Hey friends! Ok It has, unfortunately, taken me a while to post this. It was supposed to be posted in February, but I had some technical difficulties. My water kefir was simply not creating any fizz. I did a second ferment in a closed quart sized mason jar with a little fruit inside and let it sit for a couple days as suggested. The first batch came out SO incredibly sugary I spit it right out! After some research I found that this is fairly common. So I continued to try it and by the 4th batch I was golden! I let it sit in a second fermentation process for a little over a week and it tasted carbonated and a little sweet!
Part of the reason why I started to make water kefir was because my husband loves Le Croix, tonic waters, and the like. However I really wanted to find a product that would provide him good probiotics as well. He couldn’t get into kombucha so water kefir it was! After this last batch he sipped on the glass while staring me down! I have him try the strangest things sometimes so he never knows what to expect. To his surprise and mine, he liked it! I still have some tweeking to do to make it a flavor he would really enjoy, but it was very exciting!
So here is the scoop and directions. I copied this from Cultures from Health, because they truly know best!
- Heat 4 cups water.
- Pour into glass jar. (Where to buy)
- Dissolve 4-6 tablespoons cane sugar in the water.
- Cool to 68°-85°F.
- Add water kefir grains.
- Cover with a coffee filter or cloth secured by a rubber band
- Place in a warm spot, 68°-85°F, for 24-48 hours.
- After culturing is complete, prepare a new batch of sugar water, (steps 1-4 above).
- Separate kefir grains from the finished water kefir.
- Place kefir grains in the new batch of sugar water.
- The finished water kefir is now ready to consume, flavor, or store in the refrigerator.
*Avoid aluminum utensils when making water kefir. Stainless steel is acceptable.
For instructions on flavoring and bottling, please visit our website.
*Before bottling water kefir, carefully inspect the bottles for cracks, as cracks can weaken the integrity of the containers. We also recommend “burping” the containers daily during the second fermentation to release excess pressure. Fermented foods often have a sour but clean aroma and flavor. Never consume anything that smells or tastes unpleasant.
Originating in Mexico, water kefir grains (also known as sugar kefir grains) allow for the fermentation of sugar water or juice to create a carbonated lacto-fermented beverage. Incredibly easy to brew, the starter culture can create a new batch of kefir every 24 to 48 hours. This makes a fantastic non-dairy alternative to milk kefir and can be flavored after brewing to make a variety of delicious sodas. If you are looking to replace soda pop, your family will love it!
- Traditional heirloom-style kefir culture (called “grains” due to appearance); not a powdered starter culture
- Gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan
- Reusable culture; makes a new batch of kefir every 24 to 48 hours
- With proper care, the culture can be used indefinitely to create delicious probiotic-rich kefir
- Cultures on the counter at 67° to 80°F, no heating appliance required
- Can be used with sugar water, fruit juice, and coconut water
Description: Kefir consists of lactic acid bacteria and yeast existing in a symbiotic relationship. The benefits are similar to those of milk kefir (dairy kefir) but the average person will be able to consume larger amounts of it due to its water base. Click here for information on the numerous strains of yeast and bacteria generally known to comprise water kefir grains.
Please note: kefir grains may or may not multiply due to a number of factors but they can be used repeatedly to create wonderful carbonated beverages.
Q. What is kefir?
A. Kefir is a probiotic beverage made with either kefir grains or a powdered kefir starter culture. There are two types of grains, milk kefir grains and water kefir grains. Milk kefir grains can be used with cow milk, goat milk, or coconut milk. Water kefir grains can be used with sugar water, juice, or coconut water. Kefir grains consist of bacteria and yeast existing in a symbiotic relationship. The term kefir grains describes the look of the culture only. Kefir grains contain no actual “grains” such as wheat, rye, etc. Our kefir grains are grown in filtered water and organic sugar.
Q. Does water kefir have the same benefits as milk kefir?
A. Generally speaking water kefir is slightly less concentrated than milk kefir and therefore some individuals find they consume more water kefir than they would milk kefir. However, due to water kefir’s water (rather than dairy) base and great taste when flavored, it is easy to consume larger amounts of water kefir.
Q. What ingredients go into making water kefir grains?
A. Our water kefir grains are grown in filtered water and organic sugar.
Q. What strains of yeast and bacteria does water kefir contain?
Q. I want to consume kefir but I’m allergic to dairy. Is water kefir a good alternative?
A. Yes! Water kefir contains no dairy. (Please note: water kefir grains are processed in a facility where dairy products are processed.)
Q. Does water kefir contain gluten?
A. No, water kefir grains do not contain gluten. (Please note: water kefir grains are processed in a facility where gluten-based products are processed.)
Q. Are water kefir grains reusable?
A. Yes, water kefir grains are reusable. Once your kefir is finished culturing, simply remove the water kefir grains and place them in fresh sugar water, juice, or coconut water.
Q. How long do water kefir grains last?
A. With proper care, water kefir grains should last indefinitely.
Q. What is the process to make water kefir?
A. Water kefir grains are added to sugar water, juice, or coconut water and allowed to culture for 24 to 48 hours, then the kefir grains are removed. To flavor water kefir (we don’t recommend drinking water kefir made with sugar water without flavoring!) simply add fruit juice or flavor extracts (e.g., vanilla extract) to the water kefir. If a more fizzy water kefir is desired, once the juice is added you can bottle it up tightly and allow it to sit for a few days so the carbonation can build.
Q. Can I allow the kefir to culture for longer than 48 hours?
A. We strongly recommend against allowing the kefir grains to culture for longer than 48 hours as over time it will damage the grains by potentially starving them (particularly in warm weather when the culturing process is sped up due to the heat).
Q. How will I know if I’ve successfully made water kefir?
A. The primary indication of whether or not you have successfully made water kefir is that the finished kefir tastes less sweet than the sugar water or juice you’ve started with.
Q. What does water kefir taste like?
A. Finished water kefir will be fairly sweet. (See below for information about sugar content.) Depending on the type of sugar used, the amount of culturing time, etc., water kefir may also be slightly bubbly. We strongly recommend flavoring water kefir made with sugar water prior to consuming it as the taste of plain water kefir isn’t particularly pleasant. Flavoring options include fruit (fresh or dried), fruit juice, and flavor extracts.
Q. Will water kefir grains multiply?
A. Water kefir grains are known to multiply, but at times they are reluctant to do so and therefore we do not guarantee kefir grains will multiply. Even if they do not multiply, with proper care, water kefir grains can be used repeatedly to brew water kefir. Click here for more information on ways you can encourage your kefir grains to multiply.
Q. Can I use a plastic container to brew water kefir and plastic bottles to store it?
A. Theoretically food-grade plastic shouldn’t cause any damage to the culture but we always recommend glass when working with starter cultures or food due to the potential of plastic to leach undesirable chemicals.