one thing that has totally taken off in the health-world over the past few months has been Kombucha!
it’s actually surpassed the ‘health-world’ and people who are beginning to dip their toes into the pools of healthy living are even drinking it!
you can not only find it in specialty health stores now, but in most of your grocery stores and convenience stores.
and it’s wonderful!
Kombucha has actually been around for over 2,000 years, and is known in ancient Chinese culture as the “Immortal Health Elixir”, in which it has rich anecdotal history of health benefits like preventing and fighting cancer, arthritis, and other degenerative diseases.
ya’ll know i love drinking and eating anything that has to do with being PROACTIVE with your health, and improving it as it currently is! this stuff.. takes it all up a notch!
so in order to brew Kombucha you would need a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast… a whaaaat? a SCOBY, aka: the “mother” because of its ability to reproduce, or “mushroom”.
Kombucha, as I mentioned above, is JAM PACKED with health benefits. just like i share with all my other drinks i make, i want to make sure you understand why you’re drinking something and what it’s doing to help improve that hot ‘bod you’ve got going on!
So, what are the health benefits of Kombucha Tea?
detoxification: i’m a huge promoter in any detoxifer because detoxification alone produces healthy livers and aids cancer prevention. and one of kombucha’s greatest health benefits is its ability to detox the body. it is filled with so many of the enzymes and bacterial acids your body produces and/or uses to detox your system, in turn reducing your pancreatic load and easing the burden on your liver. since Kombucha is very high in Glucaric acid, it’s a double win because the acid has shown to help prevent all types of cancers.
join care: Kombucha contains glucosamines, which my husband actually takes a pill for regularly, as it’s a strong preventive and treatment for all forms of join pain, muscle aches and arthritis. a little bit about glucosamines is they increase synovial hyaluronic acid production (say that 10 times fast), and since hyaluronic acid functions physiologically to aid preservation of cartilage structure and prevents arthritic pain, it in turn enables connective tissue to bind moisture thousands of times its weight and maintains tissue structure, moisture, lubrication and flexibility and lessens free radical damage, which ALSO is associated with reducing wrinkles!! HELLLLO… if you’re not convinced on Kombucha yet…. that one better have caught your attention.
aids digestion and gut health: so… at this point…. i think i’ve shared it more than enough the fact that i deal with chornic constipation and have major digestive issues. BUT since i began drinking my Apple Cider Vinegar and Lemon Juice every single morning, followed by a glass of Kombucha, i have been (knock on wood) smooth sailin’! because it’s naturally fermented with a LIVING colony of bacteria and yeast, Kombucha is a probiotic beverage. and this stomach loves anything that has to do with probiotics… ya feel?! this then in turn has a myriad of benefits such as improved digestion, fighting candida (harmful yeast) overgrowth, mental clarity, and mood stability. It’s also been noted for reducing or eliminating the symptoms of fibromyalgia, depression and anxiety. so it’s pretty much a jar filled with HAPPINESS and HEALTH! if you don’t get my point by now!
immune boosting: Kombucha is also anti-oxidant rich, and if you don’t know how beneficial antioxidants are for boosting your immune system and energy levels thennnnn you might want to get out from under that rock.
so now that i gave you the TAYLOR-RANT on why you should be drinking this good-bacterial, live-cultured, drink…
let’s get down to BUSINESS shall we?!
i remember years back my (now) sister-in-law’s mother would brew this stuff like it was her job, and i always thought it looked well… weird..
because if you haven’t seen the process on how it’s made or what a SCOBY looks like, then you’re in for a real treat!
it’s like a big blog of a booger.
or a big slab of goop.
either way, there’s no pretty way to put it. but the fact that you know that thing its going to create a delicious-goodness for your ‘bod, you’ll soon fall in love with the squishy disk!
so for about 5-6 months i was spending like $4 a bottle (yikes!) on Kombucha, probbbbbably 7 times a week. both my husband and i were drinking them.. so you can do the math.
all those $4 bottles kept adding up, until about 3 months ago i waved my white flag and gave up! i hopped on line, did my research on HOW to BREW MY OWN KOMBUCHA!
i compared companies, resources, tips, tricks, etc.
i finally pulled the trigger and bought a Scoby from Kombucha Kamp
and no they’re not sponsoring this post… i am truly telling you the company i personally saught out myself and in turn want to take away any headache and searching on your end!
my little box, which made a jiggling sound, arrived at my doorstep about 4-5 days later.
