Homemade Lavender Kombucha

Lovely, healthy lavender spiked kombucha
By Julia Mueller

Probiotics are delightful creatures. Kombucha is a natural bubbly beverage with an abundance of probiotics. It is brewed using tea and sugar through a fermentation process that requires a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY). Kombucha can help achieve digestive balance, boost your energy level, detox the liver, and possibly help maintain a healthy weight.

For almost a year, my boyfriend and I have been brewing kombucha at home.  We have made all sorts of flavors by adding 100% juices, dried fruit and more recently, lavender buds.  Remember from my Lavender Chocolate Chip Cookie post, lavender also has great health benefits, such as eliciting relaxation and helping ease insomnia, calming headaches and relieving indigestion. Put kombucha and lavender together and you achieve an all around healthful elixir.

If you made a resolution about health this year, you would not be alone. Whether you are looking to drop the weight you collected during the holidays, exercise more, or add vegetables to your diet, you have company. In my experience, balance is very important; kombucha helps to create this balance. If brewing kombucha at home is not your thing, no biggy. If I were to encourage any health habit it would be to get probiotics into your life regularly through natural foods such as store-bought kombucha, yogurt, kefir, or other fermented foods such as sauerkraut.

I posted a how-to on kombucha brewing back in May, so simply follow the steps in my earlier post along with the recipe below. Essentially all we do when we flavor kombucha is allow the kombucha to complete its first fermentation and then add juice or more flavored tea to the beverage and allow it to go through a secondary fermentation. Brewing kombucha at home can be risky, so if you are new to home-brewing, please consult someone who has experience if you have questions.

Follow the normal steps you take to store your kombucha, leaving the lavender buds in the kombucha (you’ll be straining the buds out when you’re ready to drink the kombucha). I bottle my kombucha, so from here, I pour the lavender kombucha into a pitcher and then pour from the pitcher into the bottles.

Do you want your kombucha to go through a secondary fermentation? If no, then simply refrigerate your lavender kombucha and strain the kombucha before drinking.

If you would like to put the kombucha through a secondary fermentation, store the bottles (or whatever vessel it’s stored in) in a warm, dark room and leave for 3 days. This will allow the probiotics to process the newly added sugar. After the secondary fermentation is complete, refrigerate it and strain the lavender buds out when you’re ready to drink it.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Homemade Lavender Kombucha
 
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Lovely, healthy lavender spiked kombucha
Author:
Recipe Type: Drink
Serves: 20
Ingredients
  • 2 gallons homemade kombucha (see: http://www.theroastedroot.net/how-to-make-homemade-kombucha/)
  • 1 cup dried lavender buds
  • 8 Black Tea bags
  • 1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 gallon water
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, heat a gallon of water until boiling.
  2. Romove pot from the heat, add the black teabags and lavender buds.
  3. Allow the tea to steep 12 minutes then remove the teabags, but leave the lavender buds in.
  4. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve
  5. Allow tea to cool to room temperature.
  6. When cool, Carefully pour already prepared homemade kombucha into the pot with the lavender tea.
10 Comments
  1. I have gone through my second batch of kombucha and it is still too sweet. This time I let it sit in the closet for over 2 weeks but I still don’t get that taste I am used to. Ironically I still drink it because I hate waste, adding favors is what I am trying to get to. If you have any advice for me it would be appreciated.

    My only idea is that I have too much sugar. I plan on starting a new batch tonight we will see how it turns out.

    1. Hi Brett,

      I think there are four possibilities for the sweet kombucha.

      1. Too much sugar for either (or both) your initial fermentation or secondary fermentation. How many gallons of water did you use, how many tea bags (and what type of tea: green/black?) and how much sugar did you add?

      2. The kombucha temperature is not warm enough for the probiotics to eat all of the sugar. Temperature should stay between 75 degrees and 80 degrees roughly. I find 78 degrees seems to be perfect.

      3. Length of time at the appropriate temperature. Although the kombucha was brewed for 2 weeks, were the full two weeks at the appropriate temperature? I have brewed a couple of batches that I have left for 2 weeks but the kombucha was around 60 to 65 degrees and the batch was not finished fermenting by the end of the two weeks.

