Water Kefir

Water Kefir

water kefir copyWater kefir grains, or we call them kefir crystals, are unlike milk kefir grains as they thrive on sugars and not lactose. They are dairy free and gluten free despite being called “grains.” They look slightly different from milk kefir grains and are translucent while milk kefir grains are white.

Different websites and books will tell you to use different methods to make water kefir. This is my personal favorite method. I believe it has a lower alcohol content than other methods and tastes just as great! Water kefir is different from the Kefir Soda recipes on my site. Kefir soda is made with a powdered packet of a kefir starter or kefir whey which is from milk kefir and is not dairy free.

Water kefir does not have much flavor on its own. With this method, I recommend doing a second ferment with juices and flavorings to give your water kefir extra flavor. It will give you a fizzier and more consistent brew each time. We have lots of recipes to second ferment your water kefir.

water kefir grainsThese grains grow rapidly and  it’s important to give them minerals from time to time. A small drop of molasses can add minerals and help your water kefir crystals stay healthy

I recommend water kefir be consumed within a week. It will ferment rapidly even in the fridge – much faster than kombucha – and can end up with too much pressure and not as pleasant of a taste. Water kefir may also become more alcoholic if fruit juices are used and fermented for longer periods of times. This is another reason to drink it more quickly.

Some recommend not using filtered water as water kefir grains thrive on minerals (as do most cultures), although I do not recommend using distilled or reverse osmosis or alkaline waters that remove ALL minerals from the water. Regular filtered water or spring water is fine, and I’ve never had any problems with it. I hope you enjoy this probiotic drink as an add-on to your already happy diet!

Love yourself enough to live a healthy lifestyle

water kefir flavors

Check out the second fermented water kefir recipes, for a fruity flavored version.

Basic Water Kefir Recipe
Water kefir is a different fermentation than milk kefir. We also have recipes for kefir soda made with kefir powder packages, and it is quite easy to make. It is very similar to this drink; kefir soda is just made with powder packages and faster and easier to make. Check out my Kefir Soda Sunday blog post.~Donna
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  1. To a glass jar, add 4 cups of room temperature filtered, or spring water.
  2. Add 4 tablespoons of cane sugar, stirring to dissolve. You can use brown sugar, white sugar, sucanat or raw sugar. (See note for different types of sugar you can use) If you use sucanat or raw you need to heat the water to dissolve the sugar and then allow it to cool before placing your grains in your jar. Certain types of sugars don’t dissolve in water very well and will stay stuck on your grains.
  3. Add your water kefir grains.
  4. Let sit on your counter for 2 days with a cloth napkin secured by a rubber band cover. (It might take 3 days the first time you brew with your grains.) Mixture will be come slightly cloudy and slightly bubbly with a mildly sweet taste but not as sweet as the sugar water.
  5. Strain your water kefir crystals with a strainer, and place your water kefir grains in a new sugar water mixture.
  6. You can drink the water kefir right away with a squeeze of lemon or you can 2nd ferment for more flavor and fizz!
  7. Repeat the recipe above for your next batch.
Recipe Notes

Note: You can use Molasses, maple syrup, or sucanat as well. I do not recommend using honey as it is antibacterial and can kill your grains over time. Coconut sugar can be used in some cases but can cause problems as well. If you'd like to use coconut sugar, wait until you have extra water kefir grains and you can experiment with a different batch.

Note: You can store your water kefir in fresh sugar water in the fridge for up to 1 month until ready to use again. When ready to resume brewing, strain the old water and add new water and sugar.

Tip: Every few batches, add a drop of molasses for extra minerals, which keeps you grains healthy.


Water Kefir Recipes

I have lots of Water Kefir recipes exclusively for my Biotic Pro Members!!