How to Preserve Apple Juice

Fresh apple juice will keep in the refrigerator for two to three days before it begins to ferment. Juice may be stored for longer periods by:


Cut the top off an empty fruit juice carton, place a polythene bag inside, fill with juice, tie the top of the bag and freeze. Once frozen, the bag can be removed from the box and you have a brick of juice, which can be stacked in your freezer. One cubic foot will hold over five gallons. Juice can be frozen for months without any appreciable loss of flavour.


Pasteurising is a great way of preserving your juice because pasteurised juice can be stored for anything up to 2 years.

Pasteurisation is a straight-forward process which simply involves carefully heating the juice to 72°C and holding it at that temperature for 20 minutes. The aim is to stop the juice from fermenting and kill off any organisms that could cause the juice to spoil. The process, if done properly, doesn't affect the flavour of your juice - that fresh apple flavour will still be there.

Using a hob is possible but it is very difficult to keep a steady temperature and the juice invariably ends up with a cooked-apple flavour. If the temperature dips below the required level at any stage the juice will not be properly pasteurised.

The simplest option is to use a purpose-built pasteuriser so you can pasteurise your juice with confidence. We recommend the Analogue Pasteuriser / Steam Juice Extractor Top Combo, an ideal combination to save valuable time and make less mess when making jellies and cordials! Our pasteurisers have a thermostat and timer for accuracy and ease of use. A buzzer sounds when the temperature is reached. Once at required temperature, timer can be set and begins to countdown. Once pasteurisation time finishes an alarm sounds.

Pasteurised juice can be stored anytime between 6 months and 2 years, depending on how it is stored. Careful pasteurisation will kill off any organisms that could cause spoilage of the juice whilst preserving its fresh apple flavour.

Pasteurising in the Bottle

Fill clean glass bottles with juice and close the caps 'loosely', place them in the tank of the pasteuriser, fill the tank with water to the required level and set the pasteuriser to 72°C. Once the temperature has been reached an alarm will sound. Set the timer on the pasteuriser to 20 minutes. 

When the timer reaches zero another alarm will sound. Tighten the caps on the bottles and carefully remove them allowing them to cool. It is best to lie them on their side when cooling as this will create a 'seal' on the lid - effectively pasteurising the lid. As the liquid cools the liquid will contract leaving a vacuum in the bottle.

Our pasteuriser holds 13 x 75cl bottles so juice can be pasteurised  in large batches with ease. The shelf life of bottled, pasteurised juice should be 1 – 2 years.

Pasteurising in the Bag

Alternatively, juice can be pasteurised in our 3, 5 and 10 litre bag-in-boxes for medium term storage. With the aid of a filling stand, the bags can be filled with juice ready for pasteurisation and then sealed. Two 5 litre bags or one 10 litre bag can be pasteurised in the pasteuriser at any one time by the same process described above. (Note: The 20 litre bag should not be used in the pasteuriser as the tank capacity in insufficient).

Bag-in-boxes can easily fit into a fridge so are excellent for those who wish to serve chilled apple juice. The shelf life of bag-in-box pasteurised juice should be 6-12 months.

Volumes must be accurately measured when filling bags. If too much liquid is placed in the bag (i.e. more than 3, 5 or 10 litres) this will put extra pressure on the bags and seams (less liquid is absolutely fine).

There must be no air in the bag when the tap is attached. Gentle pressure on the bag when inserting the tap will achieve this to ensure all air is expelled before inserting tap.

Bags are then in their final condition and ready for pasteurising.