Nutrition, Recipes

Kombucha Adventures, Part 2 Flavouring

January 30, 2017

This article is long overdue. After a little shy of 10 months of making my own kombucha, here is the supplement to the original. I am going to share, the good, bad, and messy parts of making your own flavours.

After the initial fermentation process of 7-30 days, pour about 3/4 of the brew into a separate air-tight container at room temperature. Put them in the fridge to once you are happy with the taste to stop it from fermenting further.

Tips for flavouring

  • When using fresh juices: Use 12-25% juice and the rest kombucha
  • When using fresh, frozen, or dried fruit use 20-30% fruit depending on how sweet the fruit is, and fill the rest with kombucha.
  • If flavoring with herbs, the variety and strength of herbs varies greatly. Experiment to come up with the best ratios and combinations for your taste preferences.
  • For flavor extracts such as almond or vanilla extract, start with 1/4 teaspoon extract per cup of kombucha and adjust to taste. Remember the flavor will continue to develop during the second fermentation period.

Tips for Bottling your Kombucha and achieving the sought after Effervescence:

1. Bottle F1 (Fermentation 1) when there’s a nice balance of sweetness and acidity. It takes approximately 1-2 weeks to build up a nice amount of carbonation. Experiment with different types of teas (except Early Grey, Chai)  for  F1. I found the best combination was green and black tea. The reason not to use Earl Grey and other flavoured teas is because of the bergamot oil. I would stick to the simpler teas and add the more complex flavours in F2.

2. Bottle into one plastic bottle at the same time you fill your glass bottles. This is an excellent tip from Kombucha Brooklyn for a controlled f2 which will serve as a model help you to know when a good amount of CO2 has built up, based on your environment (temperature) and the unique qualities of your brew. Your plastic bottle will tell you there’s carbonation when it’s very tight, and thus clearly pressurized. So, when you know your plastic bottle has carbonation, your glass bottles will too. This will possibly help avoid the explosion of kombucha in your home.

3. Leave 1″ of headroom in your bottle.  It will oxidize your brew, and make it more likely that bacteria are still active, thus creating more acids, potentially contributing off-flavors.

4. Search for good bottles.  Use flip-top bottles, Ball mason jars, or the amber beer bottles. Any glass bottle that can keep your kombucha air tight. plastic.

5. Add raisins or a 1/2 teaspoon of sugar. Remember sugar is what sparks yeast the most, and the yeast are responsible for the bubbles. You can use a 1/2 teaspoon of plain white sugar per 12oz bottle, and that’s what many beers do to create carbonation.

6. Use a teacloth. When opening your f2, don’t shake the bottle. Just like anything bubbly, shaking it will cause a massive pop with your kombucha-causing it going everywhere. And if you are successful for achieving the much sought after carbonation, it will rise to the top so make sure you are near a sink with a teacloth over the lid, and open with care over a deep container ready to catch the kombucha that escapes!

My Favourite Recipes:

apple cinnanomLemon-lime Kombucha

  • Ingredients
    • Zest one of lemon and lime
    • Juice of half of lemon and lime and juice
    • 1/2 teaspoon of raw cane sugar
    • 8 raisins
    • Fill the rest with F1 kombucha


  • Ingredients
    • 20-30% pineapples
    • 2 sprigs of mint leaves slices up
    • 8-12 raisins
    • Fill rest of bottle with kombucha

Strawberry Basil

  • Ingredients
    • 20-30% strawberries
    • 6 basil leaves
    • 8-12 raisins
    • Fill rest of bottle with kombucha

Raspberry Mint

  • Ingredients
    • 20-30% raspberries
    • 2 sprigs of mint
    • 8-12 raisins
    • Fill rest of bottle with kombucha

Apple Cinnamon

  • Ingredients
    • 20-30% sweet apples
    • 2 sticks of cinnamon( less if you are making less than 2 L)
    • 8-12 raisins
    • 1/2 teaspoon of coconut cane sugar
    • Fill rest of bottle with kombucha

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