How To Make Toilet Wine In Prison: A Step-By-Step Guide

Prison life is tough, and sometimes inmates have to resort to unusual methods to make their stay bearable. One such method is making toilet wine. Yes, you read that right! Toilet wine is a homemade alcoholic beverage that inmates create using simple ingredients found in prison. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll take a closer look at the history of toilet wine in prisons, the ingredients and tools needed to make it, and how to safely enjoy it.

The art of making toilet wine has been around for decades, and it’s no secret that inmates have a knack for brewing it. While it’s not something you’ll find on a wine list, it’s a popular drink among inmates who want to escape the harsh reality of prison life. However, making toilet wine is not as simple as it sounds. It requires a certain level of skill and knowledge to create a drinkable batch.

Are you intrigued to learn more about how to make toilet wine? Then keep reading! In this guide, we’ll show you the step-by-step process of creating your very own batch of toilet wine. With a little patience, practice, and our expert tips, you’ll be able to enjoy your very own homemade brew in no time!

The History of Toilet Wine in Prisons

Prisoners have been making toilet wine for decades, if not centuries. The origins of this concoction are somewhat unclear, but it is believed to have been created out of necessity. Inmates were unable to access or afford traditional alcoholic beverages, so they used what they had available.

The process of making toilet wine involves fermenting fruit, sugar, and other ingredients in a container, often a plastic bag or container, and hiding it away in a warm, dark place. The mixture ferments over a few days, producing a potent alcoholic beverage.

Toilet wine has become a symbol of prison culture, and many inmates take pride in their ability to make it. It is often traded or sold between prisoners, and some have even reported using it to bribe guards.

While it may seem like a harmless pastime, the creation and consumption of toilet wine can be dangerous. The unsanitary conditions in which it is made can lead to contamination and illness, and the high alcohol content can lead to alcohol poisoning.

Despite these risks, the tradition of making toilet wine persists in many prisons around the world. It has become an enduring symbol of the resourcefulness and ingenuity of inmates who are forced to make do with limited resources.

The Origins of Toilet Wine in the Prison System

  1. Desperation: In prisons, inmates have limited access to alcohol, leading to the creation of makeshift alcohol recipes, including toilet wine.

  2. Resourcefulness: Toilet wine is made using simple ingredients such as fruit cocktail, sugar, and bread, which are often available in prison commissaries.

  3. Creativity: The process of making toilet wine often involves unconventional methods such as using plastic bags, socks, or other materials as fermentation vessels.

  4. Underground Economy: Toilet wine has become a popular commodity in prisons, with inmates using it as a form of currency or trading it for other goods.

The origins of toilet wine in the prison system can be traced back to the early 20th century when inmates had limited access to alcohol. Desperate to find a way to get drunk, prisoners began experimenting with various ingredients and methods to create makeshift alcohol recipes. One of the most popular and widely used methods is the creation of toilet wine, which has become an integral part of prison culture.

The Popularity of Toilet Wine Among Inmates

In the world of prison, toilet wine is a well-known commodity. Inmates have been making it for years, and its popularity continues to grow.

One reason for this is the cost. Traditional alcoholic beverages are expensive and not readily available to inmates. Toilet wine, on the other hand, is made from easily obtainable ingredients and can be made for very little money.

Another reason for its popularity is the ingenuity and creativity it requires. Inmates are often looking for ways to pass the time and stay occupied, and making toilet wine provides a unique and challenging project to work on.

Finally, toilet wine is a way for inmates to escape the monotony of prison life and find a moment of enjoyment. It provides a sense of camaraderie and can be a way to bond with other inmates over a shared experience.

Despite its popularity, it’s important to note that making and consuming toilet wine is illegal and can have serious health consequences. In the following sections, we’ll explore the ingredients and process for making toilet wine, as well as ways to enjoy it safely.

The Risks of Making and Consuming Toilet Wine in Prison

Making and consuming toilet wine in prison can be extremely dangerous and has led to numerous injuries and even deaths among inmates. One of the main risks is the potential for alcohol poisoning due to the lack of control over the fermentation process and the unknown potency of the final product.

In addition to the risk of alcohol poisoning, inmates who make and consume toilet wine also face the possibility of contracting diseases from unsanitary conditions in the prison. The use of unclean equipment and unsanitary ingredients can lead to the growth of harmful bacteria and viruses.

Prison officials also crack down hard on inmates caught making or consuming toilet wine. In many cases, inmates caught with the homemade alcohol face disciplinary action, including solitary confinement and loss of privileges.

