It’s Kombucha Time Again!
Do you love flavored kombucha?
So A while back I posted how to make kombucha and a little extra information about it! Today I am going to teach you how to 2nd ferment your kombucha so you get that flavor and fizz. If you buy your kombucha at your health food store, then you are probably going to like this part of the kombucha process. The kind you buy at the store is flavored with some kind of juice and bottled in individual bottles. We are going to do the same thing, but in your own kitchen!
If you want a recommendation for a good store bought kombucha brand, try Kombucha Wonder brand. They have some really good flavors and are all organic. Though for some of you who drink it like crazy or like to choose your own flavors, you are better of making it yourself! You save a lot of money this way too.
Fizz it up!
The second fermentation is so easy and quick. The juice increases the carbonation of the komucha and makes it taste fruity and yummy! Experimenting with different flavors are really fun too. I find that some juices make the finished kombucha fizzier then others. Lemon ginger really isn’t that fizzy while cranberry, cherry, and pineapple are really bubbly! I think it has to do with the sugar content. Though, sometimes your kombucha has a mind of its own, so you might be in for a little surprise!
Here are a few questions answered for you..
What do i use? I reuse bottles from the store-bought kombucha, pellegrino bottles, ball jars, or quart juice bottles. Just make sure it is glass.
How much flavor for my bottle size? Well really it depends on your taste. These are the measurements I use. If you have no idea what you like, go ahead and try my recommendations and you can always alter it to your liking as you learn!
80z (little glass juice bottle)- 2 TBS
160z (GT bottle)- 1/4 cup
24oz (Pelligrino bottle)- 1/3 cup
I like to fresh squeeze my juices (when I can) and then strain out the pulp & seeds with a nut milk bag, muslin, or cheesecloth. I then use the pulp to make pulp crackers in my dehydrator or add it to smoothies or baked goods. Get creative!
Cherry vanilla (Cherry juice and a few tsp of vanilla extract)
Orange Grapefruit (Orange juice and Grapefruit juice. Fresh squeezed is always best!)
Pineapple pomegranate (My favorite!)
Apple berry (Apple juice and mixed berries)
Kiwi (a favorite)
Watermelon lime (Ha! this one is easy. Watermelon has so much juice to share ).
Ginger lemon (Boil a handful of fresh chopped ginger for a few hours to make a syrup. This syrup if potent so you might not need the whole amount I recommended. A few tsp-TBS of lemon juice should be good, just taste it as you go if you question yourself!)
Raspberry grape (Careful, grape tastes like wine pretty quickly- only ferment a few hours!)
Herbal tea! (Remember i said don’t use herbal tea for brewing kombucha? Well, If you want the health benefits of herbal tea, now is the time to add it. This won’t make your kombucha fizzy, because herbal tea has no sugar. Though you can always sweeten it with a little honey afterwards)
Be creative and go wild!
Brewed Kombucha (to your liking)
Juice or a combo of juices. Fresh squeezed or bottled (preferably organic). *You can always just plop in fresh, frozen (defrosted), or dried fruit. It just won’t be as flavorful as the fruit juice.
1. Gather a bunch of empty old kombucha bottles, Pellegrino bottles, mason jars, or any glass bottle. Clean them very well.
2. Clean your hands and a bowl (big enough to fit your scoby into) well! Remove your scoby from your jar with your hands and place in a plastic or glass bowl and set aside in a clean area. **
My homemade ginger syrup is in the jar on the left. Look at flavor options above to learn how to make it.
3. Make or pick out your juices/fruit. I always like to do many flavors at once!
I used a 16 oz GT bottle. So I added 1/4 cup of juice.
4. Line up your glass bottles and fill them with the right amount of juice depending on your bottle side (look at chart above). Don’t worry if you add too little or too much. Kombucha is very forgiving!
I pour my brewed kombucha in a spouted measuring cup to make it easier to pour. A funnel is also a good idea too!
5. Pour your brewed kombucha in your glass bottle. Make sure you leave 2 inches from the top! You don’t want it to explode.
Don’t forget to leave 2 inches form the top!
6. Screw your caps on tight and let the bottled kombucha/juice sit on the counter or in the cabinet (out of direct sun light).
I keep mine in my food pantry. I have a whole shelf for my kombucha! I also line the shelf with a towel just incase it leaks.
7. Let it sit for a day at the minimum. Though, you can even go up to a few weeks. (The longer you let it go, the more it will turn into alcohol because you are fermenting it. If you are giving this to your kids, only ferment it for a day please.)
See the fizz?
8.Chill in your fridge (optional, but it tastes better) and carefully open! Some juices seem to fizz more than others so you will have to experiment! I always open mine over or near the sink because I have volcano kombucha’s all the time!
9. Sometimes if you ferment your kombucha/juice for a couple of days to a week, a little “juice scoby will form”. It usually looks like a piece of jelly. Just scoop it out and dump it or compost it.
Sometimes if you let it ferment for a few weeks, your little “juice scoby” will grow thick! This kombucha was blueberry flavored and I let it go for 3 weeks. It was a little strong, but still good :). Just take out these big juice scoby before you drink, or else they pretty much plug up the top! Kombucha is so fun.
10. Enjoy your homemade cup of Kombucha. A slice of lemon always makes it taste better. Remember (especially if you are on GAPS), to start off slow if you have never had kombucha before (like a few TBS at a time). This is because, like any fermented food, it can give you die off. Die off is when your body releases toxins because you are detoxing. Drinking kombucha is one way of detoxing. Just build up your serving size SLOWLY!
I always put my scoby back in a new brew to keep it healthy and strong! Don’t forget to keep some starter liquid!
1. Always wash your hands very well before handling your scoby and always put in glass/plastic bowl or jar. Use a plastic knife if you want to cut it. Metal can sometimes kill your SCOBY.
2. After you have set aside you SCOBY what are you going to do with it?…there is 3 choices.
a. Ferment another batch: continuous brewing allows your kombucha to be as healthy as possible and it will brew faster.
b. Place in a jar or container in the fridge with enough reserved kombucha to cover your scoby. Putting it in the fridge will slow down your fermentation process when you start it back up. But it will definitely still work! You can forget about it in the fridge for many months!
c. Give it away, either your baby or a part of your scoby (cut it with a plastic knife). *Tip: always keep an extra for yourself just incase yours get moldy!
So now you know how to make Kombucha! It is fun and will get easier the more you do it!