Save money and learn how to make a chai tea latte at home! A warm and spicy spiced tea blended with frothed milk for only a fraction of the price! Made in under 10 minutes.
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My, how things have changed.
This How to Make a Chai Tea Latte post was originally published in 2012! Back then I had only one child, was still married, and, the biggest shocker of them all, I STILL DRANK COFFEE! At the end of the post, I admit that my go-to drink was a quad-soy latte and chai tea lattes were my afternoon delight. 6 years later, I can barely handle caffeine in any form so it's herbal tea for me, please.
But every once in awhile I do splurge and enjoy a homemade Chai Latte. And with this step-by-step tutorial, you too can be making Chai Lattes at home for only the fraction of the price.
Let's take a look.
Recommended Ingredients & Equipment
Homemade Chai Tea Lattes are super easy and wildly versatile. This is just a guideline on how to make your favorite chai latte at home.
Ingredients & Substitutions
- Tea - Traditionally chai is made from black tea. For a caffeine-free alternative, I choose Rooibos. Read more about it.
- Non-Dairy Milk - My preference is soy because the flavors blend well with the spices of chai. Additionally, soy milk is one of the best non-dairy milk for frothing. Other recommendations are hemp, cashew, or oat.
- Maple Syrup - I use this as a sweetener. You can swap it for agave syrup, coconut sugar, monk sugar, or omit it altogether. Check out my guide to vegan sugars and alternative sugar replacements.
- Spices - My go-to spices are cinnamon, cardamom, star anise, cloves, peppercorn, nutmeg. Sometimes, I'll also add grated ginger into my tea (just throw it in with the spices) if I'm looking for a little extra zing. The spices are very flexible in this recipe, so mix and match as you please.
Check out the full list of my recommended kitchen tools and gadgets.
What is Rooibos?
Rooibos, or red bush tea as it is commonly called, is an herb that comes exclusively from South Africa. It has been around for the past 300 years but only recently gained popularity as a tea. Rooibos has smoky, sweet, and vanilla flavors that pair deliciously with the spices commonly associated with chai tea.
Rooibos is not only delicious, but it also has many health benefits. As someone who cannot drink caffeine I find Rooibos tea the perfect alternative.
How to Make a Chai Tea Latte
Step One: Boil and Steep
Boil and steep the tea and spices in 1 cup of water. You are essentially making a chai tea concentrate. If you know you will be drinking a lot of chai teas this fall and want to be efficient, double or triple the batch and store your chai tea concentrate in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Once your tea and spices have steeped for 5 minutes, pour them through a fine mesh strainer so that just the concentrate remains.
Step Two: Froth the Milk
To get a nice frothy foam on your milk, first heat it up to a scald, that's just before boiling point, then transfer the milk to a frother and give it a few pumps.
Serving and Storing
Serve your Chai Tea Latte immediately with an oatmeal date scone or vegan blueberry muffin. To serve, pour the chai concentrate into the bottom of a mug. Top with frothed milk and sprinkle with ground cinnamon and star anise.
Pro Tip: If you know you will be drinking a lot of chai, double or triple the batch for the chai tea concentrate. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Tips and Tricks
- A great chai latte is a balance of spices. Experiment with the spices in this recipe to find the perfect combination for you.
- I highly recommend getting a milk frother. However, if you have a French press, those work great for frothing milk. Just pour your warm milk into the French press. Pump it up and down a few times and you'll have delicious latte-quality frothed milk!
Frequently Asked Questions
My preference is soy because the flavors blend well with the spices of chai. Additionally, soy milk is one of the best non-dairy milk for frothing. However, if you don't like soy my other recommendations are hemp, cashew, or oat both for flavor and texture.
Sure! This spice blend is just a recommendation. This recipe is highly versatile. Experiment with the spices in this recipe to find the perfect combination for you.
More Homemade Latte Recipes
How to Make a Chai Tea Latte
- Over medium-high heat, combine the water, tea bags, and spices in a medium-sized saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil for five minutes. Remove from heat and stir in maple syrup if using.
- Carefully pour hot water through a strainer, dividing it equally into two mugs so that just the tea concentrate remains. In the same saucepan, bring heat milk to scald (just before boiling point) then remove from heat.
- Transfer milk to your milk frother and pump up and down a few times until your milk is light a frothy. Tap the frother a few times on the counter to let the milk settle a bit.
- Top off each mug with milk. Sprinkle with cinnamon, garnish with a couple of star anise (optional) and enjoy immediately!