How to Make Kombucha

March 30th, 2018

One of the most popular ways to add a little fermented fun to your diet is by drinking kombucha, a fizzy drink that’s fermented with a SCOBY—or symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast.

To make your own brew, all you really need is time (at least seven days, to be exact) and five simple ingredients. You can pick up a kit with a starter SCOBY, then use on repeat for future batches. And here’s a tip: the first batch you make can be extra tart, and can make a great base for salad dressings.

Yield: About 4 cups
Active time: 20 minutes
Total time: 7 days

2 to 3 cups hot water
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 black tea bags (or 1 ½ teaspoons loose tea)
Distilled white vinegar
Starter culture

Add sugar and water to a quart-size glass jar. (It doesn’t need to be boiling, just warm enough to melt the sugar and steep the tea.) Stir to dissolve sugar, then add tea bags; steep 10 minutes and discard tea bags. Let liquid cool completely to room temperature (68° to 85° F), 1 to 2 hours.

Next, add vinegar and kombucha SCOBY. Cover jar with a paper coffee filter or a fine-mesh dish towel and secure with a rubber band. Find a warm spot in your house away from direct sunlight to let kombucha rest for at least 7 days and up to 30 days. Taste with a straw beginning at day 7. Once it tastes good to you, it’s ready to drink!

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This article is related to: Drink Recipes, Fermented Foods

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Nicole GulottaNicole Gulotta is a writer, author, and tea enthusiast.

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