How to Make Apple Cider Vinegar from Apple Cores.

Apple Cider Vinegar Using Apple Cores

Apple Cider Vinegar Using Apple Cores. Pin Me!

How to use apple cores have become my newest “how to use all parts of your food” project.  It is so easy to make your own apple cider vinegar.   My boys love to cut up their apples using an apple corer. Fancy, I know.  So every day, we have one or two apple cores sitting in my compost jar. It seemed like a complete waste to simply throw them in to the heap. So apple vinegar it is.

When I made sugar free crockpot homemade apple sauce, I had more apple cores then I knew what to do with them. So, I decided to experiment with a variety of apple core vinegar recipes. So who won?  You have to read on to find out!

Experiment#1:   Removing the Apple Cores after a Few Days:

Experiment #1 was based upon a Nourishing Tradition’s recipe.  See the  fruit scrap recipe here.  (Note,  recipes in the book are based upon traditional food cooking.)   Whey helps jump start the fermentation. However,  I avoid it like the plague since dairy and I don’t always get along.

However, you can use honey  or organic Rapadura sugar (unbleached and unrefined sugar) without the whey.  If you use honey rather than Rapadura sugar, the fermentation will take longer.  In a nutshell, here is my recipe adapted from the above recipe from Nourishing Cook.

  • you use 1/4 cup honey or sugar to one quart warm non-chlorinated water. (Chlorinated water halts fermentation.)  I used locally sourced honey.
  • Stir the water and sugar mixture so it dissolves.
  •  Fill the jar up half way with apple cores, and then add the solution.
  • Put a cheese cloth  or towel with a rubber band over the lid.  I used a paper towel with a rubber band.
  • Put the jar in a cool place.
  • After a week,you will see the liquid darken.  (Honestly I didn’t see that much of a change.)
  • Take out the apples and then let the liquid sit for about two to three weeks.  Stir every day until it has the right vinegar smell.
I follow the recipe to a “T” except I didn’t cut up the cores.  Due to the fact that I used honey, I let the mixture sit for almost five weeks.  After the third week, it smelled the same as it did the fifth week.  I produced apple cider not apple vinegar.  Or perhaps a really weak apple cider vinegar.
Perhaps I needed whey  for my project to work?  I was very disappointed, but used it as apple cider anyway.

Experiment #2.  Fill the Jar up to the top with Apples

I tried the same recipe with  the cores of 6 lbs of apples.  This time I used an tomato jar.  Then,  I  filled the jar up to the top with apple cores then added the liquid.   Everyone else takes out their cores out at week one or two. I bucked the trend and never took out the apple cores during the fermentation time.

Results?  I found the liquid got cloudy and a scum was developing at the top.  It is called the mother.

Yep.  The apples were fermenting.

I jumped with joy! I finally arrived. (Um, the vinegar arrived.)  At week three, I started checking if it smelled vinegary.  By week four or five, I had APPLE CIDER VINEGAR!

When as recipe called for apple cider vinegar, I gladly grabbed my supply.  (Yeah, I stuttered like a peacock. )

Experiment #3.  Fill the quart up to the top with Brown Apple Cores.

For Jar #3,  I used the cores of about 6 lbs of apples and  followed the advice of an apple core vinegar recipe on Healthy Eating Site .  The recipe called for letting the apple cores brown first.  Note, this recipe only calls for apple cores and water.  No sugar or honey; however, the process can take 7 months.

I am too impatient for 7 months so I used the above Nourishing Cook’s recipe, but filled the tomato jar up to the top with apple cores and the honey water solution.

Results?  Similar to Experiment #2 but I think I will brown the cores next time before I put them in the jar. I think it fermented slightly faster.

Oh, that scum (the mother) can be added to the next batch if you want to ferment your next batch quicker.

Also, you can add your peels too to make vinegar.  I have other uses for them.  Let’s just say they are lips smacking good.  Check back soon for the apple peel recipe.

Join the Conversation:

  • Do you use your apple scraps to make vinegar?
  • If so, what is your recipe?
  • Do you think it matters that I kept the apples in the solution for five weeks?
  • Do you use other fruit scraps to make vinegar?

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  1. 1


    I have never tried to make vinegar, but it’s on THE LIST! We have quite a few apple cores around here too. I’m glad to hear that you think letting them brown is actually better. It would take a while to get enough cores. Maybe I’ll throw them in the freezer until I have enough. I do that with citrus peels for infusing vinegar.
    Kristina (The Greening Of Westford)´s last blog post ..Making Yogurt: It’s All About Temperature!

  2. 3

    Ashley Veronika Zappe says

    Hi! I’m really excited to try making vinegar, but I thought it required special equiptment like a still. Did you really just put the ingredients in a jar and let it sit? Did you cover the jar? lid it tightly or let it breathe?


    • 4


      As I mentioned above, I let it sit in a jar but stir it every day (when I remember) and put a paper towel over it with a rubber ban. Most people use a cheese cloth. I didn’t have one. This lets it breath. I have a video coming up on the site so you can see it visually.

  3. 7

    Ashley Veronika Zappe says

    Hi! I’m really excited to try making vinegar, but I thought making vinegar required special equipment like a still. Did you really just put the ingredients in a jar and let it sit? Did you cover the jar? lid it tightly or let it breathe?


  4. 8


    This is such perfect timing! I was thinking just last night about how I could make ACV. We go through it so quickly and it’s so expensive. Can’t wait to try these out!


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