How to Make Kombucha Tea

kombucha-bottled
Three bottles of grape-flavored kombucha made at home.

I’ve received so many requests about how to make kombucha tea. With a 16-ounce bottle costing $3.50 at Whole Foods, it’s nice to know how to make it at home. It’s not hard at all.

The benefit to drinking kombucha is the probiotics that help your digestive system, and a lot of people just like the taste. It’s hard to describe, but the taste reminds me of dry champagne.

Store-bought kombucha can be too strong for my taste, but when you make it at home, you can adjust it to suit your preference.

Ingredients:
2 quarts water, filtered
4 organic black tea bags
¾ cup white granulated sugar
½ cup kombucha from the last batch
1 SCOBY

Q: What is a SCOBY and where do you get one?

A: SCOBY stands for Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast. It’s what transforms the sweet black tea into kombucha and provides the healthy probiotics. You can receive one from a friend who makes kombucha, you can order one through the mail, or you can grow one from a bottle of store-bought kombucha tea (that’s how I did mine, see directions below).

Directions to Make Kombucha Tea

Be careful to keep everything really clean. I make each batch in a half-gallon canning jar, which produces enough for three 16-oz bottles.

kombucha-tea
Day 1:

  1. Boil a quart of filtered water.
  2. Add 4 tea bags and let steep for 20 minutes.
  3. Stir in ¾ cup of sugar and let cool.
  4. Pour tea into a half-gallon glass canning jar and then fill the jar with cool filtered water.
  5. Add the SCOBY and ½ cup of kombucha from the last batch as a starter. (You can use store-bought kombucha the first time.)
  6. Cover jar with a muslin cloth or paper towel and secure it with a rubber band or the canning jar ring.
  7. Let it sit undisturbed in a dark place for about 5-10 days. The longer it sits, the less sweet it will be. I usually let it sit for 9 full days.

Day 10 (or sooner, if you prefer):

  1. Remove the SCOBY from the jar, and place it on a plate.
  2. Reserve a half cup of kombucha to start the next batch.
  3. Use a funnel and pour the kombucha into bottles or jars with lids. I use glass swing-top bottles with rubber gaskets. (I bought them from a homebrew store that sells equipment for making wine and beer.) A batch this size fills three 16-oz bottles.
  4. Add flavoring if you like. Since we like grape flavor, I add a little less than ¼ cup grape juice to each 16-oz bottle.
  5. Let the bottles sit at room temperature for 5 days. This improves the flavor and adds carbonation. (Make sure your bottles have tight-fitting lids to hold the carbonation.)

Day 15:

  • After waiting 5 days for the bottles to sit on the shelf and improve carbonation, transfer the bottles to the refrigerator. They’re ready to drink!
With this routine, every nine days I start a new batch of kombucha, and each batch takes two weeks to be ready to drink. I use my calendar to help me remember when to start a new batch and when to move the bottles to the fridge.

Q: I avoid refined sugar. Can I use an alternative like honey instead?

A: From what I’ve read, the SCOBY does best with sugar in the most simple form possible. Most of the sugar will be consumed before you drink the kombucha anyway.

Q: I’m not ready to make the next batch. Can I store the SCOBY?

A: Store your SCOBY covered with some kombucha in a jar until you’re ready to start the next batch.

How to Grow a SCOBY

kombucha-scoby

  1. Start with a new 16-ounce bottle of plain store-bought kombucha. A popular brand is GT’s, and it is found at grocery stores such as Whole Foods.
  2. Pour the kombucha into a wide-mouth glass canning jar, and cover the jar with muslin cloth or a paper towel. Let it sit at room temperature.
  3. After about four days, a SCOBY will start to form. Add some sweet black tea to help the SCOBY grow. (Sweet black tea made with a cup of water, one tea bag, and ¼ cup granulated white sugar.)
  4. After about ten more days, the SCOBY should be ready. You probably won’t want to drink any of this starter batch of kombucha (because of the taste), but do save a half cup of it for a new batch.

Q: I’m not sure if my SCOBY looks right. How would I know if it’s contaminated?

A: Try searching Google for photos to compare. If your SCOBY has brown tendrils on it, that’s probably extra yeast, and you can just remove those. If you think your SCOBY has mold on it, be safe and start over.

