Is homemade kombucha safe to drink?


Cool. However what’s kombucha, precisely?

Kombucha is a bubbly fermented drink comprised of black or inexperienced candy tea.

To make it, all it’s worthwhile to do is brew some tea, combine it with sugar, let it cool after which add your SCOBY and a few starter liquid after which let it sit in your counter and ferment at room temperature for just a few days. As soon as it’s fermented, your kombucha shall be able to flavour and bottle, after which just a few days later it is going to be bubbly and scrumptious and able to drink!

Is There Any Risks in Making Kombucha?

Fermenting kombucha in a traditional and secure setting doesn’t pose any well being dangers (ref).

The Canadian Meals Inspection Affiliation has declared kombucha to be secure and that it meets their inspection standards (ref).

In truth, there aren’t any critical circumstances of poisoning in scientific literature straight associated to the consumption of home made kombucha (ref). When correctly ready, kombucha is secure.

The one incidents reported have been associated to utterly unsanitary fermentation environments or the usage of vintage jars contaminated with lead. Each incidents are simply averted!

Observe: Like every meals, kombucha might not be appropriate for everybody. Amongst different issues, it might comprise a small quantity of alcohol, which might be harmful for youngsters and pregnant ladies. Do you’ve got any questions? Seek the advice of a well being skilled!


What’s a SCOBY??

The acronym SCOBY stands for Symbiotic Tradition Of Micro organism and Yeast.

You employ an present SCOBY to start out every new batch of kombucha after which a brand new SCOBY types as a skinny layer on the floor of the batch when it’s fermenting. It will definitely grows right into a thick, gelatinous disc that appears a bit like a big mushroom or an alien sea creature of some sort. I’m not gonna lie, it will probably positively be slightly confronting the primary time you lay eyes on one! (Simply ask my buddies who gasp and ask “pricey God what’s that factor?!” Once they see it floating in a gallon of kombucha on my counter!)

However I guarantee you, there’s nothing threatening or alien about SCOBYs. They’re a wonderfully pure a part of the candy tea fermentation course of, and so they’re an important ingredient relating to brewing your individual kombucha at house.

Tools for Making Kombucha

  • Stockpot (a minimum of 8-quart or bigger): That is for making the candy tea base.
  • 1-gallon glass jar: You may use this for truly brewing the kombucha. You should use two 64-oz jars as an alternative, however notice that you simply’ll want one scoby for every jar.
  • Finely-woven flour sack dishcloths: A double layer of dishcloths is used to cowl the jar, permitting airflow in however protecting bugs and grime out. You can even use tightly-woven tea towels, napkins, or different lint-free cloths.
  • Swing-top glass bottles, or an assortment of recycled plastic soda bottles: That is for bottling your kombucha! Both brown or clear glass bottles are wonderful. You’ll want to use swing-top bottles which can be meant for brewing and holding carbonated drinks; ones which can be simply meant to carry water haven’t got a robust sufficient stopper to permit the kombucha to carbonate correctly.
  • Small plastic funnel: You may use this to switch the kombucha into bottles.

Emma Christensen

RO Filtered Water

Reverse Osmosis (RO) is one of the simplest ways to filter out chemical compounds like chlorine and fluoride from our water provide. These chemical compounds aren’t good for you and positively aren’t good for the SCOBY. RO methods are costly, however we predict it’s worthwhile to be able to have one of the best SCOBY, and the healthiest kombucha potential.

Print the Do-it-yourself Kombucha Information

By in style demand, I’ve created a printable PDF with all of the directions from this submit. Enter your e mail under and it is going to be despatched to you!

Time to Take pleasure in!

When you’ve completed brewing your first batch, take a second to benefit from the fruits of your labor. However don’t neglect to maintain 2 cups of your brew along with your SCOBY in it so you can begin your subsequent batch as quickly as you’ve got time.

Whether or not you develop into a back-to-back brewer, a steady brewer, or take just a few weeks off in between every batch, we’re assured about one factor: store-bought ‘buch won’t ever style nearly as good once more.

The issue with store-bought kombucha

It’s no shock that kombucha has develop into very talked-about world wide as a wholesome delicate drink different. Though I’m always brewing my home made kombucha, I nonetheless discover myself shopping for some once I’m out every so often.

