Converting Milk Kefir Grains into Water Kefir Grains
If you're looking for the best way to convert milk kefir grains into water kefir grains, we have exactly what you're looking for.
To start, you may want to divide half of your grains you received from us to keep as milk kefir grains only. These
can be frozen until use.
Make sure your milk kefir grains are fully activated by allowing them to ferment 1 cup of milk (whole milk) for 24
hours, then repeating three times in three days adding another cup of milk every 24 hours. After this period, allow
the grains to drain, keeping the Kefir to drink if so desired. Then, rinse the grains thoroughly through a 1/32 inch
strainer under cool clean water. Use these grains to convert.
Dissolve ¼ cup unrefined cane sugar in 1 quart of water. Add ⅛ teaspoon unrefined sea salt. You may want to
add 1/2 tsp. of molasses to add minerals, but this is optional.
Add active milk kefir grains to the sugar-water solution.
Ferment for 4-5 days at room temperature.
Separate the grains from the sugar water and add them to a fresh batch of sugar water (¼ cup sugar in 1 quart
of water). Ferment at room temperature for 12-24 hours less than the previous batch that you fermented for 4-5
Repeat above step, shortening the ferment time by 12-24 hours each batch, until the fermentation period is 48
hours or less.
At this point, the grains have been converted into water kefir grains. Though sometimes milk Kefir grains do not
want to convert, as they can be a bit finicky.
Making Water Kefir
Note about sugar: Best to use unrefined sugar or organic sugar since these sugars have more minerals which
are important for the health of the grains. If you only have refined white sugar, add a dried fig or a couple pieces
of dried fruit like mango or apricot.
Note about water: Use water free of chlorine and fluoride. Mineral water is best.
Note about what to use to ferment your water Kefir in: Use glass or stainless or plastic. Do no use aluminum.
Not about temperature: Your Kefir may take more or less time to ferment based on the ambient room
temperature. Higher the temperature (up to 85f) the faster the ferment will be.
Note about healthy grains: Water Kefir grains need minerals (from Trace Mineral Research) to grow and stay
healthy. Some information instructs to add sea salt, yet too much salt is not good. I recommend using a liquid
mineral concentrate which is a far better value and will last you for many months, if not years. You only need to
add 10 drops for one quart (liter) of water to re-mineralize your prior to adding the grains for every batch you
Procedure: Use 3-4 tablespoons of the converted milk Kefir grains in one quart of clean room temperature
water. Dissolve ¼ cup organic or unrefined or refined sugar per quart of water. Add a dried fig or any dried fruit
to add minerals for the grain’s health, though if you’re using a non-refined sugar, the mineral content should be
ok. Cover with fine cheese cloth or fine mesh material, using rubber band or screw cap to secure the cloth and
allow to ferment at 68°-78F° up to 85°F for a few days or until the water Kefir tastes just slightly sour. When you
see some bubbles rising to the top upon nudging, your kefir is fermenting. If it tastes very sweet, allow it to
ferment for more time. To bottle, pour off the water Kefir, leaving a little of the remaining liquid with all grains
behind to make another batch. Bottle what you poured off adding a little sweet fruit juice if you want carbonation,
secure the bottle with a cap and place in the refrigerator.
Converted milk Kefir grains cannot be used to make milk Kefir so save some of your grains for milk Kefir
Enjoy, Steve Shapson, thecheesemaker.com