How to Make Kombucha (Without Starter Tea)

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When it comes to one of the most popular health beverages in the world today, there is hardly nothing that comes close to kombucha’s appeal.

Although kombucha has recently gained popularity and attention, the drink itself has been around for millennia and is recognized for its health benefits.

Many individuals appreciate having kombucha in their life because of its low cost and the fact that it is significantly healthier than other teas.

Of course, learning how to brew and ferment kombucha on your own will be less costly. When you can manufacture your own in multi-gallon batches while just paying for a SCOBY and containers for the kombucha to ferment in, it becomes a financially reasonable option to make your own kombucha.

Unfortunately, for many individuals who are unfamiliar with the procedure, it might be more hassle than it is worth.

Traditionally, four ingredients are required to make kombucha. You’ll need a basic starting tea, which may occasionally be replaced with store-bought unflavored kombucha, sugar, a SCOBY, and a container to ferment everything in. Except for one, all of these products are rather simple to get.

Sugar is a mainstay in all food shops, and many internet vendors provide big enough containers for the fermenting process. The missing piece of this jigsaw is going to be the base tea.

Some individuals may suffer because in order to get the kombucha starter tea, you must first brew an unflavored kombucha, creating a circular dilemma of requiring the completed product in order to generate a new one.

Other times, if you know where to shop effectively, you can buy a very affordable and unflavored kombucha drink at your local store and use it as your beginning tea, although this may become pricey when preparing the drink in quantity.

All of this may have you wondering whether you can start brewing your kombucha without the starter tea, since it doesn’t seem to be as important as the other elements.

While it is true that certain kombucha components, such as the SCOBY, cannot be replaced, there are others that can, and starting tea is one of them.

Before you can begin to completely comprehend how to properly replace the starting tea in kombucha, you must first learn how to make kombucha.

This will help you understand which processes will be influenced by the replacement and why certain liquids may be more suited to your kombucha than others.

The Traditional Brewing Method

How to Make Kombucha (Without Starter Tea)

Brewing kombucha is quite similar to brewing beer and wine in many aspects, since the process uses beneficial bacteria and yeast to achieve the desired benefits and taste.

However, instead of wheat or fruits as a substrate, kombucha employs green or black tea (most typically black teas) as the base.

Depending on who you ask, the classic kombucha brewing procedure consists of three steps. Some individuals, particularly those who buy fresh SCOBYs, disregard the procedure of making the SCOBY.

Aside from that, kombucha is notable for being one of the few beverages that undergoes a twofold fermentation process.

The first run of fermentation focuses on converting the sweetened tea into fermented kombucha, while the second pass focuses on adding the appropriate flavour and amount of carbonation.

In the normal brewing procedure, your starting tea will come into action either while you are feeding and increasing your SCOBY or when you begin the first pass of fermentation.

When producing the SCOBY, the starting tea will serve as the SCOBY’s fuel, since black teas with added sugars are the ideal fuel for the bacteria and yeast found in SCOBYs.

By utilizing a high-quality kombucha beginning tea, you can be certain that the bacteria in the SCOBY will absorb and consume even more nutrients than the sweet tea alone.

Similarly, during the initial fermentation pass, you will typically add roughly two cups of unflavored kombucha. This kombucha may be particularly labeled as a starting tea, or it might be an unflavored kombucha from the shop, or it could even be from an old brew if you’ve been doing this for a while.

Here, the fully developed SCOBY will utilize the sugars in the sweetened kombucha starting tea to fuel its chemical activities, resulting in more nutrients in the kombucha by the time it is ready to serve to friends and family.

As you can see, the starting tea is quite vital in the brewing of kombucha. In more ways than one, it will be one of the cornerstones on which you will depend if you continue to make kombucha.

As a result, you may begin to worry that you don’t have anything to feed and ferment the SCOBY for your kombucha, but happily, there are a variety of components and food items that may suffice for your kombucha-related demands.

Does it Need to Be Homemade Kombucha?

How to Make Kombucha (Without Starter Tea)

When looking for kombucha recipes and brewing techniques, you will often come across comments stating that adding the starter tea will be better in the long term and economically for you to manufacture your own kombucha as a beginning tea.

To some degree, this statement is correct, since once the kombucha is brewing, you can always put away a part of it to use before flavoring it, which eliminates the need for starter teas.

The simplest way is to go to your local grocery shop and get a bottle of unfiltered, raw kombucha to serve as your beginning tea. These goods might be advertised as basic, raw, unfiltered, unflavored, or other theme-related descriptions.

Unfortunately, not everyone will be in a location where there is a good chance of finding raw, base kombucha in the supermarket’s produce section, which means that while this solution is the simplest, it is also one of the more difficult methods in terms of trying to find the bases when they are in stock.

Similarly, you may discover similar things at internet merchants. It may be difficult to judge the quality of anything when you can only see it on a computer rather than feel its weight, smell its scent, and so on.

You may purchase your raw kombucha base here for a somewhat higher price, since many internet merchants have exaggerated costs and pricey delivery.

Some individuals feel that only kombucha bases may be utilized to make a good brew when making a beginning tea for kombucha. While such specifications may surely add to the quality of the food or drink produced, there are several methods to go around the kombucha restrictions.

For example, the starting tea may be produced using the cheapest black tea leaves you can find plus a few spices to spice things up.

