Want to know what the best ingredients would be to make kombucha on your kitchen counter? ..look no further.
When I started out with brewing kombucha I needed a sweet and short description of ingredients that would be Kombucha safe but yet give me some wiggling space to safely experiment with flavour and character of my Kombucha. I also didn’t want to do anything to harm my ferment and here is an understandable breakdown that’ll be sure to get you moving in the right direction.
Aside from your Kombucha Mother / SCOBY and starter liquid, you’d only need three ingredients to make kombucha and all three of these components influence the taste and character of your finished brew. The key is to keep the bacteria and yeast in a good balance because if you don’t you’ll end up with inconsistent brews that may be low in carbonation and it may result in a thin or translucent SCOBY and worst case no SCOBY at all. The SCOBY is a reflection of the good bacteria and when your SCOBY grows nicely you know those guys are happy, which will make your gut happy too.
Let’s have a closer look at the three ingredients:
Traditionally kombucha is made with the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant and any tea that’s made from this plant would be safe to use. Teas made from this plant would be your ordinary Black, Pu-erh, Green, Oolong or white tea. I’ve found that Pu-erh tea makes a wonderfully bold tasting kombucha but if you are worried about the caffeine content you might like green tea better. The SCOBYs also do well on green tea.
Some brewers have made Kombucha with Rooibos tea for years successfully. If your SCOBY is used to tea from the Camellia Sinensis plant and you want to make Rooibos Kombucha, I suggest adding at least one Green tea bag/ 1 tablespoon loose tea to the brew.
I’ve seen that the tea can also change the color of the SCOBY, Green tea makes a whiter SCOBY and Rooibos SCOBYs tend to have a reddish tinge to them.
Rather NOT use flavoured or herbal teas as these teas may have oils that can be harmful to the Yeast Bacteria Balance of your brew, read more about teas to avoid over here.
I am sure you already know that the sugar is for fueling the SCOBY and serves as an energy source to break down the nutrients and other components in the tea which in turn contributes to the health benefits Kombucha has to offer.
The longer you let your kombucha ferment the less sugar will be present in your brew and you can even go as far as testing the sugar content with a hydrometer.
Kombucha likes the sugar to be light in colour because the darker the sugar the higher the mineral content. High Mineral content means that the microorganisms must work so much harder to get to the glucose they use as an energy source.
White Sugar would be your best choice. White organic sugar would be wonderful but I have to mention that many brewers brew with ordinary table sugar successfully.
Your kombucha would be happiest in water that’s free from harmful chemicals and additives. Enhanced water like ionized or mineral-rich water wouldn’t be a good choice and can harm the culture. Spring water is a good choice and it would be good to make sure that your water is fluoride free if you are using previously boiled and cooled tap water. The boiling and cooling gets rid of the chlorine because it’s designed to kill microorganisms and will kill your culture.
Click here to see how to make Kombucha in 3 Easy Steps!
Now, That’s the low down on the ingredients used when brewing kombucha, later on, we can go much more in depth and detail but let’s first get your first batch of kombucha brewing, I can’t wait to hear from you or see pictures of your first batch of kombucha brewed successfully!