List of Fermented Foods

Fermented foods have played an important role in human health for hundreds of years. Societies known for their long livety have always eaten some form of fermented food.

Check out the naturally fermented kimchi and other Korean foods below. Easy to order in the USA.

Looking at the list below shows that most of these fermented foods come from Africa, Asia and "old" Europe, all societies that do not suffer from the plague of intestinal problems that beset modern societies.

In general, fermentation increases protein and nutritional levels of food. For example, vitamin B12, folacin and riboflavin are all increased after fermentation of maize flour1.

Fermented gruels are commonly used as a weaning food for babies in many countries. They reduce bouts of diarrhea significantly when compared with unfermented gruels. Interestingly, this protection lasts even after cooking the gruel.

The fermented grains and vegetables are full of the beneficial lactic acid bacteria. This is the family that most probiotics come from. You'll find Lacotbacillus plantarum in many of these.

Leuconostoc mesenteroides is one of the most common bacteria found in fermented foods. It plays an important role as it grows rapidly over a wide range of temperatures and pH and so stops bad bacteria getting a foothold.

If these foods are heated to a high temperature after fermentation then the beneficial bacteria will be destroyed.

nothing beats real food

Fermented foods from round the world

Food IngredientMain species presentCountry
Ale Grain Yeast World wide
Busa Rice, millet, sugar Turkey
Beer Barley Yeast, lactic acid bacteria World wide
Cheese Milk Lactic acid bacteria, mold World wide
Chicha Maize and other grains South America
Dadih Milk Lactic acid bacteriaIndonesia
Dawadawa Locust beans Bacillus, Staphylococcus West Africa
Gari Cassava Leuconostoc, Alcaligenes, Corynebacterium, Lactobacillus Nigeria
Gherkins,salted Cucumber Lactic acid bacteria
Idli/dosa Rice and black gram Leuc mesenteroides, Enterococcus faecalis, yeast India
Injera Tef Leuc mesenteroides, P cerevisiae, L plantarum, Sac cerevisiae Ethiopia
I-sushi Fish Lactic acid bacteria, yeast Japan
Kaanga piro Maize Lactic acid bacteria New Zealand
Kefir Milk Streptococcus, Lactobacillus and Leuconostoc sp, Candida kefyr, Kluyveromyces fragilis Eastern Europe
Kenkey Maize, sorghum Lactic acid bacteria Ghana
Kimchi Vegetables Leuc mesenteroides, L brevis, L plantarum Korea
Koko Maize, sorghum Lactic acid bacteria Ghana
Kombucha Tea, sugar complex mix of bacteria and yeasts Worldwide
Leavened bread Wheat Yeast Europe, North America
Lambic beer Barley Yeasts, lactic acid bacteria Belgium
Mahewu Maize L lactis, Lactobacillus sp South Africa
Miso Soy beand Lactic acid bacteria, mold South east Asia
Nam Pork, rice, garlic, salt P cerevisiae, L plantarum, L brevis Thailand
Nono Milk Lactic acid bacteria Nigeria
Ogi Maize, sorghum, millet L plantarum, Corynebacterium sp, Acetobacter, Yeast Nigeria
Olives Olives Lactic acid bacteria, yeasts Mediterranean
Palm wine Palm sap Yeasts, lactic acid bacteria World wide
Pin dang Fish roe -Phillipines
Poi Taro Lactic acid bacteria Hawaii
Puto Rice Leuc mesenteroides, Enterococcus faecalis Phillipines
Qula Yak milk Lactic acid bacteria, yeast Tibet
Salami Meat Lactic acid bacteria World wide
Sauerkraut Cabbage Lactic acid bacteria Europe, North America
Sorghum beer Sorghum Lactic acid bacteria South Africa
Sourdough bread Wheat, rye Lactic acid bacteria Europe, North America
Soy sauce, miso Soy beans Lactic acid bacteria, mold South east Asia
Tempeh Soy beans Mold, yeast, bacteria Indonesia
Tibi Fruit - Mexico
Tofu (fermented)Soy milk Lactic acid baceteria, Bacillus sp South east Asia
Trahanas Milk and wheat Lactic acid bacteriaGreece
Wines Fruit Yeasts, lactic acid bacteria and acetic acid bacteriaWorld wide
Yogurt Milk Lactic acid bacteria World wide

Table compiled from information from Peter Sahlin's thesis "Fermentation as a Method of Food Processing", "Food Biology" by MR Adams and MO Moss, and PubMed.

Fermented Foods

Naturally fermented by traditional recipies. Full of beneficial lactic acid bacteria.


Or check out these wonderful aged cheeses if that sounds more to your taste. Aged cheeses are also full of the beneficial lactic acid bacteria we need for good health.




1. Murdock FA & Fields ML. B-vitamin content of natural lactic acid fermented cornmeal. Journal of Food Science 1984 49, 373-375.