After years of intrigue and many dollars spent on store-bought bottles, I recently decided to roll up my sleeves and dive into the world of home-brewed kombucha. With the help of a friend (cc: Melissa Cichecki), I can proudly say that last month I brewed my first successful batch of probiotic tea. And honestly? It was rather simple. I don’t know what I was so worried about this whole time, but I wish I had started long ago. So here I am now, ready to preach my booch sermon and convince you all to join me.

We’ll start with why. Brewing fermented tea to then store in your closet for up to a month may make you feel like a crunchy witch-doctor, but according to science, the benefits are worthwhile. Due to its probiotic content, kombucha, along with other fermented food and drinks, can help regulate and maintain gut health, leading to a stronger immune system, better digestion, and improved mental wellbeing. Although kombucha alone won’t fix all of your health concerns, it definitely helps. Afterall, there’s a reason people have been consuming probiotics for centuries now. Plus, with how inexpensive it is to make, there’s no reason not to.

Without further ado, here’s my step by step guide on how to brew your own booch.


Ingredients

4 Tablespoons of Black Tea
8 Cups of Water
6 Tablespoons of brown sugar (or any sugar)
1 SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast— a.k.a. THE MOTHER)
1 Old kombucha (this is what the SCOBY comes submerged in— save it, you’ll need it!)

1st fermentation

  • Brew tea, add sugar. Let it ~cool~.
  • Transfer tea into a large glass vessel. Top with SCOBY and ¾ cup old kombucha.
  • Cover with a tea towel and secure with rubber bands.
  • Store for 7-30 days in a dark area with no air, at about 75 degrees.

2nd fermentation

  • Remove SCOBY along with 1 cup kombucha and store in an airtight glass container. Keep the top for yourself and gift the bottom to a friend!
  • Pour the rest of the kombucha into a new vessel with an airtight top.
  • Add flavor (if any).
  • Stir in 1 tbsp sugar.
  • Store in a dark place for 3-4 days. The kombucha will get hot so periodically let a little gas out to prevent from exploding.
  • Store your kombucha in the refrigerator and enjoy!

Okay, so here’s the funny part. I tried brewing my second batch recently, and as of now, it’s not looking so good. I’m still in first fermentation, and it’s only been 9 days, so it may turn around, but to me, that’s fun of kombucha! It makes you feel like a scientist, experimenting and finding the methods that work best for you. Or maybe I’m wrong and this isn’t as easy as I thought. Who knows! Stay tuned to find out if I become a pro-kombucha brewer or if my talents lie elsewhere.