Your kids will love this probiotic rich beverage!
Sometimes it’s hard to get our kids to eat and drink the things that are good for them.
So both parents and kids will be thrilled to have this super yummy and healthy drink!
My kids ask for it, especially my three year old! It’s her favorite thing to drink!
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The Probiotic Beverage That Your Kids Will Love!
It’s Water Kefir!
Now, let me start by saying that this is NOT the Kefir made with milk! This is a totally dairy free beverage.
So if you don’t like the taste of Milk Kefir, or if you do not consume dairy, never fear! You are going to love Water Kefir!
What is Water Kefir?
There are a lot of similarities between Kombucha and Kefir. Just like Kombucha, Water Kefir is a fermented drink that you can make at home.
As I said, Water Kefir is made from different “grains” than Milk Kefir. Additionally, since it is a fermented drink, once the culture has been established, it can be reused to create multiple batches.
Unlike Kombucha, the Kefir fermentation process is a lot faster; often only taking a day or two instead of a week or two. Although Water Kefir and Milk Kefir are 2 distinct ferments, they both come chock full of healthy nutrients and probiotics! You can find more info on The Amazing Benefits of Milk Kefir here.
What are Water Kefir Grains?
The “grains” that are used to create Kefir are not actual grains but are actually a polysaccharide matrix containing a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (just like a Kombucha SCOBY).
Unlike Kombucha SCOBYs, the Kefir grains are more delicate and susceptible to changes in temperature and even starvation if they run out of “fuel”. The Kefir grains used to make Milk Kefir thrive by consuming lactose (milk sugar). However, sucrose (aka table sugar) acts as the fuel for the organisms used to ferment Water Kefir.
I have to feed the Kefir what?!
Yes, you read correctly, you feed your Water Kefir Grains sugar!
But, do not worry, you are not consuming sugar when you drink Water Kefir!
Similar to the Kombucha SCOBY, Water Kefir grains eat the sugar and then deposit good bacteria into the water.
What does Water Kefir taste like?
Water Kefir has a naturally sweet, mild flavor. It is much milder than Kombucha and can be flavored as well. It is an excellent substitute for sodas and other unhealthy beverages as it is slightly fizzy.
In my house we don’t even bother flavoring our water kefir as we love the sweetness that the unflavored Water Kefir gives.
Where do I get Water Kefir grains?
There is only one place that I will buy my Kefir grains from. Kombucha Kamp! You can find their Water Kefir Grains here.
Kombucha Kamp’s Kefir grains are perfect for brewing your own home-made Kefir.
Just as I talked about Kombucha SCOBYs in my post Why You Should Use The Kombucha Continuous Brew System, you need to make sure that your Kefir grains come from a trustworthy source. If you buy Kefir grains online, it is very important to get them from a reputable source.
Both their Water Kefir Grains and their Milk Kefir Grains come packaged fresh, fully hydrated (NEVER DEHYDRATED!) and shipped right away via First Class Mail to ensure the most potent Kefir Grains arrive at your door.
While it may take a few batches to reproduce as the grains adapt to their new environment and food source, these hydrated kefir grains will make delicious Kefir and reproduce more quickly than dehydrated Kefir grains.
Dehydrated Kefir grains will not be as healthy and will be more apt to die. I only buy Kefir grains that have never been dehydrated!
How do you make Water Kefir?
Water Kefir is extremely easy to make! Trust me, anyone can do it!
All you need is:
2 Tablespoons of Water Kefir Grains
1/4 cup of organic sugar
1 quart room temperature filtered water
3-4 organic raisins (optional)
Pinch of himalayan pink salt (optional)
Add the sugar and water to your quart jar. Stir to dissolve sugar and then add your Kefir grains.
Add the optional raisins and salt. The raisins and salt provide additional fuel for the Kefir grains, helping them to grow and reproduce better.
I add raisins to every batch, but I only add salt every few batches or so due to the flavor that it gives the Kefir. We don’t really like the flavor that the salt gives, but I add it occasionally to create healthier grains.
I have also found that the Kefir grains love coconut sugar! Again, we don’t like the flavor that the coconut sugar leaves in the Kefir, but the grains love it! So I occasionally will use coconut sugar to give the grains a healthy boost.
After that, just screw on the lid and store in a cabinet for 24-48 hours. You can use a regular lid or a fermentation lid. If you use a regular lid you will probably need to burp the lids occasionally to avoid pressure build up in your jar.
After 24-48 hours, depending on the temperature that your kitchen is kept at, your Water Kefir will be ready!
All that you need to do is strain your Water Kefir into glass bottles and then, using the Kefir grains, start a new batch!
You can either put the Water Kefir that you strained directly in the fridge to enjoy, or add flavoring for a second ferment.
Like I said, we love the flavor of plain Water Kefir, but you might prefer flavored:)
And that’s it! Water Kefir is super easy to make!
Have you made Water Kefir before? If not give it a try! You’re going to love it!