Everything good for you is usually a pretty penny. I am ok with investing my money in my health care now instead of paying for sick care later, but I have learned to make some things on my own to make my health care costs affordable. One way I do that is brewing my own kombucha. If you can make a glass of sweet tea, you can easily brew some kombucha.
I use to buy bottles of kombucha through a company or at the local health food store for $3-$5 a bottle. Yes, per bottle! I can make a gallon at home for that cost and it tastes good. In fact, it tastes so good my kiddos just asked if I could make an extra gallon this time, so now I have 3 gallons sitting on my counter, fermenting.
Why is kombucha so good for you? Kombucha is rich in probiotic bacteria that is produced during fermentation. Probiotics provide your gut with healthy bacteria. These bacteria can improve many aspects of health, including digestion, joint health, detoxification, inflammation, prevention of cancer, energy boosting, an antioxidant and even supports weight loss. I am sure you have heard that your gut is your second immune system. When we have a healthy gut, we usually have a healthy immune system.
I am not saying kombucha can heal you. That is just silly. What I am saying is kombucha aids your body in healing itself. It helps detoxify your liver, promotes balance to your digestive system, and has vitamins, such as Vitamin B, enzymes and acids that aid your body.
I am a big component of shopping local and supporting small businesses. Renee of Organic Stepping Stones, introduced me to brewing my own kombucha and where I purchased my Kombucha Starter Kit. You can order a kit from Organic Stepping Stones also. It comes with everything you need to start. Plus, Renee is an amazing teacher and has years of experience.
This is her recipe that I have used over the years. I switch up the types of tea, but the recipe stays the same.
- 1 scoby (It is not pronounced Scooby like Scooby Doo, it is pronounced SCKO – BEE)
- 1/2 -2 cups of starter (which is kombucha your last batch or the liquid that comes in the jar with the scoby)
- 1 cup organic evaporated cane sugar
- 2 tablespoons (or 4 bags) organic tea of your choice
- 1 gallon filtered or spring water (no fluoride or chlorine or it will kill your scoby)
- 1 gallon glass wide mouth jar
- rubberband or string
- a cut piece of cloth for top that is breathable, yet dust wont get in – see the organic chicken fabric I chose below. You can kind of see through it.
- optional: 1 teaspoon hibiscus
- Boil about 1 quart of your filtered water. Then remove from heat. Add one cup of organic cane sugar then stir to dissolve. Add 2 tablespoons of organic black or green tea. If you decide to add hibiscus, add one teaspoon now when steeping with the 2 tablespoons of tea.
- Let it sit in the pot and steep until liquid is room temperature.
- In a gallon glass jar, add scoby and starter liquid.
- Put the strainer on top of the jar.
- Then, pour the room temperature sweet tea through the strainer and into the gallon jar with your scoby and starter. See video below.
- Add additional filtered water until it reaches the shoulder of the jar.
- Using a Sharpie or label write on the outside of the jar the date and type of tea.
- Cover jar with a cloth that is breathable and secure rubber band or tight string around the top to keep dust and yuck from getting in.
- Set the jar on your counter AWAY from a heat source like under-cabinet lights, ovens, microwaves or direct sun light. It is ideal that the temperature is between 65 -75 degrees. I usually keep it in my pantry, but sometimes it is on my counter.
- It is NOT unusual when you first start brewing for the scoby to be on the bottom or its side. It will eventually rise to the top. I had to ask Renee this.
- After seven days start tasting the liquid to find the flavor you like best. A shorter brew will result in a lighter flavor that is higher in sugar. A longer brew will result in a stronger flavor. Typically between 7 to 12 days is preferred, depending on the temperature in your kitchen.
- When you feel the kombucha is perfect, pour it through a funnel in glass jars or bottles. A tight seal will aid in producing carbonation to get a “fizz.”
- Refrigerate immediately.
Renee goes through so much more on her website about fermentation and kombucha. I just wanted to share how easy this was to make. I strongly suggest to check out her site if you are interested in making this. She is an amazing teacher and has so many tips!
Oh! One last thing. After the kombucha is brewed and I pour myself a glass, sometimes I add a drop of lemon vitality or grapefruit vitality or even lime vitality to give it a nice flavor. After all, kombucha is fermented sweet tea and lemon or citrus flavors always pair nicely.
Cheers to Good Health,