How to Make Kombucha At Home


* This article contains affiliate links. For more information, please read my Affiliate Disclosure.

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipeI’m not gonna lie: when I first decided to learn how to make kombucha at home, I was feeling pretty intimidated.

I had never done any fermenting before and, just like with learning any new skill, I feared I would mess it up or make my family sick. 

But as it turns out, making kombucha at home is actually one of the quickest and easiest things that I now DIY on a regular basis. It takes very little hands-on time to brew a batch and virtually no special skills or equipment to get started. All you need is some water, sugar, tea, a SCOBY (which we’ll talk more about in just a minute), a glass jar and some bottles.

Oh, and it’s nearly impossible to mess it up or make anybody sick with homemade kombucha. In fact, quite the opposite: kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks you can consume besides water!

 

Cool. But what is kombucha, exactly?

Kombucha is a bubbly fermented drink made from black or green sweet tea.

To make it, all you need to do is brew some tea, mix it with sugar, let it cool and then add your SCOBY and some starter liquid and then let it sit on your counter and ferment at room temperature for a few days. Once it’s fermented, your kombucha will be ready to flavour and bottle, and then a few days later it will be bubbly and delicious and ready to drink!

 

Health benefits of kombucha

Kombucha is a fizzy, carbonated drink that can be flavoured in a myriad of ways using fruits, herbs and spices. But unlike soda and other carbonated beverages that are loaded with sugar and flavoured with artificial flavours, kombucha is all natural and is actually very low in sugar. This is because, even though kombucha is made with sugar, the SCOBY actually feeds on the sugar during the fermentation process. (See “What is a SCOBY?” below for more info.)

The longer kombucha is left to ferment, the less sugar remains, and by the time it’s ready to consume, there is typically very little sugar left. It also feeds on the caffeine in the tea, leaving very little caffeine too:) Since it is fermented, “living” food, (err, drink), kombucha is also very beneficial for gut health and for supporting a healthy microbiome.

As we are becoming more and more aware, our overall health and immunity is intrinsically tied to our gut health, and fermented foods and the probiotics they contain are one of the best possible things to consume to support a healthy gut!

 

How much does it cost to make kombucha at home?

Making your own kombucha is WAAAY cheaper than buying it from the store. Like, insanely cheaper.

Like anything, there will likely be a few start-up costs at the beginning (although they are very minimal), but overall making your own homemade kombucha is extremely economical.

Case in point: I can make about a gallon of kombucha at home for literal pennies. Okay, maybe it might cost me up to a buck or two for a gallon depending on the exact ingredients I use to flavour it. But that’s even a bit of a stretch.

Compare this to store-bought kombucha, which can cost anywhere from about $5 to $10 for a 16oz bottle. I’ve priced it out before, and for roughly the same amount as I make at home in a gallon batch, it would cost me roughly $40 to $60 to buy it ready-made from the store!

But financial savings aren’t the only reason to make your own kombucha at home…

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

Other reasons to make kombucha at home

By making your own homemade kombucha, you also have total control over the flavour, as well as the sugar content.

When it comes to flavouring kombucha, you can get as creative as you like! I’ll talk more about some of my favourite ways to flavour kombucha and favourite flavour combinations further on in this blog post, but for now just know that there really are no rules when it comes to flavouring your homemade kombucha.

Finally, while you do need to use sugar to start a fresh batch of kombucha, the fermentation process essentially consumes the sugar for you so that there’s much less sugar in the finished product by the time you’re ready to drink it.

The longer you allow your kombucha to ferment, the less sugar there will be in the end. In fact, if you ferment kombucha long enough, there will be almost no sugar left at all, and in this case kombucha is even allowed on reduced sugar or keto diets! 

However when you’re purchasing it from the store, the sugar levels vary depending on the brand and the batch, so you definitely have much more control over how much sugar is in your kombucha when you brew your own at home.

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

What is a SCOBY??

The acronym SCOBY stands for Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast.

You use an existing SCOBY to start each new batch of kombucha and then a new SCOBY forms as a thin layer on the surface of the batch when it’s fermenting. It eventually grows into a thick, gelatinous disc that looks a bit like a large mushroom or an alien sea creature of some kind. I’m not gonna lie, it can definitely be a little confronting the first time you lay eyes on one! (Just ask my friends who gasp and ask “dear God what is that thing?!” When they see it floating in a gallon of kombucha on my counter!)

