Flavoring Kombucha & How to Make Kombucha Fizzy Flavoring Kombucha & How to Make Kombucha Fizzy
March 5, 2021
by Olena

Flavoring Kombucha & How to Make Kombucha Fizzy

by Olena

Hi-hi. Doesn’t this kombucha look like Shirley Temple?! Just so much better for you!

After making kombucha from scratch, I was quite a happy camper without much desire to make kombucha fizzy. However (there is always “a however” or “but”), once I dropped a few pieces of fresh ginger in a bottle and let kombucha ferment overnight – there was no way back. Next day, I was drinking ginger ale without sugar full of probiotics. And what happened next was even more mind blowing – my kids LOVED fruit flavoured kombucha. That was a life changing day because they wouldn’t go near plain one.

Before we talk about flavoring kombucha and how to make fizzy kombucha, I would like to stress the simplicity of entire “kombucha business” one more time – it is extremely simple process and you do not need to sterilize anyone with anything, as long as you are a reasonably clean human being. You know what I mean, right?!

By the way, current summer kombucha situation – 2 glass dispensers. It is a major production here.

How to Make Kombucha Fizzy

Isn’t “she” a beauty?! You can create all these bubbles all by yourself.

  1. Brew: Make your own kombucha.
  2. Bottle: Pour it into tight seal cap bottles (you can buy them at Ikea or on Amazon), leaving only an index finger length room at the top (see photo below).
  3. Flavour: Add approximately 1/3 – 1/2 cup pureed fresh or frozen fruit/berries of choice. To puree fruit, add it to a blender with some kombucha from the bottle, puree and pour back into the bottle.
  4. Ferment: Close bottles tightly and let sit overnight or if you do it in the morning watch the magic to unfold throughout the day. Second fermentation (build up of CO2) begins as soon as you add fruit – bacteria in kombucha will start “eating” natural sugars in fruit (berries) and your kombucha will start getting some colour. It looks so beautiful, like the most vibrant artificial coloured drink yet it’s completely natural and healthy. Mother nature is amazing!
  5. Let Gas Out: “Burp” the bottles 12 hours later and after that once a day, if it’s too hot – twice a day. This is very important step as CO2 builds up and if you don’t burp the bottles for a few days, they might explode. Again, this is very rare and is yet to happen to me. It almost did when I added too much mango to one particular bottle and it was over 86 F in the kitchen at night, so during those hot summer days basically. To “burp” kombucha, simply place bottle in the sink, cover with a dish cloth and start opening the cap slowly and letting CO2 out. It is OK if it leaks, you can just rinse it off. Just do it slowly and you will be fine.
  6. Store and Enjoy: Store kombucha on a counter if you plan on consuming it within 1-2 days after it’s ready. After that, refrigerate and consume within maximum 2 days. It is important to understand the following: fermentation process keeps going after kombucha is ready (tasty). Its speed depends on type of fruit used (low vs. high sugar content) and temperature (outside, time of the year, fridge or counter). Eventually, more and more alcohol develops and kombucha tastes accordingly, more sour and boozy. I’m looking into making moonshine kombucha now, don’t worry, but for now please keep an eye on the taste and time, and store accordingly. I have to say that for us on hot summer days I do not need to place kombucha in the fridge, cooler days – we drink it slower. Another option is to flavour as you need – drain plain kombucha into bottles, refrigerate, then flavor the night before the day you want to drink it – checking weather forecast helps.

Now let’s get to flavoring kombucha combinations and ideas.

Flavoring Kombucha

When it comes to kombucha flavors, it is a matter of personal preference, your geographical location and endless-endless combinations. Here are some that I have tried and we loved. Just to clarify – you add fruit (flavor) right after bottling to make kombucha fizzy – that is what makes kombucha fizzy.

