Chai is an Indian blend of black tea, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves, peppercorn and star anise. Its flavor alone is very strong, so it’s mixed with milk to tone it down. Not too spicy or bitter, it has just the perfect blend of ingredients, giving you a mildly flavored, enjoyable drink. There are many versions of Chai Tea Latte recipes: here are a couple of delicious ones.
For homemade chai tea lattes, you can brew the black tea yourself or use a black tea concentrate.
The Five Spices Used in Chai Tea Latte
1. Green Cardamom. This spice is floral-scented and gives an earthy, smoky flavor to the tea. Green cardamom is a must-have for making chai. Get whole pods instead of seeds for better flavor. Crack them before steeping the tea.
2. Cloves. Unlike green cardamom, this one is optional. It’s highly recommended, however. Cloves are very fragrant and their flavor blends well with cinnamon and spicy black pepper.
3. Cinnamon Stick. The sweetness of cinnamon counters the earthiness of the cardamom and the spiciness of the pepper.
4. Fresh Ginger. This mild spice is responsible for that soothing sensation you feel on the back of your throat as you drink the tea.
5. Black Peppercorns. Adding peppercorns to the drink gives it that subtle kick of spice that makes it cozy and warm.
You can combine the above ingredients to your liking or purchase premixed chai spices at markets and tea stores ready to use.
Chai Tea Latte with Almond Milk
2 cups almond milk (or milk of choice)
2 black tea bags (optional; Darjeeling)
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3 tablespoons maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
If using tea, keep in mind that this drink will have caffeine. Heat up the almond milk in a saucepan over medium-high heat, until it begins to bubble around the edges of the pan. Turn off the heat, and add the 2 tea bags to the pot of hot milk. Wait 3 to 5 minutes for the tea to steep, then remove the bags and continue with the next step.
If you’re skipping the tea, add the plain almond milk to a saucepan.
Now that the milk is in the saucepan (whether it’s been brewed as tea, or not) add in the cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and maple syrup. Whisk to combine, stirring over medium heat, until the mixture is piping hot.
Adjust any seasoning to your taste and serve immediately. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge. You can serve them chilled over ice, or reheat on the stove again.
Note: For those that wish to avoid caffeine, you can eliminate the tea altogether and make a milky chai tea latte.
Chai Tea Latte from Concentrate
Tazo Chai Tea Latte Concentrate – The base of the drink that contains black tea and spices. You can buy this at large supermarkets such as Target and Walmart.
Milk – Pick your favorite! You can even use dairy-free. I love using almond milk for this recipe.
Cinnamon – For garnish. it’s optional but highly recommended.
Tips for the Best Latte
You can use 2% cow’s milk or any type of mile you prefer.
You can use a mile frother or immersion blender to make your milk nice and foamy. You can also use a hand whisk. You can sweeten chai tea latte by adding honey or maple syrup.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, add Tazo tea latte concentrate. Cook until hot.
Pour the concentrate into a mug. Place the saucepan back on the stove and heat milk until warm.
Whisk the milk vigorously for 1 to 2 minutes, or until frothy. Pour the milk over the concentrate. Scoop the leftover milk foam in the saucepan and top it on the latte.
Dust with cinnamon, if using. Enjoy!
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