How To Make Banana Moonshine


Learn how to make your own Banana Moonshine using this step by step tutorial. It’s easy and fun. This recipe is my own. I found that there was a lot of information out there on the topic of making homemade alcohol, but most of it was not helpful to novice brewers like myself.

It also seemed like a lot of recipes out there only told you half the process, which left me to try and figure out the other half on my own. So, I took it upon myself to create this easy guide for…

Banana Brandy Moonshine Recipe

Banana brandy moonshine is the perfect cocktail option for any banana lover.

This recipe is fairly simple to make and is sure to be a crowd pleaser. We can pretty much guarantee you will go bananas (pun intended) for this banana brandy moonshine recipe. Remember those squishy banana marshmallow candies I know you had all the time as a child? Well, this recipe is basically an alcoholic version of that. What could be better!

Banana brandy recipe

This moonshine recipe is a little different from the others you will find on our site. Instead of creating a delicious concoction and adding your homemade moonshine to it, I am going to teach you how to take these simple ingredients and turn them into a delicious sugary liquor itself.The key to this recipe is to make sure you pick only really ripe bananas that are full of flavour. Avoid the green ones. 

The best part about this type of moonshine is that it’s fairly simple to make. You don’t have to play around with temperature stages or sophisticated grain preparation methods. Just blend the bananas, add sugar, water, yeast, and there’s your mash bubbling away!

How To Make Banana Moonshine

However, the yeast choice is an important factor here as you’ll be fermenting a slightly different type of sugar than you normally do with corn or grains.


  • Banana
  • Sugar
  • Water
  • Distilling yeast 


  • Boiling pot
  • Mixing paddle 
  • Fermentation bucket
  • Siphon
  • Airlock
  • Moonshine still

Recipe Notes

  • In order to make home brew you can use any bananas (overripe will do better), but make sure they do not have any mold. The outer peel can be black but the pulp itself should remain useful. 
  • The moonshine will be ready to serve right away, but you can play around with different barrel-aging options to get a more unique, in-depth flavor. 
  • Picking the right type of yeast and moonshine still will have a significant impact on your final proof and flavor, so do your research first.  

I picture this drink tasting especially delicious around Christmas with a dash of Baileys and a sprinkle of cinnamon on top. Or, mix it with a little lemonade and a scoop of vanilla ice cream in the summer. It’s like adult banana candies!

Banana Brandy Moonshine Recipe

This one will have you go, well… Bananas!

Image ofBanana Brandy Moonshine Recipe


  • 20 pounds of yellow ripe bananas
  • 5 pounds of table sugar (granulated)
  • 5 gallons of water
  • 1 teaspoon of yeast nutrient
  • 1 small pack of wine or distillers yeast


  1. Peel the bananas and mince (I use a meat grinder) until you get a mash out of the pulp.
  2. In a large stock pot, pour in one gallon of water, bring it to a boil, and then slowly mix in sugar until fully dissolved. 
  3. Dump the sugar syrup and banana mash into the fermentation bucket and add the rest of the water.
  4. Make sure the mixture is at room temperature, and then add yeast nutrient and yeast.
  5. Cover with a lid, put the airlock in place and then store the fermenter in a dark space that will maintain a constant room temperature.
  6. Allow the mix to ferment completely (approximately 10-14 days) until there is no visible activity in the airlock for 2-3 days.
  7. Filter the fermented brew through 2-3 layers of gauze (a cheesecloth should work). Squeeze the pulp thoroughly. If you don’t filter it, the brew will burn in the process of distillation, which will cause the moonshine to have a bitter taste and unpleasant odor.
  8. Distill as you normally would to obtain a desired flavour.

Recipe Note

  • Your final proof and flavor will largely depend on the type of still used.
  • Make sure to pick only ripe bananas that are full of flavor. Avoid the green ones.
  •  The moonshine is good to drink right after distillation, however, you can play around with barrel-aging to get a more complex flavor.
  •  Picking the right type of yeast will have a significant impact on flavor, so we recommend doing your research first.

Banana moonshine recipe

Getting overripe bananas for a fair price is not a problem but this “capricious” raw material requires a special approach from a moonshiner. First, banana moonshine will interest enthusiasts of exotic hard liquors which are hard to come by.

The technology is comparatively complex, as it requires boiling the must. In return you’ll end up with a distillate with a scarcely perceptible aroma and a subtle banana aftertaste. In order to make home brew you can use any bananas (overripe will do better).

The thing is to find untainted fruits without mold. The outer peel can blacken but the pulp itself should remain useful. Usually unconditional fruits are used for moonshine.

bananas moonshine
Blacken bananas are great for moonshine

It is not recommended to mature home brew with banana peels because in order to increase the shelf-life before transporting peels are treated with chemical mixtures which can get into the final beverage. Furthermore, there’s almost no sugar in peels as well as aroma.

