During a long day in the mountains, I go through several 1oz “shots” of energy gel. Even when purchased in bulk, brand name energy gels are very expensive per ounce. When a friend of mine introduced me to a “homebrew” recipe for energy gel, I had to give it a try. Using his recipe as a start, I tweaked the ingredients and process, and added a few more options for flavors. In addition to the satisfaction of making my own energy gels, I’ve found that they work very well and are cheap to make. Also, my ability to alter ingredients in accordance with my own needs is a big plus.
How It’s Made
The equation for Homebrew Energy Gel can be written as follows:
Base Powder + Flavor Powder(s) + Base Liquid = Homebrew Energy Gel
The following recipe makes about 42oz of Homebrew Energy Gel. It is less viscous than other brand name energy gels. This allows it to flow better (especially in cold environments). If you find that it is not thick enough for your tastes, add more pectin. Like other energy gels, it will work best when consumed with water. Be sure to keep the energy gel refrigerated as there are no preservatives in it.
STEP 1: Boil 51oz of Apple Juice until there is only 14oz of liquid left. While the Apple Juice is boiling, move onto STEP 2.
STEP 2: Mix the following base powder ingredients into a bowl and mix thoroughly (use a kitchen scale to measure and a whisk to mix):
- 500g Maltodextrin
- 93g Brown Sugar
- 2400 mg Caffeine
- 18g Sea Salt
STEP 3: Add one of the following flavor powders to the base powder and mix thoroughly
Orange: 60g Orange Gatorade Powder
Lemon Lime: 60g Lemon Lime Gatorade Powder
Fruit Punch: 60g Fruit Punch Gatorade Powder
Strawberry: Two 4oz packets of Strawberry KoolAid concentrate
Apple Cinnamon: 9g Cinnamon
STEP 4: Once the Apple Juice is done boiling, turn the heat down to simmer. Add 16oz Agave Nectar and 1tbsp lemon juice. Stir quickly for 20 seconds.
STEP 5: Add the powder mixture to the liquid mixture. Whisk thoroughly and then blend on a low setting for 15 seconds or until all clumps are gone.
STEP 6: Add 3 teaspoons pectin with citric acid and stir thoroughly. Pour the mixture into a large gel dispenser and let it sit for 24 hours before using.
Where to Purchase the Ingredients
Apple Juice: Grocery Store
Brown Sugar: Grocery Store
Sea Salt: Grocery Store
Flavor Powders: Grocery Store
Agave Nectar: Grocery Store or Health Foods Store
Lemon Juice: Grocery Store