Nevertheless, my essential downside with the store-bought ones is that almost all of them are tremendous candy. When it’s actually candy, it implies that the micro organism haven’t had the prospect to eat sufficient sugar but (which is the fermentation course of), or that they’ve added sugar again into it to make it nearly like a delicate drink to enchantment to a broader market.

This defeats the aim of ingesting kombucha for its advantages utterly!

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Alcohol in Kombucha

There’s a small quantity of alcohol in all kombucha, even store-bought kombucha. Many of the alcohol is transformed into acetic acid and different non-boozy issues throughout fermentation, however it’s not an ideal system. On common, a serving of kombucha comprises lower than 1% alcohol (which is far lower than even a lightweight beer).

Scrumptious recipes utilizing kombucha

Additionally referred to as second fermentation kombucha, the kombucha might be flavored with elements like ginger, pear, grape, strawberry, lemon, pineapple, orange and different fruits, imparting a brand new taste to the drink and including the advantages of those fruits.

The fruits and different elements needs to be added to the ready-prepared kombucha base, and on this fermentation the drink will develop into carbonated, resembling a soda.

Kombucha with lemon and ginger


  • 1.5 liters of kombucha;
  • 3-5 slices of ginger;
  • 1/2 lemon juice;
  • 1.5 L bottle.


Put the ginger slices and the lemon juice in a clear bottle. Add the kombucha to the bottle, filling it nicely till the bottle is totally full, in order that there isn’t any air in it. Cowl and let it relaxation for 3 to 7 days, which is the time required for additional fermentation, however basically this flavored beverage shall be prepared after 5 days of fermentation. Nevertheless, the drink creates fuel rapidly and a few shoppers like its style after solely 24 hours of the second fermentation course of.

To make the kombucha with different flavors, you merely have to combine the fruit within the blender, pressure and add to the bottle together with the kombucha base, then wait for five days, as a result of the brand new fermentation will add taste to the drink.

Simply the Gist: Making Do-it-yourself Kombucha

  • What You’ll Want: Lively SCOBY, water, sugar, tea, distilled white vinegar or starter tea, glass jar, cowl, and heat spot out of direct daylight.
  • Directions: Dissolve sugar in water, steep tea, let it cool, take away tea luggage, add vinegar or starter tea, and SCOBY, cowl, and tradition for 7-30 days at room temperature (68-85°F) out of direct daylight. Retain tea and SCOBY for the subsequent batch. Repeat.
  • Fermentation Temperature & Time: 70-80º F is the best culturing temperature. Hotter temperatures velocity up fermentation, cooler temperatures sluggish it down. The longer you let your kombucha tradition the much less candy and extra vinegary it’ll develop into.
  • Indicators of Fermentation: Taste turns into much less candy extra vinegary, SCOBY thickens, stringy brown yeast particle current, haze or new child SCOBY at prime of the liquid, tea has lightened in shade.
  • Bottling & Flavoring: Taste completed kombucha or bottle it to present is additional carbonation. HOW-TO VIDEO: Flavoring & Bottling Kombucha Tea.
  • Steady Brew Kombucha: A extra superior brewing technique for making bigger batches – learn more!
  • Troubleshooting: Strive our Kombucha Troubleshooting FAQ for solutions to commonest points.
  • Storing Kombucha: Discover ways to make SCOBY Hotel to retailer kombucha or take brewing breaks.

Kombucha Brewing Ideas:

Between batches of kombucha, go away the SCOBY within the jug with sufficient kombucha liquid to barely cowl it, about 1-2 inches of liquid. This liquid will now be thought of your “starter liquid,” which you’ll want for every batch of kombucha.

At all times hold the jug lined with cheesecloth (or a breathable kitchen towel) certain by a rubber band to maintain any bugs out of the SCOBY (for those who go away it uncovered, bugs will gravitate towards it).

When you see any mildew (it’ll seem like bread mildew…inexperienced/white and fuzzy circles), discard the SCOBY and the entire batch of kombucha.

You’ll discover your SCOBY is greater after the primary batch of kombucha – it’ll develop to the width of the container, and a second SCOBY will kind. SCOBYs will at all times proceed to develop with every batch of kombucha.  As soon as a SCOBY will get to be a few inches thick, it’s worthwhile to peel off slices to be able to hold the SCOBY wholesome. You can provide these slices to your mates together with some starter liquid to allow them to begin their very own batch, or you’ll be able to discard them.