But I assure you, there’s nothing threatening or alien about SCOBYs. They’re a perfectly natural part of the sweet tea fermentation process, and they’re an essential ingredient when it comes to brewing your own kombucha at home. 

 

Where do I get a SCOBY from?

If you’re ready to get started making your own kombucha, you’ll need a SCOBY to get started. You can either ask around locally and see if you can get one through a friend or through Facebook marketplace, etc., or you can buy one online. 

I got my first SCOBY for free from a friend and have never had to get another one because they multiply every time you brew a fresh batch! 

* If you happen to live in the Comox Valley send me a message and I will happily give you one of my SCOBYs free of charge:)

But even if it costs you a few bucks for your first SCOBY, so long as you keep brewing kombucha somewhat regularly and store your SCOBYs correctly (see below), you’ll never have to buy one again, and you could even potentially sell extra SCOBYs to other people in your area!

 

Where to order a SCOBY online

If you’re opting to order a SCOBY online, there are a couple places you can get one from. One of my favourite places to get all sorts of fermented starter cultures (including SCOBYS, yogurt starter cultures, sourdough starters, kefir, etc.) is from Cultures For Health.

Cultures For Health also sells some pretty delicious kombucha flavour kits, including flavours like White Tea and Ginger, Lavender Lemonade, Black Chai Spice and more.

You can also order a SCOBY from Amazon. 

 

Can I make my own SCOBY?

Technically, you can grow your own SCOBY simply by mixing brewed tea, sugar and some starter liquid (kombucha). Eventually a new SCOBY will form, but it typically takes a lot longer to create a SCOBY from scratch this way and your kombucha will be susceptible to being taken over by bad bacteria while you wait as part of the SCOBY’s job is to populate your kombucha with enough good bacteria that bad bacteria can’t thrive.

I’ve never personally made my own SCOBY from scratch and don’t really recommend it, but technically it’s possible if you wanna get really scrappy.

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

What else do I need to make kombucha at home?

Aside from a SCOBY, you’ll need a few other basic ingredients and tools to get started making kombucha at home.

You’ll need… 

  • A SCOBY (see above)
  • Tea (you can use any black, green or white tea, bagged or looseleaf. But make sure it’s organic!  I like Farmhouse Teas (affiliate link) and highly recommend their superior organic teas! 
  • Sugar (I prefer organic cane sugar. I’ve also used coconut sugar with success).
  • Water (tap water is fine, just make sure it’s filtered or non-chlorinated. If it’s chlorinated, make sure to boil it first to remove the chlorine).
  • A glass vessel (glass gallon jars are my favourite, but you can use half gallons or even quart jars for small batches)
  • Bottles (I like using swing-top bottles like this, but I also use old (clean) growlers and howlers that I’ve picked up at local breweries, etc.)
  • Flavouring (this is optional, but recommended. You can use fruit, juice, herbs, spices or herbal tea blends to flavour your kombucha)

Alternatively, you can get everything you need to get started making kombucha at home –minus the glass vessel– with this starter kit from my friend and affiliate partner, CeAnne at Farmhouse Teas.

The Homestead Kombucha Bundle is only available for a limited time, and has everything you need to get started brewing kombucha at home, including Farmhouse Teas’ Three Sisters black kombucha tea blend, a starter SCOBY, a bag of organic cane sugar and three of my favourite flavour packs, including Farmhouse Teas’ Strawberry Mojito, Rose Berry and Rosemary Citrus herbal tea blends. Plus you’l get a stainless steel strainer, a 30+ page kombucha brewing eBook and more, including a bonus kombucha brewing video course (among other sweet bonuses). 

AND, until June 30th, you can save a massive $100+ off this limited edition bundle. Check it out right here.

 

How to make homemade kombucha

Once you’ve got your SCOBY, tea, sugar and fermenting vessel, you’re ready to get started making your own kombucha at home! 

First you’ll need to know how much of each ingredient to use. This will depend on the size of your fermenting vessel.

