Tips and Troubleshooting:
- If your grains are dehydrated, the process is the same, but discard the first ferment. It may take up to a week to fully hydrate the grains.
- Water kefir grains will often double in size each week or so. If yours are not, they may still be making wonderful kefir, but something could be perfected.
- Do not use water that is chlorinated or fluoridated (Britta filter workswell … or buy spring water)
- Use only unsulphured dried fruit such as apricots or raisins. Sulphur is added as a preservative and will kill your grains.
- Never add anything to your grains that is used to preserve food, or kill bacteria. This means avoid preservatives of any kind.
- Do not use honey in place of sugar. Honey is a natural antibiotic and could damage grains.
- The finished product smells slightly yeasty or beery. If it smells like vinegar or otherwise off, your grains need some rehab. Don't drink kefir water that smells rancid or too sour.
- Water Kefir gets very fizzy. A build up of gases could cause bottle explosion. If you are going to keep water kefir longer than a few days, store in bottles designed for brewing. Open your bottles over a sink in case the liquid fizzes up and out of the bottle when opening.
- If you ordered live kefir grains and they arrive frozen in the winter, simply allow them to defrost at room temperature, and then follow instructions.
- It is not necessary to use organic sugar or fruit in order to make kefir. I use organic ingredients because I prefer to limit chemicals in my foods.
- If you are using distilled water, or are boiling your water and letting it cool before use, you may need to add a few drops of minerals, or add a piece of egg shell. I use Concentrace Liquid minerals. If you do add minerals, a few drops will do. Too many minerals is just as bad as not enough.
See Also: Good Grains Gone Bad for some more tips and specific issues you might encounter when making water kefir.