The SCOBY is ok to sit down unused for just a few days to some weeks till you might be able to make one other batch – simply be sure you hold the jug lined with cheesecloth, and examine the SCOBY earlier than beginning one other batch to make certain it’s mold-free and remains to be floating in starter liquid. I’ve had my SCOBY sitting unused for as much as three weeks. Simply make certain you examine on it every so often.

One of many funnest elements about brewing kombucha is flavoring it. Upon getting completed your main fermentation, you’ll be able to both bottle your kombucha and be carried out, or you’ll be able to carry out a secondary fermentation to taste it. Right here is find out how to do a secondary fermentation.

Whereas secondary fermentation just isn’t obligatory in brewing kombucha, this additional step is what lets you taste your kombucha as desired, and makes the drink “effervescent” or fizzy.

When extra sugar is added to the brewed kombucha, both within the type of 100% juice, fruit, or brewed tea with cane sugar, the kombucha might be brewed once more for a second time. The probitoics proceed to develop, as they feed off of the added sugar. It’s throughout secondary fermentation that kombucha turns into fizzy!

IMPORTANT NOTE: Secondary fermentation occurs with out the usage of the SCOBY. You don’t use the jug with the SCOBY for secondary fermentation. With the intention to hold your SCOBY wholesome, you by no means need it to return into contact with something aside from brewed tea with sugar. Learn all directions for secondary fermentation very fastidiously earlier than continuing.

To place your kombucha via secondary fermentation, comply with all the directions above, however as an alternative of bottling the kombucha and being completed at Step 13, add your flavorings to the pitcher with the brewed kombucha (NOT the jug with the SCOBY!)

To recap: after your first fermentation is full, pour the brewed kombucha right into a pitcher, leaving the SCOBY with some starter liquid within the jug. Cowl the jug with the SCOBY with the cheesecloth certain by a rubber band, and retailer it in a heat, secure place. You now have your pitcher of kombucha, which is what you’ll use to maneuver ahead with secondary fermentation.


1. Selecting Which Sugar

Sort Of Sugar Probably End result
White Sugar This is the best sort of sugar for the SCOBY to ferment, nevertheless it’s the most extremely processed sort of sugar. For freshmen this would be the best sugar to supply a nice tasting kombucha brew – nevertheless it is extremely troublesome to seek out natural white sugar.

To keep away from GMOs or pesticides – you could favor to attempt natural evaporate cane sugar as an alternative.

Natural Evaporated Cane Sugar That is the closest factor to natural white sugar obtainable. It’s a bit tougher for the SCOBY to digest so Natural Evaporated Cane Sugar is usually a bit extra work to supply an excellent tasting brew.

We personally suggest utilizing any such sugar.

Brown Sugar Brown sugar is solely extremely processed white sugar that has had molasses added again in to create a richer flavour.

Sugar with excessive molasses content material is troublesome for the SCOBY to digest, making a extra ‘vinegary’ tasting kombucha.

The SCOBY might not have the ability to keep a wholesome stage of acidity within the tradition – growing the chance of contamination and batch failure.

We suggest avoiding any such sugar.

Rapadura Sugar Rapadura sugar creates the same consequence to brown sugar – a robust, vinegar-like kombucha.

It could be preferable to brown sugar as rapadura sugar is normally much less processed, nevertheless for style and the well being of the SCOBY we suggest avoiding rapadura sugar for kombucha.

Honey Honey just isn’t an excellent choice for kombucha because it introduces different bacterial strains that can compete with the SCOBY.

It’s doubtless that honey will result in contamination and failure of the batch.

Others Pure sweeteners like stevia, agave, maple syrup and coconut sugar usually are not appropriate for making kombucha and needs to be averted.

All synthetic sweetners like aspartame, sorbitol and xylitol is not going to work for kombucha in any respect.

To be secure – solely use white sugar or Natural Evaporated Cane Crystals for home made kombucha.

