3 Ways to Mix Kava and Orange Juice

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orange juice and kava
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One of the best combinations of flavor for a kava drink is kava and orange juice. This is because the bitterness of the kava is balanced with the tart flavor of the orange juice. Here are 3 ways that you can successfully mix orange juice and kava together.

When mixing kava and orange juice there are really only 3 ways to successfully mix them together. First, you can blend the kava and orange juice together during the straining stage. Second, for a quick beverage, you can add a splash of orange juice during the final stage. Third, you can actually pre-mix orange juice and kava powder together before straining.

Combining kava and orange juice is an amazing way to create a refreshing beverage for a hot summer day. We often find kava bars in the United States offering a kava shell with an orange wedge on the side on top of a kava orange juice mixture.

Let’s jump right into the 3 ways to successfully mix kava and orange juice together.

You Can Blend Kava and Orange Juice Together During The Straining Stage

One of the best ways to mix kava and orange juice together is to add the orange juice during the straining stage of making the kava drink.

When you make a kava drink you have to strain out the kava root by using a filter. While many people use strainer bags the traditional way to do this is with a leaf filter. However, when in a pinch you can use a coffee filter strainer.

During this straining stage, you should add the orange juice into the mixture and strain it along with the kava. This will create an instantly smooth kava-orange juice mixture. The best part about this strategy is that you can continue to strain out the kava mixture while adding the right amount of orange juice.

Depending on how many times you strain out this mixture you will get a more refined and smooth taste. Most kava bars strain their kava one or two times but if you want to really create an amazing drink you should strain your kava 3 to 5 times while adding in the orange juice.

The reason that this works is that you will be slowly adding the orange juice to the kava-infused water. While you strain this mixture out it will reduce both the kava flavor as well as the orange juice flavor. After 3 or 4 times of doing this, you will get one of the smoothest kava drinks imaginable.

For a Quick Beverage Add the Orange Juice at the End

Looking for a quick drink on the go? This method is for you.

One of the easiest ways to mix orange juice and kava is to simply add the orange juice at the end when you pour the kava into the glass or shell. Here you should only add around 1/5 of orange juice to the glass to give a small taste.

Most kava bars in the United States will do this because it is easier to do and can be pretty cool when added properly. A bartender can add the kava and orange juice into a shaker cup, shake, and pour over a couple of ice cubes to create an amazing professional drink. After they will top off the kava drink with an orange wedge to bring the entire drink together.

However, when making this drink at home you don’t need to be fancy. Just adding a small amount of orange juice to the finished kava drink will suffice. Remember however to keep the orange juice a small portion and not overload the flavor of the kava.

If you add too much orange juice at this stage you run the risk of diluting the kava and creating a bad-tasting glass of orange juice. It is a delicate balancing game of adding just the right amount of orange juice to give the flavor but not enough to create a glass of orange juice.

Mixing Kava and Orange Juice Together Before Straining

This is an old secret that not many people know about. When you first mix the kava powder and water to let it sit for a while throw in the orange juice.

This will give the kava powder and orange juice time to be infused with the water. The effect is an amazing and rich-tasting mixture that has both flavors. It is hard to explain in words but you should try this when you get the chance. By letting the kava and orange juice sit at around 65-73 degrees for a while you get an absolutely amazing orange taste.

You will still need to strain out the kava but now you can strain it and taste it along the way. Unlike the previous method where you would add orange juice while straining here, you can simply strain and taste as you go. If the taste is still a little too strong then keep straining the kava orange juice mixture until you get the exact taste you want.

Not many people understand just how powerful this way of combining juice and kava is. If you add the flavor ahead of time before straining and let sit you can actually infuse the kava water with the flavor. As you strain you will slowly refine everything until you get it perfect.

When the team here at Kava-Bula does this we often see that a mixture of 2/5 orange juice with kava works best. After this, we strain about 2 times and taste along the way. The finished product is then poured over ice and given a hard straw to mix the drink to prevent the kava from settling.

Does Orange Juice’s Acidity Damage The Kava?

This is a hotly contested debate in the kava community. It is widely known that kava’s potency is reduced when combined with any type of acid and let sit for a long time.

We have served thousands of beverages with kava and orange juice paired together. We have not noticed any reduction but we also make sure to use the same type of orange juice time and time again.

When mixing our kava orange juice drinks we always use high pulp orange juice concentrate. From this, we add about a quart of water for every gallon to dilute the acidic nature of the orange juice. After this, we add the orange juice to our kava.

Doing this method we have never experienced a reduction in the potency of kava. Often we see the opposite where our guests get a better overall experience and enjoy the drink even more.


That’s about it when mixing kava and orange juice together. There are really 3 ways to do this properly and not dilute the drink itself.

Remember kava is a cultural drink that is designed to bring the local community together. It should be respected and whenever you drink it you should always say ‘bula!’ This translates to wishing those around you good health and good fortune.


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