Green Tea Vs. Black Tea Kombucha

How do you decide between Green Tea vs. Black Tea Kombucha? There are many benefits to using each type of tea, but which one is better? Join me as we examine the benefits of both teas and which is the best for kombucha. Plus one tea you should never use!

Large glass jar with Jun Tea label on front and cheesecloth with twine on top. Jun Tea and SCOBY in the glass jar. Pink and purple filled bottles in the background.
Green Tea Kombucha, also known as Jun Tea

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What is Kombucha?

Kombucha is a naturally carbonated beverage made from a sweetened tea base and a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast, also known as a SCOBY. As the bacteria and yeast consume the sugar from the tea, the drink is fermented, producing naturally occurring probiotics and carbonation.

Glass jar of black tea kombucha with SCOBY and two glass jars of brewed kombucha. Loose black tea in a wooden bowl and scattered around the table.
Black Tea Kombucha

Green Tea Vs. Black Tea Kombucha

What is the difference between green tea kombucha and black tea kombucha? Which one is better? Let’s first explore each kind and the differences between the two.

To make green tea kombucha you will brew, sweet green tea and a SCOBY. Green tea sweetened with honey is called Jun Tea. This tea can also be made with organic cane sugar, as in traditional kombucha.

Green tea is less processed than black tea. Also green tea is not oxidized like black tea, so it has a much subtler taste and lighter color. Green tea also has less caffeine than black tea.

Black tea kombucha is made with sweetened black tea and a SCOBY. Black tea is oxidized. However, oxidation creates a favorable environment for nutrients and microorganisms.

Black tea can handle longer steeping times than green tea without becoming too bitter. Longer steeping during the brewing process is necessary for the process of making kombucha, so using black tea will produce a less bitter tea.

Black tea does contain caffeine but at 15mg. per serving, it is a minimal amount. Among the beneficial properties of black tea are the naturally occurring polyphenols that promote the growth of good bacteria but also inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria.

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Which Type of Tea is Best for Kombucha?

Many different teas can be used well to make kombucha.

White tea, Oolong tea, Pu-erh tea, Green, and Black tea can all be used to make this fermented drink with a generous amount of sugar and a SCOBY starter culture. You can easily prepare different types of teas using either premade tea bags or loose-leaf tea in a bit of cheesecloth tied with a string.

Black tea, English Breakfast tea, and Ceylon are the most commonly used varieties with the best flavor.

When it comes to tea, primarily used for brewing kombucha, organic tea is your best option to avoid any pesticides that may have been sprayed on the tea leaves during the growing process.

Since we are explicitly discussing green and black tea here, let’s discuss the best tea for making kombucha.

Which Tea is Best?

The unpopular answer is it depends on your reasons for making kombucha.

Both green tea and black tea are excellent choices for kombucha. They may have different benefits, but their different flavor profiles are the starkest contrast.

If you seek the mildest tasting and healthiest option possible, organic green tea sweetened with local, raw honey is your best choice. Not that it matters, but if you are wondering, this is my perfect kombucha.

If you want a kombucha with a hearty flavor, health benefits, and maximum fizz, black tea will be best suited as your starter tea.

Speaking of fizz, keep in mind that, as with any kombucha or water kefir, the most carbonation is produced during the second fermentation.

During the second fermentation, fruit or fruit juices are added to the kombucha tea and allowed to sit in a closed container for several days to add a specific flavor and complete the fermentation.

The first fermentation is the sweet tea after it has been brewed and exposed to a symbiotic culture of bacteria for several days to a month, depending on your taste preference.

Both teas have excellent, beneficial properties. They both have a lovely taste. Black and green tea serve as the environment for your SCOBY to cultivate that desired tea fermentation.

Jar reads Kombucha with a small jar of kombucha tea and SCOBY on a burlap cloth with two glasses of kombucha and a thin bottle in the background.
Kombucha made using Black Tea and a SCOBY

Why is Black Tea Not As Healthy As Green Tea?

Black and green tea comes from the Camellia sinensis plant and contains antioxidants. However, black tea is processed differently than green tea.

The fermentation process that black tea undergoes leads to oxidation, which reduces the levels of antioxidants compared to those in green tea. Additionally, black tea typically contains more caffeine than green tea.

Therefore, green tea is healthier than black tea due to its higher antioxidant and lower caffeine levels. However, both teas can still provide health benefits when consumed in moderation.

Both green tea and black tea are rich in polyphenols, specifically catechins, which are potent antioxidants that help protect against cellular damage from free radicals.

The significant difference between the two is how they are processed. Green tea leaves are steamed or pan-fried to stop oxidation, preserving the high levels of catechins.

On the other hand, black tea is fermented and oxidized, which decreases the levels of catechins and increases the levels of theaflavins and thearubigins.

Additionally, black tea contains more caffeine than green tea, which can negatively affect some individuals, such as increased anxiety or disrupted sleep.

It’s important to note that both teas can still provide health benefits. Still, green tea is generally considered a healthier option due to its higher antioxidant content and lower caffeine levels.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this blog post is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Though I am a medical professional, I am not speaking as one here. Nothing in this blog should be taken as medical advice or even recommendations. I can not diagnose, treat, or advise anyone regarding any situation and will not do so in writing contained here. Thank you!

Two jars of Jun Tea Green Tea Kombucha with SCOBY cultures and cheesecloth covers
Jun Tea, or Green Tea Kombucha

Is Green Tea Kombucha Good For You?

Green tea kombucha is a fermented tea considered a healthy drink due to its probiotic content and antioxidant levels.

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that can help improve gut health and boost the immune system.

The antioxidant properties of green tea can also help protect against cellular damage and reduce the risk of certain diseases.

However, it’s important to remember that kombucha can contain high amounts of sugar, and the caffeine and alcohol content may vary depending on the brand and type of kombucha.

Additionally, some people may have an adverse reaction to the probiotics in kombucha, causing digestive discomfort.

Overall, green tea kombucha can provide health benefits, but it’s essential to consume it in moderation and be mindful of its sugar and caffeine content.

As with any new food or beverage, it’s always best to speak with a healthcare professional before incorporating it into your diet, especially if you have any pre-existing medical conditions.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this blog post is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Though I am a medical professional, I am not speaking as one here. Nothing in this blog should be taken as medical advice or even recommendations. I can not diagnose, treat, or advise anyone regarding any situation and will not do so in writing contained here. Thank you!

Jars of kombucha on their second ferment with fruit and herbs on left. Jars on the right kombucha in jars with SCOBY
Jars of Kombucha

Which Tea Is Not Good For Kombucha?

While many teas will work well for making kombucha, there is one that definitely will not. And a few others that could be better choices too.

There are better choices than Earl Grey when brewing your tea for kombucha. However, since this tea is considered a flavored tea, it will not work well.

Earl Grey tea is a black tea flavored with bergamot oils from the peel of a bergamot orange.

In some studies, these oils have been shown to have antibacterial properties which can harm your SCOBY culture or, at the very least, halt fermentation. A healthy SCOBY is essential to producing your own kombucha of the highest quality.

Beyond Earl Grey, herbal teas will not work for kombucha making either.

Herbal teas typically originate from other parts of the plant, not the leaves. Therefore, these teas usually do not contain the necessary nutrients for your kombucha to ferment correctly.

Many flavored teas have essential oils or additives that can prevent fermentation or cause it to go wrong. Early Grey falls into this category, as does Chai tea.

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