How to Make Banana Moonshine


  • Bananas – 22.05 lbs/10 kg
  • Sugar (not necessary) –6-15 lbs/3-7 kg
  • Water – 1.3 gl/5 liters (plus 0.8 gl/3 liters per each 2 lbs/kilo of sugar)
  • Distilling Yeasts – 2 oz/60 grams of dry (or 10.5 oz/300 grams of compressed)
  • Cookies (Optional) – 1 piece per 2.5 gl/10 liters of homebrew can be replaced with kefir, sour cream or vegetable oil)

Banana home brew produces a lot of foam which can be suppressed with simple cookies without flavor additives or coloring compounds crumbled on the surface of home brew. You can use vegetable oil or dairy products for the same goal; the right proportions are in the recipe. The more sugar, the less banana flavor there is in the distillate.

I recommend not adding sugar at all. In order to get the most high-quality moonshine possible you should replace conventional yeasts with wine yeasts or make broth following the standard technique.

At the same time you should not forget that the fermentation with wine yeasts or broth lasts several times longer than with usual ones.

Thus if you are just starting go ahead with distilling yeast. Depending on the variety bananas contain up to 30% of sugar, 1-1.5% of starch, and 0.7% of inulin – polysaccharide which can be broke down to sugar by heating up to a high temperature; the proper way to do this is described in the recipe.

Saccharifying 1% of starch with malt is pointless to my mind because the yield will increase in a minor way but adding the malt will greatly influence the aroma and partly the flavor.


Making Banana Mash

1. Peel the bananas.

2. Mince the pulp using a meat grinder or in any other way until you get a mash.

3. In a cooking pot fit for heating mix the mash, water, and sugar (if you are going to use it). You should get homogenous consistency.

4. Heat up the contents of the container to 131-136°F/ 55-58°C. Maintain this temperature for one hour, stirring the mash from time to time in order to not let it burn at the bottom and to prevent lumps from appearing. Then cool down the must to 86°F/ 30°C. During this step inulin in the banana pulp will turn into fructose, which is perfect for the fermentation.

It is very important not to overheat the must over 140°F/ 60°C because such high temperatures cause enzymes to break down, thus stopping inulin from turning into fructose.

5. Pour the must cooled to 77-86°F/ 25-30°C into a fermentation container. Add yeasts or broth. If the broth turned out to be very thick, add more water to make it more fluid. Stir it.

During the fermentation banana brew produces a lot of foam! I recommend filling the container to the half and crumbling cookies on the surface (1 piece per 2.5 gl/10 liters of brew).This method is the best. Alternatively you can add vegetable oil (1 teaspoon per 2.5 gl/10 liters) or thick sour cream (kefir) in proportion of 2 tablespoons per 2.5-3.1 gl/10-12 liters.

6. Install an airlock on the bottleneck of the fermentation container.

7. Leave the brew (you can cover it) in a dark place with a temperature of 64.4-80.6°F/ 18-27°C. Depending on the chosen yeasts and temperature the banana brew will ferment for about 5-45 days. When the airlock stops extracting gas, the taste has no sweetness in it, and there’s sediment at the bottom, you can get to the next step.

Distilling into Banana Moonshine

8. Filter the fermented brew through 2-3 layers of cheesecloth and/or funnel filter. Squeeze the pulp thoroughly. If you don’t filter it, the brew will burn in the process of distillation, which will cause the moonshine to have a bitter taste and unpleasant odor.

9. Fill a distillatory vessel of a moonshine still with the filtered brew.

10. Distill it for the first time, drawing off the overhead product, until the potency of the stream drops below 30%.

11. Dilute the obtained moonshine with water up to 18-20% and then distill it for the second time in your Moonshine still. Draw off the first 100 ml (plus 30-50 ml per each 2 lbs/kilo of added sugar) separately. That’s a harmful cut fraction called “heads”, you shouldn’t drink it.

12. Finish drawing off the main product while the potency in the stream drops below 40 degrees (it stops burning).

13. Dilute the finished banana moonshine with water until you get desired potency (40-45%). You should let the distillate mature for 2-3 days in a dark cold place for the taste to stabilize before trying it.

Banana Moonshine Recipe – Make Your Own Waragi

Banana moonshine is a popular drink throughout the tropical parts of the world, especially in East Africa. In Uganda, banana brandy moonshine is called “waragi” – war gin. Making banana moonshine at home is actually quite simple. In this post, we will give you a step-by-step banana brandy recipe. Let’s dive right into it.

