Dec 05 2014

Episode 16 – How to Make Kombucha Tea & the SCOBY

How to make kombucha tea & the SCOBY

Today I talk all about how to make kombucha tea, what kombucha tea is, and about what to do with a kombucha SCOBY and even how to make one yourself!

If you’ve never tried kombucha, you’re missing out on an interesting flavor that will hit you by surprise with the first sip that you take. It sure surprised me when I popped a bottle open and smelled it for the first time. You hear about how it has a vinegary taste but don’t really believe it until you try it for the first time.

So you go out to the store, pay about $3.50 for a bottle and now you’re hooked! Isn’t there a cheaper way? Of course there is! You can very easily make large batches of kombucha yourself. You can actually save quite a bit of money making your own kombucha since it’s about $3.50 a bottle whereas if you make it at home it might be somewhere around $1 a gallon. Yes, you read that right.

I hope you enjoy today’s show and at the very least, if you have some near you, try it and see if you like it. If you don’t, no big deal, but if you do, it’s so easy to make!



  • What is kombucha and what is a kombucha SCOBY?
  • Where did I first try kombucha and what I thought about it?
  • How do you make kombucha?
  • Where do you get a kombucha scoby and can I make one?
  • How long do you let kombucha tea brew?
  • What are some good kombucha flavors I can try?
  • What are the health benefits of kombucha?
  • Is there any alcohol in kombucha and how much?
  • Now that you’re making so much kombucha, what do you do with all of the mothers that multiply?
  • Troubleshooting your kombucha in areas such as:
    • What if my kombucha SCOBY gets mold?
    • Can I use green tea for kombucha?
    • What kind of vessels should I use to brew kombucha such as glass, plastic, and metal?
    • Can I use plastic to ferment kombucha in?
    • Is metal bad for kombucha and does that mean the same for stainless steel?
    • Can I use different kinds of sugar to make kombucha or even honey?
    • A little bit about another type of SCOBY that makes another tea similar to kombucha called Jun
    • If I want less sugar in my kombucha, should I just start with less?
    • Does light affect the brewing process and can I leave it on the counter?
    • Do you have to keep ferments apart when brewing them open so they don’t cross contaminate each other?
    • What are those stringy things in the kombucha that’s growing?
    • Does it matter if the kombucha SCOBY floats on top, is in the middle, or sinks to the bottom?


Basic Kombucha Recipe (ratios for different batch sizes)

2 Gallons:

  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) loose tea (16 tea bags)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 gallons (7 quarts) water
  • 4 cups starter


1 Gallon:

  • 2 tablespoons loose tea (8 tea bags)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 1/2 quarts water
  • 2 cups starter



  • 1 tablespoon loose tea (4 tea bags)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 quarts water
  • 1 cup starter


One quart:

  • 1/2 tablespoon loose tea (2 tea bags)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup starter




I’d love to hear your thoughts on today’s show so be sure to comment below or if you have an idea for the show, email me at paul at fermentationpodcast.com or just click on the Contact button on top of this page and fill out the form. I look forward to hearing from you!

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