Fresh Apple Shrub

October  9, 2012
3 Ratings
  • Makes 3 cups
Author Notes

Shrubs (aka drinking vinegars) are a kind of preserve in which fruit is submerged it in a combination of vinegar and sugar and allowing it to steep for a time. After straining, you’re left with a sweet, highly acidic, fruity concentrate. The shrub can then be used in cocktails, stirred into sparkling water or whisked into salad dressings. —Marisa McClellan

What You'll Need
  • 3 medium apples (choose a variety that is flavorful and sweet)
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2/3 cup granulated white sugar
  1. Shred apples on a box grater. Funnel the shreds into a wide-mouth quart jar. Top with apple cider vinegar and sugar. Use a narrow spoon to stir the apples, vinegar and sugar together. Apply a watertight lid and give the jar a good shake.
  2. Tuck the jar into the back of your refrigerator and let it sit for four or five days. Taste the liquid and if you’re happy with the balance, strain out the apple bits, making sure to press firmly to remove all the liquid. Don't be afraid to use your (clean) hands for this.
  3. Place the strained shrub in a clean jar and keep refrigerated. It is ready to use now, but will mature in flavor over time.
  4. Stir it into cocktails, sparkling water or use in homemade vinaigrettes and marinades.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Randa McDonough
    Randa McDonough
  • Michael Hoffman
    Michael Hoffman
  • Garden cook
    Garden cook
  • Nancy Stadlman
    Nancy Stadlman
I'm a food writer and canning teacher. I write the blog Food in Jars. My first cookbook, also called Food in Jars, is now available. My second cookbook will be out in spring 2014.

11 Reviews

Nancy S. September 13, 2022
What is the ratio of shrub concentrate to sparkling water. Thank you in advance.
Nancy S. September 13, 2022
Experienced my first shrub at The Shedd in Healdsburg, CA. What a thirst quencher! Anxious to get my ingredients combined. Have apples from the orchard. Planning to serve shrubs at my September Villa Ladies’ Party. Food 52 is such support when pursuing interesting recipes!
Randa M. June 2, 2014
How long will this keep?
frcontrone September 26, 2013
I sent this recipe to a friend last year. She made it and I was delighted to be able to taste it this past summer. She had lost the recipe, and I hadn't saved it. You don;t know how glad I am that it has been posted again. It is the greatest. We even added some to a little mayo, and cream cheese. Made a wonderful salad dressing.
Sashinka November 25, 2012
I just made this and it tasted so spectacular that can't wait to taste the finished product! I'm so grateful for this talented and sharing cooking community!
MOCHINO October 31, 2012
can I drink this just as it is? or do I have to add it to something??
Michael H. October 28, 2012
We've made this shrub once and it's delicious! I'm planning to start another batch today, this time adding fresh ginger.
Garden C. October 15, 2012
So after the fruit is strained out can this "canned" mixture remain out of the refrigerator? And for how long? I can't wait to try this--Thanks.
mad4mex October 15, 2012
I'd love to know what kind of cocktail you'd make to utilize this shrub. Yum!
peacenique October 14, 2012
Thank you for this recipe. How long will it last in the fridge
The K. October 12, 2012
what kind of vinegar would you suggest for a version with pears?