Another risk of making and consuming toilet wine is the possibility of explosions or fires. The fermentation process produces carbon dioxide, which can build up pressure in the container holding the wine. If the pressure becomes too great, the container can explode, potentially causing injury or starting a fire.

Despite these risks, many inmates still choose to make and consume toilet wine in prison due to the limited availability of other sources of alcohol. It’s important to understand the dangers involved and to weigh the risks before attempting to make or consume this homemade alcohol.

The Ingredients You Need to Make Toilet Wine in Prison

Fruit: The main ingredient for toilet wine is fruit. Any type of fruit can be used, but the most popular choices are oranges, apples, and grapes. These fruits are easy to obtain and have enough natural sugars to ferment into alcohol.

Sugar: Since fruit alone doesn’t contain enough sugar to produce a significant amount of alcohol, additional sugar is necessary. Inmates can obtain sugar from the prison commissary or by trading with other inmates.

Yeast: Yeast is needed to convert the fruit sugars into alcohol. Inmates can use bread, which contains yeast, or they can buy packets of yeast from the commissary.

Water: Water is added to the mixture to dilute the fruit juice and create the right environment for fermentation to occur. Inmates can obtain water from the sink or toilet, which is why it’s called “toilet wine.”

Fruit Juice

Fruit juice is the primary ingredient in making toilet wine. It contains natural sugars, which ferment when mixed with yeast, and produce alcohol. In prison, inmates often use fruit juices like apple, orange, or grape juice to make their toilet wine. These juices are readily available in commissaries or can be traded for other items.

Quality: The quality of the juice used will impact the final product. High-quality juice without added preservatives or chemicals will produce a better-tasting wine.

Quantity: The amount of juice needed will depend on the desired quantity of wine. Most recipes call for a gallon or more of juice.

Variety: Inmates can experiment with different fruit juices to create unique flavors. Some use mixed fruit juices or even fruit cocktail.


Sugar is an essential ingredient when making toilet wine. The yeast used to ferment the juice needs sugar to convert into alcohol. The amount of sugar used will affect the alcohol content of the wine. Too much sugar can cause the yeast to die, while too little sugar can result in a low alcohol content. In prison, inmates usually use packets of sugar from the commissary.

Inmates sometimes use other sweeteners like honey or fruit jam, but these may not be as effective as sugar. Honey and fruit jam can contain bacteria that can interfere with the fermentation process, resulting in spoiled wine. Sugar is the safest and most effective sweetener to use in toilet wine.

Some inmates also use artificial sweeteners like saccharin, but these are not recommended. Artificial sweeteners cannot be fermented by yeast, so they will not produce any alcohol content. In addition, the chemicals in artificial sweeteners can interfere with the fermentation process and can be harmful to consume.


Yeast is an essential ingredient in the making of toilet wine. It is a microorganism that feeds on the sugar in the fruit juice and produces alcohol as a byproduct. It is important to use the right type of yeast for this process, as not all yeasts are suitable for making alcohol. In prison, bakers’ yeast is commonly used, as it is easy to obtain and works well for making small batches of wine.

The yeast is activated by dissolving it in warm water and adding a small amount of sugar. Once it is frothy, it can be added to the fruit juice mixture, which is then sealed in a plastic bag or container to allow for fermentation. The length of time required for fermentation depends on the amount of yeast used, the temperature, and the amount of sugar in the mixture.

It is important to note that too much yeast can cause the wine to ferment too quickly, which can result in a high alcohol content and a strong, unpleasant taste. Conversely, too little yeast can result in no fermentation at all, leaving you with a sweet, fruit-flavored beverage instead of wine.

In addition, it is important to ensure that the yeast is not contaminated, as this can result in the growth of harmful bacteria and other microorganisms that can make you sick. Proper sanitation and handling of the yeast and equipment is crucial to ensure the safety of the final product.

The Tools You Need to Make Toilet Wine in Prison

Plastic Bag: A strong, sealable plastic bag to hold your wine ingredients.

Toilet: The bowl of the toilet is where the wine will ferment, so it’s an essential tool.

Pillowcase: You’ll need a pillowcase to strain out any solids from the wine.

Hot Water: Hot water is necessary to dissolve the sugar and mix the ingredients together.

Time: The longer you allow the wine to ferment, the stronger it will become. So, patience is key!

A Plastic Bag

  • Flexible: A plastic bag is the ideal material for making prison wine as it is flexible and easy to handle. The bag can be manipulated to fit into small spaces, making it easy to hide from guards.