For a quart-size jar, use

  • ½ Tablespoon loose leaf tea or 2 tea bags
  • ¼ cup sugar 
  • ½ cup starter tea

For a half gallon, use

  • 1 Tablespoon loose leaf tea or 4 tea bags
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup starter tea

For a gallon, use

  • 2 Tablespoons loose leaf tea or 8 tea bags
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups starter tea

 

Step 1 – First Ferment

The first part of the kombucha-making process is called the First Ferment. This is the part where you actually get your batch going and get it started fermenting. 

 

Watch: How to Make Kombucha At Home – First Ferment

Here’s what you do:

1. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Place your tea into a tea pot or other similar vessel to steep in (you could also use a pot or a glass jar or bowl). Make sure that loose leaf tea is contained in a tea bag or strainer.

2. Once your water has boiled, pour it over your tea and allow tea to steep for about 5 minutes. 

3. Strain tea or remove tea bags and then transfer tea to your fermenting vessel (make sure to leave space for your starter tea!). Add sugar and stir until dissolved.

4. If there’s lots of extra room in your fermenting vessel (ie. in a large, gallon jar), top with cool water until your vessel is about of the way full.

5. Allow tea to cool to at least 85 degrees Fahrenheit or cooler (room temperature to tepid, lukewarm water is ideal) before adding your starter tea and your SCOBY. 

* DO NOT add your SCOBY to hot tea! If the liquid is too hot, -it will kill your SCOBY! Liquid should also be at least room temperature and not refrigerated when doing your first ferment as refrigeration slows the fermentation process.

6. Once your tea has cooled down, add you starter tea and your SCOBY. Then place a coffee filter over the jar opening and secure with an elastic band. Set kombucha aside on your counter at room temperature but out of direct sunlight, and leave it to ferment for at least 5 to 7 days and up to about 2 weeks.

* The time it takes for your kombucha to ferment depends on the temperature (warmer temps = faster fermentation and cooler temps = slower fermentation), as well as your personal preferences (if you prefer it sweeter, bottle it sooner. If you prefer less sugar, wait a little longer to bottle it).

 

Step 2 – Second Ferment

The second ferment is when the real fun begins! This is when you get to add your flavourings and bottle your kombucha!

 

Watch: How to Make Kombucha At Home – Second Ferment

You’ll need… 

  • Bottles (use glass bottles with airtight lids to bottle your kombucha and allow it to build up carbonation. I like to use swing-top bottles or glass growlers for mine). 
  • Flavourings (fresh, frozen or dried fruits, fruit juices, herbs and spices work great for flavouring kombucha! I especially like using the herbal tea blends from Farmhouse Teas to flavour my kombucha. My favourite flavours are Rose Berry, Strawberry Mojito, Apple Pie and Turmeric Ginger Peach… Okay, who am I kidding. I like them all!) 

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

Add your flavouring(s)

Start by adding your flavourings to your bottle. If using fruit, you can either pop it in the bottle whole, chopped up, or blend it up first with a tablespoon or two of kombucha and then add it to the bottle. If adding herbal tea, herbs or spices, just add them in loose. You can strain them out later. 

As for how much to add, I sort of eyeball it, but on average I’ll add about one tablespoon of herbal tea to a 34 oz. swing-top bottle, or about ¼ cup of fresh or frozen fruit. If adding spices (cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, etc.) I add about ½ teaspoon dried, ground spices or 1 teaspoon fresh (ie. ginger, turmeric, etc.).

This is where you get to play around with the different flavours and amounts and find what works for you. There are no hard and fast rules about flavouring kombucha like there are when you’re doing your initial ferment, so have fun! I’ve personally never made a bottle of kombucha I didn’t like, but if you do happen to make a bottle too strong or you don’t like the flavour combination, it won’t hurt you. Just chalk it up to experience and adjust your flavouring next time:)

The sky’s pretty much the limit when it comes to flavouring kombucha. I love using the herbal flavouring packs from Farmhouse Teas because they’re delicious, 100% organic and already blended for me, but here are some of my other favourite flavours and combinations…

 

Kombucha flavour combo ideas 

  • Strawberry Mint 
  • Strawberry Basil 
  • Strawberry Rhubarb 
  • Blueberry Lemon/Lime 
  • Lemon Ginger 
  • Pineapple Ginger 
  • Mango Pineapple 
  • Blackberry Ginger 
  • Apple Cinnamon 
  • Raspberry Cherry 
  • Raspberry Lemon 
  • Watermelon Mint 
  • Cherry Lime 
  • Cranberry Orange 
  • Lemon Rosemary 
  • Blackberry Cherry 
  • Blackberry Mint 
  • Pear Ginger 
  • Tripleberry (Blackberry Blueberry & Raspberry or Strawberry)

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

Bottle your kombucha 

Once you’ve added your flavourings to the bottle, use a funnel to pour in your kombucha (remove the SCOBYs first!). Fill the bottles up to the top, leaving about an inch to ½ inch headspace. Seal the bottles with the lid and set it aside on the counter out of direct sunlight once more.

