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How to Make Bubbly Fruit Flavored Kombucha

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There’s nothing better than bubbly fruit flavored kombucha. For those of you who don’t want to spend the money to buy it, you can make it.

A couple of years ago, a friend of mine was in a bad car wreck. He actually broke the steering wheel off with his chest. He was in the hospital and completely miserable on a gazillion pain killers and medications. His wife, Paula, who is a good friend of mine, told me about what a hard a time he was having. I suggested she go buy some kombucha and bring it to him. It made him feel so much better that he went off all his pain killers and came home and started making kombucha himself. I had just learned how to make the fruit flavored kombucha and taught him how to make it. He makes the best fruit flavored kombucha I have ever had and he makes gallons of it each week. Kombucha is a powerful detoxifier. It is loaded with B vitamins so it will lift your mood and just makes you feel great.

I just can’t say enough about it.

Carrot juice is great in kombucha

How to Make Your Bubbly Fruit Flavored Kombucha.

To make sure your kombucha is bubbly, you’ll need to make sure your kombucha is not too sour or overly vinegary tasting. It needs to eat the sugars to make the carbonation – if all the sugar is gone, it will have nothing to eat to make the natural carbonation. It is best to make your batch when your kombucha is just a tiny bit sweet and not overly sour. To see more info, refer to this blog. https://www.culturedfoodlife.com/my-kombuchas-not-bubbly/

You will need:

  • Kombucha that’s already been brewed and ready to drink.
  • Fruit juice of your liking: cherry, grape, blueberry pomegranate, lemon, pineapple, etc.  You can add pieces of fruit (strawberries, blueberries, etc.) in addition to, or instead of, fruit juice.  Even orange peel is delicious and gives it more fizz.
  • Plastic funnel.
  • Bottles suitable for brewing. I use 16-ounce bottles, but you can use different sizes if you’d like. If you are using glass bottles you must beware because there might be flaws in the glass. You need bottles made for brewing like the ones on my store site or old beer bottles work, too. You can use old GTs Synergy bottles, but my favorite are the clamp down bottles by Grolsch. (These are beer bottles). You can also find bottles at home brew stores . Bottles that have clamp down lids are safer and are thicker glass for brewing, and the ones I most recommend.
Second ferment your kombucha with fruit

Instructions:

  1. Add 1 to 2 ounces of fruit juice to clean sterilized bottles. Use a plastic funnel (not a metal one). I use a digital scale to measure the juice I put in, but you can also use a measuring cup.
  2. Add kombucha, about 14 ounces of kombucha for a 16 ounce bottle. You can strain the kombucha through a coffee filter and it will help it not form another kombucha baby on top of your bottle, but straining is not necessary.
  3. Cap the bottle shut. Leave a little room in the bottle. I usually fill it to the neck of the bottle
  4. Label your bottles so you know when it started its second ferment.
  5. Let your kombucha sit in a dark place for 1 to 3 weeks. Check after each week to see if your kombucha bottles are bubbly. If not, let it ferment longer. Then place your bottles in the fridge to enjoy. Be careful when opening bottles and check often to make sure there is not too much pressure

Always use a non metallic funnel

Old Gts Synergy bottles work great!

108 Responses to "How to Make Bubbly Fruit Flavored Kombucha"
  1. Hi Donna,

    I am all the way over in Australia too, I see you have other followers from here!!! I brewed my first batch of Kombucha and am now on the second ferment, I have ordered bottles but they haven’t arricpved so I put it in jars, now they have a film covering them, what do you think it is? Should I drink it or just skim it off.

    Thank you so much.

  2. I am trying to make purchases to begin continuous brew Kombucha. I think I have selected everything but the spigot on my brewing container. It comes with plastic, but I noticed that you have what looks to be a stainless steel spigot on your kombucha brewing containers…I have found stainless steel spigots, but wondered if you had one in particular that you like to use, or might recommend. Thanks!

  3. Making my second batch of kombucha…love it! When you second ferment with fruit do you use the same kind of juice as the fruit? Is it OK to use orange peel and orange juice or is that too much citrus? I have psoriasis on feet and hands after reading your blog about magnesium I have started using Celtic Sea Salt in all my cooking and in my kefir. Is it safe to put some in my bath water (about how much)? Thanks for all your helpful info to all of us.

