Fizzy coconut water kefir is a lovely drink that can replace sugary drinks in yours or your family’s diet. In this lesson, we’ll show you how to make it in a variety of flavours.
Coconut Kefir & Water Kefir
Water kefir (“keh-fear”) grains — also called sugar kefir, tibicos, tibi, Japanese water crystals — are similar to kefir grains, which are used in dairy milk to make a fermented dairy drink.
In this article I’ll be giving you a recipe for coconut water kefir and water kefir. The first is one you make with coconut water from a young coconut, the second is one you make with filtered water.
Dairy kefir uses different grains (which are not grains like wheat grains – the word is used as it is in a grain of sand) to water kefir. If you want to make the type of coconut kefir that uses the meat from the coconut too, which results in a white kefir, rather than a translucent kefir, I’ll will be adding a video and recipe for that shortly (I’m writing this in April 2019).
Water kefir grains tend to be translucent, whereas milk kefir grains will be whiter, looking a little bit like cauliflower. Because water kefir grains tend to be used in a variety of liquids, they will sometimes appear different colours, depending on the colour of the liquid. So in the video for fizzy coconut kefir below, I use dark molasses and coconut sugar, which turns them brown. If you use white sugar, they’ll turn white.
No two batches of water kefir drink or grains are exactly the same in their bacterial makeup. This also means that you may find some variance in taste between two batches that you make, even with the same grains.
Like kefir grains, water kefir grains are a mix of bacteria and yeasts, which feed on the sugar in many different sugary liquids to produce lactic acid, very small amounts of ethanol (alcohol), and carbon dioxide, which carbonates the drink on the second stage fermentation, as I show in the video.
The main benefit of this process is that probiotics are produced in the final drink. It’s thought these are beneficial to the human intestines, creating an environment that aids digestion.
This is a great TedTalk about the science of your gut. . .
Growing Water Kefir Grains
Water kefir grains cannot be grown from scratch; they have to come from a donor. The good news is that you only need a very small amount to start growing them from that first batch. It seems there is an abundance of kefir grains for sale on eBay. You’ll only get very small amounts, but that’s all you need to start them multiplying.
Here are the instructions for growing kefir grains. The grains need a high amount of sugar to feed on.
Related: Raw Fermentation at Home online course
For making water kefir and growing more grains
- 6 cups spring water
- 1/4 cup water kefir grains
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar or white sugar
- 1 teaspoon blackstrap molasses (optional)
- 1/8 teaspoon sodium bicarbonate
- Place all ingredients in a glass jar and cover with a breathable tight mesh material, such as a nut milk bag.
- Allow to stand at room temperature for up to 48 hours.
- Strain the liquid and reserve the grains.
- The resulting water can be drunk as is or added to smoothies for an extra boost of probiotics. You can also add fruit juice for a second stage fermentation (see recipe below).
- You should notice an increase in the volume of the kefir grains that came out, compared to when you started.
- Repeat this process until you have enough grains to keep this process going and also make coconut kefir.
Young coconut water doesn’t seem to make the kefir grains grow very fast, which I assume is because it doesn’t have much sugar beyond being able to make the coconut water ferment into kefir.
So I like to use the growing kefir grains recipe, then alternate it with the coconut kefir recipe, back and forth each batch. When you team up growing the grains with the recipe on how to make the actual kefir, you should be able to provide your daily kefir requirements on an ongoing basis.
Things to look out for with coconut water kefir
- I used to think you need to rinse the grains after each brew, but now I don’t believe you do. If you are going to rinse them, avoid tap water as it may contain contaminants that harm the grains.
- You can store kefir grains in the fridge in sugar water for up to a week. You can also freeze them for up to 6 months. If you have too many grains, you can add them directly to a smoothie.
- The only metal that can touch your grains is stainless steel, as this is nonreactive metal.
- During fermentation, you’ll see the grains rising and sinking, as they produce gas when growing. This is a good sign.
- To get a fizzy second stage fermentation, you must use a tight-fitting lid on the bottle.
- The water kefir and coconut kefir will keep for several months in the fridge.
- If your grains aren’t reproducing, it’s probably because you’re not using enough sugar in the mixture. Use the recipe for growing the grains, in those amounts, to revive and get your grains going again.
- After freezing the grains, it will take several harvests to get the grains reproducing fully again.
- No matter how comprehensive my instructions here, there are so many variables that this is going to be a try-it-and-see process. This is especially true with the second stage fermentation, where different juices will have varying sugar content, so will react differently. Having said that, by following this process, you’ll have a great start to successful batches of coconut water kefir whenever you want.
Coconut Water Kefir FAQ
Yes! Coconut water kefir is full of beneficial probiotics, which is helpful for your gut, digestion and microbiome.
If you drink too much, it can have that effect, yes.
Start small and build up. Each batch can be slightly different in its potency, but if you start with about 200ml (7ozs) a day you should be good.
It has a slightly zingy lemon taste from the fermentation. It can also be flavoured in the second stage fermentation with fruits like orange, cherry, pineapple, or anything you want to try.
Some people say honey has a natural antibacterial effect, so shouldn’t be used. But people that I’ve spoken to that have actually tested it say it works fine.
Like any food, kefir can go bad, but it takes months in my experience. Before it gets to that stage it will continue to ferment and go sour. This means it’s likely to taste bad before it actually goes off.
No, they just dissolve if they’re not kept right (either being used in a ferment or being kept in the fridge with a little sugar). As long as they are intact, they’re good.
Water kefir needs sugar to ferment. To reduce the amount of sugar still left in your water kefir when ready to drink, leave it to ferment a little longer. Leaving it in the fridge for a week+ before drinking will make it less sweet. It’s then up to you to decide your own personal sweet spot for sugar left Vs taste.
It also comes down to quality of sugar. I feel better about raw cane sugar or coconut sugar still being present, than I do about white refined sugar.
Related: Interested in fermentation? Check out our Raw Fermentation online course.
263 thoughts on “How To Make Fizzy Coconut Water Kefir”
What is the maximum time frame that i can keep the coconut water kefir or any fruits water kefir in the fridge ? A year ? How would i know if they turn bad ?
I would say you’re good for about 6 weeks. They will continue to sour as all of the sugar gets eaten, until they turn bad.
So I’ve gone through the first fermentation for multiplying my grains and as I strained the grains after 48 hours, I find that the liquid is fairly thick and slightly gelatinous. Yours did not look this way so I’m wondering if I did something wrong. I’m thinking I should scrap it and start again. I had all the signs of a healthy fermentation during that 48 hours btw, but did not increase my grains at all. Same amount as what I started with. Any ideas?
Hmm, is the liquid still very sweet? It sounds like it didn’t ferment for some reason and the liquid is like syrup from the sugar still being there?
I just wanted to know why/whether WKG grow/don’t grow and you have answered that question, so thanks for that ?Thanks for sharing your time to make the video. I would like to give you a couple of tips.
You don’t need a nut bag to cover your fermentation vessel. Take the rubber seal off the lid and cover your fermentation jar just with the lid. It is enough to keep flies out and oxygen in. I do it that way all the time with all my ferments (milk kefir, water kefir and kombucha.
When you open your second ferment bottle and you don’t know how much carbonation those bottles contain, Stand the bottles in a vessel like you did in the video and put a plastic bag over it. Open the bottle through the plastic bag and you won’t have a kefir fountain as the kefir shoots into the bag and runs into your vessel that the bottle stands in.
My coconut kefir builds up so much carbonation in the first ferment that I don’t need to do a second ferment. To flavour it I use red seals. fruit teas. You only have to leave them in a few minutes.
Thanks for the extra tips, Christel 🙂
Hi Russell, love your article and video. Question though: is water kefir really raw? Since the grains I will buy where fed refined sugar. I eat fully raw. Thank you.
No sugar is completely raw, so no. I’ve never tried it with raw honey, which you can do with kombucha, so maybe you could give that a go.
Can you add juice with the second stage molasses, mix half and half and let it ferment for the two days before consuming?
Not sure what you mean by ‘mix half and half’?
Hi Russell, Great recipe and video! If I am bottling the coconut water kefir in 16 oz bottles, how much sugar should I add to get the right amount carbonation but not be too sweet? I did my second batch yesterday and added 6 grams coconut sugar per 16 oz bottle , also added some ginger slices.
Each batch is different, but I would say starting with a teaspoon of sugar at the second stage would be good to get it fizzy. Then you can adjust from there.
thank you so much for sharing your video.I was wondering if I can make bigger amount of the coconut kefir from the same amount of kefir grains.Or do I need to add sugar if I use more coconut water ?
Thank you so much!FEL
Hey Fel, it depends on how much you want to add extra. Just a little is fine, but anything more I would add more sugar and potentially more grains.
Hey russel, I’m a little confused, if i don’t want to use a juice in the second fermentation stage for coconut kefir, can I just add brown sugar? If so, how much brown sugar woukd you suggest I add?
Absolutely. The kefir just needs a little more sugar at the second stage to continue fermenting and in order for it to go fizzy. I’d say start with a tbsp and see how it goes.
Hi Russell, can I use filtered water instead of spring water?
Thanks Russell! Just one more question – the stainless steel measuring cups that I am using, there’s rust going on them. Can I still use them to measure my WK grains? Or perhaps I should use my plastic measuring spoons instead? Thanks once again!
No, I wouldn’t use measuring cups with rust on.
Can you tell me where you got the bottles for your ginger kefir…superb recipe !!!!
hey Candi, I got them from Ikea 🙂
About making coconut water kefir ; I was wondering if is it possible to make a new coconut kefir from a previous brewed one, without the grains? ( mixing 50/50 coconut water + water kefir ) Do you think it will work?
Thanks in advance for your help/advice!!
Hey Coralie, most likely that’s not going to work, as it’ll just dilute the original.
Oh, alright! I thought it would grow as a kombucha scoby do. I tried 2 days and it got foggy, but taste good. I’ll see how it goes.Thanks!!
It is pure coconut water that is flavored with only natural fruit and coconut. The smoothie, consisting of coconut water, mango, and orange juice, has a sweet and light flavor.It is nutrition with originality.
You shouldn’t drink the first soak water. Also, kefir must be anaerobically prepared. Need a proper glass jar with a bubbler/burper on the lid.
Hey, LiftedWolf. Can you clarify what you mean by ‘the first soak water’?
Also, I’ve never had an issue doing it without lid as you described.
I have bought some frozen Kefir grains that resemble talcum powder “dust” and set it away in filtered H2O, coconut sugar, molasses and sodium bicarbonate. I am now on my fourth change of sugary water (over a week of growing) and everything is bubbling nicely…… But no grains evident when straining fluid……. How long does it take the grains to become visible to the human eye!!
Hey Clare, I’ve never seen kefir in powder form before, I’ve always bought the grains.
Hi Russell. I have several questions to ask. First, can i use a stainless pot and a glass jar as vessels in fermenting coconut water kefir? Should I wash the kefir grains after fermentation? Then if I store the kefir grains in sugar water, should I rinse the grains again before reusing them? Thanks a lot for the informations you’ve shared!
If you use metal is does need to be stainless, as any reactive metal will harm the grains.
I’ve seen people say you do need to wash and some say not. I’ve done both and it’s still inconclusive. At the moment, I am tending to give them a quick rinse in filtered water.
Thank you for your great site!! I was just wondering if it’s possible to ‘kill’ your grains and if so how would you know if you have? I went away for a few weeks and forgot to store them in freezer. They were on their first ferment.
It is possible. They usually just turn to mush and then a fine dust-like texture. It’s pretty obvious when they’re dead 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing. Can you please let me know how long the water kefir last with added juice (I added grapefruit juice to 2nd stage)
Love your work.
I’ve kept it for several weeks in the fridge. It will get more sour as time goes on.
(had to correct a few errors on my first question- submission)
Just ran across your site, it’s absolutely informative! I’ve got my first batch of Coconut Kefir brewing, awaiting 2nd stage. My question is, I want to make Kombucha (any flavor is fine)…. how would I give that a go? I don’t have a SCOBY but read online how to make one from initially purchasing a plain bottle of Kombucha, but I can’t find unflavored Kombucha locally. Would you think I could make it from a flavored one to get me started? Is it possible to make Kombucha another way? I’m a big fan of probiotics, and have noticed quite the improvement in my health & my son’s. Thank you!
Hey Amy, we cover all that good stuff in our Fermentation course. You do need a SCOBY. I have heard people using a previous batch of kombucha, but that’s only because you can sometimes get a strand of SCOBY in there. It’s easy enough to get a SCOBY online.
Hi Russell, I’ve followed your instructions & timing exactly with the exception of doing the fizzy ferment with fruit instead of juice, and my kefir tastes like vomit. Any suggestions? Thanks.
Oh dear. Did you definitely use water kefir grains and not milk kefir grains? Which fruit did you use?
Yes they are definitely water kefir grains. I’ve tried several flavorings: lemon juice ginger & pears, lemon juice ginger & strawberries, lemon juice ginger & raspberries. The coconut water is always nice and clear, not pink or purple. Do you think I’m fermenting too long? I’ve been doing 48 hour sugar water kefir, then 48 hour coconut water kefir, then 48 hour tight lid fizzy ferment without the grains.
Sounds like you’re doing everything just right. Does it come out fizzy?
Yes it comes out nice and fizzy. That’s the exciting part. I read on a kefir website that it might be an imbalance in the yeast and bacteria. Apparently, “This can happen when over-active yeast uses the dissolved oxygen too rapidly and are not completely fermenting all the sugar (which can allow it to be too available to other invading bacteria and yeast). Most of the invading bacteria that can cause problems do not tolerate too low of an acid environment (ph 2-4) High Butyric acid levels (also present in small amounts naturally) smell like vomit. . . and will most likely pass once you get your ferment in a safe ph level for a couple ferments.” Should I try more baking soda? My grains grow very well. I’m storing them in sugar water in the fridge for a few days to calm them down and clean them out. Can I go directly to the coconut water ferment from there or do I have to start with sugar water first?
Ah, interesting. You can go straight to the coconut water for sure.
With the water kefir you could try a touch more baking soda for Ph. did you also add lemon in that first stage?
