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Coconut Kefir – Homemade Goodness for the Gut

Almost as popular as yogurt in Eastern Europe, kefir is worth getting to know for its tangy flavour and important health benefits. Traditionally made with cow’s milk and fermented with bacteria and yeast, kefir is becoming more popular in North America and is now available in many grocery stores across the continent. Like yogurt, kefir can also be made at home using dairy or a milk substitute with a starter kit that can be bought online or at your local health food store. Alternatively, this recipe hack for a mock kefir bypasses the need for a starter kit all together and uses probiotic capsules instead.


2 cans coconut milk (1 can, 13.5 FL. OZ, 400 ml)

1-2 capsules probiotics – your preferred brand


  1. Put the coconut milk and the probiotic capsule(s) in a blender and combine until the coconut milk consistency is very smooth.
  2. Transfer to a 32-ounce (1 litre) mason jar and fasten the lid loosely.
  3.        Keep the mason jar on the kitchen counter for 24 hours to allow the fermentation to take place.
  4. Once done, reserve 1/2 cup (125 ml) of the kefir as a “starter” for your next batch.

5.When you’re ready to make your next batch, combine the reserved kefir with 1 can of coconut milk and repeat steps 1 through 4.

  1. Store the coconut kefir in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Kefir can also be frozen for future use.


Joanne Nijhuis MSc, RD is a consulting, media and culinary dietitian in Simcoe Grey Bruce on a mission to entertain and educate through her love of food. In addition to recipe development and writing for several publications, Joanne offers cooking demos/classes and individual counselling – in person and online via Zoom Health. For more information, email Joanne at jo.knows.nutrition@outlook.com


Did You Know?

This homemade kefir – made with creamy coconut milk – offers all the benefits of fermented foods without the gastrointestinal upset that some people experience with dairy products. Probiotic powerhouse kefir is so very good for you as it supplies healthy bacteria to your gut microbiome (i.e., the microorganisms living in your digestive system). Not only does kefir aid in digestion, it also promotes healthy immune function. With a consistency often thinner than yogurt, kefir can be pleasant on its own or sweetened with honey or maple syrup. If you’re not a fan of the taste, but crave the health benefits consider adding kefir to your smoothies, oatmeal or cold cereal.


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