  1. Ginger Kombucha: Peel and slice a few inches of fresh ginger and add to a bottle. Believe it or not, you do not need to add fruit to make ginger kombucha fizzy – ginger is enough. I usually buy organic fresh ginger, peel, cut into chunks and freeze in a sandwich bag. This way pricey ginger not from China doesn’t go bad and I always have it on hand. 
  2. Mango Kombucha: Puree 1/2 cup fresh or frozen mango (see which one I buy on my Costco shopping list) along with some kombucha in a blender and pour back into the bottle.
  3. Pineapple Kombucha (Kids’ Favourite): Puree 1/2 cup fresh or frozen pineapple along with some kombucha in a blender and pour back into the bottle.
  4. Raspberry Kombucha (Kids’ Favourite): Drop 1/3 cup of frozen or fresh raspberries into the bottle. To serve, add a few slices of lime and you are in heaven.
  5. Orange (Mandarin) Kombucha: Add small pieces of peel and a few chopped segments (all of mandarin) to the bottle.
  6. Rhubarb Kombucha: Dice 1/3 cup fresh or frozen rhubarb and add to the bottle.
  7. Cherry Chia Kombucha: This one is the bomb dot com. In a jug, combine 4 cups kombucha tea, 1/3 cup fresh or frozen cherries and 3 tbsp chia seeds. Stir with a long wooden spoon every 15 minutes a few times. Cover and let sit on a counter for 5-6 hours. I haven’t tried making it in a bottle for the fear of never being able to wash it properly and kombucha still turned out fizzy. Just stir before serving.
  8. Lime Kombucha: Squeeze a few generous size lime slices into a glass with black tea kombucha and ice. This simple combo will blow your mind on a hot summer day, forget iced tea!

Tips on Flavoring and Making Kombucha Fizzy

  1. Length of fermentation will depend on the temperature in your kitchen (usually time of the year). Burp bottles and taste kombucha every day. On hot days, fermentation takes 1 day, in cooler weather – 2 days. As soon as you like the taste, place kombucha in the fridge, otherwise fruit will keep fermenting kombucha further and make it sour.
  2. Adjust taste with more fruit or plain kombucha, play it by ear and don’t be scared to experiment. If you are a home cook, you can flavour kombucha.
  3. To wash the bottles, fill them up with warm water right away and wash as following when ready – add a bit of baking soda, a bit of hot water and shake-shake-shake. That’s it.
  4. I have tried making kombucha fizzy with juice and raisins, and very minimal fizz has developed.
  5. You can serve kombucha with ice and garnishes of your choice.
  6. You can add vodka!:)

But still the most mind blowing part to me is that my kids now drink fizzy kombucha and call it healthy pop (it does taste like one). I am yet to meet a child who drinks plain kombucha, so flavoring kombucha is the only way to make your kid drink load of probiotics.

Why are probiotics so good for us?

In short, probiotics are good bacteria essential to our gut’s health. And I’m sure you have heard it many times – health starts in our gut. Overall to be healthy, we need to keep immune system strong and probiotics are a huge part of it. I think it is pretty easy to understand.

Be healthy! What’s next? Kombucha smoothie?!


71 comments on “Flavoring Kombucha & How to Make Kombucha Fizzy

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  1. I’ve been making Kombucha for a few years but I have never stored them in the fridge. I’ve always put them in Grolsch bottles in a dark part of my kitchen (right now I have them stored in a dishwasher that I’m not using!). I really enjoyed your detailed instructions on adding fruits etc and will be trying this. I’ve learned a lot and really appreciate all the tips and tricks you’ve shared!

  2. This is a very comprehensive list!
    I am wondering if you have ever used beet kvass to flavor your kombucha? It’s a great flavor boost and tastes a bit like deep red wine.

  3. 5 stars
    I just started a batch of kombucha. I was very nervous until I read your recipe, your comments and your flavors. I am so excited and can hardly wait now!! Thank you for making this easy!!!

