Kombucha is a type of sweet tea infused with bacteria and yeast cultures. This drink is considered a health drink that promotes better digestive health.
Kombucha used to be rare in the US, but these days the drink can be found in local supermarkets. Some people even brew their own kombucha! This sweet drink is best stored at room temperature to keep the culture alive. But what about freezing this drink? But can you freeze kombucha?
Some are of the opinion that kombucha should not be frozen as the probiotic culture could die off during freezing. This is a myth; Kombucha can be frozen for future use! Now it is important to freeze the drink properly by “fast freezing” so that the bacteria and yeast culture do not die during the freezing process.
The fact is that freezing kombucha does not kill the bacteria and yeast cultures, the cold temperatures only cause them to remain dormant. Still, there are many things to consider before freezing the drink.
For one, the cell membranes of yeast and beneficial bacteria could rupture as they expand if left in the freezer for too long. On the other hand, the ice crystals that form during freezing could be harmful to the bacteria. We therefore advise against freezing kombucha for weeks. You must consume kombucha as soon as possible if you want to enjoy its health benefits.
Read Also: Can you freeze fresh vegetables?
How about chilling the drink? Is It Safe to Store Kombucha in the Fridge? Yes, you can store kombucha in the fridge. When refrigerated, kombucha can be kept for up to 3 months. However, we recommend not keeping the drink for too long if you want to enjoy its health benefits.
Kombucha has a long shelf life and will never spoil. And why? The bacteria in the drink will kill any contaminant it encounters. If kombucha is kept at room temperature, it will continue to ferment and become sour throughout the day. Fermentation stops when the drink is chilled in the refrigerator. Kombucha should only be tossed when mold is developing. This happens when the drink has been left for too long.
How to freeze kombucha?
If you’re looking to keep your favorite health drink in the freezer, here’s a step-by-step guide on how to freeze kombucha:
Before proceeding with freezing, it is important to note that this process does not guarantee the survival of the probiotics after freezing.
Slow freezing is the enemy when storing kombucha in the freezer. If you’ve brewed your own kombucha, it’s important to pack the drink properly. This also means that no metal is used to store the drink.
The probiotic culture will react with the drink, so always use plastic dishes and funnels to prepare kombucha. To freeze the drink, you can use a rigid plastic container or heavy-duty, removable plastic bags. Simply fill the kombucha into the container, leaving a few inches free before sealing. Never shake the kombucha.
Fill a large bowl with ice and set the packaged beverage in to cool, then add water and 1/4 cup salt. The salt makes the water and ice extremely cold, chilling the drink almost instantly. When the drink is nice and chilled, stick it in the freezer and keep the temperature constant at 0° Fahrenheit.
The same process can also be used when freezing store-bought kombucha without having to transfer the drink to a different container.
How do I thaw frozen kombucha?
To thaw frozen kombucha, transfer the beverage from the freezer to the fridge. Consume the drink immediately as soon as it is thawed. To ensure most probiotics have survived freezing temperatures, consume the remainder of your kombucha stash within a few days or weeks of freezing. Never leave thawed kombucha in the pantry or freeze leftovers.
Freezing kombucha is a delicate process that requires careful preparation and considerable knowledge of how to properly handle kombucha microorganisms. While there’s no guarantee that blast freezing will ensure the survival of the probiotics once the drink is thawed, it’s worth a try if you need to store gallons of the drink in the freezer. Our advice is to freeze the drink in small batches to avoid wastage.