  4. Where to you get lids for the GT Kombucha bottles if you are reusing?
    Or how long can you use the ones that come on the bottles?

  5. Donna, got a couple of more questions: if stored in a bottle with a flip top, do they need to be refridgerated, if not, how long outside of fridgeration can they store. Also, how much in one day can be consumed to be considered safe. Thanks again….so many questions, lol. Karen

  6. Hi, I have recently made my first batch of Kombucha tea and want to begin to add fruit flavors. My question is: I have my Kombucha in 1 quart glass canning jars, will these jars suffice for brewing my fruit flavored Kombucha? If not, where would be a cheap place to get bottles? Thanks for your help. Karen

  7. Donna,

    Thank you for all the time you have put into your website to educate us. I am so thankful for the available information that you offer. In your post, you say to second ferment (2F) the kombucha for 1-3 “weeks” in a dark place. Did you mean to say 1-3 “days”? I have been doing a lot of reading and research about kombucha and your website is the only one that recommends this length if time for a 2F. Will this length of time that you suggest cause the bottles to break? Thank you again for all your help.

    • It just depends on how cold your kitchen is and how sweet your kombucha is. Just check it and open the bottles to see if they are bubbly but it can take a long time if the temps are colder.

  8. I’m interested to know why you specify using only a plastic funnel to fill jars for secondary ferments. What would be the problem with using a stainless steel funnel?

  9. Could you use a food grade white BPA free 5 gallon bucket to make the Kombucha? I know plastic is not recommended but if it is food grade change anything? I could add a plastic spigot? Thank you!

  10. I have been making and using Kefir (in smoothies) for about 12 days now to try and help digestive problems. I THINK it’s helping but I am having a lot of heartburn/indigestion etc. I am hoping this is just my body getting used to Kefir. I know everyone is different but can someone give me an idea as to how long this could continue if it is caused by Kefir. Thank you

      • Thank you for replying.
        I have been off wheat for 2 years and other grains for a year and have been vegetarian for over 30 years. I have still been having digestive problems (2 IgG tests have not shown a problem with dairy), mainly indigestion, heartburn, sore stomach (under ribs) so having bought your book on Cultured foods I thought I would try Kefir. I think it’s working OK although I don’t seem to be generating a lot of it. My kitchen is only around 20 degrees C (68 F) so I wonder if that might be why. My smoothie usually includes banana, avocado, ground seeds, cinnamon, milk and yogurt as well as around a cup of Kefir.
        Sorry this is a bit long!

          • I ordered live grains but they took longer to come by post than they should have – 3 days instead of 1. I followed the instructions and I think they are working – I have enough to start again every day with just a small amount left in the ‘milk’ which tastes slightly ‘yeasty’ and not at all like fresh milk. Perhaps I should add that the majority of the food I buy is organic as is the milk.

            • I just read this comment from June and wanted to make sure she has had an Hpylori breath test. I had similar pain and dealt with it in a similar way as she. My problems all ended when I got diagnosed and treated for Hpylori infection and began healing myself with cultured foods.

  11. Donna,

    After making kombucha and then doing the second ferment, I’m not ready to brew another batch. You say that you can leave the scoby in the 1c starter tea on the counter for up to a month. When doing the first brew we use a cloth to cover the jar. Would that be true when letting the scoby sit for up to a month…just a cloth? Or should it have a lid on it? It’s rather warm here in Melbourne Australia this week (40C and above the next several days!) so I am wondering about evaporation from the starter tea if I just have a cloth on it.

    BTW my first batch turned out well…even though I only used 1/2 cup starter tea…you were right in saying to just give it a bit longer…it worked! Thx!

    Beth

  12. Hi. I have not made Kombucha for at least a year…my babies are in the fridge in their liquid from last year when I stopped making it. Are they still good? Should I just toss them and start over?

  13. WHere did you get those lovely colored clamp top bottles in your post. They are beautiful but I can’t find them anywhere.
    Thanks

  14. How do you sterilize your glass jars? Just curious and wondering whether or not it is necessary.

  15. Hi Donna,

    I looking at buying the kombucha scoby but saw that I will need some previously brewed kombucha as well. Will I need to order one of the kits or is there another way. Also do you use the continuing brewer for your kombucha or just brew it in the jars? I saw the crock sitting on your counter on your video.