Allow the bottles to sit and do their second ferment for about two or three days. Then transfer to the fridge to chill before serving!

Allowing your bottled kombucha to sit on the counter for a few days allows it to continue fermenting and helps build carbonation. Putting it in the fridge helps slow the carbonation so it doesn’t get too bubbly.

I recommend chilling it before opening it up, both because cold kombucha (like cold beer) just tastes better, and because I once opened a warm bottle of blackberry kombucha in my friend’s kitchen and it EXPLODED all over their ceiling, walls, clothes… Not my finest hour. 

To be fair, we had been travelling and I had it jumbling around in my backpack, and I’ve never had a problem with chilled kombucha! Still, you might want to open it over the sink (or outside) just in case;)

 

How to store homemade kombucha

Store kombucha in the fridge. If you store bottled kombucha at room temperature for a long time it will build up a lot of carbonation and could start to leak or even explode all over. Storing it in the fridge will slow the carbonation and keep it longer. 

Kombucha is fermented, so it won’t technically go bad. But once opened, it can lose carbonation within about a week or so.

If left to ferment for too long, it will also start to taste more like vinegar than a refreshing drink. If this happens, simply use it as a base for homemade salad dressing!

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

Is Kombucha safe for kids?

Due to the fermentation process, there is sometimes trace amounts of alcohol in kombucha, but nowhere near enough to cause any sort or effects. Still, this is something you might want to consider when giving kombucha to young children.

I definitely wouldn’t give it to babies under one year old as they are still developing their digestive systems. But our almost five-year-old LOVES kombucha and drinks it regularly (and has been drinking it since she was three). She doesn’t even know to ask for soda, but she asks for kombucha on almost a daily basis!

 

Storing your SCOBYs in a SCOBY hotel

Every time you brew a new batch of kombucha, a new SCOBY will form. Before long, you’ll no doubt end up with quite a few of them! And they all need a safe place to live when you’re not actively using them to make a fresh batch of kombucha. 

Enter the SCOBY hotel…

SCOBY hotels are essentially just glass jars where you store your SCOBYs along with some of the fermented tea from previous batches of kombucha. I store my SCOBYs in a gallon-sized glass jar and I always add about two cups of starter liquid back to it along with my SCOBYs after I’m finished with my first ferment (before bottling and flavouring). This will keep your SCOBYs alive and healthy until the next time you go to use them.

Store your SCOBY hotel in a dark, room temperature place. I store mine in our pantry. I’ve stored SCOBYs without using them for up to about two months or so before and they’ve always been fine, but to keep them strong and healthy, you should brew a fresh batch at least once a month or so and then add some of the starter liquid from your fresh batch back into your SCOBY hotel so they have more sugar and caffeine to feed on.

If you go too long without “feeding” them some fresh starter liquid, they could starve to death. Although from my own experience, they’re pretty hardy little creatures and seem to survive just fine for quite a long time!

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

What to do with extra SCOBYs

At some point, you’ll find yourself with more SCOBYs than you need or than you have room for in your SCOBY hotel. Not to mention, SCOBYs do get old and very thick as they continue to grow. Here are some ideas for what to do with extra SCOBYs you no longer need…

  • Sell them (or give them away!)
  • Feed them to your chickens (our chickens LOVE when I chop up a SCOBY or two, and it’s just as healthy for them as it is for us humans!)
  • Compost them 
  • Blend them up and add them to your smoothie (ok, I haven’t personally done this, but I know of people who have, and it’s extra probiotics for you! Yum! ??)

 

Download your FREE Kombucha eBook!

Once you make homemade kombucha a few times, it’ll likely become second nature. But you’ll probably want to refer back to the instructions a few times when you’re first getting started. To help with this I created a free Kombucha-making eBook that you can download from my Free Resource Library. 