  4. A friend taught me how to make kombucha and the first 2-3 batches turned out well. But then a batch developed large white mold rings in the top. I threw that batch out. The next batch developed a wrinkled scum-like coating on the top with dozens of tiny white dots of mold, so I threw that batch out. I also threw that scoby out in case it was contaminated and my friend gave me another one. But before I make another batch, I’m trying to figure out what I did wrong so it doesn’t happen again. Have been reading on several sites how to make it and these are the only things I can think of.
    #1-I used paper towels on the top of the jar as it sat (but so do my friends) instead of a cloth or coffee filter (Does this matter?).
    #2-I did not cover it with a dark cloth as it sat on the counter (does this matter?).
    #3-The first bad batch I forgot to use regular sugar and used Truvia instead. But the second bad batch I went back to sugar.
    Also, with the batches I made that turned out good, I poured it into a pitcher without a lid, and put in fridge. Most recipes, I see, says to put it in air tight bottles – what are those bottles called?
    Finally – I’ve never liked tea so have never made it for myself (ie: wasn’t familiar with how to make it), but I like the taste of kombucha. After I made the tea and let it sit to cool off, when I took the tea bags out, I squeezed them out into the tea liquid. Is this a no-no? Should I have just lifted the bags out? Does this make a difference?

    1. #1-no. #2-no. #3 – you have to use sugar only. second batch was made with scoby from 1st batch though. squeezing tea bags doesn’t matter. bottles are only for keeping kombucha fresh and more fizzy. airtight cap bottles. Also I recommend to google kombucha mold and see what it looks like to make sure it was mold, then make fresh batch following the recipe. should work. good luck!

  5. 5 stars
    My granddaughter loves kombucha, but at $4-5 per bottle she couldn’t afford it often. I made her some raspberry and she couldn’t believe that it wasn’t store-bought. Cherry chia is next along with ginger. In the spring I’m going to try rhubarb. The possibilities are endless. Thank you!

  6. 5 stars
    Just made a bottle of ginger and a bottle of blackberry flavoured Kombucha and they are awesome! Thanks so much for including the info on flavours and fizziness. Takes a lot of the guesswork out of it. Cheers! Dorothy

  7. Is there a way to keep kombucha longer then 2 days. I own a tea bar and I am looking to maybe have it as an option

    1. Yes, if you remove fruit after 2nd fermentation and refrigerate. Certain flavors keep longer like raspberry and ginger vs. lavender, for example. Then you experiment with others.

  8. Hi.
    I’m making the first fermentation here (as we speak) and this is my first go at homemade kombucha. I’m thinking on flavouring some of the kombucha on the second fermentation and this is where my question comes in: if I were to infuse with an Ikea pop bottle, how do I clean out the bottle. Like how am I gonna take out the fruits or lemon slice that I have forced into the bottle once I’m done??

  9. Hello! Enjoyed reading your post. My first batch is fermenting “as we speak”. Quick question: I’ve heard not to use herbal teas, but will decaffeinated black/green teas work? I’m pretty sensitive to caffeine and would like to make a decaffeinated variety that I can drink throughout the day (and night)

    1. Yes, you are right. You can’t use herbal teas. I have never tried it with decaffeinated varieties of black or green tea, but from the research I did, others have been successful with it. Happy kombucha making!

  10. Is it possibly to keep flavoured kombucha for longer if you remove the fruits? Will that stop further fermentation? I’m the only one in my house who will drink it so I’m trying to figure out how to make it last longer!

  11. Thanks very much for your advice and help, i am going to try to put fruit in the bottles, we have been drinking plain fizzy kombucha, but it is very boring so I am going to take your advice and try the fruity kombucha. Thank you very much. ?

  12. I have been drinking Kombucha Tea for about 35 years. I love it. I use Green Tea and Jasmine Tea, 4 tea bags of each in a gallon. I also flavor it with fresh ginger. It is great.

