The basic kombucha recipe can be altered to your specific liking.
I always recommend using a black tea from an organic source.
Orange pekoe is my personal favorite as is the most nutritious for the scoby and the longest fermented tea. It has the best pH level for the scoby and gives the strongest flavor. (pH is 2.6-4)
Green tea can also be used but I recommend mixing it half and half with black tea. As long as it is a true leaf tea. After the batch I then go back to a black te base for the next brew as to give the scoby some nutrition back.
Oolong tea (almost a black tea) This gives a softer, milder flavor
Green tea especially lighter in color takes less time to ferment.
Rooibos this is not a leaf from a tea plant, it’s a red tea. I advise to stay away from red teas, they don’t feed the scoby.
Herbal teas You can do this occasionally but I don’t advise it. You would need to do a black tea again right after as to feed the scoby.
White tea Although this is a tea from a leaf it is not a fermentable tea and cannot be used. You could try to mix it with black tea and see if you get a result but it is not advised.
** Stay away from teas with oil in them it will kill the bacteria in the kombucha and can make it go rancid.
Chai Tea Do not use this type of tea. You can et around this by using a black tea and adding the spices desired to give the chai flavor, such as cinnamon etc. If you decide to use the chai tea, when you are done you must discard that scoby. Every time you do this brew you ned to use a new scoby.
The new scoby will always be the scoby on the top
Sugar must always be a cane sugar, I use organic non gmo cane sugar. Processed sugar gives the best results. Don’t use unprocessed sugar as it will not work. Don’t use unpasteurized honey either. Pasteurized honey is tolerable but doesn’t give the same result. Remember the scoby feeds off the sugar and this creates the ferment.
Turbinado sugar can be used but you want to boil it in the water with the tea as to break down the molasses.
Agave is a definite no, it is too low in carbs and therefore there is nothing for the scoby to feed on.
Maple syrup can be used if desired but again the processed sugar is the best.
* You could use stevia on te second ferment as this just sweetens the brew and there is no scoby to feed so isn’t an actual ferment.