2. Selecting Which Tea

Sort Of Tea Data Probably End result
Black Tea The absolutely fermented leaves of black tea permit for the best digestion of vitamins for the SCOBY. That is one of the best tea alternative for a newbie kombucha brewer. Keep away from black teas that use oils resembling Earl Gray, Chai or different flavoured teas. Simple kombucha with a daring, fruity flavour – much like apple cider.
Inexperienced Tea Inexperienced tea leaves usually are not fermented so the vitamins are tougher for the SCOBY to course of. Nonetheless, inexperienced tea kombucha might be superb – it might simply want a bit extra monitoring because it normally brews barely faster than black tea. A lighter colored kombucha with a softer flavour – many individuals truly favor inexperienced tea kombucha over conventional black tea brews.
Oolong Tea The Oolong tea leaves have been partially fermented so it sits someplace between black and inexperienced tea when it comes to flavour and brewing issue. The kombucha color is extra amber than inexperienced tea, and the flavour is complicated.
White Tea White tea is the least processed type of tea – making it essentially the most work for the SCOBY. It’s difficult to brew, so we recommend that you simply do a white and black tea mix with a minimum of 25% black tea. A light-weight colored, mild flavoured kombucha – one thing price experimenting with!
Natural Teas Natural teas usually are not appropriate because the kombucha base as they don’t comprise the fitting vitamins and sometimes have oils that may hurt the well being of the SCOBY. Teas like Rooibos can be utilized in a combination with a black tea base. A sick SCOBY – finest to stay to a black tea base or combine in extra flavouring after the fermentation is full.

3. Avoiding Steel Containers & Utensils

For brewing kombucha it’s crucial to have a sterile setting that can be freed from chemical contaminants. That is for 2 causes – 1. To maintain the SCOBY wholesome and a couple of. To not pollute the kombucha brew.

The micro organism and yeast discovered within the SCOBY are delicate to antibacterial soaps and detergents. It’s crucial that there isn’t any bleach or detergent residue within the container you select in your home made kombucha.

As kombucha may be very acidic (pH is often 2.5 – 4.0) it will probably trigger chemical compounds like phthalates, BPA, nickel and chromium to leach from the brewing container into the kombucha. This will likely contribute to a heavy steel and chemical construct up within the physique if kombucha is being consumed frequently.

It’s also beneficial to keep away from utilizing any steel utensils that can are available in contact with the SCOBY – the ionic costs of steel can hurt the great bacterial development of the SCOBY and encourage the expansion of pathogenic micro organism. As an alternative of utilizing steel – select wooden or a hardy plastic.

4. The Brewing Surroundings

It is vitally essential to have a clear house for brewing your home made kombucha. Kombucha must be saved in a darkish house the place it is not going to be disturbed for the fermentation interval. The best temperature vary is about 20-25°C.

Be sure there isn’t any mud, or different fermenting cultures (like sauerkraut or sourdough) in the identical space to keep away from contamination of the brew. This will even occur if the kombucha is brewed within the shut proximity to the rubbish the place bread waste is saved.

Additionally examine that the jar is roofed appropriately to keep away from any bugs stepping into the kombucha.

5. The Brewing Interval

The brewing interval of your kombucha will range relying on the kind of sugar, sort of tea and temperature. Usually talking, an excellent batch of kombucha will usually take about two weeks.

Because the flavour of kombucha is influenced by private desire – after about 10 days you could like to start out style testing to seek out your ideally suited steadiness of sweetness and tartness.

A shorter brew interval will retain extra sugar so shall be a lot sweeter than a protracted brew. All through the fermentation course of the sugar and caffeine content material within the candy tea is consumed by the SCOBY.

When you favor a low sugar or low caffeine kombucha, it ought to brew for at minimal two weeks.

Do-it-yourself Kombucha FAQs

Are you able to get drunk off of kombucha?

Most kombucha comprises lower than 0.5% ABV (for reference, beer has about 5% ABV), so it isn’t doubtless that you’ll get drunk from kombucha.

What are the unwanted side effects of kombucha? 

The excessive quantity of probiotics in kombucha imply that ingesting an excessive amount of can result in GI discomfort (bloating and in some circumstances diarrhea). Kombucha additionally comprises caffeine and sugar, which can additionally impact you.

What are the well being advantages of kombucha? 

Kombucha comprises probiotics, which contribute to a wholesome intestine microbiome (and in flip, help regulate weight and obesity). It additionally comprises antioxidants and polyphenols.

Can you set kombucha within the fridge? 