    There is just my husband and me in our house and at this point our friends think we (me actually) are a few brain cells short, so I’m not sure what I need to get so that I’m not drowning in kombucha.

    Thanks,
    Lynne

    • If you order a scoby you get the starter liquid with it. So no you don’t need to order both. I use a crock to make my kombucha in and you can also do it in a big glass jug. The continuous brewer is sure nice but not necessary. It’s hard to drown in kombucha people usually love it and can’t seem to make enough.
      No worries all my friends thought I had lost my mind but it wasn’t long till they were all doing it and the skeptics are doing the most. Makes me smile!

  16. How long should i second ferment my kombucha if i use crystalized or fresh ginger, fresh fruit, or fruit juice?

  17. When I second ferment I check a bottle to make sure the fizz is there then I put the bottles in the refrigerator. When I open a bottle that has been in the refrigerator it has no fizz anymore. I can set it on the counter and it gets some fizz back. I cannot figure out what is wrong.

  18. Hi Donna,
    If I want to stick to the original flavour but I want it to be more fizzy, do i leave it out of the fridge after bottling to accomplish that? If so, how many days? Or will it become fizzy in the fridge after how many days? Thanks and more power to you.

    • In order to make it more fizzy as the original flavor you need to bottle it before it gets sour and is just slightly sweet cap it and let it sit out for a few days. Its the sugars that the yeast est that make it bubbly.

  19. Thanks for sharing, your testimonial is very touching. Is there and advantage of kefir over kombucha?

  20. I’ve never done a second ferment. If you use real fruit or pieces of ginger, does it need to be strained out after the second ferment? Will it get moldy if left in the bottle? Thanks!

  21. I am making my first batch of Kombucha. It has been 4 weeks since I started it. After about a week and a half , I realized that my house is probably too cool so I set it on a heating pad. It is finally starting to form a scoby on top which is a thin layer that can be pushed aside easily. The kombucha tastes good-a little sweet but not too much and not vinegary. It has been 4 weeks now and I think it tastes like it is done. Is it finished even though the new scoby is not as thick as the original? Thanks,
    Patty

      • The caffine is reduced to only a small amount in the final product but you can pre “decaffinate” your tea by placing it in water that has been brought to a boil and “flushing” the caffine out by leaving it in for 30 seconds before adding the bags to the water you will be using for the kombucha. This takes out a majority of it and the rest will be drawn out during the fermentation process. I have read that this does make it take a little longer to ferment. I have also read that there is something in tea that works with the remainder of the caffine allowing a calming engery not a shakey one. I am very caffine sencitive and can have no caffine after noon or else……. I have not had any issues with drinking kombucha unless I was downing it and then, truthfully, it is more of a light buzz.

  22. I’ve loved reading this blog. I’ve been making Kombucha for about a year now–but never tried a flavored second ferment. I really like it just the way it is—but I do want to try this idea. I’ll have to get some bottles. Thanks to everyone for your comments. They’ve motivated me!

  23. I have been making kombucha for a few months now, but have not had a second scoby formed that would completely seal off the top. It is just a thin slime on top. What does that mean? does it need to sit longer until an actual scoby forms?

  24. I tend to have VERY carbonated second ferments – to the point that I put a bowl under the bottle, a towel over the bottle and open the bottle outside….nervously. 🙂 I always have soo much that flows over and I don’t like loosing out on what gets sopped up in the towel. Would burping the bottles help? Should I skip the sitting on the counter stage and move it straight to the fridge?

  25. HI Donna! Since you make so much of this fruit flavored kombucha, would you consider doing a list of what juices you use and what the flavor is like after the 2nd ferment is complete? The fermenting process seems to really change the flavor – not necessarily in a bad way, but sometimes it does not taste how you would expect at all……

  26. I’ve been experiencing some frustrating results with my second fermentation. i’ve left it on the counter in a capped bottle for a week. Wanting to see if it was adequately second fermented I put one bottle that had some nice bubbles in the fridge to chill. After chilling and opening, it had no carbonation. The chilling somehow dissolved the bubbles that were in the bottle. I went ahead and opened up one of the same bottles that had no bubbles at room temp and it was excellently carbonated. Is this something that is normal? The chilling releases the bubbles? How am I supposed to know if it is carbonated when it doesn’t look bubbly until I open the seal? Any advice?

