Delicious home brewed hops kombucha with a combination of aromatic pine, citrus, and floral notes full of gut-healthy probiotics.
Do you enjoy kombucha? I love the stuff now but I haven’t always enjoyed it. The first time I took a sip of kombucha was several years ago as I sat in the car in a parking lot of Flagstaff, Arizona.
It tasted like… dirty towels. 😖😣 Ugh, I simply didn’t find it favorable at all.
Thankfully I gave it another try and I’m glad I did because there is an exciting world of kombucha flavors that have made me swoon for the drink.
Commercially made kombucha can be found in most grocers – even Walmart carries several brands of the ever popular probiotic drink. You can occasionally even get samples of the stuff at Costco if you go on the right day.
Find everything from rose kombucha to lemon ginger, peach pineapple, even basil kombucha. In most cases, the kombucha flavor is so incredibly good that you wouldn’t even realize you are drinking kombucha.
Centennial hops give this kombucha a hint of citrusy beer without being too overpowering. If you are looking for an additional flavor profile, orange is a natural fit.
When you’re ready to make hops kombucha you can take one of several avenues. Use dry hops or pellets or create a simple syrup by boiling the hops to extract more flavor.
Hops tend to run a little bitter, and boiling them results in a much bitter kombucha than I like to have. So I typically add .25 oz of dry hops to a gallon of brewed kombucha after the first ferment (1F). The dry hops sit in that kombucha anywhere from 1-3 days as a second ferment (2F).
They are then strained out and the kombucha is poured into swing top bottles for a 3-4+ day ferment there.
Some helpful links:
- Don’t have a kombucha SCOBY? Learn how to make your own kombucha SCOBY from scratch.
- You can find a gallon glass kombucha jar on Amazon. It’s best to buy in a pair (2) – one for first ferment and one for second ferment.
- Yakima Valley Hops is a great source for a variety of hops to flavor your kombucha. I prefer Centennial hops but Cascade hops would be a great choice too.
- Once you have a kombucha SCOBY, learn how to make your first few brews of kombucha.
- gallon glass jar (for initial brew)
- clean cotton cloth and rubberband (for first brew)
- gallon glass jar and lid (for second ferment)
- swing top drinking jars (for bottling)
- plastic strainer (no metal)
- 1 C organic cane sugar
- 8 organic black tea bags
- 2 C previous brew kombucha or vinegar
- 14 C water
- 1 kombucha SCOBY culture
- .25 oz dry cone hops Centennial, Cascade, etc.
- Bring 3 C of water to a boil. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Toss in the tea bags.
- Add the additional water (9 C) and allow the mixture to cool. Remove the tea bags and pour the sweetened tea into a clean glass jar.
- Add the 2 C of previous brew kombucha (or use vinegar) and add the kombucha SCOBY. Cover with a cheesecloth and rubberband.*
- Cover the jar with cloth, secure with a rubber band and place in a warm spot. The time it needs to brew may vary greatly - anywhere from 7-10 days should be sufficient (at a temp of 75 degrees). Winter batches may take a little longer. You can taste your brew by taking out a little bit with a clean straw or spoon.
- Once the brew has reached the perfect taste, bottle for a second ferment. Remove the SCOBY and set aside in a large bowl - taking care to cover for the time being. Remove 2 C. of kombucha and save for a future batch. To the remaining kombucha, add the dry hops (.25 oz). Place the plastic lid on the gallon kombucha jar and set to the rear of the counter away from sunlight in a warm place.
- Allow the hops to infuse that second brew for 2 days, give it a shake a few times each day. The hops should float on the top and sort of expand.
- After 2 days and with clean hands, remove the hops and discard. Strain the hops kombucha using a fine mesh strainer and funnel into your swing top bottles, filling 3/4 full. Continue with the remaining kombucha until you have 5-6 bottles. Optional: before sealing, feel free to add a small 2" strip of fresh orange peel. Close up the bottle and leave them out on the counter at room temperature for 3-4 days. This will help increase the carbonation.
- Place in the refrigerator and consume at your leisure.**
What’s your favorite flavor to brew up in kombucha? And have you tried Hops Kombucha before? If not, give it a whirl.. you might find that it’s your new favorite.
If you give this recipe a try, please leave a comment, and rate the recipe!