While you put kombucha within the fridge, fermentation slows down dramatically. You’ll be able to due to this fact retailer it within the fridge if it’s worthwhile to take a break from fermenting, or to relax it previous to serving.

Can you utilize no-calorie sugars (like Stevia, Splenda and so forth.)?

That is one in every of few recipes the place you actually can’t use sugar substitutes. BUT you received’t truly be consuming that entire 1 cup of sugar. The sugar is meals for the micro organism and yeast. They’ll principally eat all of it up and produce fantastic issues like acidity and carbonation, and the completed kombucha shall be a lot decrease in sugar because of this.

My SCOBY sank to the underside! Is it okay? Sure! Your kombucha SCOBY might sink or float across the container. That is completely regular and nothing to fret about. It would doubtless float again to the highest finally, or a second SCOBY might kind on prime (which can be okay).

Kombucha Troubleshooting?

Beginning a brand new mission might be difficult at occasions, however with our ideas and sources, we’re assured that you will achieve success.

Perhaps you are questioning what a healthy SCOBY looks like or maybe you are undecided in case your SCOBY was properly activated.

Regardless of the case, browse our troubleshooting FAQ and you will be in fine condition to make one of the best home made kombucha potential!

Ginger-Mango Do-it-yourself Kombucha Tea

Course: Drinks Delicacies: Paleo Prep Time: 10 minutes Whole Time: 10 minutes Servings: 4 Energy: 27 kcal

Writer: Steph Gaudreau

Making home made kombucha is straightforward and simple. Discover ways to taste your home made kombucha with ginger and mango.


How is Kombucha Made?

For these new to kombucha brewing, a SCOBY is a magical Symbiotic Colony Of Micro organism and Yeast which gobble up (ferment) the sugar, metabolizing it into the marginally carbonated, tangy drink that’s wealthy with probiotics and helpful acids.

In actuality, it appears to be like like a pale, bizarre, flat pancake and kind of like a science experiment. Click on right here to learn extra about kombucha health benefits.

Find out how to Make Kombucha

When you get the grasp of it, making your individual Kombucha is a straightforward course of that can give you infinite bottles of this scrumptious, probiotic-heavy beverage.

Beneath is a primary kombucha recipe that even a whole newbie can brew efficiently on the primary try.

PART 1: Find out how to Make Your Personal SCOBY

If you’re new to brewing kombucha, the very

When you’re new to brewing kombucha, the very very first thing you’ll must do is create a SCOBY. This symbiotic tradition of micro organism and yeast, or SCOBY, is accountable for turning your sugary tea into an acidic, nutritious beverage.

You’ll be able to skip to part 2 if you have already got a SCOBY from a buddy or have ordered a starter tradition on-line.

NOTE: Be sure all of your instruments and your palms are clear earlier than beginning. Keep away from touching the brew along with your palms.

  1. Begin by boiling 2 cups of filtered water in a big pot. 
  2. Take away the water from warmth as soon as it boils and add 4 luggage of unflavored caffeinated black tea (or about 1 tablespoon free leaf in a tea diffuser). Enable to steep for about 5-10 minutes.
  3. Add a 1/2 cup granulated sugar and stir till it’s utterly dissolved.
  4. Add 5 cups of cool filtered water.
  5. Pour your candy tea combination into your clear brew jar and add 1 cup of starter kombucha. You should use any commercially obtainable, unflavored, unpasteurized (uncooked) kombucha. GT’s Original might be one of the best recognized and most available.
  6. Cowl the jar with a material or espresso filter and safe with a rubber band. Place it in a darkish cabinet or closet that stays heat all through the day and evening (between 70 and 85 levels).
  7. Examine your jar each few days after the primary week. You need to discover bubbles rising and finally a skinny movie forming on the highest of the brew (that’s the cellulose mat, or pellicle).
  8. It would take between 1 and 4 weeks in your SCOBY to kind. As soon as the pellicle has thickened into an opaque layer about ¼ inch thick, you might be prepared to maneuver on to Half 2!

PART 2: The First Fermentation (1F)

Upon getting a reside SCOBY, you’re prepared to start your first batch of kombucha. 

The primary fermentation takes easy candy tea and turns it into acidic, probiotic-rich kombucha tea. The second fermentation, which can comply with, is when kombucha will get its tasty taste and fizzy carbonation.

