Fermented Berries

What You'll Need

  • yogurt strainer or cheesecloth
  • wide mouth pint mason jar
  • measuring cup
  • fermentation/pickling weight or weck jar lid
  • 2 cups berries (we liked raspberries best, but a mix of berries works well, also.)
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons fresh whey, strained from yogurt
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Fermented Berries are berries that have been elevated to another level of delicious. The brief lactic fermentation gives them a sparkling effervescence, a honeyed zing that lingers on the tongue. The berries themselves are softened and sweetened and made somehow almost creamy by the fermentation, and as such are the perfect accompaniment to yogurts and custards, smoothies and cakes. The liquid that remains after the last berry has been eaten is a treat in and of itself, too. Drink it straight, or splash it into sparkling water, or even champagne. It depends on how much you feel like celebrating the return of berry season. A single fermented raspberry and a splash of the fermenting liquid in a flute of champagne is cause for celebration, indeed.


Using a cheesecloth or Greek Yogurt Strainer, strain the whey from the yogurt.
yogurt strainer
Place the berries in a pint jar.
Jar of berries
Combine the honey and salt with the whey.
Pour the whey mixture over the berries.
fermented fruit
Top off any remaining space in the jar with chlorine-free water, making sure to leave about an inch of headspace.
Gently press the berries below the level of the water. A fermentation weight is useful to ensure that the berries stay below the honeyed brine.
pickling weights
Place a lid on the jar, screwing it down just lightly. Leave the jar out of direct sunlight, at room temperature for 24-48 hours. The berries will become more tart as the fermentation continues, but the faint taste of honey shines through.
fermented raspberries
Store in the refrigerator, if you do not eat them right away.
finished berries
A powdered vegetable starter culture, such as Body Ecology or Caldwell’s, may be used if a vegan option is preferred. Combine 1/2 teaspoon of the starter with a small amount of water, and the salt and honey, and pour it over the berries. Top off any remaining space in the jar with chlorine-free water, leaving an inch of headspace above the liquid.