YIELDS – 1 Serving

Quarter (0.25 Servings)

Half (0.5 Servings)

Default (1 Serving)

Double (2 Servings)

Triple (3 Servings)

PREP TIME – 30 mins

COOK TIME -2 hrs 30 mins

TOTAL TIME – 3 hrs 5 lbs 

Bananas 2 gals Water 1 tbsp Red Star Champagne Yeast (or any other distiller’s yeast) 1 tbsp (optional) yeast nutrients 1 tbsp alpha-amylaseOverview:1

Time to prepare the mash: 3 hours
Batch site: 3 gallons (12 liters) of mash

Homemade Banana Moonshine Brandy recipe


Results in ¼ gallon (1 liter) of banana moonshine
Fermentation time: 4-15 days (expect about one week)

As already mentioned above, making banana moonshine mash is relatively simple and you don’t need many ingredients. The most important thing is that you use very ripe bananas. They should be dark yellow with some brown spots – but not rotten.

A green banana consists of mostly starches and has a very low sugar content. Only as the fruit continues to ripen, enzymes in the banana skin help to convert starches into sugar. A ripe banana has a very high sugar content of over 20% – sometimes even up to 30%. That is more than in apples, pineapples and most other fruits.

While some other banana brandy recipes recommend adding the banana skins to the mash as well, we do not recommend that. Unless you are lucky enough to grow your own bananas in your backyard, the peels of store-bought bananas are almost certainly sprayed with potentially harmful chemical mixtures that might make their way into your final product.

Since removing the banana skins means removing the source of enzymes that converts starch into sugar that can be converted into alcohol, adding glucoamylase enzymes to your waragi mash helps break down remaining starch into sugar.

You can also follow this banana brandy recipe without adding these added enzymes. This will mean that your banana moonshine brandy mash will have a lower alcohol percentage. Hence, you would be wasting parts of the bananas. Alpha-amylase is available in most brew shops and online and doesn’t cost much.

Hint: Glucoamlyase enzymes are the same enzymes that occur naturally in malted grains. For the beer and whiskey production, these malted grains are added to help break down starches into sugar. You could also add malted barley to the banana mash instead of the pure enzymes. This will, however, add a grain taste to your banana moonshine. The pure glucoamylase does not add any taste.

Let’s start with the step-by-step preparation guide:

  • Peel the bananas and cut them in pieces.
  • Add 1.5 gallon (6 liters) of water and the banana pieces into a large pot.
Banana Brandy Moonshine Mash
  • Use an immersion blender to blend it to a fine pulp

Should you add sugar to your banana moonshine mash?
As mentioned above, with up to 30% sugar content, bananas have more sugar than apples or grapes. Therefore, there is no need to add sugar to your mash. Adding sugar to the wash will make the banana moonshine less smooth and add a rum flavor. But, if you are aiming for quantity, adding sugar to this banana mash moonshine recipe is absolutely possible. For every 2.5lbs (1.25kg) of sugar you add to the mash, add an additional 1.5 gallons of water. Stir the sugar into the mash at 160°F (71°C).

  • Heat to 160°F (71°C)
  • Optional, but recommended: At the temperature of 160°F (71°C), add one tablespoon (or 5g) of alpha-amylase and stir well.
  • Sanitize all items that will come into contact with your mash from now on (fermentation bucket, stirrer, siphon, etc.).
  • Transfer the mash into a sanitized fermenter. Banana mash will produce a lot of foam during the fermentation process. Therefore, make sure to leave plenty of room for expansion to prevent your fermenter to explode. To be safe, don’t fill the fermenter to more than half of its capacity.
  • Let the banana mash cool down naturally to about 75°F (24°C) while keeping the lid on your fermenter to avoid contamination. Depending on the size of your fermentation vessel, this takes about 1-1.5 hours. If the temperature is still too high after about one hour, you can add a couple of clean ice cubes to the mash to speed up the process or cool the container from the outside, e.g. by placing it into a bathtub with cold water. Since the enzymes need the high temperatures to convert starch into sugar, make sure to wait for about an hour before actively cooling down the mash.
  • At a temperature of around 75°F (24°C), you can pitch the yeast and stir it into the mash thoroughly. We recommend using 5g of Red Star Champagne yeast. Since the mash will have a high sugar content, the alcohol percentage of the finished banana brandy wash will be quite high. While normal bread yeast would also start the fermentation process, it would stop converting sugar into alcohol somewhere between 5-7% ABV. Champagne yeast remains active up to around 17% ABV.
  • Optional, but recommended: Add one tablespoon (5g) of yeast nutrients at the same time as you add the yeast. In theory, the banana must provides enough nutrients for the yeast to survive. However, adding yeast nutrients gives the yeast a headstart against other organisms like bacteria, molds or wild yeasts that may want to feed on your sugary sweet banana mash. So adding these nutrients decreases the chances of the banana mash going bad and also decrease the fermentation time.
  • Close the fermentation container and add an airlock. This will allow the carbon dioxide produced in the fermentation process to escape the container while it prevents anything from entering. Store it in a dark place at room temperature.
  • The fermentation process will take anywhere between 4-15 days, depending on the ambient temperature and other factors. Check on the mash every now and then. Once the bubbling stops and the mash doesn’t taste sweet anymore, it is ready.

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