This recipe outlines find out how to make one gallon of kombucha. When you’re utilizing a smaller or bigger jar, confer with the useful Kombucha Recipe Chart under to see how a lot of every ingredient to make use of for various sized batches.

IMPORTANT: Be sure your palms and instruments are clear earlier than starting.

When you made your individual SCOBY, reserve 2 cups of that brew to make use of as your starter and throw the remaining out.

As you get ready to reuse your jar for your first

As you get able to reuse your jar in your first actual brew, take away the SCOBY and place it on a clear plate. You’ll be able to rinse the jar earlier than pouring within the new tea for those who favor.

  1. Boil 2 cups of filtered water in a big pot.
  2. Take away the water from warmth add 8 luggage of unflavored black tea (or about 2 tablespoons free leaf) and permit the tea to steep for about 5-10 minutes.
  3. Add 1 cup granulated sugar and stir till it’s utterly dissolved.
  4. Pour the candy tea combination into your clear brew jar and prime off with cool filtered water, leaving sufficient room so as to add your starter tea and SCOBY (about 3-4 inches from the highest).
  5. Gently pour 2 cups of starter kombucha, into the brew jar and take a pH studying. To stop mildew development, your starter brew must have a pH of round 4.5 or decrease. In case your pH is greater, slowly add small quantities of distilled white vinegar, stir, and retest till it reaches the specified stage.
  6. With VERY clear palms, place your SCOBY into the jar.
  7. Cowl the jar along with your material or paper towels and safe with a rubber band. Place it in a darkish cabinet or closet that stays heat all through the day and evening (between 75 and 85 levels).
  8. Enable your brew to ferment for between 7 to 21 days. Begin tasting (by utilizing a clear baster or pinching the tip of a straw) after day 6 (for those who’re utilizing a drink dispenser like mine, you’ll be able to simply use the spigot). As soon as your brew reaches your most well-liked steadiness of acidic and candy, you’ll be able to transfer to Half 3. You can even use your pH tester to examine the acidity. Kombucha shall be between 2.5 and three.5 pH when carried out brewing.
A pH of around 2.8 is about the right level of aci
A pH of round 2.8 is about the fitting stage of acidity for my tastes. It’s prepared!

PART 3: The Second Fermentation (2F)

The final a part of the kombucha brew course of is so as to add carbonation in addition to additional flavorings for those who’d like.

To get a bubbly ultimate product, switch your brew (with out the SCOBY) to hermetic bottles and permit for additional fermentation with extra flavorings, earlier than stopping the fermentation course of by inserting the bottles within the fridge.

NOTE: As at all times, be certain your instruments and palms are clear earlier than starting. As a result of it’s unimaginable to inform when a glass bottle turns into too pressurized earlier than it’s too late, we suggest using a plastic check bottle till you are feeling snug with the second fermentation course of. Merely substitute one in every of your hermetic glass bottles with a plastic one in every of comparable dimension. As soon as this bottle turns into rock laborious, your brew is able to be put within the fridge. Discard the tea on this plastic bottle however take pleasure in the remaining!

  1. Pour your freshly brewed kombucha into your hermetic bottles. You’ll be able to filter the tea for those who favor however it isn’t obligatory. Save 2 cups of tea and your SCOBY in your brew jar to behave because the starter in your subsequent brew. 
  2. Add your flavorings (see concepts under) and further sweeteners if you want.
  3. Seal every bottle and permit them to additional ferment in a darkish room or cabinet for 3 to 10 days. Utilizing your plastic tester bottle talked about within the notes above will provide help to decide the optimum brew time in your particular setting.
  4. As soon as the specified carbonation is reached, pressure out the added flavoring (if desired), reseal the bottles, and place them within the fridge. Or simply place them straight within the fridge and pressure out the flavoring stuff. Or simply go away the flavoring stuff in there and don’t fear about it. At this level you’ve made scrumptious home made kombucha, so the way you drink it’s as much as you. It ought to final 1 to three months as soon as refrigerated.

Blueberry flavour

For the 1.5 litres (recipe under) you will want:

  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries (I exploit the small wild blueberries)

Depart it out on the bench in well-sealed bottles for 1-2 days after which place it within the fridge able to drink. It would launch a good looking pink color. Pressure earlier than ingesting – until you just like the blueberries to chew on.