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Old 07-20-2009, 07:21 PM   #1
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Homemade Root Beer Advice Needed

Has anyone made a good root beer starting from "scratch" rather than using the concentrates? If so, please share your recipes and suggestions! I plan to try it using stevia as a sweetener.
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Old 07-20-2009, 08:57 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zudy View Post
Has anyone made a good root beer starting from "scratch" rather than using the concentrates? If so, please share your recipes and suggestions! I plan to try it using stevia as a sweetener.
Hi Zudy,

This 'old' thread may help...some:

http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/ma...out-there.html

The 'Leeners' site does sell a Root Beer Brewery which you might find interesting...

I stopped brewing my own sodas when I found this site:

Pop The Soda Shop - Over 1400 Soda Pop, Juices, Teas, Waters & Energy Drinks

and mail ordered Diet Root Beer from them (they carry several Diet brands... ;-)

You might find a home brewing store in your local area for more information and supplies for brewing or making your own Root Beer...

Last edited by locarbman; 07-20-2009 at 09:05 PM..
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Old 07-21-2009, 09:15 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by locarbman View Post
Hi Zudy,

This 'old' thread may help...some:

http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/ma...out-there.html

The 'Leeners' site does sell a Root Beer Brewery which you might find interesting...

I stopped brewing my own sodas when I found this site:

Pop The Soda Shop - Over 1400 Soda Pop, Juices, Teas, Waters & Energy Drinks

and mail ordered Diet Root Beer from them (they carry several Diet brands... ;-)

You might find a home brewing store in your local area for more information and supplies for brewing or making your own Root Beer...

Frostie (Diet) Root Beer! That takes me back! I might put up with the shipping charges--once--mostly for the nostalgic value. Thanks, locarbman
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Old 07-21-2009, 11:58 AM   #4
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l.c. man, thanks for the links! Do you..or did you..make your root beer in glass bottles? Seems the website you linked cautions against it but I'd really rather do it in all the dark glass bottles I have saved!
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Old 07-21-2009, 12:09 PM   #5
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l.c. man, thanks for the links! Do you..or did you..make your root beer in glass bottles? Seems the website you linked cautions against it but I'd really rather do it in all the dark glass bottles I have saved!
Yes, I purchased cases of dark glass bottles, yeast, caps, cappers, etc. from my local home brewing store...their website is:

Jims Homebrew Supply Inc.

Worked really well and I was very satisfied with the product...the hardest part was waiting for the Root Beer to age... ;-) I also used Stevia as a sweetener. It has been so long ago now that I just don't recall the details, recipes, etc. but expect you will be happy with this project! Good Luck! ;-)
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Old 07-22-2009, 09:29 AM   #6
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Thanks LCMan for the bottle info. I have been searching and found quite a few very old recipes for root beer with different ingredients. Was thinking of first trying to make a concentrate of the flavors that turn out "best". It seems the main flavoring used to be sassafras root but it is not available for sale and apparently the bark, which is available, is not as strong. Then I read that modern root beer is flavored mainly with wintergreen. This is getting complicated!
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Old 07-25-2009, 05:21 PM   #7
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LC Man...Been working on getting the roots together for root beer today as well as the yeast but now am wondering how to make root beer without the sugar. What I have read is that the yeast needs sugar for fermentation. I was thinking of just boiling up the roots etc. then mixing it with carbonated water and stevia. Is that how you did it?
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Old 07-25-2009, 07:24 PM   #8
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LC Man...Been working on getting the roots together for root beer today as well as the yeast but now am wondering how to make root beer without the sugar. What I have read is that the yeast needs sugar for fermentation.

Gosh, I just don’t remember ;-( I do add sugar to my LC Bread recipe’s for the yeast and consider it 0 carbs because the yeast will ‘eat it all’ ;-) I expect that the same may apply to the sugar free soda. I do remember that I used Champagne yeast and a Rootbeer concentrate in my recipes. I heated all the ingredients per instructions then poured into the bottles, capped them and waited for an amount of time for the yeast to do it’s work…had to keep checking the bottles for ‘explosions’ ;-)

I believe some information came from:

Cooking With Stevia and Stevia Recipes

Cooking With Stevia and Stevia Recipes

however, their Recipe Database is currently ‘Under Construction’

I was thinking of just boiling up the roots etc. then mixing it with carbonated water and stevia. Is that how you did it?

