There seems to be some confusion as to whether Chai Latte is tea or coffee. As any good detective would do, we've researched the subject, so you don't need to now. Instead, you can read this guide and learn how to make the fragrant, creamy drink at home in your kitchen. The mystery behind Chai Latte can be put behind you, allowing you to focus on drinking your favorite new beverage regularly.
What is Chai Tea Latte? Does it have coffee in it? Sadly, it does not. It's simply black tea with steamed and foamed milk added to it.
This guide aims to help you understand the process of preparing a Chai Tea Latte at home. It explains what it contains, how to prepare it, and what you can do to personalize it. By the time you finish reading about Chai Tea Latte, you'll be an expert on the subject and be able to make it in your kitchen with the greatest ease.
What is Chai Tea Latte?
A Chai Tea Latte is among the hottest drink trends today. It's a pick-me-up for non-coffee drinkers who want to boost energy levels and enjoy a warm beverage. Made of black tea which contains higher levels of caffeine than other varieties of tea, what makes it a Latte is the presence of steamed and foamed milk in it.
A handful of spices such as cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, star anise, and black pepper give the beverage its mildly spicy flavor and fragrant aroma. You can even opt to include vanilla pods, licorice, cumin, and mace to your preferred chai blend if you plan on making it yourself. Pre-mixed chai tea is also available in loose-leaf and bagged preparations to make the process of making Chai Tea Latte fast and easy for you.
The beauty of making the beverage is that it's very simple to do, requires few ingredients, can be adapted to fit your diet or personal preferences, and feels incredibly decadent despite being relatively inexpensive to make at home. You can consume a Chai Tea Latte if you're following a Keto diet or have omitted animal-based products such as dairy from your shopping list.
How to Make Chai Tea Latte
To make a Chai Tea Latte, you'll need to assemble all of its ingredients as well as the tools and equipment needed to make the hot beverage. You'll need a kettle, mug or tumbler, spoon, steamer/frother, loose-leaf or bagged black tea or Chai tea blend, filtered water, and spices. If you have a brand of Chai tea that you like already, you will not need the last item on the list because it contains ingredients such as cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger.
Once you have all of your ingredients ready, you can start the process of making the Latte. The steps are listed for you to follow. We've opted to go with making a Chai Tea Latte from scratch using loose leaf black tea.
- Prepare your spice blend. You'll want to grind any spices that you haven't already prepared. Having access to a manual or electric spice grinder is very helpful. It allows you to make fast work out of grinding down cinnamon sticks and cloves. Adding equal parts of each spice to a bowl allows you to make a large batch of Chai spice to use at a later date.
- Put your kettle on the stove and fill it full of the filtered water. Turn it on medium-high to high and let it come to a boil. The kettle should ‘whistle' when it's time to take it off the burner. You want to work with the hottest water you can so that the tea can steep properly in the liquid.
- Add the black tea and spice blend to a reusable tea bag or tea strainer. Allow it to steep for a few minutes until you can see the water has changed color, and the fragrance of the spices has become strong. Remove the teabag and set it aside to clean.
- Include the sweetener and stir. This step is optional. You may not feel the need to add anything to the Chai Tea Latte apart from milk or plant-based milk. If you do want to give it a hint of sweetness, try brown sugar or maple syrup for best results.
- Put the milk, cream, or plant-based milk into the steamer and froth it. If you don't own a frother, you can whisk it on the stove, use an immersion blender or even take cold nut milk and place it in a jar, shake it vigorously, and then heat it. All three methods of preparing the milk or milk alternative work well.
- Add the frothy substance to the Chai tea that you've poured into your mug or tumbler. You can top it with an extra sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg to enhance its earthy flavors. Once you've let it cool some, drink and enjoy. A Chai Tea Latte hits the spot anytime day or night as well as all year long.
There are plenty of reasons why you should make your own Chai Tea Latte at home. Not only does it save you money, but you're also able to enjoy a consistently good product each time you make it. There is little work involved in preparing a Chai tea bagged blend, too. You simply steep it in water, add the steamed and frothed milk, and your choice of sweetener, if you wish to add it to the beverage.
Making Chai Tea Latte Keto
You can't consume milk on a Keto diet. If you want to follow its guidelines, you'll need to substitute it with heavy cream or nut-based milk. The main idea behind this type of beverage is its preparation, so as long as you steam and froth the cream or almond milk, you'll be ready to go.
Steaming and frothing heavy cream can make the Chai Tea Latte creamier and more decadent. You won't even notice that it's Keto-friendly because of how rich it tastes. If you're tired of drinking Bulletproof Coffee, you'll love the delicious medley of flavors that Chai provides you with regularly.
Making Chai Tea Latte Vegan
To make a Chai Tea Latte vegan, you'll need to omit the milk. You can use a variety of nut milk products or soy milk in place of the steamed and foamed dairy. You may notice that some milk alternatives such as coconut milk are naturally thicker and creamier.
The flavor of coconut goes well with a Chai spice blend. You can experiment with different combinations of ingredients until you find the one that you like best. The biggest thing to remember is that some plant-based milk tastes nuttier than others, which can affect the overall flavor of your vegan Chai Tea Latte.
Ways to Make the Beverage Fancy
If you love how some coffee shops add fancy elements to your beverage, you can do it yourself rather easily. By investing in a beautiful mug or tumbler, you'll want to fill it often. You can also add freshly ground spices to the foam on top of your latte to make it look and feel more like an authentic coffeehouse creation.
Sweeteners such as brown sugar or maple syrup complement the spice blend common to Chai tea. You can also use regular table sugar or sugar substitute, but keep in mind, the flavor may be very different than what you achieve with a darker sweetener. Experiment with what you have on hand to create the perfect homemade Chai Tea Latte.
Can Chai Tea Latte be made without dairy?
Yes, you can make Chai Tea Latte without milk. You can use a plant-based alternative instead. Soy, almond, cashew, macadamia, oat, and coconut milk works well as long as you steam and froth it before adding it to the black tea blend.
How much caffeine does a Chai Tea Latte contain?
There is 47 mg of caffeine per every eight ounces of black tea in most cases. If you're sensitive to caffeine, you may want to limit how much Chai Tea Latte you consume. It, like coffee, can tax your nervous system if you drink large quantities of the beverage.
Do I need special equipment to make a Chai Tea Latte?
No special equipment is needed outside of a tea kettle and milk steamer/frother. You will, of course, need a cup to put the beverage in as well as Chai tea, steamed milk or milk alternative, and water. Other than that, you're all set to make the beverage at home.
How can I make a Chai Tea Latte cold?
All you need to do to make a cold beverage is to place the prepared Chai Tea Latte in the fridge or add ice cubes to it. Keep in mind that it will alter the appearance of the drink because the beverage should have steamed and foamed milk in it. Colder temperatures will affect the appearance of the drink but not its flavor.
Is there a special cup to use for Chai Tea Latte?
Any cup that you can safely hold will do. Some people prefer a mug with a handle. Others like using a refillable to-go tumbler with lid because of how portable it is. Whatever cup you like best is perfect for a Chai Tea Latte.
How much Chai Tea Latte can I drink each day?
There is no limit to how much Chai Tea Latte a person can drink daily. The only warning we offer is that black tea does contain caffeine. Too much of the substance can make you feel jittery and out-of-sorts, so proceed with caution.
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