Jamaican Ginger Beer

By now it should be apparent that I’m something of a ginger phene.  I mean in the past two weeks alone I’ve posted recipes for Carrot, Ginger and Lime Juice, Tangy Red Cabbage with Ginger, and Rhubarb Ginger Crumble.  I can assure you I won’t be slowing down anytime soon.

Although I made a Boozy Ginger Beer when I was in Ghana, I’ve been wanting to try a non-alcoholic version.  This is pretty darn close to perfect- just enough brown sugar sweetness, some fruity tartness from the lime, and a whole lot of ginger kick.

If you’re a Frugal Fannie like myself, feel free to re-use the ginger.  There’s still be a lot of ginger flavor left for your favorite tea or syrup.


Jamaican Ginger Beer

Yield: 4 servings


* 5 cups water
* 1 cup minced ginger
* 1/3 cup lime juice
* 1/2 to 2/3 cup brown sugar
* 1 Tablespoon cream of tartar


In a large saucepan bring the water and ginger to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, add lime, cream of tartar, and 1/2 cup brown sugar. Taste and add a little extra sugar, if desired.

Let stand for three hours. Strain and refrigerate. Serve over ice with a slice of lime.

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13 Responses to “Jamaican Ginger Beer”

  1. #
    gluttonandstudent — April 12, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    This looks really refreshing – sounds like it would be reminiscent of ginger ale, which I love.

    Perfect recipe for an underage beer lover like me!


  2. #
    Exam Result 2011 — April 13, 2011 at 10:35 am

    wow fantastic this post i love it . Good Look Beer really i used Beer. interesting details shared in the post. thanks


  3. #
    Paula — April 22, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Cream of Tartar? Can you explain? That's a completely unexpected ingredient for me. I, too, am a ginger fan! Will definitely check out your red cabbage and ginger recipe as well.



  4. #
    CATE — April 23, 2011 at 1:12 am

    Paula- I don't really know why there's cream of tartar in ginger beer recipes! Every recipe that I saw had it so I included it as well.

    I just googled it and saw this:

    Re: Ginger Beer – Why Cream of Tartar?
    Reply #3 – Jan 26th, 2005 at 5:50pm
    It aids a clean fermentation, and can remain or fall out, depending on the overall balance of the must, if you taste citric and tartaric acid powders, you will detect the different bitterness.

    That was from a wine and beermaking site, so they used a lot of jargon that I didn't quite understand.

    A ginger beer recipe that I saw said, “the cream of tartar keeps things suspended nicely while giving it a rich texture”.

    Maybe next time I'll do a batch with and without and report back!


    • Anonymous — July 17th, 2012 @ 3:25 pm

      im a cook my chef uses cream of tartar cause is sharpens the flavor


    • Anonymous — July 17th, 2012 @ 3:27 pm

      im from grenada my chef barbados and we make house made ginger beer, for our dark and stormies that sell crazy i have tasted her greatness, but she still wont tell me the secret to her crytal clear, extremly powerful kicking ginger beer but i could also say another great assest to a gingerbeer with kick is young ginger !!


  5. #
    Ch Br — November 5, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    well she didnt ferment, therefore this isnt even really ginger beer or ale…..this seems closer to be ginger punch

    therefore the tartar isnt needed


  6. #
    Anonymous — April 14, 2012 at 6:52 am

    How long would this last in the fridge, could I make a couple of bottles at a time…sounds so easy…


    • CATE — April 14th, 2012 @ 7:33 pm

      I'm actually not sure how long it would keep… it's so good that every time I've made it it only lasts a day or two in the fridge :)


    • Anonymous — July 17th, 2012 @ 3:28 pm

      it could last up to 4 weeks after fermentation if you boil it before fermentation it will last longer


  7. #
    Anonymous — August 2, 2012 at 12:12 am

    In case anyone still wants to know, in Jamaica we use another ingredient to make the ginger beer ferment and become fizzy, even when we are nor making the alcoholic version. In North America, Britain and Europe the cream of tartar is used to make the ginger beer fizzy like many carbonated beverages, but without the pumping of carbon dioxide directly into the mix.



  8. #
    maxine — January 16, 2013 at 7:06 am

    Thank you for this simply recipe and yes I enjoy my drink


  9. #
    Doreen — August 17, 2013 at 4:08 am

    If you want the real thing, you must use Jamaican ginger and not Chinese ginger which is found everywhere. Jamaican ginger has a sweet flavour followed by a kickback unlike Chinese ginger. Unfortunately Jamaican ginger is quite hard to find.


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