I WAS SO EXCITED!!!
if you follow me on Snapchat (TayloredFitness) you may remember this day vividly.
because i was jumping up and down like Santa Claus delivered me a puppy!
waving an air-sealed baggie filled with the MOTHER!
i had previously went to Wegman’s the day before and got a jar, but then later knew i needed more and ended up getting 3 of THESE jars
so filled with excitement and the eager-beaver that i am, i began the process… with fingers crossed and a hopeful heart!
…and in the end 3 weeks later, it turned out to be a total SUCCESS!
and now i own a brewing company in my home.
but really, i have like 4 batches brewing currently now and my husband insists i get a refrigerator to put all the soon-to-be filled bottles in when it’s done brewing.
THAT’S how easy it is to make you guys!
it can seem scary, and you’re afraid buying your first Scoby is a waste of money if it doesn’t turn out.
but trust me Kombucha Kamp is the way to go and their Scobys truly are the BEST!
so remember how i said the store bought Kombucha is like $4 a bottle?
well 1 Scoby is $25 and makes the equivalent of 5 bottles.
ok so $5 a bottle Taylor?! how is that a deal?!
BECAUSE IT’S THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING!
your Scoby (unless in a rare case it goes ‘bad’) will produce and produce more and more batches for LIFE!
because it’s literally a live ‘creature’ it never dies. so with that ONE Scoby you invest $25 in… will make you endless bottles of Kombucha!
you can do the math… but after 2-3 batches your Scoby and done and paid for itself and you don’t need to keep forking up $4 a bottle at your grocery store.
COUNT ME IN!
anywho…. are YOU ready to begin Brewing YOUR own Kombucha?!
again, i give my scouts honor it’s easier and will be more successful then you are thinking.
How to Brew Kombucha Tea
1 Scoby (again, I highly recommend Kombucha Kamp)
1 Gallon GLASS Jar
2 cups Sugar (yes it must big classic ‘ol white sugar… no worries.. you don’t end up drinking the stuff, the Scoby soaks it ALL up and you only get the tea itself)
4 Black Tea bags or Green Tea Bags (with Kombucha Kamp, they actually send you Tea with your Scoby to first start out with!! But then you’ll need more as you brew more batches. **You’ll find I did Green Tea for my first batch, but with my previous batches I’ve found Black Tea to produce a much stronger flavor! Yum!)
1 piece of 100% cotton (like an old T-Shirt), 3 coffee filters OR a sheet of cheese cloth
2 rubber bands
2 cups Boiling hot water
4 cups room temperature water
5 Glass Bottles (16 oz)
optional: Fresh Ginger
Making Your Kombucha
Step 1: Place your 4 tea bags into your glass 1 gallon jar (cutting off the strings if you want), then bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Pour in your boiling water and allow tea to steep in the jar for 5-6 minutes. Then remove your tea bags.
Step 2: Add 4 cups room temperature (not cold not hot) water to your jar then quickly pour in your 2 cups of sugar, then immediately stirring until all sugar is dissolved, usually about 1-2 minutes.
Step 3: Cut open your bag that has the Scoby in it, careful the liquid doesn’t pour out, because they do a good job at Kombucha Kamp to make sure that thing is filled with starter liquid and your Scoby! Then carefully pour in the starter liquid, followed by your Scoby. Which is the fun part, because it flops right on it!
take your spoon and sort of flatten out your scoby so it’s floating along the top.
