Yes, I know this looks scary.

My friend Erin gave me a kombucha scoby a few weeks back and I’ve been brewing at home ever since. It is so much fun!  I’m giving another friend some of the scoby tomorrow, so thought I might as well share the steps here, exactly as Erin taught me:

– Big glass jar like this one
– Cheesecloth or loose cloth to cover jar
– Tea bags (organic)
– Sugar
– Scoby

– Boil 1.5 gallons of filtered water
– Add 1.5 cups of sugar
– Add 4-5 tea bags and steep for 30 minutes. (Tip: Liptons Tea is organic. Another tip: you can tie the little strings on the tea bags together so it’s easier to pull them out at the end.)
– Now put lid on the pot, and let the sugar tea reach room temperature. This can take about 6 hours or so.
– Pour your sugar tea into your big glass jar with the kombucha starter. (“Starter” is a few ounces of bacteria laden liquid).
– Put the scoby on top. (“Scoby” is the mass of gooey bacteria, so called “mother.”)
– Now cover with a cheesecloth and secure with a rubber band. You can also use a light dish towel. The idea is that you want the liquid to be able to “breathe” but you don’t want bacteria to get in.
– Let brew for as little as 8 days, but no more than 14 days.
– After the 8 days, remove the brewed kombucha and store in the fridge. Be sure to keep 1/2 inch of liquid in your big glass jar to act as the starter for the next batch.
– Repeat!

I add a splash of tart cherry juice when I pour a glass, which adds a pretty color and flavor. Another tip – you can use different types of tea to bring in new flavors, like green tea, black tea, etc.

Kombucha is a living, probiotic-rich drink with a fizzy taste. In addition to taking probiotic supplements to keep my gut flora flourishing, I also like to include probiotic rich food & drink like kombucha, sauerkraut and kimchi in my diet.

If you love kombucha like I do and don’t love spending $4 on a bottle at Whole Foods, then I highly recommend brewing your own!