Guarapo de Piña (Fermented Pineapple Juice)

Mabí / guarapo de piña (fermented pineapple juice)

After a few days during which our very hot summer gave way to intense and seemingly-random rain, we are back to sunlight and hot days. Fortunately we Dominicans have a few weapons in our arsenal to help us survive the heat.

Mabí / guarapo de piña (fermented pineapple juice)

Fermented drinks are not uncommon in the Dominican Republic. I’d dare to say that they are rarer now on account of the myriad carbonated drinks on the market (because let’s face it, even if they are not the healthiest drinks they are very darn refreshing).

Having turned my back on carbonated drinks a while ago, this time hopefully for good, fermented drink is a great way to satisfy the craving for “bubbly”, cold drinks. It is also cheaper and much healthier. If you find the idea of drinking fermented fruit drinks somewhat-off-putting, let me put your mind at ease: Dominicans have been drinking mabíes and guarapos (fermented root and fruit drinks) for a long time. Give it a try, trust me, it’s worth the effort.

Mabí / guarapo de piña (fermented pineapple juice)

Another good thing about this drink is that you only use the pineapple peel; you can use the rest of the pineapple in other dishes, or add frozen pineapple cubes to your drink to keep it cooler longer than with just ice, then you can eat the fruit once you finish your drink.

Buen provecho,

Aunt Clara
Guarapo de Piña (Fermented Pineapple Juice)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
You have to admit that a bubbly, ice-cold pineapple drink just screams "tropical summer", right? Well, whether or not you're in the tropics, Guarapo de Piña (Fermented Pineapple Juice) is a a must-try. I'm sure you'll soon be adding it to your list of favorite drinks.
Serves: 6 servings
  • 1 pineapple
  • 2 quarts drinking water
  • 1 cup sugar or equivalent sweetener
  1. Wash the pineapple under running water scrubbing the peel clean.
  2. Peel the pineapple (reserve the pineapple for other uses, like cutting into cubes and freezing to serve once the drink is ready).
  3. Rinse the peel again.
  4. Put the pineapple peel in a pitcher big enough to fit the water and peel.
  5. Cover and leave outside until you notice some froth on the surface.
  6. Refrigerate for 3 to 4 days, or until you notice bubbles stuck to the sides of the pitcher.
  7. Strain and pour the liquid into another clean pitcher. Add sugar to taste, ice and frozen pineapple cubes (optional).
For some extra fun, dice and freeze other fruits (watermelon, melon, mango) and add them.
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{ 4 comments… add one }

  • Krystal July 8, 2013, 9:07 PM

    Tia, My peel grew mold over night, is this normal ? Is that part of the fermentation ir should I throw it out. It looks a lil scary

    • Aunt Clara July 9, 2013, 1:12 PM

      NO! That is not normal. If it grew mold in the fridge in just one day, it means the pineapple wasn’t good to start. Throw it away.

  • alex August 23, 2012, 9:52 AM

    what about the chemicals ? they cannot be rinsed from the peel!

  • Noni February 5, 2012, 8:26 AM

    I sometimes find I've left my pineapple in the fridge a little too long, and have that 'fermented' flavor with bubbles climbing the side of the jar… and I use it anyway…

    frequently in a green drink… have never had any negative results!!