How to Make Homemade Caribbean Ginger Beer

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When I was growing up in the Caribbean my mom used to make a drink called ginger beer. She made it every Christmas and but it was never my favorite. As you can imagine, ginger is an acquired taste especially for a child. Now that I’m an adult, I have grown to appreciate the taste and potency of ginger. Now before you go on thinking that child protection services should have been called, although the name of the beverage is ginger beer, this drink didn’t have any alcohol in it so don’t let the name throw you off. Ginger beer originated in the 1700 in England and was indeed a fermented drink. Some people still ferment is and others don’t.

This spicy tasty ginger drink is a Caribbean staple and a favorite that you can make at home. (Be sure to sign up for my newsletter and stay in the loop).

But the Caribbean ginger beer that I drank growing up had zero resemblance to beer. It’s zippy, a bit spicy can packs a nutritional punch. How much snap and spice it has depends on personal preference and taste.

Some people also spike it…but I’ll leave that up to you.

But every Carnival, food sale and definitely around the holidays it was hard to escape the pungent smell.

As an adult, I now realize the nutritional powerhouse that ginger and hence ginger beer is. Minus the sugar, you can’t meet the anti-inflammatory benefits of ginger beer. Well of course turmeric’s anti-inflammatory effects is nothing to sneeze at either but we can talk about that on another day.

So when my mom visited recently, I asked her to whip up a batch. Just like in this video, we got working in the kitchen.  She took the lead, and I took crazy notes. Here’s the recipe for Caribbean Ginger Beer. Served chilled and have a good ole’ time. By the way, I used this blender to get some of the quick and easy blending done.

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Caribbean Ginger Beer

An authentic recipe for Caribbean ginger beer. A traditional spicy drink that packs a nutritional punch.

  • Author: Lisa Leslie-Williams
  • Prep Time: 4.5 hours
  • Total Time: 6 hours
  • Yield: 10-12
  • Cuisine: drink

Ingredients

4 medium pieces ginger root

2 cups sugar

1 cinnamon stick

1 small lemon or 1/2 large lemon

About 6-8 cups cups water

4 cloves

Instructions

Soak ginger root in enough water to cover for about 30 minutes to loosen dirt and debris.

Lightly scrape ginger with knife to remove most of outer skin.

Cut each piece of ginger into 2 pieces.

Add to blender, add 2 cups of water and blend until you get a pulp (about a few seconds).

Boil approximately 3-4 cups of water and pour over grated ginger. The amount of water you add will depend on how strong you want the ginger beer to be.

Add cinnamon stick, and cloves.

Let the ginger beer sit on counter for at least 4 hours. The longer it sits, the stronger the ginger beer will be as the flavor is extracted.

Strain the ginger beer after four hours and add 2- 4 cups more water (depends on taste) and sugar. Use the sugar listed above as a guide on how much to add depending on your taste.

Notes

The original recipe for ginger beer recipe also included a small amount of rice. We’ve eliminated the rice to make this recipe grain free and it was just as good.

Keywords: ginger, ginger beer, caribbean drinks




Want to try another recipe? Try this island coleslaw. It’s how it’s made in the Virgin Islands. And don’t forget to be sure to sign up for my newsletter for more posts like this.

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