> Sign up here to get access to all of the resources in my (growing) library, and find my How to Make Kombucha At Home step-by-step printable guide under the Kitchen & Pantry Resources section of the library.

 

Kombucha is one of the healthiest drinks on the planet (besides water), but storebought kombucha is SO expensive! Learn how to make kombucha at home for a fraction of the price, plus get as creative as you like with custom flavours! Homemade kombucha is healthy, affordable, delicious and easy to make. Here's everything you need to know to get started! #homemadekombucha #howtomakekombucha #kombucharecipe

How to Make Kombucha At Home

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons looseleaf black or green tea (or 8 tea bags)
  • 1 cup organic sugar
  • 2 cups starter tea
  • 1 SCOBY
  • Your choice of fruit, juice, herbs, spices or herbal tea for flavour

Instructions

First Ferment

  1. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Place your tea into a tea pot or other similar vessel to steep in (you could also use a pot or a glass jar or bowl). Make sure that loose leaf tea is contained in a tea bag or strainer.
  2. Once your water has boiled, pour it over your tea and allow tea to steep for about 5 minutes.
  3. Strain tea or remove tea bags and then transfer tea to a glass gallon jar (make sure to leave space for your starter tea!). Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
  4. If there’s lots of extra room in your jar, top with cool water until your vessel is about ⅔ of the way full.
  5. Allow tea to cool to at least 85 degrees Fahrenheit or cooler (room temperature to tepid, lukewarm water is ideal) before adding your starter tea and your SCOBY. * DO NOT add your SCOBY to hot tea! If the liquid is too hot, -it will kill your SCOBY! Liquid should also be at least room temperature and not refrigerated when doing your first ferment as refrigeration slows the fermentation process.
  6. Once your tea has cooled down, add you starter tea and your SCOBY. Then place a coffee filter over the jar opening and secure with an elastic band. Set kombucha aside on your counter at room temperature but out of direct sunlight, and leave it to ferment for at least 5 to 7 days and up to about 2 weeks. * Warmer temperature = faster fermentation and cooler temps = slower fermentation

Second Ferment

  1. Once your tea is fermented to your liking, it's time to flavour and bottle it. Start by adding your flavourings of choice to your bottle. If using fruit, you can either pop it in the bottle whole, chopped up, or blend it up first with a tablespoon or two of kombucha and then add it to the bottle. If adding herbal tea, herbs or spices, just add them in loose. You can strain them out later.
  2. How much flavouring you add is up to you, but on average I’ll add about one tablespoon of herbal tea to a 34 oz. swing-top bottle, or about ¼ cup of fresh or frozen fruit. If adding spices (cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, etc.) I add about ½ teaspoon dried, ground spices or 1 teaspoon fresh (ie. ginger, turmeric, etc.). Play around with different flavours and amounts and find what works for you.
  3. Once you’ve added your flavourings to the bottle it's time to add your kombucha tea. First remove the SCOBYs and place them in your SCOBY hotel. (If you don't yet have a SCOBY hotel, add them to a clean glass jar). Add at least two cups of tea to your SCOBY hotel to keep the SCOBYs hydrated and "fed."
  4. Using a funnel to pour your kombucha, fill the bottles up to the top leaving about an inch to ½ inch headspace. Seal the bottles with the lid and set aside on the counter out of direct sunlight once more. Allow the bottles to sit and do their second ferment for about two or three days. Then transfer to the fridge to chill before serving.
  5. Serve chilled or store your kombucha in the fridge.

CATEGORIES
HOMESTEADING
REAL FOOD
NATURAL LIVING

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

ABOUT ANNA
Hi! I’m Anna, and I’m a city girl turned modern homesteader who’s passionate about growing, cooking and preserving real food at home, creating my own herbal medicine and all-natural home and body care products, and working toward a simpler, more sustainable and self-sufficient life each and every day. 
You Might Also Like
How to Season Cast Iron Cookware

How to Season Cast Iron Cookware

Cast iron cookware is seeing a comeback. While it’s one of the oldest types of cookware still in use today, cast iron fell out of fashion in the mid 20th century when other types of cookware such as aluminum, stainless steel and Teflon-coated non-stick pans gained...

read more

How to Render Lard (Using a Slow Cooker or Stockpot)

How to Render Lard (Using a Slow Cooker or Stockpot)

When it comes to homesteading skills, learning how to render your own lard is high on the list of things that will have you feeling like you’re channeling Ma Ingalls in your kitchen. Of course, us modern homesteaders know there’s absolutely no shame in using modern...

read more

Winter often gets a bad rap for being the coldest, darkest, dreariest season of the year, when life as we knew it in the summer ceases to exist.

