How to Make Kombucha
Adapted from Fermented By Jill Ciciarelli
  • 11 black tea bags
  • 1½ gallons water
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 1½ cups starter tea
  • 1-2 SCOBY (I used 2 small SCOBY's)
  1. Pour all but 2 cups of the water into a 1-1/2 - 2 gallon jar or glass vessel. Heat the 2 cups of the water you didn't add to a light boil then add the tea bags and let steep for 4 minutes then remove the teabags and squeeze out excess water. While the tea is still hot pour in sugar and dissolve completely then allow the tea to cool completely.
  2. Once the tea is completely cool and room temperature pour the tea into the glass vessel along with the rest of the water. Add the SCOBY then the starter tea.
  3. Cover the vessel with a dish towel or coffee filters and secure it with butcher string or rubber bands. (This is super important and will keep flies and other foreign objects out of your brew.)
  4. Place your vessel in a well ventilated, warm, dry room that is not dark because light encourages the SCOBY to eat the sugar. I left mine on the counter in my kitchen.
  5. Allow your kombucha ferment there undisturbed for at least 10 days and check for taste, depending on how sweet you like it. The longer you ferment the less sweet it will become and the less sugar it will have. I let mine ferment for a total of 21 days.
  6. Once you have done that your Kombucha is done but optionally you can bottle it for a second ferment to make it even more fizzy and delicious, this is also where you can add flavors. If you want to add flavors simply add some fruit additions such as strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, or raspberries along with some other additions such as ginger, lemon/lime juice, herbs. The sky is the limit for flavors so be spontaneous. Add the fruit or flavorings to flip top bottles then pour over the Kombucha and fill it up just about 1½ inches from the top and close the tops and let it sit on the counter for 4-5 more days. Refrigerate the bottles until cold then open and enjoy!
Notes about the sugar: For those of you who don't know what this is and are freaking out about the sugar; don't worry because the SCOBY eats the sugar and your fermented drink should have about 1-3 grams of sugar per 100 ml. Also while you can use coconut sugar I do not recommend it as it can cause a sloppy or slow ferment because it's harder for the SCOBY to digest, if you want a smooth and easy ferment your best bet is organic evaporated cane sugar.
Note about starter tea:Starter tea is any leftover Kombucha from a previous ferment or an unflavored Kombucha bought from the store. I used GT's Enlightened Original Kombucha.
Flavor ideas: I did about 4 different flavors. Blackberry, Ginger, and Thyme. Blueberry Rosemary Lemon. Strawberry. Blackberry, raspberry, strawberry, lemon, ginger. Lastly Raspberry, lime, ginger.
Recipe by Slim Palate at