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How to Make Your Own Sparkling Juice

How to Make Your Own Sparkling Juice.  Perfect alcohol free Champagne alternative.  Give a toast without getting toasted!  With New Year's Eve on the horizon, I wanted to share this quick trick for making your own sparkling juices to use either as a non-alcoholic Champagne alternative for the non-drinkers or as a great fizzy addition to mixers.

My kids LOVE sparkling ciders and juices, but they can be pricey if you buy them in the grocery store. They can be $3-$4/bottle which is only about 16 oz.  That is only a few glasses worth.
Commerical sparkling apple cider
I have figured out a few ways to make my own for less than half that cost.

The cheapest way I have found is to use my SodaStream carbonator.  I love this thing and I use it all the time to make my own soda and sparkling waters, so making sparkling juices and ciders seemed like a natural progression.  They are not very expensive (right now I think you can find them on Amazon for under 90$).  I've had mine for a few years now.. so they don't even make this model anymore.
Soda stream carbonator
Now I know you are thinking, "DUH.. just carbonate apple juice with your machine."  BUT NO!! DON’T DO THAT!!   You cannot carbonate anything but pure water with your machine or it will explode and end up a sticky mess.

Trust me.. I’ve heard stories.  I’ve even heard of someone trying to carbonate wine once! The bottle blew sky high in her kitchen and she ended up with red wine platter on every surface of her kitchen! I can’t even imagine!!Warning on soda stream machineOf course I know not everyone has a Sodastream, so I have an alternative method where you can use club soda instead.  Of course, because you have to purchase the club soda, it increases the costs slightly, but it still less expensive than buying bottled sparkling cider.

The recipe is simple.  You need the concentrated juice of your choice (I was using frozen but you also could use canned) and club soda or carbonated water.  I love that I can make pretty much any type of juice. I even found the same Welch’s white grape concentrate that they use for their sparkling version.  Talk about a perfect knock off!
DIY Sparkling Apple Juice
Cost comparison:
Store bought:
1 bottle Sparkling Cider (16 oz): $3.49  

Made with Sodastream (16 oz):  99c 
Made with club soda (16 oz): $1.59 

1 can frozen juice concentrate: $1.99
1 (2 L) bottle club soda: $1.19

The nice part about using the Sodastream instead of club soda is that you can control the level of carbonation.  To make it ‘extra fizzy’ I was able to over-carbonate that water.
Making club soda with sodastreamI normally carbonate for three “buzzes” (If you own the machine you know what that means) but for this process I use five.
Using soda stream to carbonate juiceFor every can of concentrate you need three cans of water (or club soda)
Make your own sparkling ciderYou want to mix them together slowly and stir gently because the sugar in the juice wants to trigger the dissolved carbon dioxide to release.  If you want to retain the fizz, you need to be careful. (The same way you don’t want to shake a can of soda and release the bubbles or it will go flat)
Carbonating apple juiceTo serve I poured it into some old bottles I washed out.  If you can re-cork them you can hold onto the carbonation for a few days.Carbonating Apple JuiceAnd the nice part is that it is basically an unlimited supply.   Home made sparkling juice

A great way to toast the New Year!  Everyone needs a little sparkle in their lives!

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