Brew Your Own Kombucha

My least favourite thing about finding a recipe online is a huge pre-amble about how awesome it is and what they did that morning and last week. So let’s just get to the point, shall we?

Ingredients/Supplies
Gallon Size Brew:
  • 1 Gallon glass jar – no lid required
  • Paper towel, or dishcloth & rubber band
  • 2TB loose tea or 6-8 tea bags (black or green – better results with unflavoured tea (i.e. don’t use early grey, stick with basic orange pekoe if black)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 13-14cup water (however much fits with some headroom inside your jar)
  • 1 cup kombucha tea starter liquid
  • 1 SCOBY
Instructions:
  1. Combine hot water and sugar in a glass jar. Stir until the sugar dissolves. The water should be hot enough to steep the tea but does not have to be boiling.   
  2. Place the tea or tea bags in the sugar water to steep. (can use a metal tea ball for loose tea, but remove before adding the SCOBY)
  3. Cool the mixture to 68-85ºF. The tea may be left in the liquid as it cools or removed after the first 10-15 minutes. The longer the tea is left in the liquid, the stronger the tea will be. 
  4. Remove the tea bags or completely strain the loose tea leaves from the liquid.
  5. Add starter tea from a previous batch to the liquid.
  6. Add an active kombucha SCOBY.
  7. Cover the jar with a tight-weave towel or paper towel and secure with a rubber band.
  8. Allow the mixture to sit undisturbed at 68-85°F, out of direct sunlight, for 7-30 days, or to taste. The longer the kombucha ferments, the less sweet and more vinegary it will taste. You can start tasting after day 7 to check in on sweetness/fermentation.
To Bottle:
  1. Pour kombucha off the top of the jar for consuming. Bottle in glass jars. Best if they have a secure swing top! (I re-use sea cider bottles)
  2. Retain the SCOBY and enough liquid from the bottom of the jar to use as starter tea for the next batch. Can be kept in a mason jar in the fridge until next brew.
  3. Optional: second fermentation to create more fizz! Let the bottled kombucha sit on your counter for a 1-2 days before storing in the fridge.
  4. The finished kombucha can be flavoured or enjoyed plain. Flavouring should be added after bottling & before the second fermentation.

Flavouring Options I’ve enjoyed:

  • raspberry – 5 frozen raspberries per bottle
  • ginger & anise – 2 tablespoons of grated ginger + 1 star anise pod
  • pineapple – leftover juice from a can of pineapple rings (or about 1/2 cup pineapple juice)
  • strawberry basil – 3 quartered strawberries, 1 stem of basil
  • flavouring options are endless… get creative

Enjoy!

-S

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