Loving the buch (kombucha)? Your pocket book might not be loving the kombucha factor (the new age version of the latte factor). Make your own buch hooch and save!
Are you buying kombucha bottles by the case in health food stores? Popular kombucha brands (GT’s, Reeds, Synergy) cost between $3.50 and $4.50 for a 16 to 20 ounce bottle. Depending on the size of your family, you could be going through a case a week. That’s a lot of (yeasty) dough;)
If you have the DIY spirit, make your own for a fraction of the cost.
Seven bottles of store bought kombucha per week @ $3.50 a bottle (7×3.50) = $24.50 / week
A starter kit (see below) costs approximately $50. Generally speaking (or writing), it will take two weeks for the starter kit to pay for itself.
Ongoing, your costs will be to replenish the organic tea and sugar. Phew! That’s the inexpensive part. 20 organic tea bags cost approximately $4.50 (and even $2.50 on sale), and a 24 oz. bag of sugar costs approximately $4.
If you’re brewing a gallon of tea and you use four to five bags each time, you’ll use one box of tea bags per month (averaging about $1 of tea for every brew.) The sugar will average out to about $1 per use too.
One gallon will fill nearly seven 20 ounce bottles. A 16 or 20 ounce mason jar works too. That’s roughly $2 per week for 7 bottles, compared to $24.50 per week for the store bought variety.
Of course, you may be adding in fruits or fruit juices or chia seeds to enhance and flavor your beverage, so that will add a few bucks. Don’t forget to take into account the time it takes you. I compare the time it takes to brew kombucha to doing a load of laundry (it takes a while to cook the tea, wait for it to cool and combine all the ingredients, but you aren’t actively watching it during that time.)
Once the kombucha is done fermenting, I like to flavor and store the drinks in wine bottles, Ball jars, and store bought kombucha glass bottles. Buy it once, and reuse it for life!
Make sure to read safety precautions, as you’re handling a raw beverage that requires extra care. And be careful of adding chia seeds. I added white seeds to kombucha in a corked wine bottle and, to my surprise, ended up with explosive ‘chia puke’ all over my face and in my hair. The shocked look on my boyfriend’s face was quickly replaced by his uncontrollable laughter.
SCOBY– $0 (gifted from a friend or grown). You can also purchase these online, though I do not know about the care of safety specifications of purchasing online.
Glass Beverage Dispenser– $25 (Bed, Bath & Beyond)
Organic Tea- $4.50 (Equal Exchange) Loose leaf tea and a reusable muslin bag works too.
Organic Sugar- $4 (iHerb) Don’t worry. The SCOBY ‘eats’ the sugar, so this is not a sugary drink.
*pH Strips– $15 (Enzymedica) *optional
You’ll also need a clean cloth for covering the mason jar, purified water, rubberband to keep the cloth on tight and cheesecloth (or pesticide-free coffee filters) for filtering your brew.
For tips on brewing kombucha (including safety tips), study up on the Kombucha Care website.
If you’d rather get your kombucha kit in one place, check out this amazingly giftable (for yourself or a health-conscious DIYer friend) brewing kit from The Kombucha Shop ($54).
Like Native Gypsies on Facebook, and post your best kombucha recipes for all the first-time users and kombucha fans!
*I was not compensated to write on behalf of the brands mentioned in this email.
*Like myself, if you choose to brew kombucha, you are responsible for reading all the safety precautions and taking on the risks associated with brewing a raw beverage.