What to do with seeded grapes

For the 2nd year in a row, I’ve got a big harvest of seeded grapes. Now I just need to know what to do with them. Last year I got 65 pounds of grapes and was pretty overwhelmed, giving away at least a third of them.

This year, I’ve had massive losses to birds, animals (probably fox and raccoon, though it wouldn’t surprise me if the groundhog (s) got some too), and wasps. I’ve been picking for the last two days and have about 40 pounds. The bigger issue with the creatures, is that I think they’ve gotten the sweetest ones, leaving me to salvage the less ripe ones. Last week I sampled a few in the 13-14 brix area. Then when I was harvesting, I got a lot in the 7-10 brix range. I’m also having more rot problems this year, even with a spray (maybe 2?) of fungicide. It’s still a lot better than before I started spraying, when I used to get maybe 0.2 pounds from the same sized vines. But it does mean that the 45 pounds will probably turn into 30-35 pounds once the bad berries and stems are removed.

Even at 15 brix, I’m not really into eating them. The seeds make it a bit of a pain. I’m willing to overlook them for muscadines which are 20 brix and the size of plums, but for small slip-skins a handful is enough for me (leaving 39.9 pounds…).

That leaves processing. I made jelly last year, which was decently good. I used a jar or two, but still have a dozen jars left from last year. I don’t eat that much jam/jelly and when I do, I prefer black current (not just good, but great). The grape jelly is good for when my daughter wants a PB&J.

I made some grape juice last year, which was OK. This year, I just made ~13 pounds into juice for smoothies, this time blending the seeds (last year they were strained out). I’m freezing some of it in ice cube trays for longer term storage.

So, I’ll throw out the question- what do you do with seeded grapes?

Some pics:
Batch 1 (Friday):

Batch 2(Yesterday):

A lot of drops- I’m not sure if the wasps animals, or rot caused it, but the wasps were still interested. The white tailed big ones made me pretty nervous, even though I dressed up to cover everything (including gloves).

I actually found it easier to cut off the spurs, where they connected to the main trunks. Then, I could scoot away form the wasps and cut off the bunches at a more leisurely pace. I also removed much of the rotten or broken grapes.

I’ve been reading about the health benefits of grape seeds, so I figured that since I have them, I’ll blend them up as fine as I can (Vitamix) and use them in smoothies for the next few months. I thinking that once the cubes have frozen, I can dump them into freezer bags and store them in the garage chest freezer (normally 5-10 deg F).


I juice mine with a steam juicer! It will get all the juice , seeds, and skins out and leave you with just juice. The steam juicer is a must have for grapes! Whatever you have in grapes is at least 1/2 or more juice! The juice comes out very hot and is ready to can. Here is an example https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000SSU6V2/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1473018891&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=mehu+lisa+steam+juicer

There’s always wine

@BobVance - I also have too many grapes, but not because we don’t like to eat them fresh – there’s just too darn many! So my solution (literally) is to freeze the juice, some in covered ice cube trays and the rest in half gallon containers.

I like having pulp in my juice so I use a screened reamer type juice, specifically the attachment to a Kitchen Aid mixer.

You’ve been reading the hype from the grape seed byproduct marketers. It’s true that it is healthier than eating a ground beef patty – but check out the quantitative data as to where it lies in relation to other foods.

I could definitely see the incentive to hype it: “What do we do will all these seeds?” says one winemaker to another…

Do you happen to have any pointers to good studies? If there are only marginal benefits, the amount of seeds I use will depend on how bad they taste in a smoothy :slight_smile:

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Most of the hype is focused on steering on people into grapeseed oil.

  • Part of the benefit is dependent upon temperature. Several other oils (coconut, corn, canola, olive) will reorganize into complex fats when cooked (or used in bbq basting sauces) above 425F or so.
  • Another part of the benefit is in density of constituents; e.g., higher concentration per gram weight of specific anthro-biotics. These are maintained by grape seed oils both at “salad-dressing” temperatures and cooking temperatures better than coconut and corn oils; but more-or-less no different than cold-pressed olive oils.
  • For those folks who are looking for the holy grail of vegetable oils, I recommend studying the contents and heat variability of Avocado Oil (not avocado seed oil).

My sources of information include:
Reading years of publications in Phys.org.
Standard Textbooks at the Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park NY.

Beautiful crop of grapes yoy have there! I second Clark.s recom the steam juicer. I got one because of grapes. It’s so easy and does a great job (for other things too). I particularly like the grape juice mixed with cider (sweet cider).

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That’s interesting, as I think we’ve been reading different hype. What I’ve seen has centered around the flavonoids/proanthocyanidins/antioxidents. I don’t really have the equiptment (or the quantity of seeds to make it worthwhile) to extract the oil. But, it sounds like I should look into Avocado seed oil. Right now, when I use oil (pancakes and not much else), I use coconut. I’m more a butter guy for cooking :slight_smile:

I see stuff like:

Eating grape seeds on a regular basis may, for example, improve cardiovascular health, reduce leg swelling and varicose veins, provide some protection against certain types of cancer, offer weight loss benefits, treat depression, and even fight yeast infections caused by Candida.

Maybe more legit, from the University of Maryland:

But grapes, or the chemicals within them, especially oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes (OPCs), have been touted as powerful antioxidants. Some people believe they could help treat a number of conditions, from heart disease to cancer to aging skin, although scientific evidence is mostly lacking for those conditions. However, there is good evidence that grape seed extract can help treat chronic venous insufficiency and edema.