But winter offers us a much-needed reprieve from the busy-ness of the rest of the year;

A time to slow down, rest, reflect and dream;

A time to give ourselves over to the projects, hobbies, crafts and activities that we just don’t seem to have time for the rest of the year;

A time to devour books, soak up knowledge, learn new skills and sharpen old ones.

The winter issue of Modern Homesteading Magazine showcases just a few of the many unique activities, projects and opportunities that this season affords us the time to immerse ourselves in.

Here’s what you’ll find in this issue:

✨ Inspiration and ideas to help you make the most of winter on the homestead
🌱 The many ways to put a greenhouse to use all year long
🥂Homemaking tips for the holidays (and beyond!) with Homemaker Chic podcast hosts Shaye Elliott & Angela Reed
🍴Holiday recipes & comfort foods, featuring Honey Taffy, Mulled Wine and Winter Squash
🪵 Winter woodworking tutorials with The Humble Handyman and Anne of All Trades
❄️ And more!!!

To read the full issue AND get instant access to our entire library of past issues (26 value-packed issues and counting!), click the link in my bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://modernhomesteadingmagazine.com

P.S. When you subscribe during the month of December, you’ll also get a coupon code for a free one-year subscription that you can gift to someone you love!

Give the gift of self-sufficiency this Christmas —> https://modernhomesteadingmagazine.com
...

We’re all familiar with eggnog, but have you ever wondered what “nog” is anyway, or how this decadent holiday drink came to be?

The general consensus is that eggnog originated in England in the 17th Century and was made with eggs, milk and some sort of alcohol (aka. “nog”).

It may have even been enjoyed earlier than this, as a similar beverage called posset (a hot, milky, ale-based drink) has origins dating back to the 13th century.

As I was researching this topic, I found at least one source that claims eggnog was created by mixing alcohol with eggs and milk earlier in the season when egg and milk production was at a high. The alcohol was used to preserve the dairy products so that they could be consumed during the winter months when egg and milk production was low.

It was originally made with sherry or brandy, but when eggnog reached America it was typically spiked with rum because rum was easier to come by. Eventually some people started substituting American whiskey.

Nowadays we can drink eggnog with or without alcohol, but traditionally eggnog was always an alcoholic drink that wealthy folks (who could afford milk and eggs and alcohol) would use to toast to their prosperity.

Eggnog has remained a favourite beverage around Christmas time; One that most of us are accustomed to buying in a carton from the grocery store. But like most processed foods, store-bought eggnog is often loaded with additives like high fructose corn syrup and thickeners.

This holiday season, why not make your own eggnog instead?

All you need are fresh eggs, milk, cream, sugar and a little nutmeg (and an optional cinnamon stick) to garnish.

If eggnog is on your list of holiday must-haves but you’d rather avoid the processed grocery store stuff and make your own with fresh ingredients, you can grab the full recipe via the link in my bio @thehouseandhomestead or by visiting https://thehouseandhomestead.com/old-fashioned-homemade-eggnog-recipe/

What’s your position on eggnog? Do you love it or hate it? And if you spike it with alcohol, what alcohol do you prefer?
...

One of the things I love MOST about homesteading is that it empowers us to become producers of goods rather than merely consumers.

It allows us to become less dependent on outside sources to provide for us because we can provide for ourselves.

But that doesn't mean we don't need any outside help or resources ever when we're striving to become more self-sufficient. In fact, it's even more important that we have the right tools, equipment and resources on hand so that we can be more self-sufficient and consume less overall.

Every year around this time, I compile a list of my favourite things: Things that I love and use on a regular basis, and things that I know other modern homesteaders will love too!

This year I've narrowed it down to my top 10 favourite things; Things I've been using for long enough now that I know they're a great investment and I can feel confident recommending them to others.

For the most part, these are things you're going to buy once and never have to replace.