    • Chilling can make it less bubbly, but you can let it ferment a little longer on your counter and it will become more carbonated. You can also open the bottles to check the carbonation. I’ve left my out for a several weeks to get the carbonation I wanted.

      • I’ve was told to do the second fermentation by putting your bottles in a dark place – burp daily – I also do my second one in plastic jugs and you can tell by the tightness how carbonated it is getting – no explosions here. It only takes mine about 2-3 days for medium carbonation then I strain and put it in 1/2 gallon jars in the frig. We drink ours within 3 or 4 days and don’t have an issue losing carbination.

  27. Am 2nd fermenting my kombucha for the first time… Hoping the cranberry juice will help it get fizzy. My Initial tries at making kombucha have yielded sweet, sour, and one good batch, but no fizz… I cover my Initial batches with a piece of linen… Does this let the CO2 escape, resulting in no fizz?

    Will be able to taste test the 2nd ferment kombucha in a few days…

    • When you make your first batch of kombucha the mushroom seals the jar trapping the co2. The longer you let it sit the less bubbly it is. If you get it right as it is done. Not to sour or to sweet then it is more bubbly.

  28. I use old wine bottles to second ferment. I place them in an old cooler so in case there would be a cork pop out or a bottle explode it would be contained. I also have tried using some honey for a second ferment for too sour booch with some fruit. On cranberries, cut them in half or else the booch can’t penetrate the outer skin… they are bouncin berries after all!

  29. I am brewing my first batch of kombucha and would like to flavor it once it has fermented. is it as simple as putting the juice and/or fruit (frozen) pieces in the bottle, pouring in the kombucha and letting it sit? I am using old synergy bottles. Should I cap them for the 2nd ferment or place a cloth over them? Also, should i put them in the cupboard for the 2nd Ferment and transfer to the fridge after or can they be placed straight into the fridge? Thanks so much!

  30. I heard a rumor that if a tiny piece of scoby goes down the drain it will replicate and ruin a septic system. Any truth or wisdom to Share?

      • Oh my God, if this is true, I’m lost because I left scape some of my small Scooby down the drain, I heard it will clean the drain, now which is true, anyway so far nothing happen to my drain

        • If you find the answer to this question, Please let us know. My husband would NOT be a happy camper if this happens. Thanks.

  31. I had a grolsch bottle while brewing water kefir blow up on me – glass shards over two rooms of my house.

    • You have to be very careful with water kefir and only ferment for a short amount of time. I don’t make water kefir with water crystals and and only use kefir whey to make sodas. Did you use fruit juice did you dilute it and how long did you ferment it for? I hope no one was hurt?

  32. we will be out of town for a few weeks this summer. what should i do w/ my kombucha / scobys. i’m not worried about my bottled second ferments – but i don’t want to loose my active “batches” that will be waiting to be bottled as soon as we get back.

    Thanks again for all your advice

    • You can make a fresh batch of tea and let it culture. It will turn to vinegar, but you can still use this for a starter for your next batch when you get home.

  33. i harvested my last batch too soon and it was still very sweet, and not bubbly at all. Can I save it by second fermenting it?

  34. hi Donna! I Definitely need to 2nd ferment my last batch of kombucha… it taste WAY too sour! I’ve never done this before… I have almost 3 liters of kombucha that I strained last Friday, and it is in the fridge. Can I still 2nd ferment this? and if it is possible, can I add some pineapple chunks, a bit of juice and ginger, put it in a half gallon wine jug with an airlock?
    –Sue–

    • It is best to not let your kombucha get to sour if you want to second ferment. It needs the sugars to eat and create co2. If it is to sour add extra juice to second ferment with about 4 ounces instead of two. This way it has something to consume that will make it bubbly.

  35. Its just another scoby. You can strain it through a coffee filter and it will reduce you getting a scoby but it is something that just happens with kombucha.

