What You Get in the Mail:
When you order live water kefir grains from Poseymom, you'll receive 1/4 cup of active grains, double bagged, heat sealed, and shipped in a box.
It's best to open and start growing your kefir right away. You can put the double-bagged grains in the fridge for up to 7 days for guaranteed freshness. The earlier you get started, the better.
Supplies You'll Need:
- 1/4 cup of sugar. You can use any kind of sugar, although we always use brown sugar because of the natural mineral content.
- Added mineral supply: Your choice of ONE of the following options: (Only use one of these at a time. It's best to rotate your mineral supply every few batches, for healthier grains over time.)
- A tablespoon of molasses
- A pinch of sea salt
- A pinch of baking soda
- One cleaned eggshell
- One squirt of trace minerals
- A couple of raisins
- One 1-quart jar
- One rubber band
- A coffee filter, or something similar, such as a cheese cloth or sturdy paper towel
- One quart of spring or boiled-and-cooled-tap water. Filtered, distilled, or R/O water NOT recommended.
- One fine mesh strainer (NOT metal). This needs to be a fine strainer, not a colander used for noodles.
- Wooden or plastic stirring spoon. (Not metal.)
Your First Batch
On your first batch, as well as all future batches, you'll want to follow these steps...
- Prepare your water. In a pot, heat the water slightly and mix in your sugar and mineral supply of choice (from list above). Stir to melt and mix in the sugar completely, and then let the water completely cool before the next step.
- Empty the entire contents of the kefir package (all the grains, and any juices in the bags) into your empty quart jar. Then, fill the jar up to about the 3/4 mark with your water-sugar-mineral mixture. Stir gently with your NON-METAL spoon.
- Cover the jar with your coffee filter and use the rubber band to seal it. Put the jar in a warm (like 78-82 degrees) place that gets light but not direct sunlight. If the jar is in a cool place, the kefir will still grow, but much more slowly. (Example location: You can place your kefir jar in a north-facing window, so the grains will get plenty of light and warmth, but no direct sunlight. DIRECT SUNLIGHT IS VERY BAD!)
- Leave the jar there for 48 hours. You may want to gently stir after 24 hours, but this isn't required.
- After 48 hours, strain your kefir grains out. Keep the strained juice in a container of your choice.
Now your kefir grains are ready to repeat the process, back at Step One above, to start your second batch.
NOTE: We send LIVE water kefir grains in the mail with a bit of sugary juice to keep them active. However, in some cases, the grains may go into a sort of hibernation cycle during the shipping process. So you first batch or two may not perform as well as you'd expect. It may take a few batches for the grains to reactivate and completely ferment the water. You'll know the grains are not completely active if the water, after 48 hours, is still sugary sweet, syrupy, and not fermented. Just change the water and start a new batch, pouring the unfermented water down the drain.
What You Can Do with the Juice
You can drink the strained juice right away, if you'd like. Many people like to cool it in the fridge. For a great taste, try leaving a container of strained juice in the fridge for up to 7 days. But be careful! The juice will continue to ferment, even without the grains. So the taste will change with time.
Flavored Water Kefir Recipes
- Creamy Ginger Spice: After 24 hours of fermentation with just ginger, strain the kefir, take the liquid and add ½ Tb. vanilla extract and 1 cinnamon stick per quart. Let sit for another 24 hours on the counter, or 24-48 in the fridge. Tighten the lid for more fizz! Serve cold with whip cream on top. Or add some scoops of caramel vanilla ice cream for a delicious float!
- Lime Pineapple: After 24 hours of fermentation with a slice of lime (instead of lemon), strain the kefir, take the liquid and add a half cup pineapple chunks per quart, squeeze in the lime juice and discard the lime slice. Let sit for another 24 hours on the counter, or 24-48 in the fridge.
- Raspberry Mango: After 24 hours of fermentation, strain the kefir, take the liquid and add ¼ cup mango (or similar tropical fruit juice) per quart. Add in ½ cup raspberries. Let sit for another 24 hours on the counter, or 24-48 in the fridge. Tighten the lid for more fizz!
- Strawberry Lemon: After 24 hours of fermentation, strain the kefir, take the liquid and add 1/2 cup purred strawberries and squeeze out the juice from the lemon into it. Add a couple whole strawberries if desired as well. Let sit for another 24 hours on the counter, or 24-48 in the fridge. If this is too tart, add in some sugar or honey at the end to taste.
- Cola Cherry: After 24 hours of fermentation of just sugar and grains, strain the kefir, take the liquid and add ¼ cup cherry juice per quart. Add a couple whole cherries if desired as well. Let sit for another 24 hours on the counter, or 24-48 in the fridge. Mix in sugar to taste if desired.
After your first few batches you will notice that your kefir grains grow rapidly (considering you take good care of them). You can do four things with the extra grains:
- Eat them! They are very nutritious, packed with many beneficial probiotic bacteria. You can add them to your smoothies if you wish.
- Short-term storage – you can store water kefir grains in sugary water in the refrigerator for up to a week. The cold temperature will slow down their growth. Just make sure to rinse and change their water on weekly basis.
- Long-term storage – you can put the extra grains in a glass jar and freeze them. They can last for about 6 months or longer. Keep in mind that it may take a few batches to revive them after they’ve been frozen. They should be fine after that.
- Share them! As you accumulate more water kefir grains, just share the joy of making water kefir with family and friends. Give them your extra grains and teach them how to make their own natural “soda” at home.