Use your favorite cereal to make our Malt o Meal Moonshine Recipe!
When you ask many adults about their favorite childhood pastimes you will hear a lot of stories about Saturday mornings spent watching cartoons and eating breakfast cereal. This makes sense of course, because this childhood right of passage combines great kid entertainment and delicious cereals designed for a sweet tooth.
While cereal is just as delicious as an adult, it is also possible to use it to take your moonshine game to a whole new level.
Making moonshine is quickly gaining popularity around the globe. From the popularity of the Discovery Channel hit Moonshiners to the songs about moonshine performed by country stars like White Lightning by George Jones and Moonshine in the Trunk by Brad Paisley.
Can you use Cereal in your Moonshine?
When many people think of moonshine they think of corn, but not necessarily cornflakes. That is because traditionally moonshine has been made with grains, just not the processed flakes found in your cereal bowl.
Consuming ethanol produced through fermentation goes back to the days of early man. It is believed that our bodies evolved to be able to handle a small amount of ethanol and so if push came to shove, early man could eat fruit that fell to the ground and started to ferment.
American moonshining was rooted in early pioneers, specifically those who settled in grain producing states. Fermentation was the answer to the issue of producing excess corn or grain. It also quickly became apparent that farmers could sell whiskey for a lot more than they could sell corn.
Sadly, the days of producing your own spirit soon came to an end when Alexander Hamilton decided to create a ‘whiskey tax’ to help pay for the cost of the American Revolutionary war. With this change came a huge rebellion and subsequent loss of life. Moonshining went underground where it continues to be illicit to this day.
Benefits of Using Cereal in Moonshine
While moonshine is made around the world, the ingredients for making moonshine are not always so readily available. In some parts of the world, shiners have to find alternatives to make their spirits such as sugar, sweet feed and yes, even cereal.
So cereal is widely available, which is a great benefit. It is also relatively inexpensive to buy. In this recipe we are using Malt o Meal cereals which are both really sugary and relatively cheap.
So using cereal to make mash is easy to find and cheap to buy. Why isn’t everybody making their mash out of cereal?
Drawbacks of Using Cereal in Moonshine
Of course, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Using cereal in moonshine has its benefits, but it also has its challenges.
For one, it isn’t easy to get a lot of alcohol out of it. In order to get a good ABV (alcohol by volume) it is going to take a large quantity of cereal.
Secondly, you cannot simply cook your cereal and add in your yeast. That will not convert your grains into fermentable sugars. In order to make this recipe work you need to use amylase.
If you aren’t a seasoned moonshiner, or a science buff, you probably never heard of amylase. Remember that making moonshine is really similar to a 10th grade science project. For your cereal to break down from starch into fermentable sugar you need to add amylase to your mash. Not only do you need to add this enzyme (which works to break the starch into smaller carbohydrate molecules) but you need to add the right amount at the right temperature.
Don’t worry, it sounds more complicated than it is. The most important thing to remember about amylase is that it needs to be added at the right temperature, which is 155°F (68.3°C).
The amount of amylase to add may vary. Check your bottle. Ours read ⅓ tsp per gallon.
The Right Equipment for the Job
Ingredients for moonshine may be hard to find, but the right equipment is easy! Check out the Appalachian All in one Stove Top Still Kit. Not only does this kit allow you to use your stovetop as a heat source, it also has a built in fermentor! It is the perfect all-in-one system to turn your moonshine dreams into a reality! It has a false bottom to keep all your solids from scorching and a built in thermometer to monitor your temperatures easily.
Best of all, you have the support of the team at Howtomoonshine.co. We have complete guides on how to get started on your moonshine journey, recipes and more to keep you shining for years to come.
Malt o Meal Moonshine Recipe
There is an easy way to test how much cereal to add for your recipe. The way to do this would be to cook your cereal, add amylase and then take a reading with a hydrometer. The ideal reading you are looking for is 1.0090. This means you have a gravity reading of 90. You will not get this reading from your test, but your reading will tell you how much cereal you need to add to get your ideal reading. For example, if you get a reading of 1.0030 you know you will need to triple your recipe to get your ideal ABV.
This is a good way to determine a recipe using the different varieties of Malt o Meal cereals to try out new varieties and flavors. When making your mash, stick to one variety of cereal at a time. If you want to blend the flavors, do so after the distillation.
For our recipe, we will be using 15lbs of Honey Oat Medley. We chose this one because corn is the first ingredient and it also has barley malt extract. It sounds like a moonshine recipe already. If you purchase 4 bags, you will have just enough left over to enjoy a bowl with your Saturday morning cartoons.
- A Large stainless steel or copper pot
- A Long spoon
- A strainer or Cheesecloth
- A Cooking thermometer
- Food processor
- 15lbs of Honey Oat Medley (about 11 bags)
- 5 gallons of filtered water
- 1 ⅔ tsp of amylase (check your bottle for the specific amount because it may vary)
- Yeast starter*
- Iodine* used to check that your mash has converted to fermentable sugars, not to be added to the mash itself!
- Boil 5 gallons of filtered water in a large pot.
- Use your food processor to turn your cereal into dust.
- Add your cereal into the water and heat to 155°F (68.3°C)
- Stir in your amylase, put the lid on the pot and turn off the heat.
- Wait 90 minutes. Most of the conversion will happen in the first 20 to 30 minutes.
- After 90 minutes perform an iodine test by putting a small amount of mash onto a white plate and adding a few drops of iodine. The iodine should start black and very quickly lose all color. This means that the starches have turned into fermentable sugar.
- Once you have passed the iodine test pour your mash into your fermentation bucket
- Wait until your mash cools to 70°F (21°C)
- Create a yeast starter*
- Add your yeast starter to your mash
- Aerate your mash by picking it up and shaking the bucket or passing the contents back and forth to another sanitized vessel about 10 times.
- Place on an airtight lid and an airlock
- Wait about 10-14 days or until there is no action in the airlock for two days. Give your mash about another week to settle.
I’ve made a mash...Now what?
Congratulations! You have made your first mash and are getting ready to make your first run. Before you get ready to fire up your distiller, take a minute to make sure you are ready to distill your run.
Just like making your mash required paying close attention to temperatures and timelines, so does distillation. Fortunately, we have written an in-depth guide to take you through the entire process of running your distiller from start to finish. With our step by step guideline, we take guesswork out of making moonshine. Want a really simple distillation process? Try our 1 Gallon Mist Airstill which uses no water, is about the size of a kettle and distills in only two hours!