Kefir Cultured Milk starter culture (KO13)


Only 1 left in stock

SKU: 406938Z Category:
  •  Supplied amount will inoculate 150 to 500 litres of milk depending on dosage required
  • An approximate guide for usage is 1 Drop to 1 Smidgen mini spoon (1 x 32nd of a teaspoon) to 1 litre of milk

Acidification: Medium to Fast

Texture: Medium with smooth mouthfeel

Flavour and Aroma: Medium to strong aroma and mouthfeel

KO13 is a healthy, flavoursome and easy to make milk drink. It works in much the same way as yoghurt but has a different flavour and maybe more health properties than yoghurt. It is loaded with more probiotic bacteria and is easier to make than yoghurt.

Kefir milk drink can be an expensive product to purchase as a made-up milk drink from supermarkets and specialty stores, but it can be made at home for a small fraction of the retail price. Some of the products that can be made with Kefir include:

  • Cultured Kefir milk drink
  • Cultured buttermilk
  • Quark/Labnah style (drain Kefir in a Quark bag or cotton cloth for several hours or overnight)

Instructions to make Kefir:

  • Transfer 1 litre of fresh premium milk to a clean and sanitized glass/ceramic/stainless steel pot container with a lid. Sanitising can be done with hot water from the hot water kettle.
  • Stand the container on the bench so that the milk gradually rises to room temperature (or around 20°C – 25°C). You may need to keep it in a warm place on a colder day. You may want to stand the container in a warm water bath or prewarm the milk, but it is not necessary, it is just an extra step. The cold milk will take just an hour or two to warm to ambient temperature.
  • If using a glass container/jar, place a tea towel over the bottle to prevent light oxidation during incubation.
  • Sprinkle approximately 1/32 of a teaspoon of Kefir grains to 1 litre of the cold or warm milk, and very gently mix in the culture with a spoon, just a short mix, enough to ensure the Kefir culture is well mixed in
  • Leave the container to sit at ambient temperature overnight (approximately 16 to 24 hours). You may need to find a warm place if it is a cold day or night eg. stand the bottle in a supermarket foil bag with a hot water bottle or stand the bottle next to your hot kettle and wrap a tea towel around both. The time that it takes the kefir to finish incubation will vary depending on:
  • How much culture is added
  • Temperature of incubation overnight
  • The final level of acidity required
  • During incubation, the Kefir cultures will continue multiply and produce acidity and flavour and eventually the milk will become sour and thicker. The end of the incubation is when the Kefir is thick and to your desired level of acidity, that end point may vary between individuals. The flavour can range from slightly sweet and sour to quite sour.
  • You may see some whey forming, it is a yellow green liquid and that is a visual indication that the incubation process has worked very well. To know if the kefir if that endpoint is to your liking, give the mixture a gentle stir and have a taste test to see how thick and how acidic that mixture is. If it is too acidic at this point, add a small amount of fresh milk back into the kefir to dilute that stronger acid flavour down to a flavour that you prefer. With your next batch of kefir simply reduce the amount of culture you add or finish the incubation earlier.
  • You will need to refrigerate the finished Kefir straight away or will continue to get more acidic.
  • The finished Kefir is ready to be used when it is cold, but some people prefer to drink it at ambient temperature. It can be left refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
  • Kefir does produce some carbon dioxide gas during the incubation process, so do not leave it in a jar with a tight-fitting lid, just loosen the lid a little.


  • To make a Labnah, mix the finished Kefir well and strain the warm kefir through a linen type cotton cloth (sanitized with hot water) and allow it to drain overnight in the fridge.

It can be strange leaving milk on the bench like this. During the incubation the kefir cultures will grow in numbers and ferment the milk, preventing it from spoiling while transforming the milk into Kefir. It is very much like a yoghurt when the incubation has finished.

Ideally use the freshest milk that you can obtain. The best milks to use are organic, non-organic, full cream, low fat, homogenised and non-homogenised, and milks from cow, sheep or goat. So, lots of choices. Very high caution is required if using raw (not pastuerised) milk.

  • The Kefir culture can also be used in coconut and soymilks and coconut water; it will have a different flavour to milk, and it will not thicken like milk.