This sweet-tart Cherry Hibiscus Kombucha is a refreshing treat any time of the year! Made with fresh or frozen cherries.
Making your own kombucha is rewarding and fun. There are so many flavor combinations to try and it saves you a lot of money if you drink it daily.
Here I combined sweet-tart cherries and sweet-tart homemade hibiscus kombucha. Hibiscus tastes a lot like cranberry juice if you've never had it before.
A cherry recipe to try is my Cherry Banana Fruit Leather recipe.
Two Types of Fermentation
The first fermentation of kombucha is when you combine sweetened tea, a kombucha scoby, and some starter tea. You let it ferment for 7-21 days and the result is uncarbonated unflavored kombucha.
For the second fermentation, you remove the scoby and take that kombucha you made in the first fermentation and add flavor. You let it ferment for another 3-5 days in sealed bottles. The result is a fizzy-flavored drink.
You can ferment the flavored kombucha up to 14 days. It all depends on the amount of sugar content in the flavor you're adding, and the temperature of the room.
Warmer temperatures will cause faster fermentation, and higher sugar content will also speed up fermentation.
What Makes Kombucha Fizzy?
The second fermentation is when kombucha gets fizzy. By putting it into a sealed container at room temperature and adding a sugar source (fruit and/or sweetener), carbon dioxide builds.
- Homemade hibiscus kombucha: You'll need freshly made hibiscus kombucha that has not been refrigerated yet. You might also like my Cherry Kombucha recipe, which is made with kombucha made with black tea.
- Cherries: I used frozen cherries because that is what I always have on hand. You can use frozen or fresh cherries.
To see the full list of ingredients with measurements and instructions, see the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Smush ½ cup of fresh or frozen cherries into each bottle. Pour your freshly fermented hibiscus kombucha into the bottles, leaving 1-2" head space. Let sit 3-5 days.
- Pop open the lids at least once a day. Pressure builds, and this allows it to escape.
The video below is for homemade kombucha with black tea, but the process is the same:
Should I Burp My Second Ferment Kombucha?
Yes! If you don't you could have a mess. By adding sugar to the homemade kombucha and fermenting it a second time in bottles with swing-top lids, you're creating an environment for carbonation. If you don't allow it to escape, you'll have kombucha all over your kitchen.
How Long Does It Take To Get Fizzy Kombucha?
It can take anywhere from 1-14 days. It depends on a few things.
- It depends on how much sugar you have in the kombucha. (Sugar in the form of fruit and/or sweetener.) The more sugar, the faster you'll get carbonation.
- It also depends on the weather. Warmer temperature = faster carbonation. I've had bubbly kombucha after a day in summer months and bubbly kombucha after a week in colder months.
- Strain the cherries out after fermenting, if desired.
- Use bottles with swing-top lids! Mason jars and store-bought kombucha bottles that have the seal broken won't hold carbonation.
- You can add maple syrup, agave syrup, brown sugar, white sugar, or another sweetener.
- Refrigerate after the kombucha is done fermenting.
5 Secrets To Making Kombucha
Kombucha just got easier!
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Cherry Hibiscus Kombucha
- 4 (25 ounce) bottles with flip top lids or other air tight bottles
- Measuring cup
- 12 cups hibiscus kombucha
- 2 cups cherries
- Pour smushed cherries into 4 (25 ounce) bottles with flip top lids or other air tight bottles. (½ cup cherries will go into each bottle.)
- Using a funnel, pour freshly made hibiscus kombucha into each bottle leaving 1-2" head space.
- Let bottles sit out (at 75° - 85°) 3-5 days, making sure to pop the lids each day (or a few times a day) to let out the pressure of the carbon dioxide. Taste each day to test its flavor and fizziness.
- Refrigerate when you are happy with the amount of fizz and flavor.
*Note: Nutrition information should be considered an estimate only. Different nutrition calculators give you different results.