Strawberry-Rhubarb Kombucha

strawberry-rhubarb kombucha

I really like our homemade kombucha. I like everything about it: The giant crocks visibly fermenting in the kitchen, the routine of bottling and refreshing the tea weekly/bi-weekly, drinking a cold one every night and feeling that good bacteria work its magic, and my favorite part of all, experimenting with different flavors for the second ferment. Especially if the flavors are seasonal.

This spring, I just happened to stumble into what I can safely say is my newest favorite flavor for bottling: strawberry-rhubarb.

We just happen to have a rhubarb plant growing in a container in our backyard, and a very small, somewhat neglected patch of strawberries growing in a shady spot near the property line between us and our neighbors. So as I was puttering outside in the backyard with my kids a few weeks ago, getting inspired by all the plants that were popping up in the yard, it clicked to me to try this quintessential spring flavor combination with my kombucha, and it did not disappoint.

I tried it and immediately had to share it with my husband and daughter. And my friends. And they loved it too, and said I should could sell this stuff at the store. But I really can’t, because it’s too good not to guzzle down myself. So here’s the recipe. Go forth and make your own.

Step one: make a rhubarb simple syrup

1 cup chopped rhubarb
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

Place all ingredients in a saucepan. Turn to medium high and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to help dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat and let sit until it comes to room temperature. Pour into a mason jar (including the bits of rhubarb) and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. It should keep for up to a week.

Step two: make a strawberry-rhubarb puree

All your rhubarb simple syrup
1-2 cups strawberries, fresh or frozen
1-2 cups kombucha

Place all your rhubarb simple syrup in a blender with the strawberries. Add kombucha and blend just until smooth. Add a bit more kombucha if your mixture is too thick.

Step three: bottle

Pour 2-3 oz of the strawberry-rhubarb puree into each brewing bottle. Top off with kombucha until it fills just the bottom 1/3rd of the neck. Pop on your snaplock lids to seal, and keep out of direct sunlight for 3-7 days, making sure to burp your bottles daily.


Continuous Brew Kombucha

I’ve been making kombucha at home for a long time, but it wasn’t until we switched from the batch method to continuous brew a couple years back that I began to incorporate the practice of brewing, fermenting, bottling, experimenting with flavors, and - of course - drinking it daily into my routine. Kombucha can be a time consuming beverage to keep up with, but it’s so worth it to make at home, and I’m especially reminded of this now as we enter spring with a whole new world of flavor possibilities growing right outside the door.


Last week, I harvested some lilacs from our lilac tree, rinsed them under cool water, removed the blossoms and sprinkled them with a big scoop of organic cane sugar to make a quick lilac-infused simple syrup. A couple days later, I did the same with a few stalks of rhubarb that were growing in a container near the fence gate.

This week, the kombucha crocks were ready to bottle, so I combined the simple syrups with some ingredients found in the kitchen. I could have used the simple syrups alone to flavor my bottles, but I decided I wanted to pair the rhubarb with strawberries (strawberry-rhubarb is one of my all-time favorite spring flavors) and the lilac syrup with a bit of orange juice concentrate.


I don’t know how either flavors will turn out. I guess we’ll see once the bottles are ready to crack open in a few days, but it doesn’t really matter if they’re good or bad. It’s all part of the fun.

And since we’re on the subject, I made a video last year talking about some of my kombucha tips and tricks. Check it out below: