Choosing the Best Water Kefir Ingredients

 

The sugar and water used to make water kefir can affect the flavor and carbonation level of the finished product and may affect the health of the grains as well.

If your water kefir is too sweet for your taste or too flat after bottling the finished water kefir, try a different type of sugar.

If your water kefir grains do not appear to be active, you may simply need mineral supplementation or a different sugar and water combination. Please contact Customer Support for assistance in making adjustments.

Choosing a Sugar for Making Water Kefir

 

 Type of Sugar  Description  Results
Refined white sugar

Pure white, free of minerals

Makes a sweet water kefir
Organic Cane Juice Crystals Less refined than white sugar; very low mineral content Makes a sweet water kefir

Turbinado or     Raw Sugar

Sugar that is spun to have most of the molasses removed. Slightly less refined than OCJC; medium mineral content

 
Makes a less sweet water kefir than white sugar or OCJC
Rapadura or Sucanat

Sugar cane juice that has been pressed and dried; high mineral content

Makes a stronger-flavored water kefir
Brown Sugar

White sugar with molasses added back; high mineral content

Makes a stronger-flavored water kefir
Coconut Palm Sugar

Sugar extracted and dried from coconut palm trees; very high mineral content

Too rich for water kefir; can damage water kefir grains; Use small amounts only in combination with cane sugar. 
Honey Natural sugar from bees; high in mineral content  Raw honey has its own bacteria that can compete with water kefir grains; some honey is contaminated with high fructose corn syrup; NOT recommended
Molasses  Very high mineral content Molasses used on its own can be damaging to water kefir grains; use only ½ as mineral supplementation, as needed.

Agave, stevia, monk fruit, Splenda

 
Sugar substitutes  Will not provide food for the water kefir grains. NOT recommended

 

Choosing a Water Source for Making Water Kefir

Water kefir grains may benefit from water sources with higher mineral content. Some water sources such as well water or spring water can be naturally high in mineral content and are ideal for making kefir. 

On the other hand, distilled water, reverse osmosis water and water which has been filtered through an activated carbon filter (such as a Britta or Pur) often have extremely low or non-existent mineral levels. If using one of these types of water, and your water kefir grains seem sluggish or inactive, it may help to either use a high mineral sugar (see above) or add a mineral supplement to your water.

Some options for adding minerals include:

  • ⅛ teaspoon unrefined sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon plain baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon unsulfured blackstrap molasses
  • A few drops of liquid mineral supplement (such as Concentrace)
  • Sterilized, crushed eggshell (place in a muslin bag to keep the shells from getting mixed with the water kefir grains)


If using tap water, we do recommend filtering the water to remove as many additives, chemicals and contaminants as possible. If filtering is not possible, aerating or boiling the water for 20 minutes may remove at least the chlorine. Letting the water stand for 24 hours will also allow the chlorine to evaporate. Chloramines must be filtered. Fluoride must be removed by filters designed to remove fluoride.

Click here for more information on Choosing the Right Water for Culturing.

 

                                                
 SMJ  
Choosing the Best Water Kefir Ingredients


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