  • Airtight: To make wine, you need to create an airtight seal to allow fermentation to occur. A plastic bag can be easily sealed to create a perfect airtight environment for the wine to ferment.

  • Readily Available: In prison, plastic bags are readily available and can be obtained from a variety of sources such as the commissary, the kitchen or the laundry room.

  • Durable: A plastic bag is durable enough to withstand the pressure of fermentation without rupturing, making it an ideal container for making wine in prison.

Using a plastic bag to make toilet wine in prison is a common and practical method. However, it is important to note that making alcohol in prison is illegal and can result in serious consequences.

A Balloon

  • Stretchy: The balloon should be able to stretch enough to fit over the opening of the plastic bag.

  • Durable: It’s important to use a durable balloon that won’t easily pop or tear during the fermentation process.

  • Clean: Before using the balloon, make sure it’s clean and free of any dust or debris that could contaminate the wine.

  • Pinhole: After fitting the balloon over the opening of the plastic bag, poke a small pinhole in the top to allow for gas to escape during fermentation.

Once the balloon is secured over the plastic bag with the pinhole in place, it will begin to expand as the yeast consumes the sugar and releases carbon dioxide, indicating that your toilet wine is fermenting properly.

How to Make Toilet Wine in Your Cell in Prison

Gather your ingredients: Fruit juice, sugar, yeast, and water.

Mix the ingredients: Pour the fruit juice, sugar, and water into the plastic bag, and add the yeast. Seal the bag, shake it gently, and leave it in a warm, dark place.

Check on the mixture: After a few days, the mixture should start to bubble, indicating that fermentation is occurring. Burp the bag by opening it slightly to release any built-up gas, and then reseal it.

Transfer the mixture: After about a week, the fermentation process should be complete. Transfer the liquid from the plastic bag to the balloon using a funnel. Tie off the balloon to prevent any liquid from escaping.

Let it age: Hang the balloon in a cool, dark place for a few more days to allow the flavors to develop. Once it’s ready, carefully remove the balloon and pour the wine into a cup or container to enjoy.

Mix the Ingredients

After you have gathered all the necessary ingredients, you can start mixing them together in your plastic bag. Pour the fruit juice into the bag, followed by the sugar and the yeast.

Seal the bag tightly and shake it for several minutes until all the sugar has dissolved. This will help to distribute the yeast evenly throughout the mixture and initiate the fermentation process.

Once the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, you can inflate the balloon and secure it over the opening of the bag. This will allow gas to escape during the fermentation process, preventing the bag from bursting.

Store the Mixture in a Plastic Bag with a Balloon

  1. Seal the bag: Make sure the plastic bag is completely sealed to prevent air from entering or exiting.

  2. Add the balloon: Blow up a balloon and place it in the plastic bag with the mixture. The balloon will slowly deflate as the mixture ferments, indicating the buildup of carbon dioxide.

  3. Store in a warm, dark place: Place the plastic bag with the balloon in a warm and dark place, such as under your bed or in a cabinet.

It’s important to check the balloon periodically to make sure the pressure isn’t getting too high. If it feels too tight, carefully release some of the gas by piercing a small hole in the bag with a sterilized needle.

Remember, making toilet wine is illegal and dangerous, and should not be attempted under any circumstances. This information is for educational purposes only.

Wait for Fermentation

After you have mixed the ingredients and stored them in the plastic bag with the balloon, it’s time to wait for the fermentation process to begin. This usually takes around 5-7 days, but it can vary depending on the temperature and other factors. During this time, you should keep the bag in a warm and dark place, such as under your bed or in a locker.

You will know that fermentation has begun when you see the balloon start to inflate. This means that the yeast is consuming the sugar and producing carbon dioxide, which is getting trapped in the bag. Be patient and do not disturb the bag during this time.

It’s important to note that the longer you let the mixture ferment, the stronger the alcohol content will be. However, be careful not to let it ferment for too long as this can cause the bag to burst and create a mess.

DaysColor of the MixtureAlcohol Content
3-4 daysLight yellow2-3%
5-6 daysGolden yellow4-6%
7 days or moreDark yellow or orange8-12%
Over 10 daysBrown or black15% or higher
Over 14 daysMixture will smell badUnsafe to drink

Once the balloon is fully inflated, the fermentation process is complete and it’s time to move on to the next step of the process: filtering the mixture and enjoying your homemade toilet wine.

How to Store Toilet Wine in Prison

Keep it hidden: It’s important to keep your toilet wine hidden from the guards and other inmates. Make sure to store it in a discreet location, such as under your bed or in a locker.