  36. I have tried this, but didn’t have any luck– what I had read said to refrigerate for second ferment. This makes more sense, but do you need to “burp” the bottles while they are fermenting the second time? I’m REALLY afraid of an exploding bottle, especially with a little one in the house. I have a batch of kombucha that is ready to harvest any day now, so I’m excited to try this!

  37. I was watching a video on thehealthyhomeeconomist.com and she said you should never store or ferment kombucha in anything but clear glass because it has cleansing acids and draws anything toxic out of whatever receptacle it’s in which is why it’s so good for us because it Pulls toxins out of us but also will Pull toxins from plastic, metal and colored glass. I’m wondering of The green grolsch bottles are ok because of that? I will ask her as well and tell You what she says, but what are your thoughts please? 🙂

    • It does pull out plastic and heavy metals and toxins. I do not know the answer to your question about the green groshlen bottles. It would depend upon how they are made. I will have to check into that. Most of my bottles are clear but I have used them in the past. I will have to look into it.

      • Donna. I wouldn’t worry about the colored glass because its not colored, its part of the glass itself. When they make this glass bottle the silica is the same as in clear bottles. Chromium and manganese is used to get the dark green bottles. They found Manganese purple glass in Egyptian Tombs. When combined in the glass making process these ions are inert and their bond is extremely strong.

  38. Donna,

    Instead of fruit juice, have you ever tried using pieces of fruit like grapes, or ginger bits or small cranberries in the bottle to do the scond ferment? I am brand new to kombucha making and need some guidance.

    Am borderline diabetic and concerned about sugar from fruit juice versus the fruit. Does that matter?

    Thanks!! 🙂

If you like this, then please share!
108 Responses to "How to Make Bubbly Fruit Flavored Kombucha"
  1. Hi Donna,

    I am all the way over in Australia too, I see you have other followers from here!!! I brewed my first batch of Kombucha and am now on the second ferment, I have ordered bottles but they haven’t arricpved so I put it in jars, now they have a film covering them, what do you think it is? Should I drink it or just skim it off.

    Thank you so much.

  2. I am trying to make purchases to begin continuous brew Kombucha. I think I have selected everything but the spigot on my brewing container. It comes with plastic, but I noticed that you have what looks to be a stainless steel spigot on your kombucha brewing containers…I have found stainless steel spigots, but wondered if you had one in particular that you like to use, or might recommend. Thanks!

  3. Making my second batch of kombucha…love it! When you second ferment with fruit do you use the same kind of juice as the fruit? Is it OK to use orange peel and orange juice or is that too much citrus? I have psoriasis on feet and hands after reading your blog about magnesium I have started using Celtic Sea Salt in all my cooking and in my kefir. Is it safe to put some in my bath water (about how much)? Thanks for all your helpful info to all of us.

  4. Where to you get lids for the GT Kombucha bottles if you are reusing?
    Or how long can you use the ones that come on the bottles?

  5. Donna, got a couple of more questions: if stored in a bottle with a flip top, do they need to be refridgerated, if not, how long outside of fridgeration can they store. Also, how much in one day can be consumed to be considered safe. Thanks again….so many questions, lol. Karen

  6. Hi, I have recently made my first batch of Kombucha tea and want to begin to add fruit flavors. My question is: I have my Kombucha in 1 quart glass canning jars, will these jars suffice for brewing my fruit flavored Kombucha? If not, where would be a cheap place to get bottles? Thanks for your help. Karen

  7. Donna,

    Thank you for all the time you have put into your website to educate us. I am so thankful for the available information that you offer. In your post, you say to second ferment (2F) the kombucha for 1-3 “weeks” in a dark place. Did you mean to say 1-3 “days”? I have been doing a lot of reading and research about kombucha and your website is the only one that recommends this length if time for a 2F. Will this length of time that you suggest cause the bottles to break? Thank you again for all your help.

    • It just depends on how cold your kitchen is and how sweet your kombucha is. Just check it and open the bottles to see if they are bubbly but it can take a long time if the temps are colder.

  8. I’m interested to know why you specify using only a plastic funnel to fill jars for secondary ferments. What would be the problem with using a stainless steel funnel?

  9. Could you use a food grade white BPA free 5 gallon bucket to make the Kombucha? I know plastic is not recommended but if it is food grade change anything? I could add a plastic spigot? Thank you!