No, however, I do use this method now with Sucralose powder and LorAnn flavorings. You may find post #14 by Ceze in this thread regarding use of this method for Rootbeer helpful:

http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/lo...zevia-1-a.html

I’ll keep looking for my old info and will advise if and when I find anything further!

Last edited by locarbman; 07-25-2009 at 08:18 PM..
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Old 07-25-2009, 08:05 PM   #9
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Thanks..that thread about starting with carbonated water has great ideas. I think I'll try to get the root beer "concentrate" I make down then try that method first. The LorAnn oils idea is wonderful, too. I have a ton of flavors..probably most of them...from when I went through my "hard candy making" phase a couple of years ago! I used that scary stuff Maltitol and it worked great but had to make the things sparingly.
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Old 07-25-2009, 08:31 PM   #10
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Here are some rather simple instructions I found on the net:

Instructions for Making Root Beer

Items needed for Root Beer:
1 clean and dry, 2 liter soda bottle with a screw cap
funnel
1 cup of sugar (more if you desire a sweeter root beer)
¼ teaspoon of powdered baker's yeast or dry champagne yeast - either will do so long as it is in powder form and is active (not past expiration date)
1 tablespoon of root beer extract
Any two liter soda bottle will do so long as it has been thoroughly cleaned and is completely dry inside. Baker's yeast can be purchased at any grocery store (usually found in the baking aisle). Champagne yeast and root beer extract can be found in wine making and home brew stores as well as on line. Root beer extract is also often available in the flavorings section of the baking aisle of many grocery stores.
Using the funnel, pour the sugar into the bottle and then pour in the yeast.
Remove funnel and shake bottle to mix sugar and yeast.
Replace funnel and pour in root beer extract.
Leaving funnel in place, fill bottle half full with water from tap. Use this opportunity to rinse root beer extract from tablespoon and funnel into the mixture in the bottle.
Remove funnel and swirl contents in bottle until dissolved.
Fill bottle to the neck with water and screw cover on tightly.
Let bottle sit at room temperature for about four days or until bottle feels hard like an unopened bottle of soda in the grocery store.
Store in a cool place where the temperature is below sixty-five degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius).
Before opening, place in refrigerator and chill thoroughly. Loosen cap slowly when opening to allow gas to escape and avoid liquid fizzing over.
===============

You might try reducing the amount of sugar and adding Stevia a 2 liter bottle at a time to find the least amount of sugar necessary for the yeast to function and the amount of Stevia required for the desired level of sweetness...

Hope this helps... ;-)

PS: Some additional caveats from the above site:

Diet Soft Drinks - unfortunately, you CANNOT use the fermentation process to make diet soft drinks as yeast will not cause artificial sweeteners to ferment.

Do NOT use glass containers - always use plastic containers as the pressure build up inside the bottle during fermentation will often cause the bottle to explode and scatter broken glass all over. I know this from experience as, years ago when we were teenagers, my parents let my brother and I make root beer. After a couple of successful batches, the weather warmed up and we had two, one-gallon jugs explode on us. In addition to broken glass all over the room in the basement we had a very sticky mess to clean up.

Watch the Temperature - Do NOT keep fermenting soda at room temperature for more than four days. In fact, you should move it to a cooler place (65 degrees Fahrenheit or below) as soon as the bottle becomes as hard as an unopened bottle of soda from the store. While you won't have the glass problem, the plastic bottles will still explode if the pressure gets too great and you will have a sticky mess to clean up.

PPS: Be sure to let us know your final recipe for Rootbeer Concentrate... ;-)

Last edited by locarbman; 07-25-2009 at 09:22 PM..
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Old 07-26-2009, 06:13 PM   #11
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LC man, thanks again for the info. I tried using a tiny bit of McCormick root beer extract w/soda water and stevia and it really wasn't half bad at all! I'm still searching for the rest of the ingredients for the homemade root beer. I thought I had the wintergreen (dried) but then read that you have to start with fresh leaves and ferment them for a couple of days. So I bought a plant and will try it out. Tune in next week.
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