Kombucha is a fermented drink made up of bacteria, sugar and tea. The process of concocting this sweet, fizzy drink yourself is lengthy, but it’s easy to learn how to make kombucha if you’re committed.
1. The SCOBY and the Starter Liquid
Make your SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) by adding store-bought unpasteurized kombucha to a jar with sweetened black tea. Let it ferment until your SCOBY is a ¼ of an inch thick, which could take anywhere from 1 week up to 4 weeks. The leftover liquid will be the starter liquid for your first batch.
2. The Tea
Black tea is ideal for making the SCOBY itself, but when you’re ready to start brewing the beverage, your tea options are wide open. The best tea for kombucha can be black, white, green or whichever you prefer. The kombucha supplies you’ll need to brew your batch are very basic:
- Glass jar
Brew your tea as you normally would, adding sugar to help the SCOBY work. Pour your finished tea into a clean jar with enough water to almost fill the container to the top. Gently lay the SCOBY into the jar and add the starter liquid.
3. The Fermentation Process
Cover the jar using the cloth and secure it with a rubber band. Find a dark place to store it. The flavors will take at least 1 week to develop, but it may take longer. Once it’s ready, remove the SCOBY and place it in a new jar with some of the liquid (you’ll need it for your next batch). Add whatever flavorings or fruits you’d like to your kombucha before you drink it.
It is actually possible to make yogurt with kombucha, if you’re looking for something a little bit different. Add your SCOBY to milk instead of tea and let it ferment for about 24 hours.
As with any process involving fermentation, kombucha takes a lot of patience. However, its high content of probiotics and healthy nutrients make it worth the wait. To start shopping for your kombucha making supplies, head to our online store.