Water Kefir: Pop and Fizz!

The second fermentation is a step many don’t realize needs to happen before you can get the carbonation automatically assumed there when you drink water kefir. You can definitely achieve pop and fizz naturally!

Let’s pick up where we left off last – you’ve strained your grains from its 48 hour ferment.

water kefir grains

You can do fruit juice or fruit – we’re doing frozen fruit. On hand, cherries!

frozen cherries in a bowl

Plop them in your finished water kefir…make sure it’s in a mason jar + lid/ring that will ensure a good seal. With fresh/frozen fruit, sometimes you can achieve pop and fizz is just one day. You can also put it in a Grolsch-Style flip top lidded bottle, but it’s super hard to get that fruit out of the bottle later…no fun. Fruit juice is a better option for narrow necked Grolsch- style bottles.

cherry infused water kefir

Seal it up:

cherry water kefir sealed with mason jar lid

Since it’s fruit, it’s best to only second ferment 24 hours. The hard part is that it may not build up carbonation in that short time. There are two solutions I see: 1) After the 24 hours with the fruit in it, transfer the water kefir to a Grolsch-style bottle for a second ferment for another 1-2 days (no fruit):

water kefir on its second ferment

Or 2) Change out the fruit every 24 hours. It may build up carbonation the more the bacteria works on the fruit sugars faster each day, so you might get some pop and fizz in the 3rd or 4th day of bottling it up even though you release the pressure each day when changing the fruit.

If you choose to do fruit juice…you can leave it bottled up much longer than fresh fruit. I go 2-3 days, but 4 days is sometimes pushing it to where my water kefir will start to taste a teeny tiny bit alcohol-y, especially if it’s warm in the room. I generally fill my Grolsch-Style bottles to where the neck starts to narrow, then add 2-3 Tablespoons of juice. Cap it tightly and let it sit undisturbed 1-3 days. The longer you leave it alone without opening it, the more pressure/carbonation you will get.

How do I keep track of the days? Like this in my planner with post it notes so I can move it from page to page (this was for blueberry water kefir):

Planner with a sticky note reminder that reads "bloob wk done"

and I always label my jars/bottles to keep track of what is what:

cherry water kefir in glass jar next to dark bottle

In the picture above, I’m about to strain the bloobs out and put it in the Grolsch-Style bottle. Like this:

filtering out cherries in water kefir

Let’s check out a 4 day second ferment:

amber colored fermentation bottle with gas escaping

Then when it’s ready for the fridge/storage, another label for the family:

bottled water kefir with "done" label

And that’s it!

Get some fruit and Get Second Fermented!