One of our favorite healthy summer treats is kombucha tea.
If you’re not familiar with the tea, it sounds a little strange. Kombucha is a fermented tea, originally prepared in China. It has a bitter, tart flavor that tastes a bit strange at first, but we started to love it after a few tries.
We like kombucha because it is much healthier than regular iced tea and is an easy probiotic to add to our diets. Kombucha is prepper friendly because it can be made at room temperature. If you’re ever in an emergency situation, Kombucha can keep you healthy and provide a tasty treat at the same time!
This is how we make ours:
How to Brew Kombucha Tea
- Black tea (can be made with other teas, but black responds better for some reason)
- Granulated sugar (we have made it with pure cane sugar, white sugar, raw sugar, and Turbinado sugar)
- Kombucha SCOBY (available on Amazon and in many health food stores)
- 3 quarts of filtered water
- Gallon-sized glass container with a wide mouth
- Rubber band
- Coffee filter or cheesecloth
- Boil your water in a large pot on the stove.
- Add 8 regular-sized tea bags to the mixture (3-4 family-sized bags). Brew the tea for about 10 minutes.
- Add about 1 cup of sugar to the tea while it is still hot. Mix until dissolved.
- Allow the tea to cool to room temperature (extremely important- this can take just about all day).
- Dump your SCOBY into the jar along with the starter tea liquid (or you can use about ½ a quart from a previous batch of tea).
- Cover the top of the jar with a coffee filter or cheesecloth. Use the rubber band to keep bugs from getting inside the jar.
- Place the jar on the counter for about 10 days. You can start checking the mixture at about 7 days. The mixture should be a bit bubbly and tart. Do not use the tea brew if it has any mold spores on it. Toss it and the SCOBY out if you see mold and try again with a new SCOBY.
- Take out about 1 cup of the tea and use it as a home for the SCOBY until you brew your next batch of tea. You can keep it in the fridge. It will keep more or less indefinitely.
- If you want extra bubbles, transfer the mixture into some swing-top bottles (usually sold near beer-making supplies) leaving about ½ an inch of headroom in the bottle. Leave these out on the counter for another 2-7 days before drinking and they will be quite bubbly.
- Once the tea has the flavor and bubble level you like, serve over ice and enjoy!
Learn more: 3 Delicious Loose Tea Recipes
Before second fermenting, add about 14 ounces of root beer extract (or another powerful flavor like ginger) to your gallon of kombucha tea. Place in individual swing-top bottles and ferment on the counter without the SCOBY for about 7 days. This will make the soda quite fizzy.
Learn more: Is The Water You Drink Clean?
Add about 3 cups of fruit juice to a gallon jar. Pour the brewed kombucha over the fruit juice before storing in the fridge. This will give it a fruitier taste and cover up some of the bitter flavor.
Have you made kombucha? What is your favorite recipe?