      4. Type of tea used. Did you use 100% black tea or 100% green tea? Many times people think they are buying 100% black tea but it will have other oils/ingredients in it such as orange peel. I find that 100% black tea brews me the strongest (least sweet) kombucha. When I make the kombucha with 100% green tea, the flavor comes out weaker and more sweet.

      Offhand, I’d say these are the most likely possibilities. Feel free to email me directly (roastedrootfood (at) gmail (dot) com) and I can troubleshoot what happened if you give me more specifics :) Glad you’re making kombucha homemade!

      Best Regards,

      Julia

    2. Hey, Brett ~

      I’ve been been making a 4-gallon batch (in 2-2 gallon glass jars) for some time now with organic sugar @ 1.25 C sugar/gallon; the tea comes out lightly sweet every time.
      Email me with further questions, I have plenty of helpful hints and recipes too!

      Cheers,
      Kevin in Sacramento

    3. Well let’s try this again. Message closed out before I had a chance to finish.

      I don’t even start drinking my kombucha before 3-4 weeks. I like it strong, when it gets about like vinegar. I cap it off in beer bottles (add a little sugar in the bottle before I cap it and let it set for a week or so and then refridge and it gets a little head) and drink it like beer in the summer. It has a very thirst quenching taste I like it when I go to the garden. I don’t recommend a full beer bottle till you have been drinking it for a few weeks. I went to SAMs and bought 2 of their 5 gallon decorative water dispenser which stand on an iron rack. They work very well because they have a spigot that turns off by rotating. The spigots that you mash on get jammed by the scoby before it is over with.

  2. hello julia,
    i just have two questions for you regarding my very first batch of homemade kombucha –

    my scoby is getting quite thick – when i peel it apart, do I discard the top part of it, or the bottom part?

    what is the best way to store my scoby inbetween batches?
    i heard that youre not really meant to put it in the fridge, as this can make certain bacterias domant that are needed for the all round health of the scoby?

    kind regards,
    Lily M.

    1. If you got a thick scoby you are doing everything right. I just pulled about 8 or 10 out of my two 5 gallon fermenters. I know this sounds counter productive for probiotics, but while I was slicing and putting some of them on the dehydrator (to see if I could dry and grind them in to a sourdough starter,) I was looking at several of them that were as thick as a pork belly. I got the wild idea of trying to making bacon out of them. So I have a couple of them curing as we text. Don’t know what they will turn out like but willing to try.

      Before you go spastic over bacon idea, look up the latest on pork lard. Come to find out, we have been duped again. Pork lard is good for you! 60% of the fat that is in pork lard is the same as the fat in olive oil and avocado that lower triglycerides for your heart. And at no surprise (follow the money) canola oil and vegetable oil are killing you! I know that 90% of the kool-aid drinkers out there will pass out when they read this, but check it out for yourselves.

      I am 68 years old and have balked at the idea that butter, pork, and eggs are killing people – pen-raised, chemically fed chickens lay eggs that aren’t good for you. Yard birds that feast off of worms , bugs and grass (lots of vitamin K), produce eggs that are good for you. Pork has been the main stay of the common man for centuries. Unfortunately the hogs that we have breed, to be lean, over the last several decades taste like cardboard! Thank God we have abundance of wild hogs here in Texas. Just got through smoking 4 hams!

      Butter was supposed to be the all time enemy, eat margarine. Come to find out the plastic imitation butter, “margarine”, is killing you. Butter is good for you (follow the money.)

      Pork lard used by my grandmother and great grandmother worked well enough they lived longer than the typical pill pushing, obama cared, pill junky of today!

      Coconut oil, the oil that bakers use for decades and touted as bad for you, is not killing you. It is in fact one of the best things you can digest. I blend a spoon full into my coffee every morning with my bullet blender. Emulsifies into what looks like a latte.

      Wow! Didn’t plan on my first comment being so long! If you really want something to get worried about look up BRICS and the petrodollar!

  3. For a third batch you can try a cup of honey to a gallon of water…no tea… It’s deleicious like a non alcoholic meade

  4. This is a great looking recipe! I love lavender and I think it would be a great aromatic to add to a kombucha! Can’t wait to try making this at home. Thanks so much for sharing your recipe!

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