  13. 5 stars
    Can I add a little honey to the last stage?
    Thank you so much for sharing – scoby grew beautifully and the first fermentation went great. Just flavoured the batch with grated ginger! Tasted delicious! Now I’ll wait for the fizz magic!

    1. So happy scoby growing process worked out for you, Beverly! I have never tried adding honey. You mean to final kombucha? I would try with small amount and see what happens. If you want real real fizz magic try raspberries.:) Enjoy!

  14. Have you ever used culinary essential oils, like lavender, for flavoring?? One of my favorite store bought kombucha’s is a lemon lavender flavor, so I’m curious!!
    I’m attempting your scoby recipe right now, so I have some time to consider flavor options 🙂

    1. I haven’t but you can test with a small amount of kombucha, why not?! I added real lavender I snipped on someone’s front yard during my evening walk and it was awesome!:) Let me know if you have any questions about SCOBY, tag me in a photo on Instagram if you want me to check out the progress.

      1. Hi there, I just finished my scooby growing process and have transfered to a gallon pitcher with fresh tea. If I understand, I just leave this batch for 7-10 days then I can flavor and bottle correct.?

  15. I am so glad I found your recipes on Pinterest. I have been wanting to make the fizzy and flavored kombucha but the recipes I had found made it pretty scary. I love how you have simplified the process, thank you so much! I told my husband so he is looking forward to homemade kombucha. He is also looking forward to you posting a recipe for making moonshine kombucha! Again thank you for sharing!

    1. 🙂 Enjoy! For the moonshine kombucha, just leave sweet fruit (I tried cherries and it was awesome) to sit in the bottle for more than a few days. It’s important to burp them once or twice a day (depending on temperature outside). The longer it sits, the more alcohol develops. You just have to experiment. Then you can mix it a bit with more vodka and ice in your glass.:)

  16. This whole series makes me giggle like a 15 year old! I’ve found it so satisfying, the excitement you have created in readers who might otherwise never have tried, with your simple, clear instructions.

    And you know what else Olena? Your stunning photography makes the your brand of kombucha so tempting and alluring that even if a reader had never heard of such a thing, they’d just have to try in order to taste such a beautiful thing!

    Look at what you are doing! I love the message you are spreading, it is carrying and creating excitement! Not to mention how really tasty and wonderful this stuff actually is! I hardly have a beer or wine any more at all. Kombucha is just as satisfying for me now!

    1. Hi Laurel. Awe, thank you. I just love kombucha and simplicity of making it blows my mind, and I see so much interest from people and at same time sheer fear and panic to make it. Makes me wanna take everyone by hand, bring into my kitchen and show how easy it is. I just want to help people be healthy, it’s so easy, really, and not to waste hard earned money. People work so hard today and barely do anything for fun. And kombucha tastes SO GOOD!!! I love it!!! Seeing people taking care of themselves makes my heart sing, and seeing the opposite – I am crying inside. I wish I could save the world. Well, I am, kind of, with this blog. I love helping. I love kombucha!!! We barely get sick and even if we do the symptoms are very mild and we spring back to normal within a day. Food IS medicine. My boys play street hockey, basketball etc. with sports bottles filled with kombucha and ice. Makes my heart so full they are not on devices and not sipping on Gatorade or soda, the way life was, simple and healthy, the way childhood should be! I wanna share it all and inspire.
      I love it! It is so hot now and all we drink is iced kombucha really. It is very satisfying and with age interest in alcohol really subsides, in majority of people. Have a great weekend, my friend!!!

      1. Thanks Olena, our weekend will be laid back, I cooked ahead so we could take long drives and just enjoy the company of each other!

        It truly is amazing how choosing to eat and drink delicious, healthy clean foods can turn our health around! At first we are a bit overzealous and get pretty carried away, (I did anyway) but then we find that sweet spot that works! I still keep sugar out of my life due to a medical issue, but gosh, some organic things that I can’t find or fit into our budget I now enjoy without worry and remember what I was eating before, LoL!

