon, a hydrometer, and an airlock. That's it.

Yeast consumes sugar, and, as a by-product, creates alcohol and CO2. An airlock allows CO2 to escape while keeping air out. Hydrometers measure sugar content, thereby indicating potential alcohol content.

Sanitize your equipment using StarSan or a similar product before each use.

This recipe yields 14 - 14.5% ABV (alcohol by volume). The flavor is clean and smooth, with a mild residual sweetness.

What You'll Need

  • 1 cup raspberries (frozen)
  • 3 cups apples (frozen, mixed varieties, chopped)
  • 1/2 stick cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1 chili pepper (dried)
  • 20 peppercorns
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (sea)
  • 1/2 lemon (zest and juice)
  • 1/2 gallon water
  • 2 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 7 1/2 cups sugar (white)
  • 1 package yeast (Lalvin EC-1118 Champagne Yeast)

How to Make It

  1. Add the raspberries, apples, cinnamon, fennel seed, chili, peppercorns, sea salt, lemon zest and juice, and water to a large pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes to break down fruits, extract flavors, and destroy wild yeasts. Fruit can be crushed using a potato masher to break it down further.
  2. Remove from heat and add the brown and white sugar. Stir to dissolve. Add 1½ gallons cool water. Take a hydrometer reading. Tt should read approximately 1.10~ SG (specific gravity). 
  1. Cover with a cloth held with elastic or string (or loose lid), and leave at room temperature (72ºF) overnight. 
  2. Line a funnel with several layers of cheesecloth, and strain the mixture to remove fruit.

Primary Fermentation

  1. Sprinkle the package of champagne yeast over top of the liquid, stir, and cover with a cloth.
  2. Agitate daily, and take hydrometer readings until it reads 1.03 SG. 
  3. Use a siphon to transfer (rack) to carboy(s), filling to the "neck" to reduce air exposure. 

Secondary Fermentation

  1. This stage requires an airlock to create an anaerobic environment (no air). Add vodka or water to airlock before use.
  2. When the hydrometer reading is 1.0 or lower for a week, fermentation has finished. 
  3. Rack your wine, top with airlock, and age 2 or more months.
  4. After fermentation has finished, you can enjoy your wine young, or let it age. To age and clear your wine, rack every 2 months, or when sediment is 1/2" thick. 

Adriana Meagher lives on a 130-acre farm in the mountains of Columbia Valley, BC. Her passion for a traditional lifestyle led her to create Yogurt Hydro, where she shares her latest adventures whether outdoors or in the kitchen.