Friday, August 6, 2010

brew your own kombucha tea

for those not familiar, kombucha tea is a deliciously pungent, fermented elixir rich in antioxidants and probiotics.

probiotics are friendly microorganisms that assist our bodies in keeping pathogens (harmful microorganisms) in check. probiotics also aid in digestion, nutrient absorption, and contribute to immune function.

pro = for; biotic = life: probiotic translates to "for life"

anti = against; biotic = life - antibiotic literally means "against life"

often referred to as a mushroom, kombucha is actually a harmonious colony of bacteria and yeast bound together by cellulose. the culture is also referred to as the mother or scoby (the acronym for Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast).

kombucha tea is said to have many benefits, including:

increased immunity
restored energy
a sense of well-being
constipation relief
enhanced sex drive
detox aid
fights candida
stress reduction
improved hair and nail quality
lowered cholesterol and blood pressure
weight release and reduced fluid retention


other bloggers have ventured into kombucha tea brewing, like aimee and averie (who has purchased a very nice barrel for her brew). angela from the happy raw kitchen was able to start her brew from a bottle of kombucha tea rather than a scoby!

kombucha brewing has been around for over 2000 years, with friends and families traditionally sharing kombucha cultures. carmella and don from the sunny raw kitchen introduced us to this "warrior tea" back in october. they also parted us with a scoby and detailed directions on how to make our own.

brew your own kombucha tea

important precautions:

make sure all utensils and glassware are clean to avoid contamination.
due to the high acidity of the brew, avoid contact with metal or pottery with a lead glaze finish.

you will need:

  • 1 gallon glass jar with wide opening
  • 1 C. sugar
  • 5 tea bags of black, green, or white tea or a combination
  • 12 C. filtered water, divided
  • 1/4 C. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 scoby


1.  brew the tea. bring 6 cups water to a boil. turn off heat, add sugar, and stir until dissolved. add tea bags and let sit 15 minutes or more.

2.  add 6 cups cool water. carefully add scoby, using a gloved or very clean hand.

3.  top with at least 1/4 cup vinegar or 1 cup starter tea.

4.  cover with a thin cloth or paper towel held with a rubber band.

5.  leave in a warm and cozy spot for 10 to 14 days. check with straw to taste if tea is ready - it should be a bit more vinegary than sweet.

6.  gently remove scoby and set in 1 cup starter tea. cover with thin cloth or paper towel.

7.  pour tea into glass bottles or mason jars for second fermentation. this step will produce carbonation.

8.  add flavorings if desired. (fruit, ginger, mint... strawberry with vanilla bean is my favorite)

9.  set aside at room temperature for 4 days to 2 weeks.

10.  transfer bottles to fridge before serving - kombucha tea is tastiest served chilled. the serving recommendation is 2 oz., two times a day.

happy brewing!


  1. I love kombucha! I miss it so much, since I can't drink it while pregnant (too detoxing).

  2. I'm picking up a scoby next week!! I'm super excited! Thanks for the tutorial on it because I'll need it next week:)
    Have a great weekend hun!!!

  3. Your kombucha looks amazing! Isn't it fun? Amazing how it multiplies all by itself:)

    Thanks for the link love too, just in case someone wants know how to grow their own scoby:)

  4. Ooh vanilla water. Exciting. Where do you find that? Or just make it yourself?

    Thanks for the step-by-step. Kombucha is the best!

  5. great post!!! i need to get on the kombucha wagon!!!!!!!!

  6. bitt - i just blend vanilla bean with water.

  7. This is so interesting. It doesn't sound too hard to make, and there's a person that often offers the scoby on Free Cycle. You've got me thinking about trying it.

  8. Awesome tutorial! I *still* haven't tried making my own, but you make it seem easy :)

  9. I've got a scoby that's waiting to be pickled, so thanks so much for this tutorial! The directions that came with it say that you need a starter of old kombooch, but both you and Averie made yours without the starter, so all's good. I totally appreciate this easy lil' guide!

  10. beautiful scoby's and beautiful booch!

  11. your booch and scobies just look so perfect! and i will always bow down to you as my teacher that fateful day i got my 1st scoby and needed sent me that PDF email and ive been brewing ever since..xoxox

  12. Looks really delicious, especially because of the benefits :) I personally preferred drinking homemade kefir over kombucha for my probiotics, but I'd definitely try to brew my own kombucha tea this time :D speaking of probiotics, here's a good video about it : this video explains some of the facts about probiotics, foods that contain probiotics, and the strains, which made me jump from eating store-yogurt/kefir to homemade ones.

  13. I'm a big fan of probiotics. Been using one from and so far, it has never failed me. Oh, I haven't tried kombuchea tea. But looking at the steps you provided, I think I'll try it this weekend. :)


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