        Your children are being given the best gift any mother can hand them in starting them off with such lovely nutrition and a balanced childhood of sports and family time activities! And enough exceptions of sidewalk ice cream vendors and other ‘regular’ indulgences so that they never feel as if they were raised as kids who were deprived.

        I admire so much of what you are accomplishing and I know it is not easy!

  17. Olena, I’m following your footsteps in cutting out wine and have been treating myself to store-bought kombucha. It’s crazy expensive so I want to try my own. I’m scared. Honest question…if I goof it up, what is the worst thing that can happen? I really want to make Ginger kombucha!!! Thanks,,Dana

    1. Hi Dana. Nice to hear from you. Just so you know I still drink wine on the weekend occasionally (not every weekend), not during the week though haha. I also like 1.5 bottles of beer now because it is twice less alcohol than wine and no headache. That’s on wine.
      Kombucha. The worst thing that will happen for you is nothing will happen, as in SCOBY won’t grow and just an old tea will be sitting on a counter. When I first tried and bought dehydrated SCOBY, it was sitting in that sweet tea for a month on my counter and even mold didn’t grow but nothing happened either. So, worst comes to worst you waste $3, then come back here and we troubleshoot. But I can guarantee you 99% your SCOBY will grow if you follow my recipe.:) I had like 5 ladies already reporting back with successful SCOBY babies now.:) You really have nothing to lose – go have fun and experiment, it feels like back in high school in a chemistry lab.:)

      1. 5 stars
        Hi Olena,
        I followed your recipe and cultivated a SCOBY successfully. Now just waiting to tap. I used high-grade pu’er tea which I happened to have and discovered it gives the original kombucha much depth, body, and flavor. I will try flavoring later but will probably use a different tea.
        Thank you for sharing your recipe.
        -Jane S/Medford, MA, USA

  18. 5 stars
    CHEERS to the SCOBY midwife!! haha! I’m absolutely stoked about the flavors! You got me at “vodka”… let me just say O-M-G! What a brilliant idea!!! I wish I had creativity like that! I bow to you kombucha queen! =)

    1. Bahaha, yeah I’m clearly in need of pouring my “baby vibes” somewhere. SCOBIES around the world work.
      Well, one day I looked at my green tea kombucha and it totally reminded me Red Bull which is so popular to mix with vodka. So here you go. Enjoy! I will be updating flavours as I try them out throughout summer.

    1. Ahem, mom makes kombucha or store bought? 🙂 How about teaching your maid to make kombucha for all of you? It’s really good for your dad!

      1. she makes it, she has her probiotics farm (or however it’s called).
        i definitely teach the maid, will do in summer

  19. You are the best! I have been wanting to make my own kombucha, but it seemed like advanced chemistry until I read your articles. I believe I can do this! I’ve learned so much from you, thank you!

    1. You totally can do it! I have had at least 5 people successfully reporting it worked. I’m scared myself when I read others articles, still. Everything is way simpler. I just think no one wants liability therefore all this sterilization etc., we are in America at the end of the day. You are welcome and glad I’m spreading the health sprinkles.:)

  20. I’m just waiting for my scoby to finish growing (as per your other post) and then I’ll be onto adding ginger :-)) and fruit!!! When you add frozen fruit, Olena,do you thaw it first? I’m wondering if the temperature would be too cold if I put frozen fruit into the kombucha???? Many thanks for this and your other recipes – they’re great! Cheers, WendyHT

    1. Yay, I feel like a SCOBY midwife haha. No need to thaw, just purée it frozen with some kombucha. You are very welcome and cheers to good bacteria!

  21. 5 stars
    Wonderful stuff for kiddos! Good for you. My favorite for summer is ginger with lemon and a sprig of mint! Also strawberry.

    1. 🙂 I’m waiting for local strawberries to ripen, might be in August after La Nina’s winter. I have heard they create the most fizz. I tried watermelon too.

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