Within the last year or so, kombucha has become one of my favorite beverages. The amazing benefits of this ancient, fermented drink are an appealing reason to partake. The B vitamins, organic acids, pH balancing qualities, and digestion benefits are enough to make me squeal with delight! But for me, I was sold on the taste alone. I’m not a soda drinker, but I can certainly appreciate a bubbly beverage every now and then. While some people would describe the taste of kombucha as vinegary, I think it has the perfect amount of sweetness to curb a sugary craving any day.
Anyone who has purchased bottle kombucha from the store knows that it can be pretty expensive. If my husband and I were going to incorporate this drink into our daily routine, I knew I needed to find a way to brew it at home. From our local health food store, I pay about $3.50 for a 16 oz bottle.
I knew by brewing it at home, I could make a gallon of this stuff for about $2. Talk about financial motivation.
I asked for a kombucha brew kit for Christmas and ordered my fresh SCOBY as soon as I received it. To kick off the New Year on January 1st, I brewed my first batch of kombucha. You can view Jill’s instructions on brewing a basic kombucha recipe here. I won’t bore you with the steps in this post because Jill’s instructions were very thorough and almost identical to those included with my brew kit.
One difference was that my kit suggested allowing the tea to ferment for a minimum of 14 days prior to giving the kombucha a taste test, instead of the 7 days that Jill mentions.
It’s So Easy!
I’m not exaggerating: If you can brew a pot of tea, you can make your own kombucha. It’s so easy.
My first batch of kombucha turned. out. awesome.
The flavor is the same as store bought kombucha and although the carbonation is just a bit less than the brand I buy from the store, I think it’s still delicious. My mom did a taste test and told me that she thought the carbonation was just right.
I learned a few things during my first kombucha brewing process
- Fermention in our house (especially in the winter) probably takes longer than it needs to. Before our daughter was born, we kept our house pretty chilly in the winter to save on that heating bill. Now that Lyla is running around this place, we keep the temperature at a balmy 68 degrees. Still probably too cool for the kombucha, which should be kept in a 72-ish degree environment. I bet my brewing process will be nicely accelerated during the summer months!
- I can’t justify the extra expense to crank up the heat in our home during our cold Wisconsin winters just to brew kombucha a little faster. Because of this temperature situation, I plan to brew my kombucha for 28 days in the winter and 14 days during the summer, especially if I’m looking for a little more carbonation.
- Having a glass pitcher with a cap and old store bought kombucha bottles that have been run through the dishwasher are perfect vessels for your finished product. I keep a pitcher in the fridge and filled a few bottles to bring with me to work.
I have organic black and green tea on our grocery list so I can start the process again as soon as possible. I have a feeling that we will gulp through this batch of kombucha faster than we can have the next batch ready.
Once I go through this brew process a few times, I can definitely see myself transitioning to a continuous brew system. A never-ending supply of kombucha? I like the sound of that.
I am Laura Collins, one of the writers for the blog WholeGreenLove. One of my top priorities as a wife and mom is balancing a full time job and nourishing my family with wholesome food. I believe that a simple, clutter-free life that includes real food and planet conscious decisions = happiness.