I put a lot of thought into this year's list, made some ruthless cuts to last year's list and added a couple new things I've come to love over the past 12 months.

If you're looking to invest your money rather than waste it this holiday season –whether you're taking advantage of sales for yourself or looking to buy for others on your list– you have my personal guarantee that the items on this year's favourite things list are well worth the money.

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/favourite-things/ to check out the full list if you’re looking for the perfect gift for yourself or for another homesteader on your list, or if you’re just curious to see what we use around our place:)

What are some of your favourite homestead-y things??
...

🥧 Wanna know the secret to a perfect, flaky pie crust EVERY TIME??

It all comes down to 3 simple rules…

Rule # 1 - Keep your butter (or lard) as cold as possible.

Freeze it even!

The colder the better when it comes to the fat source in a pie crust because you want the fat to stay solid until it melts in the oven. Then when it does melt, little air pockets will remain in the crust which is what makes it flaky and light (instead of everybody’s least favourite alternative: chewy and dense).

Rule # 2 - Keep the fat content as high as possible.

Fat equals flavour, and also helps keep the crust light and flaky.

Consider using whole fat milk instead of water, along with your butter or lard.

Rule # 3 - Don’t overwork your dough.

Unlike bread, pie crust should not be kneaded and should actually be handled as little as possible.

The more you work your dough, the more gluten strands will form, and which is what makes bread (and sadly some pie crusts) chewy.

Work your dough only as much as necessary to form a dough ball before you put it in the fridge to chill. The less you touch it, the lighter, flakier and more delicious your pie crust will be!

At the end of the day, homemade pie crust is almost always better than store-bought, but you’ve gotta follow a few simple rules to knock it outta the park.

I’ve spent a lot of time perfecting my own flaky pie crust recipe, which I use for sweet and savoury pies alike.

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead for more tips and to get the full printable recipe or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/flaky-pie-crust/

What’s your favourite kind of pie? Answer with an emoji below!

(Mine’s 🍒;)

#pie #homemadepie #thanksgivingrecipes #homesteadkitchen #piefromscratch #fromscratch
...

The worst part about every holiday dinner is being stuck in the kitchen cooking while everyone else is just enjoying each other’s company.

The second worst part is store-bought cranberry sauce —You know, the kind that makes that oh-so appetizing slurping noise as it slides out of the tin and into the bowl, still shaped like the can it came out of.

Homemade cranberry sauce is stupidly easy to make and tastes SO much better than store-bought. Plus you can add spices to put your own delicious spin on this holiday classic.

While it takes just a few minutes to whip together homemade cranberry sauce on the big day, you can make it ahead of time and either refrigerate it (up to 3 days), freeze it or even can it to enjoy later!

Canning is my favourite method of preservation when it comes to homemade cranberry sauce because I can make it well in advance and I don’t have to worry about remembering to defrost it ahead of time.

Canning it means you’ve always got a jar of made-from-scratch cranberry sauce ready to go in your pantry long before you’re ready to set the table (and trust me, it’s a lot prettier coming out of a Mason jar!)

Plus you can make enough for both Thanksgiving AND Christmas, all in one go, and even keep enough on hand to enjoy mixed into yogurt, oatmeal or over ice cream whenever you like!

Now is the time to start your holiday dinner preparations to ensure you don’t spend all day in the kitchen and get to soak up as much valuable family time as possible.

Yesterday I shared my family recipe for homemade Perogies, which you can make ahead snd freeze. Here’s just one more recipe you can make ahead of time and preserve to make your life easier this holiday season.

Recipe link in bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/spiced-homemade-cranberry-sauce/

Have you ever made your own cranberry sauce from scratch, or will this be your first time??

#cranberrysauce #fromscratch #homesteading #homesteadkitchen #canning #preserving #thanksgivingdinner #christmasdinner
...

Did you know that the fragrance industry has a stockpile of over 3,100 synthetic chemicals that they use to concoct their signature fragrances?😬

And get this: Because of trade secrets, they’re not even legally required to disclose the list of chemical ingredients in their products! 😱

Luckily, there’s an easy, affordable synthetic-chemical-free alternative…. Make your own DIY home and body sprays with essential oils and all-natural ingredients!

