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March 19, 2013

How to Make Apple Pie Moonshine

Apple Pie Moonshine

So, you want to know how to make apple pie moonshine, eh? You've come to the right place.

Apple pie shine is probably the most popular and sought after type of bootleg whiskey ever made, and for good reason - it's delicious. We've already posted procedures for making a basic mash and even instructions on making peach moonshine. Here is our favorite (high octane) apple pie moonshine recipe.

apple pie moonshine 2 small


Prep time: 5 minutes.
Cook time: 30 minutes.
Yield: Just over 2 quarts of 70 proof Apple Pie Moonshine.
Taste: Absolutely yummy, but knock your socks off strong.


1 quart of 150 proof, pure corn whiskey moonshine (everclear could be used as a substitute).
3 cans of frozen apple concentrate.
8 cinnamon sticks.
0-2 cups brown sugar*.
*Depending on how sweet you want it to be, you may add up to twice as much of these particular items (in other words, 1 or 2 cups of brown sugar instead of none).


The "Instant Satisfaction" Method

First, add the apple concentrate, cinnamon sticks and brown sugar to a pot. Bring to a boil and then simmer on very low heat, covered, for 20-30 minutes. Stir a few times as it is heating up to dissolve the sugar. Heating causes the cinnamon sticks to release their flavor very quickly, allowing you to be able to drink it immediately. I like to call this the "instant satisfaction" method.

After simmering, remove the pot from heat and let it cool.  Make sure it is completely cool, and none of the burners on the stove are on before moving on to the next step.

After the mixture has cooled, split it between 4 pint jars (or 2 quart jars). Top the jars off with 150 proof corn whiskey. Remember, 100+ proof moonshine is flammable. You do not want to do this anywhere near a heat source.

If you completed all of the steps, congratulations, you just made your very own apple pie moonshine. You can start enjoying the fruits of your labor immediately.  

The "no-boil" method

They say that good things come to those who wait, and we think that this statement applies to apple pie moonshine as well as it does to anything else. If you want to make a truly supreme batch of apple pie shine, you'll want to use this method. The "instant satisfaction" method listed above causes flavor to be rapidly released from cinnamon sticks, making your batch instantly drinkable. However, "steeping" the ingredients overnight, without boiling, produces a better product. Why? Well, we aren't exactly sure, but we think that boiling the cinnamon sticks cause additional flavors to be released, making the final product ever so slightly bitter. The "no boil" method provides 100% of the flavor with none of the bitterness.

Beware, this recipe is high proof. A lot of recipes call for adding a gallon apple this and a gallon of apple that, but by the time you're done adding all that liquid, you've dropped your proof down into the baby formula range. Apple concentrate provides apple flavor without compromising proof. This stuff sneaks up on you - and then it punches you in the face! But it's oh, so good.

apple pie moonshine spice mix

Gourmet Apple Pie Moonshine

The above mentioned recipe (cinnamon, sugar, and apple juice concentrate only) will make a great batch of apple pie moonshine. However, add spices like ginger, orange peel, cloves, allspice, vanilla bean, peppercorn, etc... and you'll have something that will make your tastebuds do backflips. There are plenty of recipes on the web for more complicated versions of apple pie moonshine. Some of them are great, other are OK, but most are sorely lacking. We know this firsthand here at Clawhammer Supply, because we've tried a lot of them out. We did this because we've been working on a top secret project for a while now - the creation of a perfect blend of apple pie moonshine spices. After making many, many test batches, and drinking a lot, lot, lot of apple pie moonshine, we finally landed on a recipe that we're 100% sure will melt your tastebuds into a puddle of awesomeness. We proudly present to you our very own Apple Pie Moonshine Spice Mix. Check out that link to buy some, or head on over to our sister site, How to Make Apple Pie Moonshine for more info and additional recipes.

Hot Apple Pie Moonshine

If you would like to serve up some hot apple pie moonshine, here's what we would suggest.  Use the recipe above to make standard apple pie moonshine.  Then, buy a couple of gallons of apple cider and spice it to taste using the same ingredients above.  Heat it in a crock pot WITHOUT the apple pie moonshine.  (You don't want to add the moonshine because you'll vaporize all of the alcohol if you heat it over a long period of time.)  Just set the jar of apple pie moonshine next to the crock pot and let your guests add a bit (or a lot) to each cup of cider they pour.   

We hope you enjoy this post on how to make apple pie moonshine.  This is how we like it, but we'd also love to hear your thoughts.  Let us know your opinion on this recipe, or share your own apple pie moonshine recipe below. Oh, and don't forget to check out our moonshine still kits before you leave.

Copper Moonshine Still Kit
Apple Pie Moonshine


  • Made a batch of this last week, and noticed some white….stuff on the bottom of the jars. I wouldn’t think with as high proof as this is it would be infected or anything, but I have no idea what it could be. Any ideas?

    Posted by Jeff on September 12, 2015
  • I just followed & made a batch of apple pie moonshine :) put into mason jars, since it shows to add alcohol after cools the lids are just on to screw lids shut but not tight like canning since that requires to be very hot & all was already cooled then put lids on.

    How do you store? can they be kept in cabinet or do they need to be refrigerted? Hubby says no cause alcohol will not allow mold but I worry cause of all the apple juice / cider.

    Please & Thank you.

    Posted by Hollyanne Gallo on March 22, 2015
  • just wanted to know what size apple juice do you buy?
    Posted by vida on February 14, 2015
  • In making the apple pie moonshine I combined all the ingredients (inadvertently the 190 proof Everclear included) in the pot to heat to simmer before I realized my error. Not wanting to throw all this out I continued to simmer for an hour then strained into sterilized quart jars. Because I heated this with the alcohol will it still be okay or will I have to throw this all out and start over. A big waste of $$.