Use airtight containers: Storing your wine in airtight containers, such as plastic bottles or jars, can help prevent spoilage and maintain its flavor. Avoid using metal containers as they can react with the wine and alter its taste.

Store in a cool, dark place: Heat and sunlight can both damage your toilet wine, so it’s important to store it in a cool, dark place, such as a closet or under a sink. Avoid storing it near a radiator or other sources of heat.

Check for spoilage: Over time, your toilet wine may spoil, which can cause it to smell or taste bad. It’s important to check for spoilage before consuming it. If it smells off or has an unusual taste, it’s best to throw it away.

Enjoy responsibly: It’s important to remember that toilet wine is often much stronger than regular wine and can have unpredictable effects. If you choose to drink it, do so in moderation and be aware of your limits.

Keep the Toilet Wine in a Concealed Location

Choose a Secure Spot: The first step to storing your toilet wine safely is to choose a secure spot. This should be a location that is not easily accessible and where it won’t be found by other inmates or guards.

Use Disguises: To avoid suspicion, it’s a good idea to disguise your toilet wine. You can do this by storing it in a container that doesn’t look like it contains alcohol. Some ideas include shampoo bottles, mouthwash containers, or even a hollowed-out book.

Keep it Cool: To prevent your toilet wine from spoiling, it’s important to keep it cool. This can be done by storing it in a cooler or refrigerator if you have access to one. If not, try to find a location that is cool and dry, like a basement or crawl space.

How to Enjoy Toilet Wine in Prison Safely

Don’t drink too much: While you may be tempted to indulge in your homemade creation, it’s important to remember that toilet wine can be strong. Drink responsibly and in moderation to avoid getting sick or attracting unwanted attention.

Use a clean container: Before enjoying your toilet wine, make sure it’s stored in a clean container that has been thoroughly washed and sanitized to avoid contamination.

Check for signs of spoilage: Before drinking, check for any signs that the wine has gone bad, such as a strange smell or taste. If it doesn’t seem right, it’s better to err on the side of caution and discard it.

Avoid sharing with others: While it may be tempting to share your stash with fellow inmates, it’s best to keep it to yourself to avoid any trouble or risks associated with sharing.

Be discreet: When enjoying your toilet wine, be discreet and avoid drawing attention to yourself. Drinking in plain sight or being too loud can attract unwanted attention from guards or other inmates.

Consume in Moderation

While toilet wine can be a source of enjoyment and relief in prison, it is important to consume it in moderation to avoid negative health effects. Too much alcohol can lead to dehydration, impaired judgment, and even alcohol poisoning.

It is also essential to know your limits and be aware of the strength of the wine you have made. Without proper equipment to measure alcohol content, it can be difficult to know the exact percentage of alcohol in the mixture.

Additionally, it is crucial to avoid sharing your wine with others. Sharing can lead to the spread of diseases such as hepatitis or HIV, which can be easily transmitted through blood or bodily fluids.

Overall, it is important to use caution and moderation when consuming toilet wine in prison. While it can provide a temporary escape from the harsh realities of prison life, it is not worth risking your health or safety for.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is toilet wine and why is it made in prison?

Toilet wine is an alcoholic beverage made from various ingredients that can be found in prison, such as fruit, sugar, and yeast. Inmates make toilet wine as a way to pass the time and to cope with the stress of being in prison. Additionally, it can be used as a form of currency or a way to make friends and gain respect within the inmate community.

What are the risks of making and consuming toilet wine?

Making toilet wine is dangerous because it involves using unsanitary equipment and ingredients that may contain harmful bacteria or other contaminants. As a result, there is a risk of developing food poisoning or other illnesses. Additionally, consuming too much alcohol can lead to health problems, such as liver damage, and can increase the risk of accidents or violent behavior.

How is toilet wine made in prison?

Toilet wine is made by mixing fruit, sugar, and yeast in a plastic bag or container, and then sealing it with a balloon to allow for fermentation. The mixture is then stored in a warm and dark location for several days or weeks until it is ready to drink.

Can toilet wine be made outside of prison?

While toilet wine is typically associated with prison, it is possible to make it outside of prison as well. However, it is important to note that making alcohol at home can be illegal in some jurisdictions and may result in fines or other legal consequences. It is also important to ensure that all equipment and ingredients are clean and sanitary to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

What are some alternatives to making toilet wine in prison?

While toilet wine may be a popular way to make alcohol in prison, there are other alternatives that may be safer and more effective. For example, inmates can participate in substance abuse treatment programs, engage in physical activity or creative pursuits, or seek support from friends or family members outside of prison.

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