Step 4: Take your piece of breathable cloth, that’s why i mentioned above a t-shirt, which i did, or you can triple up on coffee filters or cheesecloth, either way, you want it to be big enough that it fully covers the mouth of your jar but is still breathable for that live Scoby, and cover it over your jar. Take your rubber-bands and securely tighten it around the mouth of your jar, making sure there’s no holes.
Step 5: Tell your Scoby you love it and you’re so excited for it to produce delicious Kombucha!! This part is obviously necessary ya’ll!
Step 6: Find a well ventilated, but dark place that it won’t get disturbed. Like the wayyyy back of your pantry or in a cupboard or closet. I put mine in a cubby-hole style bookshelf that holds all my tea pots, so it’s exposed but dark and still ventilated and won’t ever be disturbed because it’s on a shelf!
now is the waiting game!! it’s now up to that floppy Mother in your jar-of-love to work her magic! it takes at minimum of 14 days (some people do it for 7, but i like my kombucha to be strong), so make sure you mark on your calendar what day you put it in it’s little spot so then 14 days later you can check on it.
after your 14 days, go take a peak at it. don’t be alarmed at all the odd looking things floating around or spots that look like ‘mold’, because those are all GOOD things!! you know your Kombucha is ready to be bottled when there’s strings hanging from the Scoby and your Scoby is floating to the top and if you look around the top of the water-line there’s a sort of film or ‘mold’ – that’s again, all good! time to bottle!!
Bottling your Kombucha:
Step 1: Get out a glass bowl, big enough for the Scoby. Take your cloth and rubber band off the top and set aside, don’t toss out because you will use it again for your next batch.
Step 2: With a metal spoon, carefully remove your Scoby and any excess pieces/layers that may have peeled off the Scoby. This is all normal! Then stick it in your glass bowl, and then with your spoon, scoop out some of the Kombucha itself and put it in the bowl with it, that way you have some starter liquid for your next batch! the gift that does indeed keep on giving!
Step 3: Line up all your GLASS bottles, glass is KEY, because Kombucha will do allllll sortsa funky stuff if you use plastic. A plastic lid on the glass jar is absolutely fine, but the jar itself needs to be glass. Knowing i was going to begin brewing my own, i had been collecting all the glass jars i previously bought Kombucha in.
Step 4: Get out a funnel, that it’s spout will fit right down into your glass jar and begin to carefully pour your Kombucha right into it. Being careful not to spill any of that precious liquid, of course!
you’ll be able to fill up 5 jars (if you use the size i have).
The next part is the fun part, you get to FLAVOR your Kombucha!! you can think of allll sorts of combos, like Lavender and Mint, or Lemon, whatever types you’ve bought just stick those ingredients right in there with your Kombucha!!
I personally LOVE LOVE LOVE anything ginger and it’s my favorite Kombucha, store bought, to drink so that’s the one i’ve been brewing and have 100% success with. I get a couple knuckles of Ginger at the grocery store, then grate it until it’s a fine texture, then literally plop the grated ginger right into each jar of Kombucha.
Tighten your lid on each and then stick in the fridge. If you do flavor it, which you can just drink it unflavored, allow it to sit in the refrigerator for about 2 days so it really absorbs the added things you put in.
Step 5: Now you’ve got your bowl with your Scoby chillin’ in it and your stater liquid. Next step?! do it all again!! Go back through my above steps on how to make it and then at the end simply pour your liquid you saved into the gallon glass jar then plop your Scoby in and say, cya in 14 days!!
I now own 4 Scoby’s total, and 2 of the batches will be done in a few days and the other 2 next week. I’ll be branching out with 3 of them with doing other flavors besides Ginger. I’m going to do a green one by adding Spirulina and Chlorella and then not sure about the other 2 yet – we shall see!!
Let me know if you end up brewing your own batch and your success with it! It truly is a game-changer and FRIENDLY on that wallet! adios to ridiculous amounts of money spent on something you can make right at home, with your own love and you enjoy it more because you know what went into making it!
Cheers to healthy living!