I only added lemon (juice) at the fizzy stage with the grains out and fruit added. Could the lemon juice be my problem? Should I add lemon with the sugar water ferment when the grains are in? I thought it was best to add fruit without the grains.
It’s best to add the fruit when the grains are out, but try half a lemon in that first stage, as it will help with the Ph levels.
Thanks for posting this video. I’ve ordered my grains and can’t wait to make kefir. Is it necessary to sterilize the jars and bottles and lids in boiling water before using?
Thanks so much for your help!
I’ve never worried about that too much, but I think it’s better to than not. If you run your jars through a dishwasher that’s sufficient.
Hello! I am writing because I believe you mention that you live in CR? I am currently living in Costa Rica and am trying to get my hands on (purchase) water kefir grains but it is of course, more challenging to do so here than in the states. I know you mention ebay, but I’m completely unaware of how to order something here in CR, as there is no address associated with where I’m currently living at the moment. If you’re still living in CR, would it be possible to purchase some from you? I understand this may be a strange request and I may live far from you, but I’m willing to take the trip for them! I miss consuming probiotic drinks and foods that I obtained easily in the states! Let me know your thoughts or suggestions. Anything would be greatly appreciated!
Hey Jessica, I’ve never even been to Costa Rica 🙂
Not sure how you would get them there without an address. Maybe just send them to a friend there?
How should I store my grains when I will be gone 2-3 weeks? You mentioned 1 week in frig in sugar water, will longer be ok? I didn’t really want to freeze them all. Last time I left them on the counter fr 3 weeks they disintegrated! Fortunately I had shared them n my friend shared them bk to me!
Yes, I’ve definitely left them in the fridge in some sugar water before and they’ve been fine. Give that a go.
Thanks! I really enjoyed all your info and the blogs!!
Hi, can you re-ferment a batch of kefir? For example, after completing the first ferment, re-use the same liquid by adding sugar into the same batch without removing the kefir grain…
I’m not entirely sure that would work out. It would definitely effect the taste. Is there a reason you want to ferment it twice? When you add fruit or fruit juice to the second ferment, that’s essentially what you’re doing anyway.
Thanks for replying Russell. Two reasons I’m curious to try this is 1) to increase the probiotic count of the kefir and 2) to reduce the amount of kefir I’m producing on a weekly basis. Right now my kefir seems to be finished in 24 hours. I’m only making two cups each batch but I can’t consume 2 cups of kefir every 24 hours so I’m making more than I can consume. I’ve rested the kefir in the fridge every other week to catch up but not sure if this cycle is healthy for the grain. By reusing a batch, it would reduce the amount I produce each week and possibly have more probiotics…?
I see. Yes, possibly.
You can also freeze your grains. You and also blend them in to smoothies.
I would like to ask what the sodium bicarbonate does for the Kefir Grains in the growing process? I haven’t come across this before. I am trying to grow my kefir grains, they plump up nicely but, do not increase in number.
The sodium bicarbonate regulates the Ph of the liquid during the process.
Hi.. Great Info! Can you tell me if I can use agave to feed the kefir grains? And I just tried something called KEVITA. It would is sparkling fizzy coconut water with some other things added.. I want my homemade coconut water kefir to be similar. It only has about 2 grams of carbs per serving, but I think they use a culture. This is all new to me so I am also wondering if I can just make probiotic fizzy water and add some lemon and a little stevia and will it still keep the fixz and probiotic benefits if I add those two things( add to the finished product, when I’m ready to drink?.. I really want the fizz so ce I can’t drink soda pop. Thank you
I wouldn’t use agave, actually for anything, because of its high fructose content.
The key to getting the fizz, is having tight bottle tops with the process I described, then you can add lemon and stevia and you’ll be fine.
Sorry, but do I add the lemon and stevia after I pour the finished kefir soda in my glass to drink?
You could do that, or you could put it in at the start of the 2nd stage fermentation.
Hi, I was just wondering if coconut water is bad for the kefir grains, since coconut water is antibacterial?
No, kefir grains will do great in coconut water.
I am new to making kefir. I blend some meat from a brown coconut (we don’t have young coconuts) with water and then pour it in a glass jar along with kefir grains, this is then covered with a muslin cloth and kept in a dark place for 12 hours. Here is the problem, the coconut milk almost instantly splits and after 12 hours it’s still split. I can’t seem to bring it back together no matter what I do and it’s hard to drink the kefir with chunks, could you tell me what I am doing wrong. The temperature in my house is usually between 20 and 23 degrees centigrade. I really need to do this right because I am pregnant and this seems to be the best probiotic. Please help!
Did you watch the video? 🙂 The only reason I say that is because I show using just the coconut water and not any of the meat blended in with it.
So just use the water and make sure you’re using water kefir grains, not dairy grains.
I can make a suggestion to solve her problem, Russell?
I do coconut yogurt with water kefir and coconut milk and it’s delicious.
The recipe is:
600 ml of fresh coconut milk (can be also almond milk, hazelnut milk, cashew nut milk, Brazil nut milk, nuts milk, macadamias milk, sunflower milk, peanut milk, finally, use your creativity, but I prefer the coconut milk) and never use industrial coconut milk (because it kills kefir)
1/2 cup water kefir (use only the ready-made water, never use the grains for this recipe)
1 tablespoon molasses
Preparation: Mix everything in a glass jar and cover with a paper towel or tissue (Russell showed in the video).
Allow to ferment for 6 to 8 hours.
Place the jar contents in a blender (yes, it will be completely separate, because the fat separates from the water)
and add 1/2 teaspoon of xanthan gum (this is the trick to put it all together and keep a consistency industrial yogurt). The xanthan gum does not kill kefir, because it is fermentation of the bacterium Xanthomonas campestris.
Only this. Place in a glass or plastic container and refrigerate.
Yogurt gain a firmer consistency after freezing.
It lasts several days in the refrigerator and will continue fermenting.
The more days stay in the refrigerator, will more sour.
I like to eat this yogurt accompanied by fruit salad (with ginger powder, himalayan salt and lots of chia seed and cashew nut in top).
Thanks, Fabiola 🙂
i have a Wellness Living Water filter. can i use this filtered water to make the water kefir? Many thanks. I used Evian last night when i made it but would prefer to make optimum use of the water filter if possible.
Definitely! as long as it’s filtering out the nasty stuff in the water, then you’re good to go.
Love your recipies!
Listen you mentioned you had issues with milk in the past, so I am curious because I am allergic to dairies (to animal milk protein, so different than lactose intolerant), and I’ve always wondered if water/coconut kefir was ok for me, since it produces this “lactic acid”..
Hey Yasmina, The water kefir is completely dairy free so it should not cause you any issues that are dairy related. However, the best way of knowing for sure is by giving it a shot and seeing how your body responds to it.
Hi…Great information! Thank you very much.
My kefir grains have become very tiny and mushy…
but working well.Is it ok?
The tiny grains are becoming hard to work with.
That sounds like they are struggling a little bit. What type of water and sugar are you using ?
I’m using blackstrap molasses and mineral water (1/4 cup to 1L) and i don’t rinse the grains after each brew.
You need to use some kind of sugar in there too, like coconut sugar or raw cane sugar. They need pure sugar to thrive and survive. Add 1/4 c sugar to your next batch and 1/8 tsp baking soda/bicarb – see how that goes
I’ll do that.
Hi, I am new to kefir and I usually make kombucha (which takes forever) So I got a few grains from a friend and I am running out of glass bottles and they are getting harder to find locally. This leads me to a couple of questions.
1. how long can I second ferment the kefir?
2. can I second ferment in plastic bottles? I have a doz new bottles that I was going to use for beer brewing but decided this was a lot healthier 🙂 They are new and never been used for beer.
appreciate your advice. thank you
1.The 2nd ferment usually takes a few days, but can go longer. It really comes down to personal taste – the longer you do that 2nd ferment (outside of the fridge) the more sugar will be eaten and the more sour it will be. Putting it in the fridge then slows the ferment right down, so it will last a few weeks, before getting sour.
2. Glass bottles are much better, but if you are going to use plastic bottles, make sure they are BPA free.
Thank you Russell,
I really appreciate your advice. x
curious.. but.. if kefir grains can’t be made from scratch and must be donated… where do those grains originally come from? How are they created?
It’s like this big mystery of the original Kefir grain. The Mother grain! Like we need to travel back in a Tardis to find the Source. 🙂
Haha, it is actually a bit of a mystery.
As far as we can tell, them seem to have originated in China.
Pretty cool to think about them all coming from the same place.
I’ve revealed my inner sci-fi geek…. 😉
Yes, it is quite mysterious. I am going to look into it and see if anyone in my community has any! Wish me luck..
There are also online kefir (milk, water) sharing groups (search facebook) where culturing geeks (smile) share their grains, starts, etc. 🙂
Wow, that’s next level 🙂
Culturing geeks.. 🙂 That’s awesome…
I read that the kefir grains originally come from Mexico. There they grow on a cactus called Opuntia. Isn’t that fascinating?
Thanks, Tanja. That is interesting, thanks so much for sharing 🙂
kombucha tea made me very ill…does this have the same properties?? I have candida…
Thanks Russell. Is there any way to make water kefir on a daily basis but without getting the grains to multiply!? Keen to get water kefir to drink, but wanted to just keep the same amount of grains and not get them multiplying! I guess maybe use less sugar. I seem to have gone from having 2 tsp of grains to 2 cups! Thanks!
Using less sugar may slow the rate of growth. But really, a successful batch of kefir will grow more grains as a product of doing it well 🙂
You can blend extra grains into smoothies for more probiotic goodness for you.
Is it okay to use the water from brown coconuts? And, other kinds of sugar besides white sugar and coconut sugar work well with water kefir?
Yes, the brown coconut water will work. Molasses is also good, although you’d want to use that in conjunction with other sugar like coconut.
Hi – thanks for this great video – very clear instructions! Out of interest, what are those bottles you’re using with the tight seal? Is there a risk of them exploding if too much pressure builds up?
I got them from Ikea. Yes, there is a danger of that happening, so you have to ‘burp’ them every day, to let out any excess gas.
Hi Russell, I like your blog a lot! I am confused about these kefir grains, though. First you mention that it is not possible to grow them from scratch and that they need to come from a donor, and then you give us a recipe on how to make water kefir and grow grains. Here you don’t mention kefir grains among the ingredients. Does that mean that this recipe is for growing grains from scratch? Thanks!
Hi Bobica, to grow the grains you’ll need donor grains, which will multiply into more.
I’ve added grains to the ingredient list to make it a bit clearer. If you’re in doubt, check out the video where I show you exactly how to do it 🙂
HI Russell. I am so excited about your wonderful information. I am very interested in brewing wine and champaign from the coconut water kefir and understanding the amount of alcohol content. Do you have any specific recipes for brewing champaign and wine? Is that the “second” fermentation process? If so is there any way to know how to monitor the amount of alcohol. Then what are the best fruits to use. Thank you so very, very much!!!! I cannot wait to get started. Blessings! Lyn
When you say you want to brew champagne and wine, do you mean that you want to do a ‘mock champagne’ and ‘mock wine’? What I mean by that is kefir that tastes like champagne or wine.
Hey Russel, great video so easy to follow, you have a great skill in presenting. Do you know if the sugar you are adding will harm candida suffers. I had candida for years and recently got it under control, i currently have just coconut kefir no sugar. Would love to try your 3 recipes do you think its safe to use them all
Hi John, 80% of the sugar is eaten during the creation of the kefir, so there is some left.
In the same way that there is sugar in coconut kefir, from the coconut water.
I have also heard that kefir can help with candida because it’s a different type of bacteria.
For the decanting process, it’s easier to use some kind of rod against the bowl. The liquid will flow following the rod into the other container. You can use a glass straw or maybe a knife, but I think I would be easy than using the bottom of the bowl.
Source: Chemistry class
Thanks for the tip! 🙂
You say that the water kefir and coconut kefir lasts for several months in the refrigerator.. Do you mean 2 months or more? If it continues to ferment in the refrigerator even without the grains, does it taste markedly different as time goes on? Will it eventually lose it’s sweetness? Does your water kefir have a little taste of alcohol? If so, is there any way to prevent that from happening? Thanks!
Hi Jun, yes I have kept kefir for longer than 2 months in the fridge.
It will become more alcoholic and less sweet as time goes on and there’s no way to avoid that unfortunately, as it’s the natural process of fermentation.
Hi Russell, I recently got some kefir grains from a friend, and wanted to share her recipe. It’s pretty tasty as is without adding more to it, but I like to have it with equal parts fresh apple juice and juice of 1/2 lemon sometimes.. delish! Also cuts the taste of alcohol for me..
~6.5 cups filtered water
1/3 cup live water kefir grains
1/2 cup organic Rapadura sugar (whole sugar with molasses)
2 dried organic pineapple rings – torn into 4 pieces
2-3 dried organic figs
5-6 pieces candied ginger
Combine everything in glass jar with plastic lid. Leave in cupboard for 48 hrs., then check to see if “done”.
I’m new to water kefir, and am looking forward to trying out your coconut kefir recipe and other recipes out there as I’m discovering there are many different ways to do this. I use a lid because that’s how my donor friend told me to do it, but see that others say to use a cloth over the jar.. If you use a lid, open slowly over a sink. My kefir grains multiply quite a bit.. from 1/3 cup to over 1 cup after 48 hrs. with the Rapadura sugar, while my friend who uses regular white sugar, doesn’t see as much growth. Thanks again for your recipe! Your video is very helpful!
I absolutely love love love your video, it’s so clear and concise, and your just totally amazing!! I also started eating raw to clear up my skin after noticing that I have a lactose intolerance and a few other sensitivities, it has helped me tremendously!!
Thanks, Alicia. It’s a wonderful feeling when you start to see clear skin after a while isn’t it.
great video, thanx!
Thanks for the video! Can I add the kefir to a green smoothie as the liquid? I usually add 1 cup of water to my smoothies, but wondered if I could substitute the kefir. Also I don’t like carbonated drinks, and was wondering if there’s a way to make kefir without it becoming fizzy or carbonated? I’m looking forward to trying this.
Hi Jun, yes you can certainly add the kefir to a green smoothie. To not make it fizzy, don’t seal the bottle it’s in airtight, just cover it with a cloth in the fridge. It takes days to get fizzy, so if you need to seal the bottle to travel about with it, that’s perfectly fine.
Hi Russell, have you ever tried coconut sugar as the sweetener? If not, do you think it will work in place of maple syrup, and how much would I use? Does the sweetener that’s used have an affect on the taste of the final kefir?
After you use the grains in the coconut water, can you reuse it right away to make another batch of kefir or can you add it to the batch that isn’t being used in the refrigerator?
To store the grains between use, do you store them without any water or sweetener in the refrigerator? If so, how long can you store them without feeding them?
A friend is giving me some water grains, but she feeds the grains with both sugar and dried fruit. What do you think of using dried fruit too.. is it really necessary? Your recipe seems simpler using one sweetener.. Do the grains ever need variety in the sweeteners or can they live off the same one ad infinitum? Thanks!
I’m just testing it with coconut water and it seems to be all good. It will be a little different of a taste, yes. In a quart or a litre, I would just use a tablespoon.
Yes, you can use it again straight away. Wash the kefir grains before you use them again.
I’ve started to store them in water with a little sugar in for up to a week. They can also be frozen for up to 6 months.
Dried fruit works, yes. It’s quite a traditional way of doing things, but it’s not essential.
They seem to be able to live off one type of sweetener.
Great video! There are quite a few questions here, so sorry if I missed this but are you able to use packaged coconut water from the store or do you need to start with raw coconut water? Any recommendations on where to get starter grains? I am brewing kombucha and fermented my own veggies. Love good gut bugs!
Hi, yes you can use packaged coconut water.
You can get the starter grains from eBay by searching for ‘water kefir grains’.
Thanks for the great info, It’s hard to find info about making this with grains rather than the starter culture. I have some super active grains and my kefir tastes quite a bit like beer. Is that normal? I want to give it to my young children but am concerned about the alcohol content. Any idea if it would produce quite a bit of alcohol if the grains are very active and you get a lot of fermentation?
Also what is the purpose of the 2nd stage fermentation?
As far as I’m aware, Kefir is always made with grains, and it’s kombucha that’s made with starter culture.
I don’t know about the alcohol content if it’s fermented until it smells like beer. Ideally you just want to ferment it for a couple of days. You might find more info on Dom’s site here: http://users.sa.chariot.net.au/~dna/kefirpage.html
The second stage fermentation is to try and get it fizzy, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t work so well. But at the very least it’ll add some good flavour in that stage.
Question…if you drink the kefir water after only 12-18 hours because you like the taste better..is there less probiotics in the drink than if I leave it longer?
Yes, the longer you leave it, the more probiotics there will be.
i have candida overgrowth and coconut water kefir has helped alot. I finally started to expel candida and what i believe to be parasites *shudders* after using it. it’s amazing.
Thanks, Deb – that’s great!
I love coconut kefir. How much should one drink per day? Should it be drank in small amts throughout the day? Thanks.
There’s no rules about how much or when it should be drunk, but I like to drink it first thing in the morning; usually a small glass full. You’ll know you’ve drunk too much in a day if you need to need to go to the toilet (bathroom) urgently, if you know what I mean 🙂
Great video and easy to follow recipe, thank you. Just made my first batch ,can’t wait to try it when it’s ready.
Thanks, Michelle. Let us know how it turned out.
I make a probiotic drink with coconut water in a similar fashion, but I started with opening up a few probiotic capsules and mixing them in the water and leaving over night. Then, I save some of the fermented liquid and put that in new coconut water which ferments a new batch. Is this a different type of kefir than this recipe? Thanks!
Hi Amanda, yes this is a different type of kefir because it uses the actual grains. I believe it will result in different bacteria in the final result, but both are beneficial to health.
Thanks for the video, Russell. What do you do with the kefir grains that you strain out of the coconut kefir? Can they be reused or do you toss them?
I noticed that you used a metal spoon and metal strainer for your kefir grains but have seen/read elsewhere that kefir grains hate metal. Has this affected your grains? Sue
This is probably the question I get asked the most about this video. It’s actually OK to use stainless steel as it’s a non-reactive metal.
The only metals that are a problem are reactive ones like steel, brass, lead etc, not that you’d ever use those in the kitchen anyway! 🙂
Hi Russell, I purchased your books a while ago but must have accidentally deleted them – is there any chance to retrieve them or resend them?
Thank you!! Lisa
Hi Lisa, yes sure. If you open a ticket at http://www.thraw.ch/support Haylee will take care of you there.
thank you! do you know if the benefits of water kefir differ from milk kefir and which would you recommend – i have heard that milk kefir will actually produce vitamin B12 in the intestines because its milk and has buffering agents? is it the same for water kefir?
I’m not sure of the difference in nutritional values between milk and coconut kefir, but I’m sure they have their own unique benefits.
I can’t really drink milk as it makes my skin breakout, which was actually the reason I got into raw food in the first place – to clear that up.
Great video. Yes, same question as Neba below…the grains that remain (in your strainer) when you make your final beverage–in this case you added the juice…are those grains in the strainer usable and can they be put back in with the originals…or are they to be discarded?
Thanks. Considering taking your course soonish. Moving to Austin, but still in New Zealand for now–so a challenge getting certain ingredients. Once I return home to America, might be a better time for the course.
Thanks for the question, I just answered Neba below, so I’ll paste the answer in here…
If you don’t want to grow more grains, you can just keep doing the coconut water stage.Grains can be used again and again.If you find you have an excess of grains you can add them to smoothies, as they are beneficial to eat too.
Have fun in Austin!
Lovely! Thanks! Question: what to do with the remain grains?
Still me 🙂 I want to say again that your video was the best thing I found for understanding what to do with this amazing elixir that a friend of mine gave me, I had no idea that such a beautiful thing existed and what to do with it!!! My friend came to Costa Rica (where I live) and left me coconut kefir first stage, it has around two cups of grains and double water, she left without giving me any instructions. But again your explanation is lovely! My question still with the remain grains; I guess after I drink the strained liquid I just have to add some more coconut water and live it out 48 hrs, but if I never drink the grains… why do I want to grow them more? Do I need to re-do the feeding maple syrup part to keep them alive? I’m just thinking that if I keep growing them I’m going to end it up having a big amount of grains which will be nice but not for storage proposes. Or… do they get feed by the coconut water sugars? If I want some other kind of kefir I just wash off the grains and use them for other recipes? Thanks so much for sharing your knowledge Rusell! Blessings from Costa Rica!
Hi Neba, thanks!
If you don’t want to grow more grains, you can just keep doing the coconut water stage.
Grains can be used again and again.
If you find you have an excess of grains you can add them to smoothies, as they are beneficial to eat too.
Thanks! Simple and to the point.
Cheers, Wendy. That’s how we do it around here 🙂
This website will tell you some of the benefits and nutritional data for coconut water: http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/is-coconut-water-good-for-you
What do you calculate to be the initial cost to make coconut water?
That link is broken, do you have the correct link?
I’m not sure what you’re asking when you mentioned the initial cost to make coconut water, can you clarify that please?
Is there a raw substitute you suggest to maple syrup? What will do the trick? Thanks 🙂
Not that I’ve found. One of the least processed sugars that seems to work is demerara.
there are some coconut sugars in the market now. would that work in place of maple syrup too?
Hi Dalen, I think coconut sugar will work, yes.
Can you tell me the nutritional facts of coconut water kefir? Does it have absorbable calcium?
I’ve seen sites that say water kefir does have calcium, but I’ve been unable to find any actual research on it.
Great information. Thank you. Can I make kefir out of boxed coconut milk such as So Delicious coconut milk?
Vikki – you can make coconut milk kefir using the milk kefir grains and So Delicious Coconut Milk. Be advised that your milk kefir grains will not reproduce unless they are in animal milk. If you are talking about substituting coconut milk to make coconut water kefir in the recipe Russel has posted above, then the answer is NO. The recipe above uses sugar kefir grains, (often referred to as water kefir grains) rather than the milk kefir grains I mention above. Coconut water is the clear liquid inside of either the young coconuts which are normally green if unhusked or white if they have been husked or the mature coconut which are hard and brown and sold at most markets. Coconut milk is made by blending the clear coconut water with the white coconut meat.
Thank you so much for sharing that — you just saved me a whole world of toil n trouble!
excellent. Thank you Russell! Cannot wait to try it.
fabulously clear instructional video. I have a question…once you have performed the first stage of fermentation and have strained the grains, can you use those grains again?
Absolutely, you can keep reusing those grains.
I need new started grains for kefir, do you have a suggested source for them? Thank you
I bought “inner-eco” prepared coconut water kefir. There are no clumps of cultures seen in the cloudy fizzy liquid.
Would it be posssible that the particles ate small and can be grown as you suggested with water, maple syrup and a few teaspoons of the liquid kefir
No, you actually need the kefir ‘grains’ (or particles as you called them) to grow more grains.
Great video, thanks for the recipe. Upon other research that I have done on water keifer grains, I discovered that metal damages the culture. Other souces suggest using only wooden or plastic spoons and only plastic strainers. I noticed you used a metal strainer, have you heard this?
I have. Stainless steel is OK to use as it’s a non-reactive metal. Any other metal will damage the cultures.
Hello, Thank you for the video. I have a question. Can you use any coconut water or does it have to be the young coconut water? I was given water kefir and was told to use organic raw sugar but it’s not fizzy nor grows so I am going to use your suggestions in using maple syrup and then coconut water. Thank you again.
Hi Russell, I just wanted to tell you that you have put out the best video about how to make kefir. You make it very easy, clear and you are so organized. Plus, you answer everybodies questions, so sweet. You were right about using the maple syrup, the grains do go crazy. I am absolutely in Love with kefir, it is miraculous down to how it even got here to all the wonderful benefits. I read somewhere that kefir grains could be Mana from heaven. What God gave to the Israelites in the desert to sustain them. Along with milk and honey, just what kefir needs to thrive and reproduce. It’s a gift that keeps on giving. God bless you and keep on doing what you’re doing.
Thanks you again,
Okay, my first question is…
When you start your water kefir, do you leave the mason jar cap on it or do you use a paper towel or other breathable “cap” so to speak? I make milk kefir and use a paper towel & rubber band “cap” to let it breathe when it is fermenting. I started water kefir grains this way but they didn’t do too well and I lost them. Now I’ve started again (new grains) and made my first batch with the same paper towel breathable “cap” as my milk kefir. It seemed like everything turned out fine but it’s not clear from your video if you leave the regular mason jar lid on (or if you recommend one way over another).
My second question is…
Any opinions on whether it’s okay to keep your water kefir, milk kefir, and kombucha near each other during the fermentation stages? Just wondering about microbes in the air either contaminating or otherwise affecting one or another?
I’ve had success with the solid cap on and also a breathable cover too, but to be safe I would have a breathable cap.
All of those ferments should be safe to keep next to each other in my experience.
hi Russell,i live in Turkey,Istanbul,and gonna visit London 15-22 August. I lack some ingrediens,and a dehyrator oven which i wanna buy,and bring back to istanbul.where should i buy the oven,and is there speacial whole food market in london,where i could shop.Thank you for your interest and all the nice recipes.I could have visit you if you were in London those dates:)Hope to hear from you soon,thanks..
It depends on what ingredients you are looking for. If you’re looking for really specialist things, plus the dehydrator you mentioned I would look at ordering online and having your items delivered to wherever you are staying during that time.
You can order from http://www.fresh-network.com and http://www.detoxyourworld.com
Thank you so much for your recipes, Russell! I am assuming that the second stage fermentation is done without the kefir grains because in all of the recipes that I have seen, none mention putting the grains back in. Is that correct?
I bought my grains from http://www.waterkefirgrains.com. They were sluggish to start, but now they are reproducing like CRAZY, and I have only had them for 1 week. I am glad that they will keep in a jar in the fridge! If there is anyone in the Seattle, WA, area in need of water kefir grains, let me know!!
Oh, and I also just use Britta-filtered tap water, and like I said, my grains are super active.
Yes, the second stage is done without the grains in.
I have well water, which has iron in it. Can someone please tell me if that is okay to use with my kefir grains? Thanks
If the water is good to drink, it should be good to grow the kefir grains – you can only try 🙂
That was a great video. I just ordered my first water kefir grains, so I haven’t even started yet. I was confused about your using a metal strainer. Everything I’ve read so far says to use a plastic, mesh one, as metal supposedly kills the grains. I was also wondering about storing the grains if I didn’t want to constantly be making water kefir. You had some just in a mason jar. Do they keep in those?
Hi Johanna, they will keep in a glass jar in the fridge without any liquid for as long as you want to leave them there.
You can touch them with stainless steel, but not any reactive metals.
I was wondering if pure (unpasteurized) orange juice or any other juice for that matter can be used in the first stage fermentation instead of coconut water. Any idea?
I’m actually not sure, definitely worth an experiment.
I have had better luck adding fruit juices and flavorings to the second stage fermentation rather than the first stage. In the first stage I now only add coconut or filtered water, a sweetener, the water kefir grains, and washed organic egg shells. My grains no longer change color to match the fruit juice color, and my grains have started to multiply since I started using egg shells in the mix. Produced satisfactory results when adding dried fruit along with fresh lemon and ginger in the first stage, but when I started adding other fruit juices, (fresh or refined), I was disappointed and in several cases threw the entire batch out. OK, recycled is the term I should use as my plants didn’t mind the taste and spruced up after getting the extra sugar and probiotics. But like Russell said it is definitely worth an experiment.
Sorry Shannon, I just re-read you question, and it looks as though you are asking about totally replacing the water with juice. I have not done that. I have only used the fruit juice for the flavoring and extra fructose. Interesting concept, and you have me thinking fermented lemonade. Currently do not have enough extra grains to experiment with, but when I do this is definitely something I what to try also. Keep us updated if you decide to experiment with this idea.
I just water kefir grains and was wondering if I could use boiled tap water that has been cooled and then add maple syrup to it instead of mineral water/pure water?
Technically it will work. The issue with boiled water is that its structure has been destroyed, so it’s not a great drinking water.
The issue with boiling out the bacteria from tap water is that it leaves the chemicals in there still. The reason we use spring water is not because of a lack of bacteria, it’s just a quality of water thing 🙂
You may have guessed, I never use tap water for anything I’m going to ingest.
Personally I’ve grown kefir grains in filtered tap water (I used my Britta). They seemed to do well enough but I’ve not compared the results to any other water types and I didn’t boil it. Also I haven’t had any kefir to drink yet from the grains I grew (or any others).
If boiling tap water I would image that most of the chemicals will remain, as Mr. James/Russell stated. Any metals such as lead or mercury would not only remain but presumably be more concentrated due to the evaporation of some of the water. I hadn’t heard the structural part before.
However I would add that the chlorine at least will evaporate from boiling the water. I’m not sure at what rate it evaporates when boiling. It takes about 24 hours if just set out uncovered as room temperature, so presumably boiling would be much faster.
How do you know if a batch of coconut kefir went bad? My friend made it and her first batch turned out but my first batch smelt horrible [rotten egg like not yeast smelling] and my 4 young coconuts were not rancid to begin with [all clear liquid]. It fermented for 48 hours out of direct sunlight. Any insight?
Thanks so much – Sarah
Hmm, not sure. There’s so many variables. i would say the grains may have not been up to the job. Or there may have been some bacteria in your jar.
I think trying again with different grains is the only solution here.
Great post! I have made the coconut Water Kefir, fabulous and just what I was looking for. Now I want to keep brewing off of my starter batch. How much would I use to add more coconut water and re-ferment? Add sugar or juice again? 1 or 2 ferments? Can I even use the last bit or does every batch need to start fresh. Thank you much for your response!
When you say you want to keep brewing off your starter batch do you mean the grains or the kefir itself?
You can just keep reusing the grains as they are forever 🙂
I was looking to use the kefir itself to re- ferment. From what I have read you can use the coconut juice kefir and last 1/4 cup of it to re-ferment up to 7 times before using the grains again.
I’be not tried that before, but I’m not sure why you’d want to 🙂 Sounds like by the 7th time you’d have weaker kefir — and you’ve still got the grains after the first batch so it would seem to me to use the kefir grains again would give the best results.
What do you do with the kefir grains when you have to go out of town for a week?
Simply leave them without any liquid in a glass jar, and in the fridge. They’ll be fine for weeks like that.
Hi, Just saw your kefir video.. really great video.. But I read not to use metal strainer or metal spoon.. Instead plastic strainer. plastic spoon. Thanks, Have a great day!
As long as the strainer and spoon are stainless steel, which is a non-reactive metal, the grains and kefir will be fine.
Thanks for this great blog (-:
I'm wondering how long you can keep your young coconut kefir after it's fermented and you've taken the water grains out? I have mine in the fridge. I am just starting with kefir and only able to deal with a tablespoon a day so far. Will I still be able to use the kefir in 5 or 6 days time or will I need to throw it out and start a new batch. Does it go off?
I've kept it for up to 4 weeks before in the fridge and it's been great still.
That's great. I was afraid I'd have to throw it out. It's hard not to drink the whole thing though, it's so good!!
I just discovered your lasagne too and I can't wait to try it out.
Is kefir water related to rejuvelac?
I've just made rejuvelac from quinoa in order to use in cashew cheese.
Do you know whether I can keep the quinoa alive by using maple syrup in the water, or do I need to discard them after one use?
William, I have not made rejuvelac with quinoa yet, but do make it with wheatberries, and barley. I use the grains to brew two batches before I use the grains in some other recipe such as sprouted bread. Unable to comment on keeping grains alive by adding maple syrup to the water – no experience in that area.
Kefir is different to rejuvelac. You wouldn’t keep the quinoa going by using sugar, no. Just re-use for 2 batched and then get rid of it.
Thank you for this informative video. Could you let me know where I could obtain the grain?
Hi Russell, do you also use kombucha? If so can you share your recipe? Do you think one is better than the other? cheers cathy
I actually like them both but I don't make my own kombucha as yet.
5 black tea bags
2-3 green tea bags
1 cup surgar
1-1/2 cup of starter kombucha tea
1 kombucha scoby (often refered as mushroom or mother)
3 quarts of water
Boil water for 5 minutes. Add surgar and stir until disolved. Add tea bags and allow mixture to cool. Transfere mixture to a 1 gallon container, and add the starter kombucha tea and the kombucha scoby. Rubberband a papertowel or coffee filter over the top and place in dark area until new scoby has formed and is 1/4 to 3/8 inch thick. For me this has been approximately 2 weeks at 70degrees. Pour into bottles or jars and start all over again with a new batch. Leave the brew kombuch sit at room temperature for another week before putting in refrigerate to cool. Enjoy and happy brewing.
Russell, I've made 5 or 6 drinks so far, but they are not fizzy . . . does that mean my grains are not alive? They came to me freeze dried, does that matter?
I've never used freeze dried grains before, but I'd lean towards saying they're not as good as fresh.
The fact that it's not fizzy might be another issue though, it might just be you didn't leave it to ferment for long enough for the amount of grains you have, or that you didn't add enough fruit juice in the second stage to have enough sugar to make it fizzy.
play around with the length of time you leave it culturing and adding a little more fuit juice in the second stage.
It's all just an experiment – enjoy that process 🙂
Russell, I could just squish you!! I've had “figure out how to make kefir” on my to-do list for months, I wasn't sure how to get started so I keep putting it off. I'm on my 5th batch right now! I ordered the grains on ebay ($6), and they're really multiplying! They're almost like pets, it's like sea monkeys lol. Thank you thank you thank you! My baby girl LOVES it too 😀
Can you reuse the kefer grains that you strain out of the water mixture?
so excited to buy them as my store sells a quart jar for 12.99 🙂
You can reuse them indefinitely, yes.
Like some of your other readers, I too had been delaying trying kefir due to not being sure about how to go about using it. I have looked through all the comments and your replies but I just need a little further clarification.
1. Once you have used the kefir in the coconut water, how do you store the kefir? ( what type of container and do you keep it in the fridge?), how do you keep it alive and how long will it stay alive?
2. Can you use the grains from the coconut water to grow more kefir after they have been used in the coconut water?
3. And, by putting them in just water with the maple syrup, is that how you grow more or is that just a plain style of fermentation?
3. In one of your replies you mention using a breathable lid. Can you recommend a type? I will need to source a good container to do this in. (I live in Melbourne Australia) Also, do you use a breathable lid during the entire fermentation process (including the part where you add the fruit juice?) I think my kids would like it fizzy and I want to get ferments into them given that we are almost vegan.
4. Can you get sick from over fermentation? How can you tell if it is off?
I know this is long but I will feel confident to proceed once I can get my head around the process. Thanks again, I enjoyed your video. Namaste, Eileen.
1. You can keep the kefir grains in water with a little sugar in, in the fridge for up to a week. You can also freeze them for up to 6 months.
3. Both, actually. The main purpose is to grow more, but you can also use the resulting liquid, although it’s not as tasty as coconut water, so I add it to smoothies.
3. (b?) Just use a nut milk bag, cloth or cheese cloth. Don’t use a breathable lid for the second stage, so that it gets fizzy.
