Recipe: Jam Jar Kombucha Concentrate

While they can be known to some as a “homely” cocktail, Jam Jar cocktails have had a rise in popularity in restaurants this year. Traditionally made with the last bit of jam in a mason jar, the jam is an easy way to bring sweetness and fruity flavor without buying or making lots of fancy flavoured syrups. 

It was as I sat on a patio in New York City, enjoying a jam jar cocktail of my own, that inspiration hit — Jam would be a really great source of simple sugar to use in fermentation for Kombucha.

There are a few important things to keep in mind when using jam as your sugar source. First, you’ll want to make sure there are no preservatives that will halt fermentation. It is best to use a homemade recipe or organic jar. Second, it is important to know how much sugar is in your jam to accurately sweeten your kombucha. Luckily, your kombucha should have a nutrition table that lists the amount of sugar, which you can use to determine how much fermentable sugar will be added to your kombucha base. 


Jam Jar Kombucha Concentrate Recipe

  1. Determine how much sugar is in your jam. 

    a) To do this look at the ingredient list on the back of the jar.
    b) This is also a good time to check if there are any additives that would halt your fermentation like: 

  • Preservatives such as sodium benzoate
  • Acids such as  added citric acid and ascorbic acid

First determine amount of sugar in the jam
15g of jam/5 sugar = 3 gram of jam for every gram of sugar
60g of sugar wanted x 3 = 180g of Jam needed
You can go even further
180g/15g = 12 tablespoons of jam
= ¾ cups of jam

2. Brew the tea by boiling 1L of hot water, letting the tea bags steep in the hot water for 5 min.

3. Add the jam. Make sure you use enough so there’s between 50-60g of sugar (Step 1a)

4. Record the pH of the kombucha base.

a) It should be between 4-4.5. If it is not under 4.5 add white vinegar to further acidify until the pH is below 4.5.

b) Be mindful that when using pH strips with an intensely coloured liquid the color can stain the test strip and impact how you read the result.

c) Note that the Escarpment Labs SCOBY is designed to pre-acidify your kombucha properly, so this step is less critical when using the Escarpment Labs SCOBY.

5. Place a coffee filter or cloth on top of the jar and let it ferment at room temperature for 1-2 weeks.
6. After one week check the pH, the target should be close to 3, if the pH is too high or the kombucha is too sweet leave it to ferment for a few more days then check on it again.
7. Once finished fermenting, strain the liquid using a fine mesh strainer. If desired, use a coffee filter afterward for additional straining.
a) The kombucha has too much sediment to use just a coffee filter.
8. Bottle your kombucha in pressure safe swing tops. For a 500mL bottle, add 1 tsp of sugar and mix well.
a) Adjust the sugar according to the bottle size you are using, around 8.4g of sugar per L of kombucha
9. Seal the jars tightly and let sit at room temperature for 3 days, then transfer to the fridge.
10. The jars should be carbonated by the third day, and ready to enjoy how you like. 
Recommendation: Seeing as there is a lot of jam used to make this kombucha, the flavour is pretty strong. I like to use it as a concentrate and mix it with sparkling water or in a cocktail!

Kickstart your Kombucha

We have you covered. Our SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast) is grown in the perfect scientific environment and packed with healthy bacteria and yeast to ferment your kombucha quickly (two weeks or less). Plus, our culture comes with easy-to-follow instructions that will have you brewing up delicious batches of kombucha in no time!

Once established, your SCOBY (a.k.a. kombucha mother) can be reused many times like a sourdough starter. Are you ready to experiment with wild flavours and fresh ingredients?

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