Beet Kvass

Beet Kvass is an ancient lacto-fermented drink of Russian origin and is prized as a blood and liver tonic. In my opinion, it’s a great first fermentation project for newbies because the process is so simple. All you need is beets, whey, salt and filtered water.

One warning though is that Beet Kvass is an acquired taste! The slightly effervescent, crimson liquid has a very earthy taste, in fact, it pretty much tastes like dirt! But good tasting, mineral-rich dirt. It’s hard to explain, but you’ll know what I mean when you try it (if I haven’t scared you off yet!)

I find it very refreshing. My body craves fermented drinks like kombucha, beet kvass, and ginger ale now (my future sister-in-law has a great recipe here), which is weird because before getting into Real Foods, I only had a taste for water. Sodas and juices never interested me so it was strange to actually have beverages in my fridge. Fermented drinks, like Beet Kvass, give me a natural boost of energy and I assume my body is getting much needed nutrients from these drinks because of how strong the cravings can be.

Beet Kvass is chock-full of vitamins since the beets remain in their raw state. Sally Fallon explains that, “One 4-ounce glass, morning and night, is an excellent blood tonic, promotes regularity, aids digestion, alkalizes the blood, cleanses the liver and is a good treatment for kidney stones and other ailments.”

When making tonics like Beet Kvass, it’s important to use organic beets since it has cleansing properties. You wouldn’t want pesticide-filled beets as they can make it harder on your body to detox. Chop beets into approximate 1 inch pieces, do not grate beets or else the fermentation process will be quickened and you will be left with alcohol. Once you’ve consumed all the kvass, you can reuse the beets 1 more time for a 2nd batch. Just add more salt, whey, water and leave out to ferment for another 3 days. You’ll notice that the second batch is weaker than the first, but it will still provide many health benefits. You’ll know when the fermentation process is finished because the kvass will take on a very deep red color and it will be slightly effervescent.

It’s recommended to drink 4 ounces in the morning and another 4 ounces at night. If you are still acquiring a taste for it, then you can start slower than this.

Beet Kvass


  • 2 medium-sized organic beets
  • 1 teaspoon unrefined sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon whey
  • Filtered water


  1. Wash and peel the beets. Cut into 1 inch pieces.
  2. Place beet pieces in a 1 quart Mason/Ball jar.
  3. Add salt, whey and water, leaving at least 1 inch room at the top of the jar. You want this room there because pressure will build up as it ferments.
  4. Seal lid on jar and give it a shake. Leave out on the counter for 3 days to ferment. Make sure to "burp" the jar once a day to release some built up gas. If you don't, your jar may break from the pressure. To burp, just loosen the lid and then tighten back up.
  5. After it's finished fermenting, store beet kvass in fridge.

Now a word of caution…see the pretty Fido jar above with the wired lid? I wouldn’t recommend doing multiple day ferments in it, unless you are absolutely going to stay on top of burping it regularly like I did. These jars would be ok for condiments like mayo that only needs 7 hours to ferment. The best vessels for longer ferments are Ball/Mason jars because they can support the pressure build up better (burp them regularly too though just to be safe, don’t take any chances). I used my new, pretty Fido jar this time because it was a Christmas gift from John and I wanted to put it to good use. He actually got me bunch of gorgeous Fido jars:

Aren’t they so pretty?? I love them! 🙂 Many people love fermenting in their Fido jars, but just be aware that the risk of it cracking or exploding is higher. If I didn’t scare you the first time by describing Beet Kvass as tasting like dirt, then I’m sure I just scared you off with talking about exploding jars! Happy fermenting! 🙂

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