Spontaneously Fermented Sparkling Apple Cider

The skin of unwashed, organic apples is teeming with microscopic organisms — tiny yeasts and bacteria that feed off the natural sugars in apple cider and turn it into a bubbly, sparkling, sweet-and-tart glass of fall flavor! No need to add sugar or spices!

Course Beverage
Author Lindsey Dietz


  • apples locally grown, if possible
  • a juicer We use a neighbor's cider crusher/press, but you can totally do this without one!
  • swing-top bottles and/or quart-size Mason jars


First, juice (or press) the apples -- skin, stems, peels, and all!

  1. If you're using a cider press, you don't even have to worry about stray leaves or sticks because they'll be filtered out. As long as you're sure your apples are organic and have never been sprayed with anything, you don't even need to wash them first!

  2. If you're using a juicer, remove leaves and sticks before juicing, but don't worry about the skins, stems, or peels. Whether using a cider press or juicer, there won't be any leaves, seeds, or stems in the finished cider.


  1. the fresh-pressed cider to swing-top bottles or quart-size jars and close. Leave on your countertop for 2 to 4 days. (You can go longer, but the cider will lose most of its sweetness and become slightly alcoholic the longer it ferments.)

  2. As the yeasts and bacteria get to work eating the apple's sugar, they'll begin to release carbon dioxide, especially by the end of the second day. Make sure to check and burp your jars at least once a day! Once the apple cider tastes like you want and has the fizz (sparkle!) you like, transfer it to the refrigerator.