We liked this homemade kombucha so much that now we make larger batches. When each batch is ready, you can pass along part of your SCOBY to someone else or continue to use it.

That’s the basic kombucha recipe. Try adding different varieties of fruits or juices to vary the flavors!
About Rachel

I write about practical tips that will help you simplify at home. Connect with me on Pinterest and Twitter.

Comments

  1. I love kombucha too, though hubby is not as wild about it. I just posted about it last night, too :).

    Shannon´s last post…Fermented Foods for Beginners: Kombucha

  2. Thank you so much for the info!

    Tara´s last post…For Matt

  3. I use a gallon jar, 8 green tea bags, and a cup of sugar.

    Fill jar with water from the tap. Let sit overnight. Add sugar and teabags. Let sit a few hours. Remove tea bags, add scoby and a bit of kombucha tea, cover with cotton fabric and a rubber band. Let sit for a week, harvest and start over.

    Don’t make it difficult for yourself. It’s really very simple and takes a whole lot less time. Boiling is not necessary and will, in the end, probably not be good for the scoby. It needs outside influences to stay strong, just like humans do. We go through between two and three gallons a week.

    LizzieK8´s last post…If your cooler breaks, knit a hat

    • hello Lizzie, the process sounds easy. If I have no scoby, will one grow with the method you descibed above? using tap water, sugar and green tea bags, and if so….use this scoby for the next batch…..can i drink the first batch?? thanks for your input……Gary in Seattle, Wa

    • sorry to bother you again Lizzie, i am disabled and very difficult to leave my home….question is, can grow my first scoby, from the process you mentioned in your post? thanks so much
      Gary R´s last post…Is a Garage Sale Worth the Effort

  4. This is a greatp post…very informative! I have been wanting to try kombucha but have been intimidated. But now that you’ve shared it seems very doable…thank you!

    Michelle´s last post…Sunday morning quiet time…

  5. Ok, I’ve got a culture in process and a reserve in the fridge! Yippee, this is exciting!
    Question, does it have to be caffeinated black tea? I suppose I could just try it with Herba Mate and see how it goes?

    juliet´s last post…The Great American Bubble Machine

    • Everything I’ve read suggests to not use herbal teas, but use black, green, or white tea instead. I’ve also read that the caffeine content in kombucha is much less than tea.

      • Rachel, love your site….very informative, thanks so much. I have a question, being disabled, its extremely difficult for me to leave my home, is it possible to grow my own scoby, using tea bags, sugar and distilled water, letting the fermenting process take place? thank you so much

        • Hey Gary, I just made my first skoby from a GT after I moved and neglected the skoby’s I had :(

          I found this guy on Youtube and followed his instructions, here’s a link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTs6bJ-O-1Q

          I did boil the water, I may try without boiling once I get started again.

          Actually, I made two skoby’s, so I doubled his recipe. After boiling the water, adding the sugar, and steeping the tea, I split it between two jars to cool overnight.

          Then I poured one full bottle of GT original (plain) kombucha into each jar and covered with a paper towel and secured with a rubber band.

          I set them in a warm dark closet.The second day, I could see the film beginning. Today is day 4 and it is already a couple millimeters thick.

          You can email me at kpkennington@gmail.com if you need any help.

  6. Stephanie says:

    I love the glass bottles! Where did you get them if you don’t mind me asking?!

    • I I found these swingtop (fliptop) glass bottles at a local homebrew store where they sell things for making wine and beer. Here’s the website for it, but other shops might have a better price when it includes shipping.

  7. I am so excited about this! Thank you so much for posting this info! HUGE fan of your site- keep up the fantastic work :)

    xoxo,
    MM

    Mellow Mama´s last post…A slight change in plans..

  8. I flavor mine with ginger. When I bottle it I add a couple of slivers of ginger root. I’ve heard ginger makes it carbonate better, too.

    Alison´s last post…Challenged by Math

    • I kind of left off making my own K-T because it tasted so acrid? Even after just 7 days of brewing. Maybe I need to just start with a whole new batch, if I can locate some plain store bought Kombucha. As I keep using the same scoby and liquid from former batches and I can’t seem to get a nice tasting brew? Maybe I’m seeping my teas too long, sometimes over night, oops maybe? Maybe I should cut back on the sugar content, using about 1 cup/gal? Anyone ever experience this and what did you do to tweek it?

