Apple Shrub

September 29, 2014

Autumn has arrived, and I couldn’t be more excited. Like many food and drink bloggers, my enthusiasm for the seasons often revolves around the abundance of fresh fruits and veggies. In the case of fall it’s apples . . . always apples. Apple pie, apple slaw, apple cider, and of course this apple shrub!! This stuff is magical I tell you. I can’t wait to use it in a cocktail!!

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

You’re welcome to use your favorite type of apple for this recipe. Just keep in mind that the sweetness of apples can vary quite a bit. I chose fuji, as I feel they are fairly balanced between tart and sweet. The standard shrub ratio is equal parts fruit, sugar, and vinegar. However, if you happen to choose a sweet variety of apple, maybe try cutting back the sugar a bit. Likewise, if your apples are extra tart, try increasing the sugar. As I always say, feel free to adjust your to suit your taste.

Apples | HonestlyYUM

It’s been over a year since I made my last shrub. Far too long if you ask me.

[linktopost slug=”plum-shrub”]

Apples | HonestlyYUM

Start by coring and grating your apples. This will help with the maceration process.

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

Add the grated apples to a non-reactive mixing bowl, add the sugar and stir to combine. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge. Let the mixture sit for at least 24 hours.

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

While it sits the sugar will extract the juice from the fruit, creating a rich apple syrup.

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

Remove from the refrigerator and add the vinegar. Give the mixture a good stir so that all sugar is dissolved. Next, strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth. Make sure you press firmly on the apple to remove every last bit of shrubby goodness! I actually used my hands to squeeze the grated apple as tight as possible. This is where cheesecloth would come in handy.

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

That’s it – your shrub is officially complete! Pour into a jar and seal.

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

The coolest thing about shrubs are that the flavors will continue to develop as time passes. The vinegar will mellow and new flavors will emerge. I told you they were magical!

Apple Shrub by HonestlyYUM

Apple Shrub


  • 1 cup shredded apples (I used fuji)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar


  • Core and grate your apples.
  • Add the grated apples to a non-reactive mixing bowl, add the sugar and stir to combine.
  • Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours.
  • Remove from the refrigerator and add the vinegar. Give the mixture a good stir so that all sugar is dissolved.
  • Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth. Firmly squeeze the shredded apple to extract every last bit of liquid.
  • Pour into a jar and seal.

(images by HonestlyYUM)


Wow, this is a really intriguing drink ! I’ve never heard of it before…I really wonder what it tastes like !! so I’ll surely try it soon ! What kind of cocktails do you use it in ? Merci beaucoup for this great find ! 😉

Thank you so much for stopping by, Sylvie!! Check back soon for the cocktail 😉

Sounds wonderful. When you say seal, do you mean in a hot water bath? How long will it keep?

Sorry Leslie, I probably shouldn’t have said seal. What I went was just to cover and keep in the fridge. Although you certainly could vacuum seal them for storage. As far as how long it keeps – if kept in the refrigerator, the vinegar should allow it to keep for several months. However, always smell it before using and check the bottle for mold or any signs of fermentation. After all, it’s always easy to make more!

I’m really craving fall and this looks like the perfect way to enjoy my favorite apples!

Just amazing! I look forward to fall just for all the apple recipes!

I’m excited for fall, too! Though I hear we’re getting a heatwave in the Bay this weekend… apple shrub to the rescue!

This sounds like the most fall-appropriate drink ever! You have to love apple, especially in tangy beverage form. 🙂

So simple!! I need to get some new shrubs going, and I think I’ll start with this one!

I have made several of your simpler cocktails with great success. I think I may have to try this one, even though it looks like more work. The shrub is intriguing. Thanks.

I love your recipes and this looks absolutely fantastic. Thanks so much for sharing. Can’t wait to try it and add it to a cocktail!

Hi! I just love you´re blog. Where do you bought that cute jar that you use for the shrub?

I’ve been ‘doing’ shrubs for about 3 months now. Started with Tart Cherries > Sweet Cherries > Apricots > Rhubarb > Tangerines > Green grapes. Will start on Apples this coming weekend. I LOVE LOVE shrub extracts. Makes drinking my gallon of water each day much more enjoyable and doable. A couple of tablespoons to a liter is about perfect to my taste buds.

I also like that the recipe is several hundred years old and is STILL viable to 2015. Jane Austin actually reference drinking a shrub in “Sense and Sensibility”. My hobby is finding old recipes and finding those gems that will still work for the current times.

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