If you wanna learn how, you can check out my DIY Home & Body sprays Masterclass for FREE today only by joining me and a whole bunch of other simple living bloggers for the last day of A Cozy Gathering.

Learn how to create your own all-natural sprays, craft handmade rope coil baskets, cook delicious and nourishing winter soups, make herbal honey infusions and more!

If you’ve already signed up, be sure to check your email for the links to all of today’s presentations!

And if you haven’t signed up yet, there’s not much time left, so click the link in my bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://bit.ly/307P0cT to sign up and watch for free before it ends tonight!

You also have the option of purchasing lifetime access if you miss it:)

I’ll be making more of these for Christmas gifts this year, along with candles and baskets of goodies from our pantry 😊

Let me know if you’ll be making some too!
...

I woke up this morning and it was still dark as night.

The rain was pelting down on our roof and the wind was howling.

Outside it was cold and dreary, but inside I lit my morning candle, turned on the soft white fairy lights we have strung in our kitchen, put a few drops of oil in the diffuser and snuggled back under the blankets with a hot cup of coffee before it was time to “officially” start the day.

I just love this time of year!

I talk a lot about seasonal living, mostly because as a homesteader, you have no choice but to live with the seasons.

You’re either starting seeds and planting in the spring, tending your garden in the summer, preserving in the fall or sitting by the fire in the winter as you eat from the larder full of food you worked so hard to put up the rest of the year, and dreaming about starting all over again in the spring.

Our success as homesteaders really does depend on us changing up our routines and making the most of each season, though this can sometimes feel easier said than done when the weather outside is dark and miserable.

But there’s something magical and deeply nourishing about this time of year, should we choose to embrace it for all it has to offer.

If you’re looking for a little help or inspiration to help you approach the winter months with intention and make this season as cozy, joyous and restful as it can be, I’m so excited to invite you to A Cozy Gathering: a 3-day virtual summit featuring 16 expert speakers, giveaways, and a lifetime’s access to a wealth of information and actionable ideas for simple-living during all four seasons (but especially fall and winter!)

The summit starts on Monday, November 8th and is completely FREE to attend.
OR you can upgrade and get instant, lifetime access to the entire summit, including all of the presentations and exclusive bonuses for just $47 (until Sunday only).

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead to register for free and save your seat, or purchase instant, lifetime access to A Cozy Gathering!

Tell me, what’s your favourite thing about this time of year??
...

We woke up to a killing frost the other day. If you’re a farmer, gardener or homesteader, you know what that means…

It means our days to get everything done outdoors are numbered.

It means we need to make sure the chickens and rabbits have fresh, warm bedding.

It means we need to finish putting the garden to bed, which includes adding a layer of compost and mulch to feed and protect the soil until we’re ready to plant again next spring.

It means tidying up our tools, putting away our hoses and making sure the water’s turned off so it doesn’t freeze.

So much of life as a homesteader is dictated by the weather and the seasons, and while that can often mean a mad scramble to get everything planted, harvested and/or put to bed, there’s something invigorating about every seasonal transition and shift. It gets my adrenaline going!

But it’s still work. Nobody said that the “simple” life would be easy!

But it’s precisely that hard work that makes falling into bed each night so gratifying. It’s the feeling of a day well spent and a job well done.

If you’re looking for some tips on what to do now before the ground freezes solid to make sure you’re ready for winter AND ready to start all over again in the garden next spring, be sure to check out the fall issue of Modern Homesteading Magazine, which is full of tips and advice to help you wrap up the growing season and get a head start on the coming months.

As always, a little bit (more) hard work right now will definitely make life easier down the line.

Link in bio @thehouseandhomestead to subscribe and read the latest issue if you haven’t yet, or go to www.modernhomesteadingmagazine.com

#homesteading #homesteadersofinstagram #simplelife #selfsufficiency #winteriscoming
...

Fact: You can use a cast iron skillet to cook your food, get extra iron in your diet and even to ward off criminals!

These are just a few of the benefits of cooking with cast iron. Wanna know more??

Click the link in my bio @thehouseandhomestead or go to https://thehouseandhomestead.com/7-benefits-of-cooking-with-cast-iron

Do you cook with cast iron? If so, what do you like most about it? Let me know down below!👇

#castiron #castironcooking #homesteadkitchen
...

© The House & Homestead | All Rights Reserved | Legal

Skip to Recipe