  9. I was going to ask you about this… you beat me to it! I’ve been buying the bottles at the grocery store, and every time I think to myself, “I wonder if I could make my own SCOBY from this?” I guess I can–thanks so much!

    Rachel´s last post…Good Calories, Bad Calories

  10. Vera Pollard says:

    When I grow Scoby do I wait to add sweet black tea on day 4 or do I add right away? My mom used to make that drink all the time when I was growing up and I was so thrilled to discover it on your website!!!
    Thank you!!!

    • I waited until the fourth day after I could see that something was forming, but I don’t know that it matters.

  11. I’ve heard that you should not use a tea that contains extra ingredients to it (like Earl Grey) because it interferes with the SCOBY growth.
    Just an FYI for ya’!
    Getting the items today to make my first batch…mmm…

  12. Thank you so much for the instructions on growing your own SCOBY

    I’ve been wanting to make kombucha for a long time, but haven’t been able to find a SCOBY.

  13. I was wondering, does the tea need to be caffeinated? Also, if I get a cutting of a SCOBY, will I be able to grow a proper one?

    • I use caffeinated black tea. Feel free to experiment.

      A cutting of a SCOBY works fine, and it will eventually grow. It doesn’t matter what size or shape it is.

  14. I am just making my first batch. Last night I put my SCOBY in and it sank to the bottom. This morning it is standing on it’s side still on the bottom. Is this normal?

    • Denise, that’s totally fine. It will float back to the top eventually.

      • My scoby never did float to the top. Throughout the entire 7-day brewing process, it stayed at the bottom. The batch tasted okay, but was not very fizzy. Any suggestions?

  15. Hello-

    So I started my first batch with a test-tube sized gift scoby, in a quart jar. The scoby is still on the bottom (5 days later) and it’s growing a daughter on top, but also it has all this clouded mass attached to it (what looks like a frog egg cocoon) It doesn’t seem to be a scoby starter, but this is my first brew, so I am clueless- I guess I am worried because I left a paper from one of the tea bags on accident-does that change ph or cause a mold?

    Thanks for info!

    • Does it look more like you expected by now? The clouded mass is the forming of a new scoby, and it doesn’t matter if it floats or not. I wouldn’t worry about the tea bag paper.

  16. Can you reuse the scoby?

    • Yes, you can use the original scoby again. It will also form another scoby on top, and you can use that one too.

  17. So it’s day three and I’ve got nothing… Any suggestions? Should I just start another batch?

  18. The above comment is regerring to growing a scoby… I’m on day three of your scoby growing technique…. Sorry, forgot to elaborate!

  19. Hello, I want to begin making batches with flavor. How much
    and what is the best furit juice or real fruit pieces to use and when? Thanks anyone who’s been successful. I really like the GT’s cosmic cranberry but cranberries are so tart.
    Any suggestions appreciated!

    • We like using grape juice for grape flavor. We’ve also tried cherry juice concentrate, but we like the grape better.

      I add the fruit flavor right before bottling it. (See Day 10 Step #4 above.)

  20. Thank you for the easy instructions. I recently started and my sister told me she takes the scoby that she doesn’t want, chops
    it in little pieces and adds it to her plants. It has made them very green and abundant in foliage.

  21. This is the best site for learning how to do this! I had actually experimented and started to make my own Scoby before I found this site, and I am happy to know I did it correctly.

    I’ve made just a few batches and am thrilled at how gorgeous my mushrooms have turned out. This is probably a silly question, but can you eat them? Is it a super food yet to be discovered like blue green algae or bee pollen/propolis/royal jelly?

    My first batch was a bit acidic, very reminiscent of apple cider vinegar. My second batch, even after thirteen days was a bit sweet. Both taste great to me, though I have yet to achieve the effervescent stage. Any suggestions?

    Thank you, Rachel, you are providing such a wonderful service and fabulous information.

    • I don’t think I’ll try eating it, ever, but be my guest.

      I’m glad yours turned out so well!

