Instant Pot Wine. A novel idea, right? We’ve all seen a meme or two running around Facebook wishing that “One of those Pinterest chicks could throw grapes in a Crock-Pot and make wine.” Well, how about one of those Pinterest guys? (That would be me. Lol). I love Pinterest.
Well, I kind of figured out how to make Instant Pot wine, but out of grape juice…not grapes. So I’m close enough. Believe it or not, it’s not as hard as you might think it is to make Instant Pot wine, but it does take a little bit of patience.
You’re not just going to wake up one day and start throwing juice in your Instant Pot and expect to have wine by the end of the day. That’s not how it works; however, starting the process off in your Instant Pot will GREATLY reduce the amount of time it takes to have drinkable wine.
So, let’s just cut to the chase and get started with the whole process! Let’s face the facts: It’s what you came here for you — to learn how to make Instant Pot wine.
- One 64-ounce bottle grape juice, such as Welch's
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 5-gram packet red wine yeast, such as Lalvin
- Instant Pot with yogurt function
- Clear packing tape
1. Open your bottle of juice and remove 1 cup of juice from it and set aside. Once this is done, use your funnel and add 1 cup of sugar to your bottle of juice. Place the plastic cap on it somewhat tightly and shake vigorously to help try to dissolve most of the sugar. This will take about 1 -2 minutes.
2. Open your bottle of juice again, and add a packet of the red wine yeast into it. Close the lid and lightly shake back and forth inside of the bottle.
3. Once done, pour the juice from the bottle into your Instant Pot inner pot liner. (Be sure your inner pot is actually inside your Instant Pot.) Remember that cup of juice we put to the side? Pour that inside with the rest of the juice. Do NOT throw away your plastic juice bottle. You're going to need it!
4. Close and lock the lid of your Instant Pot. Press the Yogurt button, and then press Less Heat. Using Less Heat on the Yogurt function will keep the heat steady around 80° F. This is less than a human's body heat. This heat zone will keep the yeast super happy in the sugary mixture inside of your Instant Pot. This is SO important! So please...make sure you use the Less Heat on the Yogurt function. DO NOT CLOSE THE VENT ON YOUR LID! We need it open so the wine can breathe.
5. Now you need to have some patience!! You're going to run the time for a total of 48 hours!! Each day, let it run for 24 hours. If you have two Instant Pots, then this is perfect as you can still cook with your other one!
6. In step 4, you will notice that I said to NOT close the vent on your lid. The reason is that this is your starting point. Every 6-8 hours, you want to alternate opening the lid vent and closing the lid vent. So, for the first round, you will leave the vent open. Wait 6-8 hours (depending on if you're sleeping or not!), and then close the vent. Then alternate. The yeast will be eating that sugar up inside of your grape juice to create that yummy alcohol content for us. It will be producing a LOT of carbon dioxide. I love doing it in the Instant pot because it can LITERALLY handle any kind of pressure that builds up, which is why we are alternating the opening and closing of the vent on your Instant Pot.
1. After your 48 hours is up, you can transfer the wine "juice" back into your plastic container. Take the plastic lid and place it on halfway. You don't want it to seal tight. Remember, the yeast is constantly releasing carbon dioxide and the pressure will build up and blow the lid off of the bottle. Then you'll just have a mess to clean up!
2. Secure the plastic cap on the bottle with the clear packing tape. Place a piece of tape across, and then place a piece of tape around the neck to keep the tape in place. This will help create a venting area for the carbon dioxide to release from the bottle. Now, you can get a nifty little aerator for the job instead of plastic and tape, and it will make you look cool, but it's not really necessary at all. At least, in my own opinion it's a waste of money.
3. Place the bottle in an area that doesn't have a ton of light. I placed mine behind my Instant Pot underneath my cabinets. It's dark, and a great room temperature for the wine magic to happen.
Now comes the waiting game. Yes, I know. You want to go ahead and start drinking it and show it off to your friends about what you created, but you can't. You need more time.
TYPICALLY, you should wait up to a month to drink it for it to be at a fabulous spot. However, you can drink it way before then. I found that after eight days of being in the bottle, my wine was more than drinkable.
Notes and tips:
1. Before you get started, I recommend sanitizing your Instant Pot. This is VERY easy to do. Take 1 tablespoon of bleach and 1 gallon of hot water. Mix well, and pour into your Instant Pot liner pot. Allow to sit for at least 30 seconds to kill any type of bacteria. Dry with a clean towel, and you’re ready to go!
2. If you're afraid of bacteria entering the lid and wrecking your wine, you can always buy an airlock. They're easy to use and super affordable.
3. If you want to keep with how much ABV (Alcohol By Volume) your wine has, you can always purchase a Hydrometer. Again, very affordable and good to have on hand. A hydrometer measures the specific gravity of your wine. You take a starting point measurement and an ending point measurement. There's a fun little formula you can use to figure out your percentage ABV. ABV% = (OG – FG) x 131.25, where OG is the Original Specific Gravity, and FG is the Final Specific Gravity.
4. The fermentation process REALLY kicks into high gear after the second to third day.
5. They do make wine kits that give you everything you need to start making wine from juice, buy they're kind of pricey and so unnecessary, In my own opinion.