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Kombucha vs Kefir: The Key Differences You Need to Know

Are you looking for a probiotic drink to improve your well-being? If so, you may be wondering if Kombucha or Kefir is the best choice.

While both drinks have similar benefits, there are some fundamental differences between Kombucha and Kefir that you should be aware of before deciding.

This article will compare Kombucha and Kefir in terms of taste and health benefits to help you decide which one is right for you.

What is Kombucha?

Kombucha

A Kombucha is a drink consisting of fermented tea. Kombucha is thought to have originated in China for over 2000 years, and was used as a medicinal drink. 

It is made by adding a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY) to sweetened tea, which ferments the sugars and breaks them down into lactic acid, acetic acid, and other beneficial compounds.

Kombucha has a slightly sour, slightly sweet and slightly fizzy flavor.

You can find Kombucha in our shop online and most health food stores. You can also make your own Kombucha at home. There are many recipes online.

Kombucha is believed to have many health benefits, including aiding digestion and detoxification. It is also a good source of probiotics. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that help keep your gut healthy. 

What is Kefir?

kefir

Kefir is a fermented milk drink that has been enjoyed for centuries in Eastern Europe and the Caucasus region. It is made by adding kefir grains to milk and allowing it to ferment. The result is a slightly carbonated drink rich in vitamins, minerals and probiotics.

This drink has a slightly sour taste and sometimes tastes like yogurt, but with a thinner consistency. 

Kefir is available at most grocery stores, and it can also be made at home by adding kefir grains to milk. Kefir grains can be found online or at health food stores. 

How are they made?

→ Kombucha

Kombucha is made by adding the "mother of Kombucha" to sweetened black or green tea. The "Mother of Kombucha" better known for SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast) is responsible for the fermentation process. The SCOBY consumes the sugar and ferments the tea, creating Kombucha.

Fermentation time is usually seven to ten days, and if it is too long, Kombucha develops a more intense vinegary flavor.

Kombucha's characteristics vary a lot because they depend on several factors, such as the type of tea used as a base, the microorganisms present in the "mother of kombucha" and the fermentation time.

The end result is a refreshing, bittersweet, slightly carbonated drink reminiscent of cider.

→ kefir

Kefir is made using kefir grains, a combination of bacteria and yeast. The beans are added to the milk (or water) and the mixture is left to ferment for about 24 hours.

The fermentation process produces a thick drink that is rich in probiotics, minerals and B vitamins. Kefir can be made with any type of milk, or it can be made with water.

What is the difference between Kombucha and Kefir?

While both Kombucha and Kefir include beneficial microorganisms, there are slight differences. Kombucha contains more bacteria that aid digestion, while Kefir contains more lactic acid bacteria (because of the milk).

Since Kombucha is created from tea, it contains caffeine. Kefir is a fantastic source of calcium because it is made from milk.

The kefir fermentation process reduces the amount of lactose this milk contains; however, this does not necessarily make it lactose free. Therefore, it is not suitable for people on special diets. 

On the other hand, Kombucha can be enjoyed by almost anyone as it is gluten-free and vegetarian.

The Benefits of Every Drink

kombucha and kefir benefits

Benefits of Kombucha:

  • Potential Source of Probiotics
  • Providing the benefits of green tea
  • Contains antioxidants
  • Can kill harmful bacteria
  • May reduce the risk of heart disease
  • Can help manage type 2 diabetes
  • Kombucha is healthy when done properly.

Kefir benefits:

  • Fantastic source of many nutrients
  • It's a more powerful probiotic than yogurt
  • Has potent antibacterial properties
  • May improve bone health and decrease risk of osteoporosis
  • Kefir Probiotics May Help With Various Digestive Concerns
  • It is low in lactose
  • It's easy to do at home

Which one is healthier for you?

Kombucha and Kefir are both healthy drinks that offer a variety of benefits. However, Kombucha is generally considered to be the most beneficial option as it is lower in sugar and calories and does not contain any lactose.


While Kefir has some health benefits over Kombucha, such as being a more potent probiotic and containing more calcium, the best drink for you is one that you enjoy drinking and that meets your specific health needs.

What is Water Kefir?

water kefir

Unlike regular kefir, water kefir is a fermented beverage made with water, sugar and a starter culture called a kefir grain. The resulting drink is sweet and slightly carbonated.

Water kefir is a great source of probiotics, which are beneficial bacteria that help keep your gut healthy.

This drink is very easy to make at home and all you need is kefir grains, sugar, water and a little patience. 

How to make your Kombucha or Kefir at home?

→ Kombucha

To make Kombucha, you need a SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast), tea, sugar and a container to make Kombucha.

You can get a SCOBY from a friend who already makes Kombuca, or you can buy it from our online store here. Once you have your SCOBY, make a tea (black or green tea is best), add sugar to sweeten it, then add the SCOBY.

Kombucha will need to ferment for 7-10 days, after which it will be ready to drink. Don't forget to store it in a glass jar or bottle with a closed lid, as Kombucha is slightly carbonated. 

Properly packaged and refrigerated, the drink retains its characteristics for a long time.

For more information on how to make Kombucha, see this article - How to Make Kombucha Base Recipe.

→ kefir

To make Kefir, you will need milk and kefir grains. You can use any type of milk. Add the kefir grains to the milk and let it ferment for 24-48 hours. The longer it ferments, the more sour and acidic the kefir will be. 

Kefir can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Which one is easier to make at home?

Kombucha requires a SCOBY, which you can purchase from the online store and takes 7-10 days to ferment. On the other hand, Kefir only takes 24-48 hours to ferment and only requires milk and kefir grains, which are easy to obtain. Therefore, Kefir is the easiest to make at home.

Conclusion

So what is the final verdict? Kombucha and Kefir are both great for your health, but they have different taste profiles. If you want a refreshing, bittersweet and slightly carbonated drink, go with Kombucha. If you prefer something more sour and creamier in texture, choose milk kefir. Water kefir has the characteristics of soy, with a sweet taste and the presence of gas.

Whatever your decision, we know you'll be doing your body a favor by drinking it! Ready to try? Visit our online store where you can buy ready-to-drink Kombucha or a Kit to do at home.

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