Most folks do not know how to make ginger ale, yet it is one of the easiest drinks to whip up yourself in a matter of minutes. The bonus of making it at home is that you can traditionally ferment it, meaning it is loaded with beneficial bacteria known as probiotics as well as enzymes, and you can use healthy ingredients to boot!
Fermentation of grains, fruits and herbs for the production of health promoting, refreshing and delicious drinks is nearly universal in ethnic cuisines but this practice has been largely forgotten with the rise of factory produced sodas that have no redeeming nutritional benefit and only encourage obesity and other chronic ailments.
Soda can be healthy. Learning traditional preparation techniques is all that is required to leave the belly bulging and backside expanding sodas from the store far behind and still enjoy a tart, fizzy drink on a hot afternoon!
How to Make Ginger Ale (Healthy and Homemade)
2 quarts filtered water
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (about 3 organic limes – buy on sale and freeze extras)
2 tsp organic ginger powder (sources)
1/4-1/2 cup sucanat (sources)
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup ginger ale starter or homemade liquid whey (do not use powdered whey. You can use the contents of a probiotic capsule, coconut water kefir or the liquid strained from coconut milk yogurt from the store instead as the fermenting medium if you have a dairy allergy)
Pinch of stevia (optional)
Raw honey (optional)
Mix all ingredients together well in a 2 quart glass mason jar (Ace Hardware carries them). Be sure to leave 1 inch at the top else the soda will rot and get moldy instead of ferment.
Leave at room temperature on the counter for 2-3 days and then refrigerate. The ginger ale will be mildly fizzy. You can then mix with a bit of seltzer water to add even more fizziness if desired.
Alternatively, you can bottle the fermented ginger ale and leave on the counter for an additional 1-2 days before refrigerating to produce a very fizzy beverage.
If the finished soda is not sweet enough for your taste, add a tiny pinch of stevia or stir in a small amount of mild, raw honey.
Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist