Sugar's the 5 Best Types
The most frequent fuel source for kombucha brewing is cane sugar. The cane is processed into a variety of products, the most well-known of which are plain white table sugar and evaporated cane juice crystals. If you're wondering if several types of sugar can be combined in one kombucha brew, the answer is yes! Sugar mixes, like tea blends, can add flavour and depth to your brew, so play around with them.
Here's a closer look at cane and other sugars that can be used to make kombucha.
PLAIN WHITE SUGAR
Ordinary table sugar, the traditional choice for making kombucha, kicks brews into overdrive since yeast can swiftly break down this highly refined fuel source. Best suitable for creating fizz in your brew. Read more in our blow abut How to great fizz in your Kombucha
EVAPORATED CANE JUICE
This is a great option for making delicious Kombucha. It is also known as raw sugar since it is treated just enough for the kombucha microbes to digest it quickly while retaining natural vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to the drinker, such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron. The optimum balance comes from evaporated cane juice crystals.
Between our requirements and those of the SCOBY. When possible, choose organic to prevent pollutants and avoid GMOs.
OTHER CANE SUGARS.
Brown sugar, turbinado, demerara, Sucanat, piloncillo, and muscovado are less refined types of cane sugar. Each one will make a somewhat different drink. SCOBYs and the finished brew may take on darker tone and deeper flavour as a result of these sugars. Increased mineral concentration from less refined sugars may result in a sourer brew or even flavour concerns. Most homebrewers who experiment with these sweeteners eventually return to cane juice crystals or simple white sugar.
Honey may generate a delicious kombucha flavour that is enhanced by the bees' flower of choice. Around 80% of the sugar in a normal honey is in the monosaccharides fructose and glucose, which means it has already been broken down for the yeast to absorb. As a result, the brew cycle is shortened, and the Kombucha is more prone to become sour after bottling if not refrigerated right away. 7/8 cup honey can be used in place of 1 cup ordinary sugar. Please don't use raw honey! The endogenous bacteria in raw honey will compete with the kombucha microbes, resulting in an unpleasant concoction. In this instance, pasteurised honey is the way to go. Check out our Blog on How to make JUN KOMBUCHA.
Maple syrup can be used as a high-octane sugar alternative, with only 1/2 to 1/3 cup needed to replace 1 cup of sugar. It contains a lot of trace minerals including zinc and manganese. Use just 100% pure maple syrup; many "pancake brands" contain corn syrup as well.
SUGARS TO USE FOR EXPERIMENTAL BATCHES ONLY!
The following sweeteners can be used to make drinking kombucha, but they should only be utilised by more experienced brewers who are utilising extra SCOBYs. We don't recommend placing any of the SCOBYs from these experimental brews back in a SCOBY Hotel; if the kombucha made with them didn't come out as planned, throw them out.
LIQUID CANE JUICE
In many places, fresh sugarcane juice is a popular beverage that can be used to make kombucha. Because the sweetness of the juice varies, it's difficult to give precise amounts, but a good starting point is to combine half fresh-pressed sugarcane juice and half tea concentrate (brewed with enough tea for the total volume of liquid, but no sugar added), which should yield about 80% of a typical batch. Experiment with different amounts of juice.
This thick, syrupy by-product of white sugar production has even higher mineral concentrations and produces a nutrient-dense beverage with a distinct flavour profile. Some people notice caramel notes, while others think the minerals add too much tartness. Molasses-only batches often demonstrate poor culture growth, despite the fact that it may be substituted by ordinary sugar in a 1:1 ratio.
Coconut sugar may or may not be a good choice because of the wide range of grades and production processes. Different SCOBYs, with their different yeast and bacterium combinations, are also likely to play a role. Mould or flavour difficulties have been reported by some homebrewers, while others are pleased with the outcome.
Invert sugar, which is often available in syrup form and is popular with some beer brewers, is simply a fancy way of saying the sugar has already been broken down from sucrose into fructose and glucose. The name refers to a laboratory technique for measuring sugar solutions, not to the sugar itself. Any sugar that is broken down into smaller components is easier for the kombucha culture to absorb since it eliminates one step from the digestive process. There is no need to spend the extra money or time manufacturing invert sugar specifically for kombucha because the yeast are perfectly capable of breaking down sucrose on their own, and invert sugar makes no difference in flavour. However, if you already have some on hand, it's a good option.
DO NOT USE THESE
Just because something tastes sweet doesn't necessarily mean it's loaded with sugar. High-fructose corn syrup, aspartame, sucralose, and saccharin, as well as other artificial sweeteners and sugar alternatives, are not suited for Kombucha fermentation. Not only are they harmful to you, but they are also harmful to the SCOBY. It may be tempting to construct a "low sugar" kombucha by using one of these substitutes, but the results have ranged from unpleasant to mold-ridden. Here are some more sweeteners to stay away from.
SUBSTITUTES FOR SUGAR
Stevia, xylitol, sorbitol, erythritol, and mannitol are sugar alcohols that are neither sugar nor alcohol. They're made from different sugars, and while they're lower in calories than conventional table sugar, they lack the necessary fuel for the primary fermentation process. They can be used to sweeten brewed kombucha, but because their flavour might vary over time, it's better to consume those brews as soon as possible after opening the bottle.
HONEY IN THE NATURAL STATE
Raw honey should not be used to make kombucha because it contains bacteria and yeast colonies that can upset the SCOBY and throw the drink off balance. If you are interested in making kombucha with Honey please check out out Jun Kombucha blog.
This syrup lacks the glucose that causes the bacteria to make the g acids, such as gluconic and glucuronic acids, that aid in the detoxification process for which kombucha is renowned. Many homebrewers are concerned about its highly processed nature and potential health risks.
POWDERED SUGAR, BAKER'S SUGAR, AND BAR SUGAR
These cane sugar derivatives are processed into smaller granules than regular white table sugar, which can cause caking and dissolving problems.
Dextrose, in a form of glucose that produces a kombucha brew that is almost entirely made up of gluconic and glucuronic acids, which aid in detoxification. The flavour may be lacking, but what's more concerning is the culture's inevitable deterioration, which requires also fructose to survive over time.
BROWN RICE SYRUP
This highly processed syrup degrades to 100% glucose with very little mineral content. Strange yeast globs and odd flavours are common in the final brew.