The Starting Tea of Kombucha

As previously said, kombucha starter tea is often recognized as the basis and foundation for your kombucha. The initial tea does not have to be kombucha-related and may be in almost any acidic form.

If you want to produce a great kombucha brew, you need always start with a good beginning basis.

The primary elements of a kombucha’s beginning foundation will be determined by your own tastes. Even if you are just starting out, you must exercise caution while producing your own kombucha drinks.

With this in mind, the kombucha fermentation process is entirely dependent on the sugar concentration of the drink. The more sugars there are, the more sugars may be absorbed, and so the SCOBY can create more nutritious value.

At the same time, if you’re concerned that the drink may taste off, you can always add a dash of vinegar to it to attempt to balance out the flavor profile.

For those who have been doing this for a long, it will be obvious which drink should be utilized as a kombucha beginning tea. For the majority of individuals, black tea with sugar added on top of the natural sugars found in apples would suffice.

Other establishments may utilize sweetened green tea as a kombucha foundation, but it has been shown that green teas do not react nearly as well to the SCOBY as the others did, giving you even more reason to stick with the ones that have been proved to generate a solid kombucha base.

What If There Is No Tea?

If your schedule has been hectic, you may not have the time, resources, or money to spend in an expensive brew of tea or an even more costly single bottle of unflavored kombucha.

This scenario will only work if you already have a sweet drink to feed the germs on. Otherwise, you may have difficulties since sugar is an essential component in the kombucha brewing process.

A modest bit of vinegar or spicy sauce is one of the greatest non-tea related treatments to consider. As for the most often used vinegar throughout these periods, apple cider vinegar is expected to be the most popular, while many individuals will encounter all of the kombucha variations over their lifetimes.

The vinegar may bring several health advantages not just to your stomach, but to the rest of your body, therefore you should consider using it instead of a good kombucha starter tea.

You will be able to get even more out of what is a naturally healthy drink because of vinegar’s inherent healing capabilities.

Working with What You Have

Finally, you’ll have to make do with what you have in the pantry and what you can purchase from the store in a fair period of time.

In some circumstances, this means you merely have black tea leaves and a dab of cinnamon, while for others, it means a trip to the grocery shop or an internet purchase.

You will be able to enjoy the healthful advantages of a refreshing glass of kombucha every morning, before bed, and throughout the day as long as you put out the work to make something you can be proud of.

If you like tea and carbonated beverages, kombucha is a great drink to try.

The greatest thing is that once you have that initial batch of starter teas to utilize for the second pass of fermentation and future kombucha brews, you won’t have to buy any more.


How to make kombucha without SCOBY and starter tea?

12 glasses water.
1 cup granulated sugar (white).
6 green or black tea bags, or loose-leaf tea as directed.
6 cups unflavored, unpasteurized store-bought kombucha.

Can you use kombucha without starter or SCOBY?

You can create kombucha without a SCOBY, but it can take up to three times as long and may cause difficulties. The SCOBY’s duty includes adding bacteria as it ferments, safeguarding the tea, and keeping it stocked with lots of healthy bacteria and yeasts.

Can SCOBY survive without tea?

Because the scoby cannot live in non-tea liquid, it is ideal to begin with a vigorous scoby so that it does not weaken and die midway through the fermentation process. A fermentation period of 3 to 5 days is ideal.

Can I use vinegar to start kombucha?

Including Vinegar in Your Brew

You may come across suggestions to add apple cider vinegar to your first batch of kombucha. The vinegar is added the first time you brew kombucha to acidify the sweet tea and, presumably, help the kombucha take root and get started.

What can I use instead of kombucha starter?

Kefir Water

This kombucha alternative is said to have developed in the late 1800s and is one of the most simple fermented beverages to create at home. This drink’s grain-like culture of bacteria and yeast makes it a fantastic probiotic and healthful for the stomach, as well as strengthening the immune system.

What is a substitute for kombucha starter?

If a kombucha brewer has not stored kombucha from a previous brew to use as starting tea for a fresh one, a bottle of unflavored kombucha or a few cups of distilled white vinegar may be used. If the brewers are producing kombucha for the first time and purchased their SCOBY online, it should arrive packed in starting tea.

Can you make a SCOBY from nothing?

You can make your own SCOBY by blending tea, sugar, and pre-made, store-bought organic kombucha. Make sure it’s raw and unflavored, and if possible, acquire one with a blobby thingi floating at the top or bottom of the bottle.

How do you make a SCOBY with vinegar?

Transfer to a jar and cover with non-chlorinated water, followed by a big splash of vinegar (unfiltered is preferable). Cover with a towel, mark with the date and contents, and keep in a cold, dark-ish area to ferment (pantry, cupboard). Every now and again, give it a good stir.

What happens if you don’t feed SCOBY?

The sugar in the sweet tea is the “food” that the SCOBY consumes. That is, if you do not use enough sugar in your kombucha recipe, or if you leave the SCOBY alone for a lengthy amount of time without providing it with sugar, it will ultimately die.

What happens if I leave my SCOBY too long?

If the kombucha brew is left for many weeks or even months beyond the goal period, the SCOBY will continue to feed on the liquid in the fermenting tank. That is, it will consume all available sugar and tea, transforming it to acetic acid – nicknamed vinegar – instead.

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