Kombucha Recipe - step by step instructions with photos showing how to make your own Kombucha, from our Healthy Drinks Recipes Collection.
Kombucha is made using a SCOBY - this is an acronym for Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast.
When you are following a Paleo diet it can be easy to get bored with your drink choices, especially when you are transitioning from a standard diet which includes fizzy drinks. Kombucha is
something of an acquired taste to begin with, but when you make your own you can experiment with a variety of flavours until you find which combination appeals to you the most.
Kombucha is quite tart with a slight fizz and is very refreshing. There are varying claims for its health giving properties, though these don't appear to be scientifically proven, and of course, as with all alternative products, there are claims that it can be damaging to your health which again appear not to be scientifically proven. Do your own research - the decision is yours to make and the responsibility is yours to take!
Is it Paleo? Well Rob Wolf loves it so...
1. Boil 7 cups of water.
2. Add 1 cup of sugar and 4 teabags (green or black organic tea is best) to the water.
3. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.
4. Remove tea bags after 3 - 5 minutes, then leave tea to cool to room temperature.
*This batch was made with black tea.
7. Pour the starter tea into the jar with the cooled tea.
9. Cover your kombucha with a piece of muslin/cheesecloth (I fold it over so it has a double thickness) and secure with an elastic band.
10. Place the jar somewhere warm where it won't be disturbed and leave to brew for 7 - 10 days.
12. A second scoby should have formed in the jar. You can now use this to make extra batches of kombucha, or alternatively you can put it into a "scoby hotel" to use when your mother scoby has reached the end of its useful life, or you could give it away to a friend. You can find out how to make a scoby hotel at the end of this tutorial.
5. Pour your cooled tea into a large glass container.
6. Remove 1 cup of kombucha from your previous batch or from your scoby hotel. This becomes your starter tea.
*This batch was made with green tea
8. Place your kombucha scoby into the jar - you can use your fingers or if you don't like the texture (it's just a bit slimy) use a wooden spoon.
11. After 7 days use a straw to remove some of the kombucha to test for sweetness. If it is still very sweet leave it to brew for another couple of days.
13. Strain the kombucha through a fine sieve or coffee filter to remove the remaining yeast products (you can keep them in if you want, I prefer not to!)
14. Pour into a glass jar (mason jars are excellent) or bottle if you are not going on to ferment it a second time. Store in the fridge.
15. IMPORTANT! Remember to remove 1 cup of tea for your next batch before starting the second ferment process!
You can drink the kombucha like this or you can second ferment it using a flavour of choice.
Kombucha will keep in the fridge for up to 9 months.
It is recommended that when you first start consuming kombucha that you limit your intake to 4 fl oz a day, rising to a maximum daily intake of 16 fl oz. It is also recommended that you avoid drinking kombucha if you are pregnant and haven't drunk it prior to pregnancy.
1. After setting aside a cup of tea with which to start your next batch, choose a fruit juice that you want to flavour your kombucha with.
Our favourite flavours are pomegranate and also apple - the mango is very sweet. We have also just tried using a cherry cordial in the second ferment which is very tasty.
You could use fresh fruit if you prefer, and this could be added to the first ferment, but then successive batches will retain this flavour, to a degree, and the potential for contamination is probably a bit higher too.
2. When using fruit juices ideally you want a ration of about 20% fruit juice to 80% kombucha tea. Obviously if you are using cordial you only want a tiny amount as it is very concentrated. If you are using fruit you will need to experiment to see what works best - do let us know how you get on!
3. Ferment the flavoured kombucha for 2 days and then keep it in the fridge to stop the fermentation process.
Small scobies will probably form, you may wish to remove these before drinking - it's a matter of personal preference.
It will keep for up to 9 months in the fridge - if you can make it last that long!
Every time you make a batch of kombucha you will get a brand new baby scoby, which is great, but if you're making weekly batches you're going to have a lot of excess scobies to deal with. Now you could just chuck them in the bin, but it is far better to either give them away to friends or store them for the time that your mother scoby fails. Keeping them a scoby hotel is super easy.