How much priming sugar per gallon

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

jkoegel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
118
Reaction score
6
Location
Rochester
I have had my cider fermenting in the secondary for 2 weeks now. Nice and dry. 1.000 as it sits right now. Very slow activity in the airlock. One bubble every 5 minutes or so. Very tiny bubbles in the cider (malolactic fermentation?)
As this is my first batch I am not ready to try my hand at the potentially explosive results of heat pasteurization. Planning on adding just a touch of sweetness with xylitol and priming it for bottling this weekend.
My question is how much priming sugar (corn sugar) do I add? I'd like a nice fizzy cider, but not as much as champagne. And no bottle bombs either.
Does anyone have a set amount to add?
Used EC-1118 if it matters for carbonation.
 

UpstateMike

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2011
Messages
929
Reaction score
178
Location
Marion
It seems to me I read on here use 3/4 cup dextrose (corn sugar) per 5 gallons.
 

Pickled_Pepper

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 14, 2011
Messages
1,245
Reaction score
79
Location
Atlanta
I typically use about 3.75 (or so) oz of corn sugar per 5 gallon batch. This gives me fizz when poured and then a steady little stream of bubbles coming up from the glass. I would use weight for your measurements instead of volume if you can. Also the must temp will be a variable in how to determine how much is needed because of some CO2 being in suspension.
 
OP
J

jkoegel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
118
Reaction score
6
Location
Rochester
I was told by a friend to use 1/8 cup corn sugar per gallon. So 3/8 cup went into the bottling bucket. Now we wait and see. I did a couple grolsch bottles to check the carbonation as it progresses. The rest is in 22oz beer bottles with O2 absorbing crown caps.
My next purchase will be a small digital scale so I can start using weight measures in the future. It seems like more advanced brewers all use weight. Makes sense, brown sugar packed or unpacked makes a big difference.
 

Daze

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2011
Messages
657
Reaction score
29
Location
Kalispell
alcohol reduces the SG slightly so a truly dry reading will be at or near .995, plus the fact that you are still seeing bubbles tells me that there is still activity in the cider. Also the cider is currently co2 saturated so if you added your sweetener with minimal agitation of the liquid and then bottled it. the little bit of suger left in it and the co2 already in the liquid should result in a nice carbination.

As to the question at hand assuming there really is no sugar already in it, 1/2 tsp per bottle or 5 tsp per gallon.
 
OP
J

jkoegel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
118
Reaction score
6
Location
Rochester
Thanks for that Daze.
This is my first batch so I was a little concerned about producing bottle bombs with too much sugar.
I used 1/8 cup = 6tsp, so just a little higher. I should be good at that amount then.

As far as the activity in my cider I read somewhere that malolactic fermentation produces a few tiny bubbles as it converts the malic acid to lactic acid in the cider? Any truth to this? My final SG was .995 before bottling so there shouldn't have been any sugar left in there. I was still counting one bubble every 7-8 minutes.
 

GinKings

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2008
Messages
579
Reaction score
21
Location
Bridgewater, NJ
+1 Buy a scale. Volume measurements are not nearly as accurate. A cup is 8 oz, but a cup of sugar does not weigh 8 oz. A cup of brown sugar is not necessarily the same as a cup of corn sugar, but a pound of sugar is a pound of sugar. I've bought a few inexpensive scales from Ebay and have been happy with all of them. Here's one example: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mini-1000-x...172?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2c5f4014cc

I think $6.45 is a bargain.

Like Daze said, if it's at 1.000 and you are still seeing airlock activity, you need to be careful. The residual sugar and the CO2 in solution could be a problem if you add priming sugar and bottle. I'd let it sit longer.
 

GinKings

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2008
Messages
579
Reaction score
21
Location
Bridgewater, NJ
Your gravity was still dropping, so your cider was still fermenting. After fermentation ends, the cider is saturated with CO2 and you will see some airlock activity from the CO2 coming out of solution. Malolactic fermentation may, or may not, happen, but it would be much later.
 

Daze

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2011
Messages
657
Reaction score
29
Location
Kalispell
I read somewhere that malolactic fermentation produces a few tiny bubbles as it converts the malic acid to lactic acid in the cider? Any truth to this?
I know nothing about malolactic fermentation, but my guess is that the bubbles you are seeing are residual co2 suspended in the liquid. it can take days for the co2 to work its way out after the fermentation has stopped especially if the liquid is cold. the colder it is the happier the co2 is to stay in it.
 
OP
J

jkoegel

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
118
Reaction score
6
Location
Rochester
I'm a big fan of Harbor Freight tools when it comes to stuff like the scale. Digital kitchen scale there for like 10 bucks. I will have it for the next batch starting up later this week.

Thanks for all the input guys.
 
Top