      The effervescence depends on the bottles you use. The bottles need to be air-tight, otherwise it’s like leaving the cap off a soda bottle and the coke goes flat. So after a few days of sitting at room temperature in closed bottles, it becomes fizzy. At that point you want to refrigerate it so that it won’t continue to build pressure and burst.

      • Does this mean that if my kombucha from the store is not fizzy enough, i can let it sit at room temperature for a little more kick? Or has the process stopped once it is refrigerated?

  22. ElizaDay says:

    Too much sugar in your recipe. I used it, my kombucha smelled like sulfur and it made me sick.

    I did research and sugar should be 1 cup per gallon. (1/4 cup per quart)

    • Too much sugar might make it too sweet, but it doesn’t make it smell like sulfur. Something was clearly wrong with your batch. I would suggest you start over with a new SCOBY.

      Sweetness can be adjusted to personal preference by adding more or less sugar in the beginning or by how many days you wait before bottling.

  23. Hello, I just purchased a bottle of GT’s original kombucha tea last night at Whole Foods with the intent to grow my own SCOBY, but an employee of the store said he has heard numerous people try to grow one and simply cannot because the tea is already fermented. Regardless, I still purchased the bottle and still plan on trying, but what’s your take on this? I mean, obviously your post states that it IS possible, but this guy was so arrogantly confident it would not work, that it got me thinkin… thanks!

    • I did it, and it worked. Did he even try? Probably not. Just try it, add some fresh tea and sugar to help the SCOBY grow like I did, and give it a shot.

    • I did it and it worked! I used GTs Citrus flavor because that was all I had, and I only used half a bottle because I drank the other half and I also put the sweet tea in with the Kombucha all at once instead of waiting a few days. I only used about 3 tablespoons of white sugar for 1 cup of tea and it worked just fine! Got a beautiful SCOBY!

      Renee´s last post…Haekelbeutel!

  24. Question about the starter, what is the purpose of starter if you are using a scoby?
    thanks

  25. I just started trying to grow a scoby last night. It’s pretty warm in the house – should I refrigerate it? I know you have to keep the final product refrigerated, but as its brewing are there temperature concerns?

    • You want the SCOBY to be at room temperature to grow, so don’t refrigerate it unless you are trying to keep it dormant. The refrigeration slows down the fermenting process in the kombucha as well.

  26. Where do I get the kombucha if I don’t have “kombucha from last batch”? I’ve never made it before so there has never been a last batch.

  27. Im going to try and make some today, by the way, I know GT who makes the stuff they sell in stores and Ive been drinking his since he started making it at home for himself and its the very best out there. I just wish I got a discount on the stuff just for knowing him :(

  28. how much grape juice do you add?

  29. over mother’s day i visited my daughter in houston and she gave me a scopy. it survived the plane trip home and a week before i started the batch. i just bottled my tea today (after 13 days) and had the first taste…it did taste like dry champange. i used the swing top bottles you suggested, and flavored 6 bottles with grape, pomegranate cranberry, and mango flavors…i left 3 bottles alone ~ the flavor was just too good! i used a gallon of distilled water, 1 1/2 cups organic sugar, 3 green tea bags, 3 black tea bags. my question is this: even though i strained the tea, there are one or two bottles that have a small quantity of yeast floating. should i strain that again?

  30. Thanks for the great instructions. I have successfully grown my scoby and am ready to start brewing my tea. Does it matter if the container I am planning to brew in is much wider than the scoby? Would it take longer to brew than if I used a narrower container?

    • Judy Roberts says:

      I’ve wondered the same. I just bottled some from a bottle with a relatively narrower neck than what I was using. It brewed just fine, though the SCOBY kinda puffed up in the middle.

    • no…the SCOBY will grow to fit the container…in fact, you can cut a piece of the SCOBY and put in a jar and it will grow to fit the jar. i use a 3 gallon jar with a 12 inch opening for my tea. the SCOBY puts on a new layer every week, which you can use to start a new batch. the SCOBY will grow to fit the dimensions of the jar you use. you can discard the bottom layer every so often as the SCOBY grows. this will usually have a lot of yeast attached and is beneficial for compost. i would use the top layer to start a new batch, but that’s just me. the bottom layer has all the good stuff.

