Save 20% Site Wide! Coupon code: HOLIDAY

$3.99 Flat Rate Shipping* Click here for details

How to Take a Break from Making Milk Kefir


Although milk kefir grains can be used to make back-to-back batches of milk kefir, at some point most people will need to take a break. 

Cold temperatures greatly slow the culturing process, so the refrigerator is a good place to store grains when a break is necessary.

Click here to learn about Taking a Break from Making Water Kefir

Short Breaks, up to 3 weeks

  • Add milk kefir grains to 2-4 cups fresh milk. More milk for longer breaks is best, to keep the grains well fed.
  • Put a tight lid on the container and place in the refrigerator. The milk kefir grains should be safe and healthy for up to 3 weeks.
  • When ready to make milk kefir again, separate the grains from the storage milk, place in fresh milk, and culture as usual. It may take a couple of batches for the grains to wake up and get back to work. 
  • The storage liquid should be fine to consume, as long as it has a pleasing aroma and flavor.


Long Breaks, up to 6 months

If a longer break is required, we recommend drying the kefir grains.

  • Rinse grains thoroughly with filtered water
  • Lay them on a piece of unbleached parchment paper in a safe location. 
  • Dry at room temperature for 3 to 5 days, depending on humidity and room temperature. Or, use a dehydrator as long as the grains do not get heated above 85°F.*
  • Place dried milk kefir grains in a ziploc bag; add a small amount of powdered milk.
  • Store in refrigerator for up to 6 months.
  • When ready to make kefir again, rehydrate the grains according to the instructions that came with the culture originally, or follow the activation instructions for milk kefir grains on our website.

*Note: The aroma of drying milk kefir grains is often unpleasant.


Ready for Recipes to Use Up Extra Milk Kefir?



Open refrigerator containing eggs, milk, and produce

Related Articles


Related Products

Milk Kefir Grains Milk Kefir Grains
Milk Kefir Starter Kit Milk Kefir Starter Kit
The Art of Fermentation The Art of Fermentation

Free eBook Library Access & Weekly Newsletter

Sign up today for free access to our entire library of easy to follow eBooks on creating cultured foods at home, including Lacto-Fermentation, Kombucha, Kefir, Yogurt, Sourdough, and Cheesemaking.
  • Library of eBooks for making your own cultured foods
  • Weekly newsletter filled with tips & tricks
  • Expert advice articles, recipes, and how-to videos
  • Join 180,000+ other health-conscious readers
  • We never share your information!
first name last name email address

Updating your cart...