How To Make Kanji Drink – Recipe & Tips

Kanji is an Indian fermented drink that contains tons of probiotics. In India, kanji is usually made during the festival of Holi. This is the perfect drink for winter months and you don’t have to plan a trip to India to enjoy it; you can easily make it at home.

If you are a fermentation fan and you are accustomed to the taste of fermented drinks, you will really appreciate kanji. If you are familiar with Beet Kvass, it’s similar to that. Salty, tart, pungent, and flavorful. So if kombucha, another popular fermented drink we love, is too sweet for your liking, kanji drink may be up your alley.

Aside from its unique flavor, this Punjabi drink is a great aid for digestion because of all the probiotics it contains so it’s recommended to drink it in moderation.

Tips For Making The Best Kanji Drink

Kanji is made with a few simple ingredients; you only need carrots, mustard seeds, salt, and water to make it. To make the best kanji drink, follow the tips below:

  • Traditionally, the recipe requires black carrots but, since those are not easy to find, you can use beet to darken the color of the drink. That’s what we recommend in our kanji recipe but that’s also what many Indian families do when black carrots are not available.

  • When it comes to fermented drinks, it is important to have the veggies fully submerged in the water or brine. The same thing applies to our kanji drink. Water is never strictly measured for kanji but it has to cover the carrots.

  • You can also adjust the measurement for mustard seeds if you want. Mustard seeds help the fermentation process.

  • You can add more mustard seeds than the recipe suggests if you want to speed up the fermentation process.

  • Like any other fermented drink or food, kanji is the result of natural bacteria that work on the veggies. If you want to preserve some of the sweet taste fresh carrots have, it is best not to peel them. If you opt for using unpeeled carrots, wash them thoroughly before slicing them. Also, don’t throw away the pickled carrots once your drink is ready. Save them for salads and sandwiches because they are delicious and have a wonderful flavor.

  • You can store kanji drink for months at room temperature but when the temperatures rise, move it to the fridge to reduce the microbial activity and preserve the taste.

Kanji Drink Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon brown mustard seeds

  • 5 large carrots

  • 1 large beet

  • ~6 cups of water

  • 1 tablespoon fine sea salt

Tools:

  • Vegetable peeler

  • Knife

  • Mortar pestle or coffee grinder

  • Half-gallon mason jar

  • Colander

  • Easy Fermenter Lid

Instructions:

  1. With a mortar pestle or a coffee grinder crush the mustard seeds. It’s fine if they are only coarsely ground.

  2. Peel the carrots and the beet.

  3. Slice the carrots and the beet into long pieces.

  4. Place the vegetables in the jar and pour water over them. Make sure the veggies are fully submerged in the water.

  5. Cover the mason jar with the Easy Fermenter Lid or a cheesecloth.

  6. Keep the jar at room temperature, preferably in a sunny place, for at least 7 days.

  7. Check on the jar on a daily basis to check if the veggies are fully submerged in the water. Stir with a wooden spoon to make sure the flavors mix together nicely.

  8. After 7 days, taste the kanji to see if it’s done fermenting. If it has a pungent flavor, then the fermentation process is over.

  9. Strain the drink with a colander. You can save the pickled beet and carrots to use in salads or sandwiches.

  10. Wash the jar and pour the drink back in it.

  11. Chill in the fridge before drinking.