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Back Sweetening Bottled Cider

I have some cider (2 gallons) that is fermenting now. I made a batch last year and it was way too dry, more like apple wine. This year Im looking to sweeten up the bottles for a better taste. I have a plan, I just wanted to run it by some experts:

Once fermentation is complete I will backsweeten by adding apple juice concentrate / brown sugar mix until the taste is right. Then I will bottle. I will start opening sample bottles after 7 days to test carbonation levels. Once I hit the desired carbonation level I am looking for, I will pasteurize the bottles in hot water on the stove to kill the yeast.

Is this a good plan, or am I missing something? This is a great batch made with fresh local cider, so I dont want to screw it up.

Thank you

That’ll work! You might want to bottle one in a plastic soda bottle so you can gauge when they’re getting carbonating when it gets firm. That way you won’t waste as many before some level of carbonation. Wear safety equipment when you pasteurize! I’ll be using xylitol this year to avoid it.

Great idea with the soda bottle! I’ll do that for sure so I dont waste bottles, especially since my quantity is limited.

Im going to try to find a local frozen apple concentrate to use, Id hate to spoil this batch of raw local cold pressed cider with some generic frozen concentrate to backsweeten.

Thank you again, thats a great idea.

You could try making your own… I left a jug outside last fall and it partially froze, so I inverted it over a jar to let the concentrated sugars drain out and left mostly ice behind. Repeat a second time and you’ll have a nice concentrate. A gallon of cider yielded about a quart and a half of concentrate, but I don’t remember the gravity of it. Might be worth a try if you can’t find anything local.

Sounds great, I’ll give it a try.

Thank you again

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