  31. Judy Roberts says:

    I’ve been putting a stick of cinnamon in each bottle when I bottle the tea. It makes it taste like apple cider. Delicious!

  32. Thank you so much for these instructions! I have 2 bottles of GTs Kombucha left and there is no more to be found in the entire city of Houston as far as I can tell, so I am going to try your method for making my own SCOBY. Say a little prayer to the Kombucha Gods for me that it works. THANK YOU AGAIN!

    • i can help you with that…my daughter lives in tomball ~ if you really want a SCOBY, she can help you. i got mine from her on mother’s day, and i have the best kombucha batch ever.

  33. hamedah says:

    I am living in Singapore. I have been asking aroud about the kombucha tea but failed.

    I need to make one myself but the problem is i dont have the kombucha itself.

    What i know is that i need the scoby to start making the tea. We dont have store in singapore that sell the scoby or the kombucha.

    I want to grow the scoby myself. Can you help me with this.

    Where can i get 1?

    Thanks Hamedah

    • you can buy a SCOBY online. they live for weeks in baggies, and it shouldn’t be a problem to get one shipped. let me know if you want one.

  34. Alexandria says:

    Hello,

    I am a newbie at Kombucha. I just started a batch and it also fell to the bottom. I have a few questions:

    1) Do you think my fell to the bottom because my tea wasn’t at room temperature? (I left it for five hours, but I woke up at 130 in the morning to add it…so I could have been sleepy and didn’t notice it was still warm)

    2) How do I test to see if my scoby is working? How do I check to see if bubbles are forming? Should I taste it before the 12 days?

    3) When I recieved my scoby in the mail, it seemed there were two in the ziploc. I add both along with the tea…does this sound ok?

    Thanks,
    My k-tea is like a child…I just want it to succeed!

    • i’m a newbie too…in any event, you will succeed. my SCOBY fell to the bottom in my first batch too. it will float to the top after time. don’t put the SCOBY in warm tea. it should always be at room temp. that being said, it doesn’t die easily, and can take a hit. warm temps can bring mold however, so always check for that. if mold invades the batch, you will have to discard everything. here’s the good news…you can bottle your tea after 9 days. yes, do a taste test. mine always tastes like dry champagne (my recipe is listed above). bottle your tea after 9 days, and leave the bottles sitting on the shelf for 5 more days before putting them in the fridge (this adds those wonderful bubbles ~sometimes, my swingtop bottles overflow like popping a bottle of bubbly when i open them after 5 days). you can always drink the tea during this time, but it tastes better cold. after a couple of months of turning the tea over, you will have the most wonderful home brew champangne ~ sometimes it takes a while to disintegrate the vinegar smell. a lot of stores are pulling the kombucha tea from the shelves due to the alcohol content which in insane because it’s not much different from the organic apple cider vinegar that i used to start my batch.
      SCOBYs can still be found online… let me know if you want one.

  35. Hi i was wondering can i use roasted brown rice green tea to make a batch? i have a scoby ready but this is the only tea i have in the house.
    Do u think the brown rice will mess it up?

    • that just sounds bad to me (i wouldn’t waste a SCOBY to try it), but let me know if it works…this stuff is so resilient that it’s hard to mess it up

  36. Just to add my 2 cents about creating your own scoby from scratch. I THOUGHT I remembered how someone did it on a site so I basically made up a batch of tea with sugar how I would normally make it (I used to make it a couple years ago and stopped so I remember this process but someone gave me a scoby then and I now I didn’t have one). I then poured in a bottle of original kombucha and waited for it to grow a scoby. Umm… it grew little green fuzzy things instead. lol. Then I decided to try growing one in a bottle of berry flavored GTs that I had already drank about 4/5 from… it grew a perfect fat little scoby in about a week. I am ready to try my new batch of KT again! So excited!

    • BTW – I didn’t add any tea or sugar while that little scoby from my GTs was growing. I just put the bottle uncovered on the counter, put double paper towel over it and secured it with a rubber band. I checked it every few days to make sure there was no mold and once the scoby started growing it got fat pretty quickly… all by itself with nothing added.

