Fizzy Fermented Fruit Coolers (Finnish Sima)

A naturally carbonated beverage derived from a recipe for Finnish sima which contains fruit juices, natural carbon dioxide, and some or a lot of alcohol depending on the amount of sugar and fermentation time.

Prep Time:
45 mins
Cook Time:
25 mins
Additional Time:
2 days 18 hrs
Total Time:
2 days 19 hrs 10 mins
5 gallons


  • 2 gallons water

  • 7 pounds white sugar, or more to taste

  • 2 (16 ounce) cans cranberry sauce, or more to taste

  • 2 ½ pounds limes, thinly sliced

  • 3 cups mulberries, or more to taste

  • 1 ¼ cups lemon juice, or more to taste

  • ¾ cup dates, pitted

  • cup raisins, or more to taste

  • 3 teaspoons ground ginger

  • ½ cup water

  • 10 raisins, or more to taste

  • 1 ¼ tablespoons brewers' yeast


  1. Combine 2 gallons water, sugar, cranberry sauce, limes, mulberries, lemon juice, dates, 1/3 cup raisins, and ground ginger in a large pot over high heat. Heat mixture until boiling, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, 20 to 30 minutes.

  2. Boil a kettle of water and use it to rinse the rim and inside of a 5-gallon food-safe container or bucket. Rinse a second time.

  3. Pour the hot sugar-fruit mixture into the sterilized container. Top off with boiling water to 1 or 2 inches below the rim. Cover the container with a clean thin plastic sheet and secure with a large rubber band. Place in a draft-free area until cool, 4 to 5 hours.

  4. Combine 1/2 cup water and 10 raisins in a small pot over medium heat. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat, cover tightly, and let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Stir in brewers' yeast. Cover sima tightly and let sit until mixture is a bit foamy, 6 to 12 hours.

  5. Sterilize a spoon with boiling water. Stir the hydrated yeast mixture and pour it into the sugar-fruit mixture in the 5-gallon container. Stir; there should be some bubbles and foam.

  6. Cover the 5-gallon container again with the plastic sheet and secure with the rubber band. Add a layer of newspaper and a board or piece of plywood on top; this will keep out air while allowing carbon dioxide to escape.

  7. Allow the sima to ferment for 2 days to 3 weeks, depending on the amount of fermentation and alcohol content you desire.

  8. Sterilize 10 plastic 1.5-liter soda bottles and caps with a 2% bleach solution. Rinse bottles well and allow to air dry.

  9. Fill the bottles with sima and cap them. Let the bottles sit at room temperature until hardened; store in the refrigerator 8 hours to overnight or until serving.

Cook's Notes:

Feel free to substitute mulberries with 2 to 5 cups of your fruit of choice.

If you wish, when cleaning the bucket or container, you can wipe with a 2% bleach solution first, then rinse with clean water, then use the hot water.

You can also use wine yeast.

Warning! The pressure can make plastic and glass bottles explode, although my glass bottles usually just crack quietly. This is why it is good to use plastic bottles, so you can release the pressure. Open with a glass ready; the sliced lemons and cranberry version tastes like fizzy grapefruit but with a kick!

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

186 Calories
0g Fat
48g Carbs
0g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 80
Calories 186
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g 0%
Sodium 7mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 48g 18%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 46g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 8mg 40%
Calcium 12mg 1%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 54mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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