Thursday, August 12, 2010

Beet Kvas

Beet Kvas

(Photo taken by my son C-Rex.) 

We love Beet Kvas.  All it rooty goodness.  Salty and earthy.  Yum!

When I was pregnant with our last child I had some serious salt cravings. Chips were high on my list of necessities. I also had some uncomfortable indigestion and bloating. Kvas hit the spot for both.

My husband has been eating to heal his gut for about 17 months and kvas has been part of his daily routine. He also will drink some when ever his stomach feel a bit uncomfortable. It's very healing for him.

Beets are full of minerals. The beets root reaches deep into the soil to pull nutrients and minerals from the way down in the earth. These minerals are stored in the root ball that we then eat. Fermenting the beets adds wonderful probiotics to the mix.

To make Beet Kvas you will need:
-a 4 litre jar
-4-5 beet medium beet roots
-3-3 1/2 litres of spring water
-2 tablespoons of Celtic sea salt
-1/3 cup of whey (from yogurt)

Peel and chop your beets into 1/2 inch cubes. Put the chopped beets into your jar.

Boil 1 cup of the water and dissolve the salt into the water. (It will look dirty with floaties in it but that is the nature of Celtic sea salt.)

Then add the salt water into the jar with the beets.

Pour about half of the remaining water into the jar. The water will cool off the salt water so the bacteria in the whey won't die when added.

Now add the whey.

Fill the jar with the rest of the water until it is 2-3 inches from the top and stir it well. I love the way the red of the beets colours the water. It gets darker still as it ferments.

Put the lid on the jar and set it some where cool-ish (better flavour) for two days. White foam forming on the top is fine. Just spoon it off and don't tell anyone. People can be squeamish.

Strain out the beets and put the (liquid) kvas into glass jars in the refrigerator. I've read you can make a second ferment using the same beets and some previously made kvas instead of whey, but it isn't as strong. I've never tried it.

Occasionally, the kvas is very thick, almost like strange yogurt.  It fine!  After straining just whizz it with a stick blender to loosen it up.  I think it gets thick when the beets are sweeter and the bacteria have multiplied like crazy.  BUT I'm just guessing.

Drink 4 oz with meals or when ever you want to.

This recipe is adapted from Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats.  It's a fun book.

Sunny Sunflower

Photo taken in our backyard by my son C-Rex. Thanks boy!

This post is part of Fight Back Friday.  Come and join us to learn some more about healthy food and preparation.

I've also linked up to Monday Mania


  1. I might have to try that. I don't do dairy, do you think water kefir grains or just water kefir would work to replace the whey?

  2. We've been making kombucha at home and drinking that - but I'd like to make the switch to this (especially considering that my wife is Ukrainian). I like the fact that whatever sugars used for the fermentation come from the beets themselves; we add sugar to our kombucha/tea for its process, and it's the only reason we buy sugar any more. Switching to this will make it healthier AND cheaper for us!

  3. Hi, Krista!

    I've never made it with anything but whey. You could try with kefir grains...I've heard water kefir can be made with flavourings and that minerals are needed to keep the grains alive...beets could be your flavouring. Just don't use all your grain in case it doesn't work. Brew a small batch like you would brew kefir.

    Hello Psychiclunch,

    Thank you for commenting. We drink both beet kvas and kombucha around here. Kvas only has one or two strains of good bacteria. We diversify. Kombucha has many yeasts and bacteria, plus the boys like it better. The micro organisms eat up most of the sugar (and caffeen and tannins) during the brewing/fermenting. Brewing Kombucha is the only reason we buy sugar, too.

    I hope this helps.


  4. Thanks for the info. I have plenty of kefir grains, they multiplied from 2 tablespoon to over 40 in just three weeks. Most of them camp out in my fridge.

  5. Anita, thank you for stopping by Monday Mania to share this very important recipe. If more people would just make healthy drinks like this, there would be so much less chronic illness around. I have some in my fridge, and I'm going to pour myself a glass right now!!

  6. I finally made this! I used two tablespoons of salt and no whey and let it ferment for 3 days, until it tasted delicious. This stuff is good! My kvass isn't as dark as yours, though. I'm sure that's okay. It's a beautiful ruby color, I'm in love. Thanks for the recipe!

  7. We need to get together and just cook until our cupboards are full! Seriously, one of these days you will find me in your kitchen...