Sunday, January 12, 2014

Our Super Easy New Kombucha Set Up - Jar with spigot and ez cap bottles

I bottled up our first kombucha with our new system. I wanted to share it with you because it is super easy now!

We chose to make kombucha at home (last April) because we enjoyed kombucha but didn’t want to spend the money. Kombucha is also a fermented food and is good for your gut with enzymes in it. (It’s not alcohol.) So it’s a fun fizzy beverage we can make at home without a co2 tank and it has the benefits of enzymes.

(You can read more about our kombucha in this post.)

Okay, so here’s the cool new set up and how it works:

This is a giant 2 gallon glass jar with a plastic spigot (plastic is important). You'll have your SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) and the starter kombucha tea (from previous batch) in the jar when you start. Make 2 gallons of strong brewed black tea in another vessel (8 tea bags per gallon filtered/distilled water - we steep for 20 minutes) and after you remove the tea bags, mix in 2-3 cups sugar when hot (1-1.5 cups per gallon). Allow the tea to cool to room temperature and then add to the kombucha jar.

Now let it sit for about 9 or 10 days until the sugar has been eaten off by the SCOBY. The sugar feeds the scoby, so it shouldn't taste too sweet by the end, but you can adjust the sweetness by deciding how long you want to let it ferment. 

Our full jar of kombucha ready to bottle

This is what our SCOBY looks like from the top. Pretty! (But they aren't always pretty. Mold isn't very common, but if you have a question, google it and look at some pictures like this link.)

Get your bottles ready. Make sure they are clean. These bottles go through the dishwasher without their caps, so I have to put them back on each time I want to bottle kombucha (I love these ez cap bottles). The two on the right were put on correctly, the one on the left is mocking me because I put it on wrong. If it's smiling at you while you are putting it on, it's mocking you.

That one on the left is smiling because it tricked me. I put it on wrong.
I didn't have a better place, so I store the caps in my garlic holder.

Now bring the kombucha jar to the edge of the counter and fill the bottles:

Now comes the second fermentation. The kombucha is already a little fizzy, and you could leave it like that, but we like to let it ferment a little longer in the capped bottles (2-3 days) so that it gets a little more carbonation! When you've let it sit out for 2-3 days, transfer them to the refrigerator to stop the fermentation and so that you have nice, cold kombucha!

Next, brew some more sweet tea and add it back into the kombucha jar so that it can start making for the next batch! But if you don't have time, the nice thing is that you can let the scoby sit with some kombucha for an indefinite amount of time. So mine is still sitting like this until I brew some more tea tonight:

About the equipment:

The jar! I got this large jar for the size and spout. I wanted to make more at once and be able to bottle the kombucha without having to remove or handle the scoby – this makes fewer chances of contamination!
The spout is higher up on the jar, but that’s okay because you want some of the previous batch to start the next one. So the scoby and a good amount of starter stay in the bottom.
Also, the spout is plastic – and that’s a good thing in this case. You don’t want ANY metal in contact with kombucha. This is an anchor hocking jar that says it’s bpa free.

The bottles! I love these bottles because they are a pretty big size – but not so big that repeated opening and closing would cause all the carbonation to be lost by the bottom of the bottle. I like fizzy kombucha.

And the starter/scoby. We made this with just a bottle of kombucha from the store that had some sediment in the bottom. Check out how we started that here.

Buy a SCOBY? You can buy one on amazon here. Or you could buy one from Cultures For Health which also has lots of other great info on kobucha and other fermented foods.

More Kombucha links:
Apartment Therapy Kobucha - These are the original directions I used!

I've shared at:

From The Farm Blog Hop

and Linked on the Barn Hop at The Prairie Homestead:

Disclosure: Michelle Brown is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

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