4. If you leave it crazy long that it gets mouldy then, yes. If you follow my instructions for the timing, you’ll be fine.
I'm out of town for a bit so how do we store our grains if not in use. Keep them in a glass container in the refrigerator or in the cabinet . . . in water or no?
Thanks so much!!
In the fridge in a glass container and not in water.
Thank you Russell . . . for all that you do!!
Oh, for all interested; I received my water kefir grains from http://fotvn.com.
I noticed you used a metal strainer to strain out your water kefir grains . . . I was told that that will kill your kefir grains . . . is this true?
I've just received mine in the mail and can't wait to try it!!
Thanks so much,
As long as you don't use a reactive metal like iron, aluminium, copper or brass (!) they will be fine – stainless steel doesn't react with them. I use a metal strainer and have healthy growing kefir grains 🙂
If in doubt just use a plastic strainer.
You did not tell us were to get the donor grains.
You can search online for water kefir grains, or buy them from:
Thanks Russell. How much kefir should you consume in one day and in one week – is it something that you would drink a quart of daily
I would start with a small glass in the morning on an empty stomach and then maybe another small glass in the evening.
A quart would be too much for most people. It has quite a strong effect in 'clearing out', if you know what I mean, so drink just a small amount, at least to start with, and you'll feel the benefit.
Thank you for doing this, I am so excited to make my own kefir!
Hey Russell, what exactly is kefir? Thanks 🙂 The grains I mean? Where do they originate from?
No one really knows where they originated from, all we know os that they're natural and not man made. They were first used in the mountains of the USSR by the people wanting to preserve their milk.
You can't grow them unless you have some other kefir grains to start them with.
I love your recipes and your ebooks and hope to get more soon including your new one coming out.
Other than making a drink are there other recipes that would use the kefir drinks. Also, my husband will not eat or drink coconut. I was wondering how much coconut flavor is in the drink? Is there another liquid that will work well?
Thanks for all your wonderful recipes!
Kefir is best served just as a drink and on an empty stomach. The young coconuts don't have that distinctive coconut flavour you may be referring to, and it will be even less distinctive once made into kefir.
THANK YOU FOR THE GREAT VIDEOS . I LOOK FORWARD TO WATCHING THEM AND LEARNING SOMETHING NEW. THANKS BLESSINGS MARY RILEY
This is wonderful timing for me ! I tried making this with water kefir grains a few weeks ago and failed miserably. As soon as I get my grains, I will try again. Thanks Russell ! You're awesome for sharing so generously.
By the way, I purchase my grains from http://www.kefirlady.com. She's really nice.
P.S. Sorry to digress, but just a thought…. I would love to take your home study course but can't afford the price…. perhaps if you were to segment the course and sell it by modules without having to commit to the whole package then it would make it so much more affordable and flexible.
I found this article a bit confusing, though I have used standard kefir grains before.
Second stage fermentation – wonder why it's called that?
This post is FANTASTIC timing (recently got my kefir grains and also have some young coconut water to hand) Thank you so much!
For kefir starter in the UK:
Be sure not to follow the instructions in that pack though as it tells you to heat the grains.
They are also dry grains which I've never used before so it'll be interesting to see how you get on with them.
When you use the Body Ecology Kefir starter (dried grains) you can save some of your kefir batch to make the next batch (kind of like making yogurt). You can do this up to X amount of times (might be 7? I believe someone mentioned this above as well). This starter is different from getting actual Kefir grains which you keep using over and over.
Also, can you use dr. martins coco water instead of fresh?
Hi Russell. My mother has been making kefir for a while and has an interesting method. She puts a dried fig in at the beginning. When the fig floats, this apparently tells you that the kefir has fermented. Thanks for the recipes above.
Do you know where I can get Water Kefir Grains in the uk?
I live in Israel. There are no young coconuts available here. Can I use regular coconut water?
I'm in the same situation here in New Zealand, I'd like to know the same. Can we use regular (mature) coconut water instead?
I’m in Auckland and there are plenty of young cocos here. Where r u
I would think mature brown coconut water would work as it's still quite sweet. the kefir grains need sugar to make the liquid into kefir.
Do you know of any way to get these to Canada?
there are lots of people with grains in winnipeg
Thanks so much for this Russell!
Do you know if the extra kefir grains stay alive indefinitely? Do you need to feed them more maple syrup? How would you know if they were no longer alive?
I'm excited to try it 🙂
Sounds yummy Russell. Could I use water kefir grains with my favorite nut milk? No young coconuts here, but plenty of hazelnuts and… maple syrup â™¥
You just need a liquid with sugar in so water and maple syrup works. Nut milk isn't going to come out well, I would guess, it if it ferments it's probably going to go 'off'.
Yickes! good thing I checked back with you this morning… Thank you!
Next spring I'll try fresh maple water kefir.
Wonderful! Can't wait to try it. How though, do you store the kefir grains until the next time?
Just keep them in a glass jar in the refrigerator.
Very cool, however I would like to know, I have goats milk kefir grains, can I make them into water grains??
I'm so new to this process, so forgive my ignorance…. if that's what it is……..Marilyn
Milk kefir grains are different to water kefir grains.
I'm not sure where you are in the world but you can search online for water kefir grains or get them from http://www.waterkefirgrains.com
Wikipedia in Italian says that you can adapt milk kefir grains in 2-3 days (by using water and sugar) into water kefir grains, and in the process they should become transparent…
Anyways, Wikipedia reveals another fact… that the kefir is slightly ALCOHOLIC, and we all know that alcohol is no good for you. Is there anything we can do to free it from alcohol?
Kefir is less than 0.5% alcoholic, which is a negligible amount. It's also not a distilled and processed alcohol or another type of alcohol like larger so doesn't have those risks associated with it..you'll never get drunk on it!
After you've used the grains to make coconut water kefir, can you reuse them? If so, how many times?
Yes, you can reuse them as many times as you need to. If you have excess grains keep them in the refrigerator. If you're reusing grains I would advise to cycle using the current ones with using ones that are in your refrigerator.
Is there anything else you can do with the left over kefir grains that were strained?
Use them again! 🙂
I read you are NOT supposed to use or let the grains come into contact with any metal….like the spoon you are using in the video :o(
The spoon I used in the video, as most kitchen utensils are, is stainless steel.
The only metals that are not supposed to touch kefir grains are reactive metals such as iron, brass, copper, aluminium or zinc.
Hope that helps 🙂
You forgot to stress that you can only use stainless steel or a nylon mesh strainer to strain the Kefir grains as other metals can kill it.
I had a question: I have some milk kefir grains that I’ve been using. Where should I store those while not in use… we’ll be on vacation for a week… so didn’t know if I should store them in water or milk in the fridge, or other ideas? Thanks! Kathy
I’m not sure about milk kefir grains, but water kefir grains I store in the fridge on their own, in a glass jar.
Regarding milk kefir grains: As I understand the Russian method of storage is to put them in a jar of milk at room temperature as you would to make the kefir and let them sit. I’ve been storing mine for months this way. They have never been in the fridge and they keep quite well. I believe it is good to give them new milk every 2-3 weeks. They have also grown really well during the storage.