What type of sugar do I need to make ginger beer and how much?

by Kelsey

See below, but for even more detailed information on Sugar and Ginger Beer, see our blog article.

What type of sugar should I use for my ginger beer?

For ginger beer we recommend brown sugar for Step 1 of your Alcoholic Ginger Beer fermentation. This gives a lovely caramelised note to your end ginger beer. For Step 2 we recommend white cane sugar as it’s readily available to produce the best carbonation.

If you want to try some different options, we have given you some info below. Any of the below options can be used for ginger beer, they will each give quite a different flavour to your final product.

The possible options:

  • Evaporated Cane Juice or Cane Juice Crystals – this is a less refined sugar and is a good option to try.
  • Brown Sugar – it will contribute a more caramel/molasses flavour.
  • Coconut Palm Sugar or Syrup – this will work well but may give sour or bitter flavours due to the high level of minerals. It may need a shorter brewing time so keep regularly tasting your brew.
  • Agave or Maple Syrup – make sure it is a pure source and not mixed with anything. 
  • Molasses – this has a relatively low level of sucrose so is best paired with a mixture of white sugar and molasses. This will add some interesting notes to your brew so some experimentation will be required.
  • Honey – there are different ratios of sugar in different types of honey so you may see some contrasting results, but it can be used for experimentation. 

What sugars should I not be using in my brewing?

  • Stevia – this is a plant sugar and will not ferment.
  • Artificial Sweeteners (Erythritol, Aspartame, Sucralose) – none of these will work.

How much sugar do I add?

The amount of sugar is specified in your recipe. If you are making non-alcoholic ginger beer you only complete Step 2 of the process so <0.5% alcohol is produced.