Kombucha is renowned for its outstanding health benefits, including its probiotic-rich digestive support and its ability to give your immune system a boost. The drink can be mixed and flavored with any of your favorite blends without compromising the health benefits that you can gain and can be safely consumed between 1 and 3 times per day according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Given all of its benefits and support, it’s not a surprise to know that many tea drinkers want to know how to safely make kombucha at home. Below, we outline some key points that you should consider before making kombucha at home, and offer a safe process to follow to enjoy delicious, nutritious, home-brewed kombucha.
Is kombucha dangerous to make at home?
So long as you follow a safe process and work with clean materials, kombucha is not considered to be risky to make at home. The concern comes from using dirty or “old” materials, improper storage, and other manufacturing mistakes that can leave you open to overgrowth and other issues. Kombucha is a living probiotic drink, which is why a process must be followed to both preserve the health benefits and the safety of the drink.
What are the health benefits of kombucha?
Beyond its digestive and motility support, kombucha offers a healthy boost of B vitamins which can support your neurological function and mental health. This, coupled with its naturally occurring probiotics, can be a great support for those who struggle with anxiety and other related mental health issues. It also offers support against the following:
- Heart Disease
- Type 2 Diabetes
This is largely due to the high dose of antioxidants and vitamins that you can enjoy with every sip — working overtime to enhance your health naturally.
How to make kombucha at home
You can make kombucha at home safely. Kombucha is a fermented drink, requiring very little care past the original investment of time and cost at the start of the process. Below, we outline how you can enjoy a moderately-sized batch of kombucha at home, and everything that you’ll need to get started.
Ingredients and Materials:
- Tea towels
- 2 cups of plain, unpasteurized kombucha
- 13 cups of water
- 2 cups of cane or coconut sugar
- 2 tablespoons of loose-leaf black tea
Before you continue, you’re likely wondering where to find SCOBY. SCOBY is actually an acronym that stands for Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast, which will be the key to creating your kombucha. We recommend sourcing this from a reputable source to ensure that it is properly and safely balanced. There are specialty stores online, or you can sometimes find them through local vendors and farms. Be vigilant when sourcing this part of your recipe, as picking a poor quality SCOBY could make you sick.
Homemade kombucha recipe
Mix your black tea, water, and sugar into a medium-large pot over high heat. You’ll want to stir continuously until the tea is fully steeped, and the sugar is fully dissolved. After this, remove from heat and cool completely, so you don’t compromise the bacterial colonies in your SCOBY.
Once cooled, add into your pitcher, and mix in your unpasteurized kombucha until dispersed. Add your SCOBY, and cover with a tea towel. You can also choose to add a rubber band around the tea towel so it won’t slide off in transit.
Move to a dark corner of your kitchen, and let sit for 1-2 weeks. Expect to see carbonization, and opaque, sudsy-looking film form. That’s indicative of proper fermentation. Your SCOBY will likely grow as well. After 2 weeks, and if you see the bubbles and signs listed above, you will have the proper base for your kombucha.
Although the recipe above is technically “kombucha,” it’s really designed to help grow your SCOBY puck for future use. For now, you’ll use this kombucha to make your first large batch of kombucha, which will result in a more carbonated and pure first fermentation.
To create your next batch, simply follow these steps and use your homemade SCOBY-growth kombucha drink in place of the unpasteurized kombucha that’s store-bought. Your next batch will be deliciously carbonated and can be sweetened with your favorite sweetener, or boosted with just a squeeze of lemon. You can even use it as a fun champagne mixer for special occasions!