  37. Hi,

    I started my first batch w/a Kombucha culture that was in a ziplock w/not much starter in it (maybe a tablespoon). I brewed the tea, added sugar, let cool and added it to my culture. Covered the top w/a papertowel and put in the closet. This is day 6 and the kombucha has remained sunk to the bottom and a layer of mold formed on top of the tea. I was able to scrap it out in one filmy spoonful but there were several spots of mold on it. Should I take the SCOBY out, soak in vinegar, and start over? Or see what happens in the next few days? Any advice would be appreciated.

    • i hope you discarded this! start over with a new SCOBY. next time, boil the distilled water and sugar until it’s disolved…then add the tea bags. cover and let cool. pour into your glass jar and place the SCOBY on top. don’t mess around with anything that has mold on it.

  38. I just bottled my first batch today. I have followed all the directions on this page and it was text book. I did the gallon ice tea jar with 8 japanese green tea bags and 1 cup sugar. I sampled before I bottled and it seemed a bit too sweet. Will it ferment further in the bottles and lose some of the sweetness? I made my next batch with a little less sugar so hope it comes out alright. For the woman who lives in Singapore I live in Guam and could possibly send you a scoby if you still need it. I may be around your area in a month or so if you still need it.

  39. Michael A. says:

    Thought I’d help start out the new year with the answer to “where to get a scoby”?
    Just by a stroke of luck, i was making scobies before i even thought of making kombucha.
    Where from you ask?
    Last year fall i decided to juice some apples and sweet potatoes for cider vinegar. Well during the incubation time in the cellar at 50 degrees and pitch black, i ended up with over 250 scobies from 50 quarts of vinegar. There you go folks. It was free( i live on a farm) and organic. Couldn’t get better than that.
    Have a happy and healthy life ya all.

  40. Is SCOBY the same as Kombucha “Mushroom”?
    Breckenridge´s last post…More Breckenridge Investment Property

    • Michael A. says:

      Yes Breckenridge, they are the same.
      Note. Error. Before putting the vinegar in the celler, it was left out to warm up for seven days in my kitchen. Its was all trial and error. But theres the basics. Later my friends.

  41. I moved last year and neglected my kombu all this time. Ewwwww its kinda funky in there, but I think I can save it. What I’m wondering is if I have to use the old liquid as my starter. I would really love to just wash my kombu slightly then try to start fresh? Is this possible? Also looks like some fruit flies got in there at some point……. Is it all going to be alright? Desperately missing my Kombucha!

  42. You guys are gonna freak on me…lol. I made 1 gallon with 10 green tea bags, 1 oz. GT trilogy and 16 oz. GT ginger berry, and here’s where you’ll freak….4 cups of pure can juice sugar and 1 cup organic brown sugar….today is day 2 of dark closet seclusion on a heating pad…..the entire top is coated with the beginning stage of the scoby already…..maybe tomorrow I’ll be ready to bottle! lol, just kidding on that last bit.

  43. Tina Spencer says:

    A few years ago, I made Kombucha tea. I got a small culture in the mail and added it to water. I never used the scoby, found out it does grow from the life cultur. Iloved it, but I didn’t make it with tea. I like the plain, original Kombucha It’s been long enough ago I don’t remember. I got a bottle of raw Kombucha, original flavor at the Health Food Store. I put about half a bottle in 2 quarts of water. I can’t remember if I used sugar. Do you have to have sugar to make it work? I did put a 1/4 cup of organic surgar in this batch. It’s been 4 dats and I do see a hazy substance in the liquid. Am I doing okay? And do I need sugar? Thank you,

    Tina Spencer

  44. I did this whole process. The finished product exceded my expectations! My dad thought it tasted just like a GT drink! Thank you so much for posting it. Grape flavor rocks!

  45. Hi There,
    Thank you for your informative site. I purchased some bottles to start a second batch and to refrigerate my already incubating batch. All three of these bottles have have a liquid dispenser at the bottom (i hope that makes sense). My concern is that with these dispensers that are made out of plastic out,I have heard that due to the levels of acidity that it can corrode the plastic nozzles over time?

    Do you have any feedback or advice about this?