  10. I have been making and using Kefir (in smoothies) for about 12 days now to try and help digestive problems. I THINK it’s helping but I am having a lot of heartburn/indigestion etc. I am hoping this is just my body getting used to Kefir. I know everyone is different but can someone give me an idea as to how long this could continue if it is caused by Kefir. Thank you

      • Thank you for replying.
        I have been off wheat for 2 years and other grains for a year and have been vegetarian for over 30 years. I have still been having digestive problems (2 IgG tests have not shown a problem with dairy), mainly indigestion, heartburn, sore stomach (under ribs) so having bought your book on Cultured foods I thought I would try Kefir. I think it’s working OK although I don’t seem to be generating a lot of it. My kitchen is only around 20 degrees C (68 F) so I wonder if that might be why. My smoothie usually includes banana, avocado, ground seeds, cinnamon, milk and yogurt as well as around a cup of Kefir.
        Sorry this is a bit long!

          • I ordered live grains but they took longer to come by post than they should have – 3 days instead of 1. I followed the instructions and I think they are working – I have enough to start again every day with just a small amount left in the ‘milk’ which tastes slightly ‘yeasty’ and not at all like fresh milk. Perhaps I should add that the majority of the food I buy is organic as is the milk.

            • I just read this comment from June and wanted to make sure she has had an Hpylori breath test. I had similar pain and dealt with it in a similar way as she. My problems all ended when I got diagnosed and treated for Hpylori infection and began healing myself with cultured foods.

  11. Donna,

    After making kombucha and then doing the second ferment, I’m not ready to brew another batch. You say that you can leave the scoby in the 1c starter tea on the counter for up to a month. When doing the first brew we use a cloth to cover the jar. Would that be true when letting the scoby sit for up to a month…just a cloth? Or should it have a lid on it? It’s rather warm here in Melbourne Australia this week (40C and above the next several days!) so I am wondering about evaporation from the starter tea if I just have a cloth on it.

    BTW my first batch turned out well…even though I only used 1/2 cup starter tea…you were right in saying to just give it a bit longer…it worked! Thx!

    Beth

  12. Hi. I have not made Kombucha for at least a year…my babies are in the fridge in their liquid from last year when I stopped making it. Are they still good? Should I just toss them and start over?

  13. WHere did you get those lovely colored clamp top bottles in your post. They are beautiful but I can’t find them anywhere.
    Thanks

  14. How do you sterilize your glass jars? Just curious and wondering whether or not it is necessary.

  15. Hi Donna,

    I looking at buying the kombucha scoby but saw that I will need some previously brewed kombucha as well. Will I need to order one of the kits or is there another way. Also do you use the continuing brewer for your kombucha or just brew it in the jars? I saw the crock sitting on your counter on your video.

    There is just my husband and me in our house and at this point our friends think we (me actually) are a few brain cells short, so I’m not sure what I need to get so that I’m not drowning in kombucha.

    Thanks,
    Lynne

    • If you order a scoby you get the starter liquid with it. So no you don’t need to order both. I use a crock to make my kombucha in and you can also do it in a big glass jug. The continuous brewer is sure nice but not necessary. It’s hard to drown in kombucha people usually love it and can’t seem to make enough.
      No worries all my friends thought I had lost my mind but it wasn’t long till they were all doing it and the skeptics are doing the most. Makes me smile!

  16. How long should i second ferment my kombucha if i use crystalized or fresh ginger, fresh fruit, or fruit juice?

  17. When I second ferment I check a bottle to make sure the fizz is there then I put the bottles in the refrigerator. When I open a bottle that has been in the refrigerator it has no fizz anymore. I can set it on the counter and it gets some fizz back. I cannot figure out what is wrong.

  18. Hi Donna,
    If I want to stick to the original flavour but I want it to be more fizzy, do i leave it out of the fridge after bottling to accomplish that? If so, how many days? Or will it become fizzy in the fridge after how many days? Thanks and more power to you.

    • In order to make it more fizzy as the original flavor you need to bottle it before it gets sour and is just slightly sweet cap it and let it sit out for a few days. Its the sugars that the yeast est that make it bubbly.

