I have asked myself time and time again “what to do with extra water kefir grains”!
Mine have gone crazy from day one and I simply can’t give them away quick enough! And I DO give them away! Some days I have 3 people at my doorstep which is just exciting because I feel part of a very important movement towards better health.
And if you know me, you’ll know my philosophy…a better gut means a happier mind the equals good feelings, good feelings attract better people and situations and all this amounts to a happy life…A happy life is super contagious…!
But once again I profess that this is not my area of speciality. I do know enough to help and guide you because I live by my principles, especially when it comes to these life affirming drinks (that leave you physically, mentally and energetically energised and revitalised), so have done a fair bit of groundwork.
(You can watch my youtube video here)
So…as I was saying, mine go crazy and so do others, it is a common question among enthusiasts on what to do with extra water kefir grains. Especially when it gets warm and they process in less than 48 hours!
Side Note: For those who don’t know. When you feed these grains they grow, or more like reproduce like crazy. One day I put 9 tbsps in and the next day I had over 20!
Which is fantastic but I got to the stage where I had bought 5 x 5 litre bottles and was spending 2+ hours every 2 days juicing away and making delicious soda pop and then I went WOAH!!
I’m running a business, single mother of two babies and now that winter is over (we drank the stuff like crazy as it kept away all the nasties winter bugs) it was time to pair back. So I started to look into exactly what to do with extra water kefir grains.
Naturally my absolute favourite option goes without saying…share the love… Hand them out to as many people as you can. How about Christmas / birthday or anniversary presents. I advertise mine for free on gumtree and meet such wonderful people every week.
But like I said even though I’ve had up to 3 people round in a day, I still couldn’t give them away quick enough so I thought I’d do some research on what to do with extra water kefir grains. I couldn’t bear the thought of tossing these miraculous little organisms that give so much to the world (more about that in my ‘How to get the life you want’ and ‘First steps to happiness; blogs).
What I found is incredible (I’ve added my sources as well because they have way more detail if you’re interested).
NATURAL ORGANIC FERTILISER Feed the extra’s to your plants whether in your garden, home or grass. I’ve heard you should turn them into your soil by a friend who is a horticulturist, not sure how that would work for grass but use your intuition, it will tell you how that could work.
Use to improve your soil. The bacteria that is essential to dirt is exactly what Kefir grains are all about. They are naturally acidic which along with the bacteria is a must in order to convert nitrogen to an edible source for your plants (www.yemoos.com).
ADD TO THE COMPOST HEAP These guys will help break down your matter super quickly (www.wholetraditions.com)
USE FOR FERMENTING OR TO MAKE BREAD OR PIZZA They can be used in place of salt for fermenting vegetables (beet, kvaas, sauerkraut), although they say milk kefir whey is best (www.yemoos.com, www.babycenter.com), or as a starter or yeast pack for your breads / pizzas (www.wholetraditions.com).
EAT THEM OR SHARE WITH YOUR PETS I have tried this and they’re not bad, haven’t done it more than once or twice though and forget to add it to food. I attempted to give it to my dog once but he’s super fussy as is so that was a no go (I think I just need to get craftier!). Feed them to any animals if they will have them, chickens, cats, you name it (www.culturesforhealth.com, https://wherethewildrosegrows.wordpress.com/2015/02/06/water-kefir-part-ii-taking-a-break-what-to-do-with-all-the-extras/)
USE THEM IN AND AS BEAUTY PRODUCTS Try the no-poo option (no shampoo). I have personally been doing it for a number of months now and love it. Every now and then I may use my vegan shampoo and conditioner but for the most parts I use bicarb and sometimes apple cider vinegar as my conditioner. Yemoos suggests using it on your hair for a clarifying conditioner and ph stabaliser as Kefir is acidic which is better than soap that is alkaline so drying.
You can add it to your exfoliator and lotions for extra nutrients. Yemoos doesn’t explain how but my guess is that since our skin is an organism that absorbs everything, these gorgeous nutrients will penetrate and keep us looking fabulous!
In fact, if you’ve left your fermentation a tad too long and it’s just about vinegar, this is apparently brilliant as a hair rinse to re-balance the hair ph after baking soda. Which makes sense because I use raw apple cider vinegar for the same reason.
TURN THEM INTO YUMMY TREATS
Don’t fancy eating them straight up! Pop them into the blender with your favourite smoothie (I used to sneak some in my girls breakfast banana smoothie all the time for an extra probiotic punch).
Or how about popsicles.
USE IN THE PLACE OF VINEGAR
Already doing your bit for the environment and using the trusted vinegar to clean everything. Well these work even better suggest Yemoos.
They also say that they’re brilliant for soaking grains, softening rice and in soups and stocks to help extract more nutrients from the bones (I will DEFINITELY be trying this one!) www.yemoos.com.
AND OF COURSE, STORE SOME JUST IN CASE…You may think at the start that you would NEVER let your little guys down, but life happens my friends so it’s always great to have a portion tucked away in your fridge in a sealed container (they say you can store for 2-3 weeks but mine have definitely stayed in longer and when I give them away people say they are still brilliant). Or else for 3 months in the freezer (haven’t tried this yet).
You can also dry them out (again, haven’t tried this but you can find more information at the resources I’ve included in this post).
Any one of the websites I’ve listed in this article have information on the storing of water kefir grains.
I have to say, if you’re looking for more information on everything water Kefir, checkout Yamoos, their library of FAQ’s is outstanding and where I got the bulk of these suggestions from.
Otherwise look out for my videos and feel free to subscribe to my youtube channel for any updates or quick how to videos on everything from fermentation (first, second, flavour and troubleshooting) to life to exercise to meditation to balance and living on purpose.
I hope you enjoyed what to do with extra water kefir grains, stay well and BE Happy!