    Thanks so much,
    Ayanna

  46. Just to double check- I make sure the lids are on tight (the swing top bottles) at room temperature for 5 days and then transfer to the fridge until… how long will it last in the fridge? Will it burst in the fridge for any reason?
    Joy Price´s last post…A Prayer Request

  47. also, how much kombucha can you drink in one day? Does it make a difference if it is a child or a pregnant woman (both in our home)?
    Joy Price´s last post…A Prayer Request

  48. You have no idea how thankful I am for you. I was drinking two GT’s a day (not recommended – yea yea). I decided to take on making my own and chose your method first. I have to admit that the process turned me off so much that I begun disliking even the store bought brands. I could detect every ingredient and started thinking about the process – ugh – I thought ” Wow I ruined a good thing” … but I kept up with the brewing because I had ordered so much organic black tea, 6 huge mason jars and 24 flip top bottles (obviously very confident with my abilities) – even when it came time to bottle it for the 5 day rest period without the Scoby (to build carbonation and smooth flavor) I HEAVILY disliked the taste. This evening, before the final step of throwing them into the fridge to cool, I poured it over ice and …….. OH MY GOSH …… I AM SO SO SO SO HAPPY. I never thought I would ever say this, but my kombucha is better! Better than anyone I’ve ever tasted before. I love it. Thank you so much. Thank you thank you thank you.

  49. Also, I am not sure how everyone is having trouble with the effervescent effect. I felt like P Daddy in a nightclub when I opened mine. It overflowed into my glass and I had to wait for the “head” to go down. I flavored mine with 1/2 cup cran raspberry juice, grated ginger, and a squeeze of lemon….
    Rosemary McElroy´s last post…how to make kombucha

  50. Jeanne Kimball says:

    I am looking at getting 1/2 gallon jars with the swing lids and rubber gaskets to store my ready to drink k-tea in. Do I need to burp the lids to keep the jar from wanting to exploud from the carbination?

  51. I’ve made Kombucha several times and then hadn’t for several months. I’ve successfully made a few scobys over the last month, but in making my kombucha, I don’t know what’s going on. I’ve made green tea, added the sugar (One thing is that I’m using an organic non-bleached sugar- does that make a difference?) put it in a jar once it’s cooled and added the scoby. What’s happening is that I get white foam on the top and then a new scoby-esque thing is formed, but it’s not smooth. It looks like there’s bubbles on it, but the “bubbles” are white (and look like normal.) It smells ok, just a bit sweet and there’s no mold. I haven’t had this issue in the past, so I don’t know what the deal is. Any thoughts? I really appreciate it.

  52. Hi! I’m trying to grow my first SCOBY from a bottle of unflavored GT’s. On day 4 I added the sweet tea (at room temp). That was Thursday (6/16) evening. Now it’s Saturday, and it looks like not much is happening. The SCOBY looks slightly larger, but it’s at the bottom of the jar. I was wondering how large it should be after these 10 days, and should it start floating?

    Thanks!

  53. I have made kombucha a couple times in the past, mostly all successes. I have never added the second quart of cool water at the end. What does this do? Will it just dilute the tea? Make it go farther? I am letting my tea/sugar mixture cool right now. Should I be doubling the liquid with water?

    Thanks!

  54. I placed my scoby in a tea that was still a little warm. Will it be ok?

  55. I followed your instructions and have started drinking my first batch….it is delicious! I used pomegranate juice to finish it and a slice of ginger. Thank you so much for the information….
    I do have a question…..Does the caffeine in the tea remain or does it get processed away?

  56. Rubie Sukie says:

    my mother isnt floating on the top is that bad please help first timer here

  57. Scott Anderson says:

    So how do you add in the flavors? I just picked a ton of black, huckle, and blueberries. Gingerberry is my favorite and what I would be going for.

  58. I’m in Subang Jaya, Malaysia, and I’ve been to a handful of organic shop for Scoby. Guess what. None of them have heard of Scoby or Kombucha tea. Can anyone provide me with step-to-step instruction of how to grow my own Scoby? I started drinking kombucha tea after being introduced by a friend in 2003 but have stopped it, now after a lapse of 7 years, I wish to start drinking it again.

    I’ve watched it on youtube video but the `starter yeast’ is not available in Malaysia. Please help me. I love it.

    Cheers.
    Steven