    Posted by Marilyn on February 11, 2015
  • I wanted to try the “Ruckus Juice receipt” but with a lower alcohol level of around 60 proof …. So I just blended some 100 proof with 153 proof grain alcohol and it came out on target once added to the 4 cans of juice concentrate and the spice kit. I personally added 1/4 cup of brown sugar. LOVED THE OUTCOME. A little low proof means a little faster sipping :)

    Posted by Carl Carlson on December 19, 2014
  • Looking for a good pineapple moonshine recipe and a good pear moonshine recipe.

    Posted by gary on November 28, 2014
  • Steeping, do you let all the ingredients sit 24 hours then add alcohol?

    Posted by teecare on November 18, 2014
  • Mine taste like a bit of fireball from the cinnamon. I did boil the sticks. Only used three! How can I cut the cinnamon flavor down? More apple juice? Some brown sugar?

    Posted by kris on October 17, 2014
  • Not sure I under stand your steep method. I’m I suppose to heat it at all or just mix ingredients including alcohol and let set overnight without heating?

    Posted by Donna on September 30, 2014
  • I made this, following the instructions but with everclear.. Is it supposed to be really strong? After splitting it up and placing into 2 quart jars, It burns my nose hair just smelling it lol, will this mellow out or should I cut it down with more apple juice concentrate/regular juice

    Posted by Shinewbie on June 27, 2014
  • I add a tad bit of Cayenne pepper to my quarts, give it that final WOOOO…. Taste….

    Posted by Red on June 07, 2014
  • A little FYI on why boiling the cinnamon sticks makes the drink slightly bitter… cinnamon contains tannins which are natural astringent compounds. Tannins are usually released when tempuratures well above 170 degrees are used, which boiling definitely passes. Not that ya’ll needed to know that to know boiling makes the drink slightly bitter, but I like to know why stuff happens so I thought I’d share. BTW, thanks for the ideas, I’ll be trying out your recipe (plus some spices of my own) tomorrow night.

    Posted by Charles on March 26, 2014
  • NO STOP! The real drink is called Applejack the drink of the mountains here in Maine! 1st make real strong hard cidah, please no frozen can stuff, u city people, then let it age a year or more, put it in ur wood pail. Mine is oak and on the coldest night below 0 put it outside I like mine -10 or better! Anything that is not alcohol freezes break up the ice still outdoors and let it drain into another container. A friend came over had 3 shots said it did not affect him at all stood up sat down and said " I think I pee’d myself!". It seeks up on ya!

    Posted by Jeff McRobbie on March 14, 2014
  • Would like for you to help in recommending the types of stills about how many gallons and where to acquire them and their prices. This has to be used in Africa, and any other equipments and ingredients needed. Personally, i have not even witnessed where and how it is produced. I look forward to your soonest response.
    Posted by ogbonnah Nwaosu on February 25, 2014
  • I start by putting a gallon of moonshine in the deep freezer, then I make mine with 2 gallons organic apple juice, 2 gallons fresh pressed apple cider, 2 lbs light brown sugar, 24-30 cinnamon sticks, 20 cloves, and a cup of pure vanilla, all ingredients go into a large cook pot, until it hits 180 degrees, then I strain all the solids out of it, chill with a wort chiller running cold water through the coil until around 110 degrees, Add the shine stir and pour into a case of quart jars, and 2 of the gallon bottles. have made 8 batches and had no complaints yet.

    Posted by DilligafDave on February 22, 2014
  • I want to try this so bad…lol…will be making it soon as I get the whiskey …thank you…

    Posted by Val on February 21, 2014
  • I tried this reciepe and it’s great, but 750ml of Jr Johnson’s moon just ain’t enough so I sit a bottle on the table and you can just add what you need

    Posted by Jim Stewart on February 19, 2014
  • I believe that’s the best recipe yet

    Posted by Tim Ashley on February 08, 2014
  • I played around a few times & finally settled on this recipe.
    1 gal apple juice.
    1 gal apple cider (CLEAN)
    2 cups brown sugar
    8 cinnamon sticks
    2 tsp vanilla.
    1 & 3/4 liters of 190 grain alcohol.
    Heat/simmer the juices, sugar & sticks without boiling, stirring regular until the sticks open up. (Maybe 30 minutes)
    Remove from heat & let cool (IMPORTANT) to room temp. Add vanilla & 1 & 3/4 liters of 190 proof of grain alcohol & stir. This makes about 10 quarts. I usually go 50-50 on quarts & pints.
    Boil or sanitize the jars & lids. Strain it before you bottle it (you’ll thank me later) and if you try and store it in the fridge longterm you will ruin it.!!:-( And all this typing will be wasted.
    Just store it in a dark cabinet somewhere & it’ll last up to a year if you you don’t drink it first. It does get better/smoother in a couple of 3 weeks;-)
    Don’t worry about sealing the jars. The proof will keep it clean.
    I call mine spicy drunk apples IDKW. But I can sip/drink a pint & have a nice mellow buzz & sleep like a child.

    Posted by weathermanmark on February 05, 2014
  • I just made my third batch and tried a little more complicated recipe. Starting with the above ingredients I added 2 cups butterscotch Schnaaps and vanilla vodka and some all spice. Problem is now it’s too spicy and tastes carmally. Any ideas how to fix this? I tries to cut with more apple juice but it didn’t help.

    Posted by Dave on February 04, 2014

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