This refreshing tepache-fermented pineapple cold drink is made from just pineapple peels, sugar, water, and a few spices! The fermentation process for making tepache with minimal ingredients is simple and quick, which makes a healthy cocktail an easy drink to make at home. This cold fermented pineapple drink is delicious and great for overall health.
Whenever pineapple is abundant, I take advantage of preparing all the pineapples and save the pineapple peel to make this delicious, refreshing, and healthy drink. Sometimes, I just use cane sugar or brown sugar and water with pineapple peels and I am good to make it. In this tepache recipe, I added cinnamon and star anise to add more flavor.
Why you will love this
- The fermentation process for this Mexican drink is faster than kombucha, but they are similar in terms of procedures.
- Take advantage of saving the pineapple peel instead of throwing them away. And you can use the same pineapple peel to ferment twice. Simply add chlorine-free water and sugar for the second round.
- This drink is healthier than regular alcoholic cocktails. Fermented drinks have probiotics which are good for the gut. If you want to learn more about probiotics and gut health, check out this informative article about gut health and the best probiotic supplements for gut health.
- If you love fermented recipes, check out my:
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Pineapple Peel - Ripe pineapple peel and core is the best to use in this tepache since it adds more sweetness.
- Brown Sugar - This is to sweeten and help to ferment the liquid. You can use piloncillo raw cane sugar, or honey and use the same amount. More sugar if you like a sweeter drink. Sugar kick starts the yeast in producing carbon dioxide gas and makes the fermentation process faster and more effective.
- Spices - Cinnamon sticks and star anise are two of my favorite spices for my delicious and flavorful drink. You can play around and add a few of your favorites as well.
- Water - Use chlorine-free water all the time. If you use tap water, let it sit overnight for the chlorine to dissipate.
How to make a tepache?
Step 1: Cut the Pineapple - Remove the crown and base of the pineapple, then rinse the body of the pineapple with running water to remove potential pests or dirt. Cut the peel from the pineapple into big chunks, leaving about ¼ inch of the pineapple flesh on the peel.
Step 2: Assemble - In a large glass container, dissolve brown sugar in water, and place the pineapple peels, cinnamon sticks, and star anise.
Step 3: Ferment - Cover with a clean dishtowel or a few layers of paper towels, then secure with a rubber band. This will keep gnats or flies away while allowing the yeasts to have oxygen. Let it stand at room temperature on your countertop, letting it ferment for about 1 to 5 days. After days 1-2, you will see it will start to bubble as a sign of fermentation. At this moment, you can start to taste it and decide if you let it ferment longer or decide to drink it.
Step 4: Drink - Strain the liquid from the container and place it in another container or bottle. Add more sweeteners like sugar or honey if you need to. Add ice to make it refreshing and chill.
Store tepache in an air-tight glass bottle or glass jar in the refrigerator for up to a year. Thanks to the fermentation process, tepache will last a long time because of its acidity. The flavors will continue to build towards yeasty, but a properly made and stored tepache will last for a long, long time.
Frequently Asked Questions
Tepache is a fermented drink that is very popular in Mexico and is now gaining popularity all over the world. Corn was the original base of tepache, but the contemporary recipe for tepache uses pineapple rinds as the number 1 ingredient in the fermentation process to produce the tart drink called tepache.
You need to wait for at least 1 to 5 days, checking the flavor daily to achieve the desired taste. The longer it ferments, the more fizzy and sour it will become. Fermentation is the reason behind the waiting period since you must allow the sugar and fruit to ferment.
You should see enough foam and bubbles that form on the top of the surface of the tepache. The tepache is ready to be bottled for its second fermentation. Bottle the tepache in the pressure-resistant bottle. Then let sit at room temperature for a day or two, or until the fizz is to your liking.
The combination of pineapple and its fermentation process is very beneficial. Most fermented foods contribute to bacteria that have a potential probiotic effect. This helps to balance bacteria in your gut, support digestive health and protect us from digestive issues. Pineapple is an anti-inflammatory food and has a high content of vitamin C, it also provides vitamins A, B, and minerals like magnesium.
It helps to fight intestinal parasites contributing to good digestion. It contains bromelain, an enzyme that helps to improve the digestive process.
Tepache and kombucha are both fermented drinks, but unlike kombucha, tepache is made from pineapple and water. The base ingredients of this fizzy drink are pineapple and water. It is often flavored with added sugars, and spices. The mixed ingredients are simply set aside and fermented naturally.
There is a very low amount of alcohol in tepache because of the fermentation process, something like 2-4 degrees of alcohol, and there is a very small chance that it will make you drunk unless you add stronger alcoholic drinks to it.
Tepeche Fermented Pineapple Cold Drink
- 1 ripe pineapple peels
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 8 cups chlorine-free water
- 2 sticks cinnamon optional
- 2 pieces star anise optional
- Rinse the pineapple to remove dirt. Using a sharp knife, cut the peel leaving about ¼ inch of the pineapple flesh on the peel.
- In a big jar, dissolve brown sugar in water. Assemble pineapple peels, cinnamon sticks, and star anise. Cover with a dishcloth paper towel sealed with a rubber band.
- Let it stand at room temperature for 1-5 days. Check for bubbles as a good sign of fermentation. Start to taste after 1-2 days and decide if it is ready to drink.
- Strain the liquid and transfer it to different containers. Add ice for a refreshing and cold drink.
- You can make a second batch using the same pineapple peel mixture. Just add water and sugar.
- You can use or add fresh sliced ginger or other fruits, such as apple peel to add more flavor.