  19. Thanks for sharing, your testimonial is very touching. Is there and advantage of kefir over kombucha?

  20. I’ve never done a second ferment. If you use real fruit or pieces of ginger, does it need to be strained out after the second ferment? Will it get moldy if left in the bottle? Thanks!

  21. I am making my first batch of Kombucha. It has been 4 weeks since I started it. After about a week and a half , I realized that my house is probably too cool so I set it on a heating pad. It is finally starting to form a scoby on top which is a thin layer that can be pushed aside easily. The kombucha tastes good-a little sweet but not too much and not vinegary. It has been 4 weeks now and I think it tastes like it is done. Is it finished even though the new scoby is not as thick as the original? Thanks,
    Patty

      • The caffine is reduced to only a small amount in the final product but you can pre “decaffinate” your tea by placing it in water that has been brought to a boil and “flushing” the caffine out by leaving it in for 30 seconds before adding the bags to the water you will be using for the kombucha. This takes out a majority of it and the rest will be drawn out during the fermentation process. I have read that this does make it take a little longer to ferment. I have also read that there is something in tea that works with the remainder of the caffine allowing a calming engery not a shakey one. I am very caffine sencitive and can have no caffine after noon or else……. I have not had any issues with drinking kombucha unless I was downing it and then, truthfully, it is more of a light buzz.

  22. I’ve loved reading this blog. I’ve been making Kombucha for about a year now–but never tried a flavored second ferment. I really like it just the way it is—but I do want to try this idea. I’ll have to get some bottles. Thanks to everyone for your comments. They’ve motivated me!

  23. I have been making kombucha for a few months now, but have not had a second scoby formed that would completely seal off the top. It is just a thin slime on top. What does that mean? does it need to sit longer until an actual scoby forms?

  24. I tend to have VERY carbonated second ferments – to the point that I put a bowl under the bottle, a towel over the bottle and open the bottle outside….nervously. 🙂 I always have soo much that flows over and I don’t like loosing out on what gets sopped up in the towel. Would burping the bottles help? Should I skip the sitting on the counter stage and move it straight to the fridge?

  25. HI Donna! Since you make so much of this fruit flavored kombucha, would you consider doing a list of what juices you use and what the flavor is like after the 2nd ferment is complete? The fermenting process seems to really change the flavor – not necessarily in a bad way, but sometimes it does not taste how you would expect at all……

  26. I’ve been experiencing some frustrating results with my second fermentation. i’ve left it on the counter in a capped bottle for a week. Wanting to see if it was adequately second fermented I put one bottle that had some nice bubbles in the fridge to chill. After chilling and opening, it had no carbonation. The chilling somehow dissolved the bubbles that were in the bottle. I went ahead and opened up one of the same bottles that had no bubbles at room temp and it was excellently carbonated. Is this something that is normal? The chilling releases the bubbles? How am I supposed to know if it is carbonated when it doesn’t look bubbly until I open the seal? Any advice?

    • Chilling can make it less bubbly, but you can let it ferment a little longer on your counter and it will become more carbonated. You can also open the bottles to check the carbonation. I’ve left my out for a several weeks to get the carbonation I wanted.

      • I’ve was told to do the second fermentation by putting your bottles in a dark place – burp daily – I also do my second one in plastic jugs and you can tell by the tightness how carbonated it is getting – no explosions here. It only takes mine about 2-3 days for medium carbonation then I strain and put it in 1/2 gallon jars in the frig. We drink ours within 3 or 4 days and don’t have an issue losing carbination.

  27. Am 2nd fermenting my kombucha for the first time… Hoping the cranberry juice will help it get fizzy. My Initial tries at making kombucha have yielded sweet, sour, and one good batch, but no fizz… I cover my Initial batches with a piece of linen… Does this let the CO2 escape, resulting in no fizz?

    Will be able to taste test the 2nd ferment kombucha in a few days…

    • When you make your first batch of kombucha the mushroom seals the jar trapping the co2. The longer you let it sit the less bubbly it is. If you get it right as it is done. Not to sour or to sweet then it is more bubbly.

