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Kombucha Starter Instructions

 Note: if you're not planning to start your Kombucha SCOBY right away, store it in the refrigerator until you're ready.

You will need:

  • one quart canning jar or other glass jar
  • coffee filter or paper towel to cover jar, and elastic
  • band to secure cover
  • wooden or plastic spoon
  • 1/4 cup sugar (evaporated cane sugar works best)
  • 3 cups water (non-chlorinated & non-fluoridated is best)
  • 2 tea bags (black or green tea is best) or 2 tablespoons
  • loose leaf tea in a tea ball or reusable tea bag
  • Kombucha starter (SCOBY)
  • 1/4 cup plain, unflavored Kombucha (this is included with your NW Ferments starter - don't throw it away!)


  1. Heat water to nearly boiling. Pour water into jar.  Stir in sugar until dissolved, then add tea & allow to steep. When cooled to room temp, remove the tea bags.
  2. Add Kombucha SCOBY and included liquid. Cover with coffee filter & secure with rubber band. Do not use an airtight lid- your Kombucha needs to breathe, but you want to keep out any contaminants.
  3. Allow to culture at room temperature - 68° to 78° F. is ideal. Choose a draft-free spot, out of direct sunlight, where your Kombucha won't be disturbed. You will see another SCOBY begin to form on the surface of the liquid. In a quart sized jar it will take about 7 days. You can taste it at this point to see if it's to your liking. Longer fermentation times produce a more sour Kombucha, and shorter times produce a sweeter product.

After your first batch, you can move up to a larger container. You will have more starter liquid (finished Kombucha) and an extra SCOBY starter to work with. Just use the same ratios: 1/4 c. sugar, 2 tea bags and 1/4 c. finished Kombucha per quart.

If you're new to drinking Kombucha, start with a small amount each day. You can increase consumption as your body adjusts to the beneficial bacteria. There are many ways to flavor and use your finished Kombucha. Check out our instructions for a Second Fermentation.