Pasteurising cider in a keg

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troyp42

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Hi guys, I want to back sweeten my cider by adding pomegranate juice to the batch. Then I was going to pour it into a 9 litre keg I have that is all stainless (so no rubber base) then sit this in a tub and use my Inkbird sous vide element to heat to 60C for 20 minutes.
Then I will put in my kegerator to carb up and then bottle some using my counter pressure bottle filler. Any reason why this wont work?
 
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troyp42

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Or...I could even carbonate it in the keg via Co2 then perform the pasteurization step just like you would with bottles. The PRV would stop any disasters and I could do it for say 20 mins at 60C just to make sure its done properly.
 

doublejef

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Hi, I did pasteurization in keg and had no problem.
Don't carbonate before, it will give you a high pressure in the keg during warming time, just through a litte amount of CO2 to mak it well close and protected from O2. Cool it down and then carbonate.
Like for the bottle, I try to get the cider at 65°C and then I consired it's ok. As keg is bigger, I give it a shake each minute or two to be sure tempareture is the same everywhere. I use IR thermometer to check temperature during the process.
 

madscientist451

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If you are going to force carbonate, you can stabilize the cider and skip the heat pasteurization.
 

madscientist451

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Also if you add the pomegranate juice to the cider and keep the keg cold its not going to ferment all that much before the keg is kicked.
 
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troyp42

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Also if you add the pomegranate juice to the cider and keep the keg cold its not going to ferment all that much before the keg is kicked.
I want to also bottle some from the keg to give to mates and family.
 
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troyp42

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Hi, I did pasteurization in keg and had no problem.
Don't carbonate before, it will give you a high pressure in the keg during warming time, just through a litte amount of CO2 to mak it well close and protected from O2. Cool it down and then carbonate.
Like for the bottle, I try to get the cider at 65°C and then I consired it's ok. As keg is bigger, I give it a shake each minute or two to be sure tempareture is the same everywhere. I use IR thermometer to check temperature during the process.
Cheers for the information. Ill give it try and see how it goes.
 
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Hi, I did pasteurization in keg and had no problem.
Don't carbonate before, it will give you a high pressure in the keg during warming time, just through a litte amount of CO2 to mak it well close and protected from O2. Cool it down and then carbonate.
Like for the bottle, I try to get the cider at 65°C and then I consired it's ok. As keg is bigger, I give it a shake each minute or two to be sure tempareture is the same everywhere. I use IR thermometer to check temperature during the process.
How long did you keep it at this temp? 65C/149F?

Also, does anyone do this with a rubber-bottom keg? I imagine it would need a false bottom to keep it from melting the rubber?

Thank you!

Reevesie
 

doublejef

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Once you reach 65°C 5-6 min will be enough but as the temparature doesn't go from 0 to 65, neither from 65 to 0, once you reach 65, you can count a minute or so, remove it from the water and let it cool down.
I use don't have a false bottom into my kettle but it should help. I put the keg into the water at 80°C and if I want to warm it, I just remove the keg during the time needed.

I made a google sheet that give you the Pasteurization Unit (PU) you get when you write the temp you have during the process.
It is read only but you can copy it and use it. You need 50 PU to be 100% sure (30 should be enough too).

Link of the Google sheet
 
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Once you reach 65°C 5-6 min will be enough but as the temparature doesn't go from 0 to 65, neither from 65 to 0, once you reach 65, you can count a minute or so, remove it from the water and let it cool down.
I use don't have a false bottom into my kettle but it should help. I put the keg into the water at 80°C and if I want to warm it, I just remove the keg during the time needed.

I made a google sheet that give you the Pasteurization Unit (PU) you get when you write the temp you have during the process.
It is read only but you can copy it and use it. You need 50 PU to be 100% sure (30 should be enough too).

Link of the Google sheet
Thank you!
 

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What are your thoughts on this method:

ferment cider
cold crash (to move all "sediment" to the bottom)
run off the sediment
transfer to another keg
pasteurize
cold crash again
back-sweeten
carbonate

I'm looking to make some CLEAR cider (not hazy)...does this sound like it would work?
 

doublejef

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Just a detail, I would backsweet before pasteurize. Just to be sure your sugar is also clean and won't bring some yeast/infection that will start back fermentation.
Avoid also to open the keg after pasteurization.
 

AzOr

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I've always heard that pasteurizing in a keg is a bad idea, but nothing with actual data.

Thanks to @doublejef for sharing his experience.

One question- How do you plan to monitor temps inside the keg? And for safety reasons, why not take the lid off during pasteurizing?

When I pasteurize my cider in bottles, I use a dummy bottle filled with water, capped with a rubber bung (w a hole drilled in bung). I use cold water that matches the cider. I can then stick my thermapen in the bung and monitor temps.
 

Grond

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I've always heard that pasteurizing in a keg is a bad idea, but nothing with actual data.

Thanks to @doublejef for sharing his experience.

One question- How do you plan to monitor temps inside the keg? And for safety reasons, why not take the lid off during pasteurizing?

When I pasteurize my cider in bottles, I use a dummy bottle filled with water, capped with a rubber bung (w a hole drilled in bung). I use cold water that matches the cider. I can then stick my thermapen in the bung and monitor temps.
To explain how I would pasteurize in the keg, let me explain my setup:

I have a 1/2 barrel keggle and use 1/4 barrel slims to keg. I would remove the spear from the 1/4 barrel, fill with the fermented cider, backsweeten, insert the 1/4 barrel into the keggle, fill the keggle with water and start heating. I would use an orange carboy cap and my ink bird thermometer to monitor the interior temp of the 1/4.
 

doublejef

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I've always heard that pasteurizing in a keg is a bad idea, but nothing with actual data.
I must say I didn't search for any other advise or experience from anyone before doing it so it may have any reason for people to say it's not a good idea but I don't know what. But of course it is important to do it with a non carbonate keg or it can be very dangerous.

One question- How do you plan to monitor temps inside the keg? And for safety reasons, why not take the lid off during pasteurizing?
When I pasteurize my cider in bottles, I use a dummy bottle filled with water, capped with a rubber bung (w a hole drilled in bung). I use cold water that matches the cider. I can then stick my thermapen in the bung and monitor temps.
I was looking for a bluetooth thermometer to put into the keg but I didn't find one that can go as high as 65°C. So I get the keg out of the bath after a while, I shake it to homogenize the temperature and check the actual temperature with a infra-red thermometre.
I also do like you with the bottle and as you know, after some time doing it, you know by experience how long it take without measurment.
I don't remove the lid because I'm afraid of loosing aroma, I was also afraid abour loosing the alcohol until I saw that his boiling temp is 78ish °C so it may stay in the liquid under 70°C. As my cider is flat when I do it, I prefer to let the lid on even if I may take it off.
 
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