  28. I use old wine bottles to second ferment. I place them in an old cooler so in case there would be a cork pop out or a bottle explode it would be contained. I also have tried using some honey for a second ferment for too sour booch with some fruit. On cranberries, cut them in half or else the booch can’t penetrate the outer skin… they are bouncin berries after all!

  29. I am brewing my first batch of kombucha and would like to flavor it once it has fermented. is it as simple as putting the juice and/or fruit (frozen) pieces in the bottle, pouring in the kombucha and letting it sit? I am using old synergy bottles. Should I cap them for the 2nd ferment or place a cloth over them? Also, should i put them in the cupboard for the 2nd Ferment and transfer to the fridge after or can they be placed straight into the fridge? Thanks so much!

  30. I heard a rumor that if a tiny piece of scoby goes down the drain it will replicate and ruin a septic system. Any truth or wisdom to Share?

      • Oh my God, if this is true, I’m lost because I left scape some of my small Scooby down the drain, I heard it will clean the drain, now which is true, anyway so far nothing happen to my drain

        • If you find the answer to this question, Please let us know. My husband would NOT be a happy camper if this happens. Thanks.

  31. I had a grolsch bottle while brewing water kefir blow up on me – glass shards over two rooms of my house.

    • You have to be very careful with water kefir and only ferment for a short amount of time. I don’t make water kefir with water crystals and and only use kefir whey to make sodas. Did you use fruit juice did you dilute it and how long did you ferment it for? I hope no one was hurt?

  32. we will be out of town for a few weeks this summer. what should i do w/ my kombucha / scobys. i’m not worried about my bottled second ferments – but i don’t want to loose my active “batches” that will be waiting to be bottled as soon as we get back.

    Thanks again for all your advice

    • You can make a fresh batch of tea and let it culture. It will turn to vinegar, but you can still use this for a starter for your next batch when you get home.

  33. i harvested my last batch too soon and it was still very sweet, and not bubbly at all. Can I save it by second fermenting it?

  34. hi Donna! I Definitely need to 2nd ferment my last batch of kombucha… it taste WAY too sour! I’ve never done this before… I have almost 3 liters of kombucha that I strained last Friday, and it is in the fridge. Can I still 2nd ferment this? and if it is possible, can I add some pineapple chunks, a bit of juice and ginger, put it in a half gallon wine jug with an airlock?
    –Sue–

    • It is best to not let your kombucha get to sour if you want to second ferment. It needs the sugars to eat and create co2. If it is to sour add extra juice to second ferment with about 4 ounces instead of two. This way it has something to consume that will make it bubbly.

  35. Its just another scoby. You can strain it through a coffee filter and it will reduce you getting a scoby but it is something that just happens with kombucha.

  36. I have tried this, but didn’t have any luck– what I had read said to refrigerate for second ferment. This makes more sense, but do you need to “burp” the bottles while they are fermenting the second time? I’m REALLY afraid of an exploding bottle, especially with a little one in the house. I have a batch of kombucha that is ready to harvest any day now, so I’m excited to try this!

  37. I was watching a video on thehealthyhomeeconomist.com and she said you should never store or ferment kombucha in anything but clear glass because it has cleansing acids and draws anything toxic out of whatever receptacle it’s in which is why it’s so good for us because it Pulls toxins out of us but also will Pull toxins from plastic, metal and colored glass. I’m wondering of The green grolsch bottles are ok because of that? I will ask her as well and tell You what she says, but what are your thoughts please? 🙂

    • It does pull out plastic and heavy metals and toxins. I do not know the answer to your question about the green groshlen bottles. It would depend upon how they are made. I will have to check into that. Most of my bottles are clear but I have used them in the past. I will have to look into it.

      • Donna. I wouldn’t worry about the colored glass because its not colored, its part of the glass itself. When they make this glass bottle the silica is the same as in clear bottles. Chromium and manganese is used to get the dark green bottles. They found Manganese purple glass in Egyptian Tombs. When combined in the glass making process these ions are inert and their bond is extremely strong.

  38. Donna,

    Instead of fruit juice, have you ever tried using pieces of fruit like grapes, or ginger bits or small cranberries in the bottle to do the scond ferment? I am brand new to kombucha making and need some guidance.

    Am borderline diabetic and concerned about sugar from fruit juice versus the fruit. Does that matter?

    Thanks!! 🙂

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