Creamy, spiced, and incredibly delicious, chai tea should definitely be on your radar! This fragrant beverage is known as masala chai in India, and it’s been traditionally brewed for thousands of years as a heart-warming, health-boosting hot drink.
What is chai tea?
Chai tea originally hails from India, and it has a 5,000-year history! It’s thought to have first been brewed for a Hindu king as part of Ayurveda – an ancient herbal medicine that uses the Earth’s natural properties and energies to promote healing.1
The word “chai” actually just means tea in Hindi. However, chai tea is specifically made from a mix of black tea and aromatic spices such as ginger, fennel, cinnamon, and cardamom.2 Instead of being steeped in hot water, chai tea is made using a combination of warm water and milk to give it a creamier taste and texture.3
A blissfully comforting drink on a cold day, chai tea also contains a whole host of possible health benefits.4
Benefits of chai tea
Here’s a quick look at a few chai tea benefits:
It contains cinnamon which may support your heart
Cinnamon has long been studied for its effects on heart health. Precisely, it’s thought to help lower the amounts of bad cholesterol in the body, while also reducing blood pressure.5
Nausea-fighting ginger is a key ingredient
Ginger has been used to help combat feelings of nausea for hundreds of years and is thought to be especially beneficial for pregnant women suffering from morning sickness.6
Its high-protein levels may help you stave off hunger pangs
Chai tea is much more filling than most other teas thanks to its liberal use of milk. Whether you go for dairy or you make a soya milk version, both are excellent sources of protein, which has been known to promote feelings of fullness.7
How to make chai tea
If you fancy brewing up a cup of this incredibly fragrant tea, you’ll have two options – using a ready-made chai tea bag or creating it from scratch. Here’s how to make homemade chai tea using the raw ingredients8:
- Heat two cups of your preferred milk over low heat on the hob.
- Empty out the black tea leaves from two standard tea bags into the milk.
- Add in six cardamom pods, a cinnamon stick, two cloves and a pinch of fresh nutmeg.
- You can then sweeten the tea with a teaspoon or two of brown sugar before leaving it to infuse over low heat.
- After ten minutes, strain the mix into mugs and enjoy!
When to avoid drinking chai tea
If you have a sensitivity to caffeine, you may want to avoid drinking chai tea or try making it with decaffeinated black tea leaves or bags instead. As ginger may also interfere with some medicines or blood thinners, you should be cautious drinking large amounts of it if you take regular medications.9
Fancy enjoying a mug of marvellous masala chai? You’ll find ready-made bags of chai tea in our natural herbal tea range, as well as various other options made from soothing herbs and vitamin-packed fruits.
Last updated: 31 March 2021