I was so excited when my scoby arrived and was even more excited when I realized how easy it would be to start producing my own kombucha. Kombucha Kamp’s directions are straight forward and are the ones I continue to use today.
Since producing my first batch of kombucha, I have produced hundreds of bottles. The best part is I no longer have to spend $3.99 a day to support my addiction.
Directions as Taken From Kombucha Kamp
- tea kettle or large pot
- 1 gallon glass container (no metal or crystal)
- 3 quarts of purified water (no chlorine)
- 1 cup of sugar
- 4-5 tea bags or 4-5 tsp of loose leaf tea
- 1-2 cups of starter liquid (non-flavored kombucha from previous batch or included with your scoby purchase)
- Scoby (obtain from kombucha making friend or purchase- I bought mine from Kombucha Kamp on the internet and it included the starter liquid)
- Tightly woven cloth and rubber band (no cheese cloth because weave is too loose and fruit flies will get in)
- Heat 4 cups of purified water in tea pot or large pot.
- As water starts to boil, turn off heat and let cool 1-2 minutes, then add to your brewing vessel. Make sure your vessel isn’t too cold to prevent it from cracking.
- Add 4-5 tea bags (green, black or a combo) and steep for 5-10 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags and stir in 1 cup of sugar until dissolved.
- Add 2 cups of purified water, lowering the temperature of the water. It needs to be no warmer than body temperature or it can kill the scoby.
- Add your starter liquid.
- Add scoby.
- Cover container with tightly woven cloth and seal with a rubber band. (I used two layers of coffee filters held with a rubber band.)
- Place container in dark, warm, ventilated area for 7-21 days. Try to disturb as little as possible during this time.
- After 7 days, gently insert straw under the scoby to taste your brew. When it has the right balance of sweet and sour, it is time for bottling. (This is personal preference.)
- With clean hands, remove the scobies and place in clean bowl.
- Pour 2 cups of brew over the scobies to use as starter liquid for next batch. Cover with cloth and set aside for next brew.
- Use clean glass bottles with tight fitting lids. (I reused bottles from store bought kombucha.) Metal lids are not ok.
- If flavoring the brew, put juice, fruit or flowers in the bottles.
- Insert funnel in the bottle and ladle or pour brew into the bottle. Leave some room at top for secondary fermentation.
- Repeat with remaining bottles. Screw on the lids and allow to sit for 1-3 days on the counter, burping the bottles to release carbonation as needed.
- Move bottles to fridge as they reach desired carbonation. Refrigeration halts secondary fermentation from flavoring.
Tips for Success
- Cleanliness is VERY important. Be sure all utensils, hands and vessels have been thoroughly cleaned and rinsed of soap.
- To dechlorinate water, allow to sit out overnight or boil for 10 minutes then allow to cool.
- Kombucha brews best between 72-85 degrees. If below 70, will ferment slower and you run the risk of the scoby growing mold. (If your scoby looks like it has mold, you must throw it away and start over.) If your environment is below 70, you can use a heating pad to maintain adequate temperature.
- Keep out of direct sunlight.
- Your scoby is a living organism. Do not put it in water above 100 degrees or touch it with dirty hands or hands that have been cleaned with anti-bacteria soap.
- Avoid contact between your brew and metal (except stainless steel). It can affect the taste and will weaken the scoby over time.