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LH 28: Fermenting Soda with a Ginger Bug

Welcome to Episode #28 of the Living Homegrown Podcast!

In this episode is all about how to ferment your own home brewed Ginger Ale using a ginger bug.

What is a ginger bug???

It is a wild yeast starter that helps you create your brew. Listen in for ALL the details or read the transcript below.

In this episode, you learn:

  • The benefits of homemade soda
  • What a ginger bug is & how it is used
  • How to do a wild fermentation with 3 simple ingredients
  • What organic sugar I recommend
  • The exact steps to creating ginger ale
  • How to create a fermentation rhythm
  • Bonus tips for fermentation success

Resources & Links Mentioned:

Blog Post on Making Ginger Ale – with photos

Sucanat Sugar*

Flip Top Bottles – Clear*

Flip Top Bottles – Brown*


For further Reading:

Wild Fermentation* by Sandor Katz

The Art of Fermentation* by Sandor Katz

True Brews* by Emma Christensen

Homemade Root Beer, Soda or Pop* by Stephen Cresswell



Click here for the full transcript for Episode #28


For More About This Podcast Series:

Check out podcast Episode 00 to get:

  • The whole scoop on what this podcast series is all about
  • My background, experience & training
  • What to expect going forward

It’s like an audio “about” page for the podcast.


Thank you so much for listening!

If you liked this episode, I would love for you to help me spread the word.

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Have a Question?

Do you have a canning/homesteading question you’d like answered on a future podcast episode?

Ask me on my Ask Theresa page – It’s easy!

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About the Author:

Theresa Loe is the founder of Living Homegrown® and the Canning Academy® and is the Co-Executive Producer & Canning Expert on the national PBS gardening series, Growing A Greener World®. Theresa homesteads on just 1/10th of an acre in Los Angeles with her husband, two teenage boys and several disorderly but totally adorable chickens. Learn more about Living Homegrown here and about the Canning Academy here.


  • Jodie says:

    I’m so exited to try this, Theresa! I’ve had success with making beet kvass and kombucha, but neither were popular with the rest of my family. Dare I ask, how would I make this an alcoholic beverage?

    • theresa says:

      Hi Jodie – To get a true “beer”, it would be best to use a store bought yeast starter (like a champagne yeast for example) to get more consistent results. Then you would do a longer ferment so that the sugar has more time to turn into alcohol. If you really want to learn how to do this, I suggest the book I “True Brews” by Emma Christensen. {See the link above in recommended reading}

      She has recipes for soda AND beer using commercial yeasts. It would help you understand the differences in brewing. 🙂

  • Craig Halle says:

    Interesting. I use a recipe for ginger syrup from Sara Moulton and make ginger ale with my Soda Streamer. I was very interested in your juicing techniques to make other homemade sodas, but have not tried this yet as I don’t have a juicer like yours. I also was considering using my counter top juicer to see if I could make flavored syrup to use for soda. Have you got any ideas for me on this? I feel there must be a resource some where for this that I have not found. Keep up the good work, Theresa. This was very interesting.

    • theresa says:

      Well Craig, you should be able to make a standard syrup with any juice. Typically, it would be 50% juice and 50% sugar. (heated in a pan until sugar dissolves) I have never used a soda Streamer, so I don’t know how sugary the syrups are for them. But 50/50 is pretty standard for a mixed drink syrup – like for cocktails. So it may work for the streamer. I’m just not sure since I have never used one.

  • Jeff Bowen says:

    I started my ginger bug yesterday and was asking myself if I need to skin the ginger. I’m guess no for that is where the yeast is?

    • theresa says:

      I do not peel the ginger Jeff. I should have said that in the recipe. I will go back and add that note. It is okay if you do peel it but I think you have better ferment with the skin on.

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