RECIPE: Christmas ginger beer with a lekker local twist

Nothing beats a cold glass of ginger beer on a hot summers day. Photo: Supplied

Nothing beats enjoying the fruits of one’s labour in the kitchen. And what’s a more rewarding treat from your home kitchen than a tall, ice-cold glass of the South African gemmerbier?

Ulundi-born chef Nono Mtshali is here to hold your hand as you try out her recipe for the perfect ginger beer with a Mzansi twist.

Traditional ginger beer has been a favourite among South Africans for a long time – it just adds an element of freshness to long, lazy summer days.

READ: Chef Nono Mtshali is capturing the heart of the nation with her food and drink recipes

Mtshali has been making waves in the culinary industry, empowering many women and men to master mouth-watering recipes.

Her recipe is easy to make, has only six ingredients and will have your taste buds buzzing for more. Enjoy it with family since it’s non-alcoholic and filled with a ton of health benefits with every sip.

Here’s her step-by-step guide to a lekker homemade ginger beer.


8 cups of water

1 cup sugar

1 tsp dry yeast

1/3 cup fresh lemon juice

½ tsp cream of tartar

1/3 cup fresh ginger peeled and grated


1. In a large pot, bring to the boil: lemon juice, grated ginger, cream of tartar and 4 cups of cold water.

2. Turn heat down and add sugar. Stir to dissolve.

3. Add the rest of the cold water and yeast. Stir then cover with a cloth and place in a dark room for 3 hrs.

4. Strain out ginger bits. Pour into clean 2 litre bottle.

5. Leave space at top for gas to build up.

6. Leave in a warm, dark place for 2 days. Loosen cap a couple of times a day to let gas out.

7. Refrigerate, chill and enjoy!

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