picklesA common question that I get when I start talking about the health benefits of fermented foods is, “What foods are fermented?” So I decided to make a list of fermented foods.

You can ferment almost any food including vegetables, fruits, legumes, dairy, meat and fish! In order for a food to be fermented, beneficial microbes have to be present in the right environment including the correct pH and temperature range. Some ferments are anaerobic which means they are done in an airtight container without the presence of oxygen, as done in lacto-fermentation. Other ferments are aerobic which means they need exposure to oxygen therefore they are not done in an airtight container.

Fermented Vegetables (traditionally fermented by anaerobic lacto-fermentation) 

Commonly fermented vegetables:

  • Pickles (cucumbers)
  • Sauerkraut (cabbage)
  • Kimchi (cabbage and other veggies)
  • Capers (flower buds of Capparis spinosa, a shrub like bush)
  • Olives
  • Pickled Peppers and Radishes

But almost all vegetables can be fermented by anaerobic lacto-fermentation, I have done:

  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Beets
  • Green Beans
  • Garlic
  • And more!

Fermented Dairy

  • Yogurt
  • Kefir
  • Cultured Butter
  • Crème fraîche
  • Cheese


  • Soy Sauce
  • Sourdough Bread
  • Kombucha
  • Vinegar
  • Miso

Most of these traditionally healthy fermented foods normally loaded with beneficial microbes are now being mass produced, packaged and sold at conventional grocery stores. The downside of mass production is that these foods are being pasteurized to increase shelf-life therefore killing the good bacteria. Additives and preservatives are also a disadvantage in modern food production.  If you buy sauerkraut that is not refrigerated, from an aisle at the grocery store, chances are that it has been pasteurized, and therefore does not contain live, healthy bacteria. Look for foods that are refrigerated, are organic and better yet they list the live bacterial or yeast cultures present in them.  A good rule of thumb for all food that you buy is to make sure you know all of the ingredients.  Better yet, fermenting at home is the way to go!  It saves money and it is fairly simple to do.

-Brenda Baran, NTP

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About Brenda Baran, NTP

Brenda Baran, B.A. Chemistry, Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, is certified by the Nutritional Therapy Association. Brenda’s passion is helping others lead a clean, natural, preventative, and healing lifestyle. She is especially interested in a whole food, nutrient dense diet that reflects the way our ancestors ate, sort of like the Paleo Diet, but with a Weston A. Price twist. Brenda is available for phone consults, video consults or in person visits. She provides individualized plans depending on assessed findings, primary health concerns and individual goals. Brenda also runs various workshops in the southeast Michigan area. She will soon be offering online courses. Contact Brenda today to get started and see what she can provide for you!

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5 Responses to List of Fermented Foods

  1. Your style is very unique compared to other folks I have read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you’ve got the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this blog.

  2. Paul says:

    Very nice page, Brenda. Thanks.
    Do you know if you can ferment broad beans. I have grown a glut of them.

    • Brenda Baran, NTP says:

      Thank you Paul! I am sure you can ferment broad beans I would ferment them in a 2% brine in an anaerobic container for 5-7 days. Hope this helps :)

  3. Ola adedeji says:

    I once tinctured garlic ,ginger and guinea pepper with fresh lime and alcohol in a pet bottle. I gubble it yet without any clue of its health benefits. should it be sustain.

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