Is Bubble Tea Healthy?

Is bubble tea healthy? We’ll give you some info you need to know before consuming bubble tea.

Is bubble tea healthy?
Tea has many health benefits

Given that tea carries numerous health benefits, you might think that bubble tea is healthy. It’s just tea and boba, right?

I hate to give some bad news, but bubble tea is not that healthy, at least compared to a regular cup of green, black, or herbal tea. Of course, it’s not the worst thing you could be drinking, but people don’t flock to bubble tea for the health benefits – they drink it because it’s a tasty treat.

Is Bubble Tea Healthy?

The tea itself is healthy, but there’s much more to bubble tea than the base tea.

Bubble tea is either milky or fruity, and it’s definitely not as healthy as just drinking a cup of tea. 

Bubble tea usually has around 280 calories and 22 grams of sugar. Regular tea has virtually no calories or sugars – if you don’t add milk or sugar.

But, of course, calories are not always indicative of health. Some high-calorie or even high sugar and high-fat foods can be loaded with nutrients, but when it comes to bubble tea, there aren’t many nutritional benefits to it. 

Tea is a good source of antioxidants linked with lowering the chances of developing some illnesses and with anti-aging. Tea is also anti-inflammatory and is an easy way to stay hydrated.

However, bubble tea isn’t the best source for reaping the health benefits of tea. The sugar pretty much cancels out any potential health benefits.

If you love bubble tea, you might enjoy our guide on if crystal boba is better than regular boba.

Sweet Tooth

Best sweetener for coffee
Bubble tea contains artificial sweeteners

The biggest red flag when it comes to boba is the amount of sweetener in the drink. People generally don’t add extra sugar to their bubble tea as it’s already sweetened. 

Some cafes offer unsweetened bubble tea, but it doesn’t seem to be very popular. 

Even sugar-free sweeteners are bad news. While they may not count as added sugars and can be 0-calorie, artificial sweeteners have been linked with health issues like metabolic syndrome.

Are There Health Risks?

Regularly consuming sugary and processed foods is not recommended.

Specifically, a few reports have been published claiming that bubble tea is cancerous. However, there aren’t any scientific reports confirming that is the case. 

So if you occasionally drink bubble tea, this doesn’t seem to be something to worry about. 

What Is The Healthiest Bubble Tea?

Is bubble tea vegan?
Drink bubble tea moderately

There isn’t a “healthy” bubble tea. There are just some teas that are somewhat healthier than others. That said, people don’t drink bubble tea for any purported health benefits.

They drink it because they like it. So, there’s no reason why you can’t have it in moderation. 

A fruity tea should contain fewer calories than a milky tea. However, they still contain a lot of sweeteners. Lots of bubble tea places allow you to add extra things to your drink.

For example, adding pieces of dried fruit or popping flavored balls along with the tapioca bubbles. If you’re watching your calories or trying to limit the sugar, just stick with the regular tapioca balls. 

Matcha tea is a somewhat healthy choice. It contains high amounts of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. It provides a good dose of caffeine, but drinkers usually don’t feel as jittery as when drinking coffee. 

So the best bet for a “healthier” bubble tea would be fruity green tea with tapioca balls and no additional toppings. If it’s available, you can also skip the sugary tapioca balls for aloe vera jelly – which is usually made from real aloe vera and sweetener. 

Is It Healthier To Make Bubble Tea At Home?

Some people like to make bubble tea at home. Usually, making bubble tea at home means you can cut back on some of the sweeteners. However, the jelly and tapioca pearls still provide a high dose of sugar in every cup. 

That said, it’s probably still not going to be much healthier at home. 

Healthy Alternatives To Bubble Tea

If you want something healthier than bubble tea, but is just as refreshing, here are some options: 

Iced Tea

Cold Brew Tea

Cold Brew Coffee




If you like this article, you might be interested in whether frothed milk is healthy.

In this article, we cover is cold brew sweet.


  • Aisling O'Connor

    Aisling is an Irish food and drinks writer and journalist fueled by coffee and herbal tea. She followed up her journalism degree with nutrition studies. Find Aisling on LinkedIn.