A study of healthy volunteers found that taking grape seed extract substantially increased blood levels of antioxidants. Antioxidants are substances that destroy free radicals, which are harmful compounds in the body that damage DNA (genetic material) and even cause cell death. Scientists believe free radicals contribute to aging, as well as the development of a number of health problems, including heart disease and cancer.

CIA definitely doesn’t put much online- The two references I found were one for making grape jelly (“discarding the grape seeds and skins”) and this:

Napa Valley spas are mud treatments designed to release toxins from the body and grapeseed oil wraps, which capitalize on the area’s predominant fruit of the vine.

Phys on the other hand, has a ton of interesting stuff. I found articles which suggest that grape seeds help with cancer, alzheimers, and importantly to me, cavities (I’ve got lots due to high sugar intake and bad genetics).

Right now, I’m leaning toward using the rest in smoothies, though I need to test the taste impact before I prep too much. Another question is- should I cook it first, as is normally done for grape juice, or just blend it all up and freeze it? I think the cooking mostly helps liberate the juice from the pulp/skin/seed, so it may not be needed if I am planning to use all of it. But, it also may help in the preservation process.

Thanks Clark! I’ll read a bit more on it and think about one next year, depending on what my harvest looks like. I don’t think the juice would be that good tasting this year, due to the relatively low brix, though I suppose I could add sugar. That is a very highly rated (and expensive) juicer.

Thanks Lois. I’ve never gotten a taste for alcohol- probably a good thing :slight_smile:


My father used to make wine

He got [and I wish I knew where it went] an old wooden wine press, then bought grapes - zins, I think.

The knockoffs are cheaper. Plenty of them have great ratings https://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=steam+juicers&tag=geminimobiles-20&index=aps&hvadid=22467286&hvqmt=p&hvbmt=b&hvdev=p&ref=pd_sl_96vgxgg8z5_b

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Presence alone isn’t enough. Dosage is key. Check out the quantity you’d need to eat on a daily basis!

I tried, as I agree that this is an important factor. I don’t see quantities listed in most of the Phys articles. The one which does have a dosage (muscadine seed), only has it for the supplement extract, not for how much raw material. I take it from your question that I would need to eat a bowl of this every day for it to matter?

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You have to compute it yourself, and it takes a bit of research. For example you could go to the Carnegie Medical Center Diet Institute or another viable place and see their recommended daily diet → then read about how they derived it and eventually come up with milligram quantities. THEN back to data about properties of grape seed to compute in weight a daily quantity. FINALLY using the published density of grape seeds you can compute volume. When I did this around 2003 I came up with 8-10 tablespoons depending on grape variety or about 4 tablespoons of ground grape seed.

A few years later a herbalist at a farmer’s market was touting cinnamon as a replacement for statin drugs. For the drug I was taking I computed I’d need to consume a minimum of 5 tablespoons daily of ground Saigon cinnamon. I then looked at concentrated cinnamon capsules and discovered they were only twice the concentration of raw cinnamon.

You’ll get a healthier outcome by using a room temperature reamer that does not remove pulp and does not cook the juice.

I have a lot of same issues you have. Sometimes I wonder why I spent all the time and money to prune and spray and only give away the fruit in the end😄

I have seeded concord and a unknown seeded green grape.

I make juice, jam/jelly with concord grape. Making wine can use a lot of grape, but the wine I made tasted horrible😞 I may give making vinegar a try sometimes. Making grape pie is another way to use up a few pounds of grape.

I don’t have animal damage, my cats will chase squirrel away. I use bird nest cover the grape vine when grapes are ripe so birds don’t get them, and nothing can stop the wasp. But I find that if wasps are there, that means the grapes are ripe, it should be harvest.

I have been thinking of grafting some better grape variety, but not sure where to find the scion.

By the way, some of the grapes in your pictures are pretty green, could they have stayed on the vine a little longer? It may taste better if they do.

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you have 4 options:
1 Eating grapes
2 make grape juice or grape juice (must not freeze for that attack bacterium).
3 make your own wine, if you do not know, here explains an old friend of mine step by step (unfortunately the servers have a photo removed after several years)


4 can also make vinegar, if the wine is achieved THROUGH grape juice and fermentation thanks to the attack of bacterium, vinegar is achieved through the wine and the attack of a second bacterium that converts the wine into vinegar

Is there a special bacterial risk for freezing grape juice? I would figure that after boiling it, most bacterium should be killed. And what is left should grow very slowly in a freezer.

It sometimes takes a while for wine to work out its issues in the bottle

Then sometimes it never tastes good

Mine belongs to the never tastes good camp,LOL!
I waited two years, no good. Very high alcohol content, but does not taste good at all, not drinkable. It was fun making it though, and it did use up a lot of grapes.

I have a lot of Concord grape coming, I am wondering instead of making red wine or desert wine, if I can use the method I make hard cider To make low alcohol level fruity drink with grape juice. Do you have any suggestions?

Wash, dry and freeze seed and all. I just put two bags of Muscadines into the freezer. They make great cold snacks. Semi frozen seedless grapes was almost always served at all our chamber of commerce meetings along with other treats which is where I got the idea from.