I am not a tea drinker, I am a coffee drinker who can’t drink coffee. I did some time at Starbuck’s, right out of college, which caused a serious caffeine addiction. About 6 months ago I discovered that it was coffee making me throw up every day, for months. I don’t even know what to say about this (*sniffle*). So, as any reliable caffeine addict would do, I made the switch to tea. I’ve gotta say the chai latte is my favorite of the teas. It’s as close to coffee as you can get.
I really like the Tazo chocolate concentrate, however I don’t like paying $4.29 for 1 container and I’m not in love with the black pepper. Their chef is pretty heavy-handed with the pepper mill. So I decided to make my own and leave it out.
I think I paid $6ish for the star anise and about $8 for the nutmeg. The rest is pretty cheap and I had it all in my kitchen anyways. On the ground cardamom, you could use whole pods if you have them but the only ones I could find locally cost $24 for a small bottle of like 8 pods. Nope.
First step: peel and grate the ginger. I used 1 unpacked tablespoon.
Next grate the nutmeg. Just a teeny bit is all you need. Unless you love nutmeg.
Put all seasonings and teabags into a heat safe container.
Boil the water and then turn off the heat, allowing it to cool about 20-30 seconds. You don’t want the water to be boiling when you pour it over the seasonings or you will get a very dark, burnt taste. After water has cooled pour it into the container and let the tea steep for 15 minutes.
While the tea is brewing prepare the rest of the ingredients.
When the time is up remove the tea bags and then strain the tea through a fine mesh strainer, cheesecloth, or coffee filter. Discard all seasonings, you don’t want chunks in your latte.
Add remaining ingredients to the tea and stir to combine. Store in an air tight container and refrigerate.
To prepare a latte shake the concentrate (the cocoa tends to settle to the bottom), fill a mug about 1/4 full with chai, and warm it in the microwave. Add steamed milk to the chai and enjoy (or just heat it all in the micro) If you are a latte junkie like myself it is fantastic to add a little sugar-free vanilla syrup.
If you order a chocolate chai from Starbuck’s it comes with whipped cream on it, as per their chocolate standard. Order it soy, no whip, with foam for a dairy-free alternative.
- 4 ½ cups hot water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 tbsp. freshly grated ginger
- 1 tsp. ground cardamom
- 4 whole star anise pods
- 7 whole cloves
- 2 pinches freshly grated nutmeg
- 10 earl grey tea bags (or regular black tea)
- 2/3 C. packed brown sugar
- 1/4 C. cocoa
- 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
- 1. Peel and grate ginger and nutmeg
- 2. Add all seasonings and tea bags to a heat-safe bowl.
- 3. Boil water and allow to cool for 20-30 seconds before pouring into bowl of tea and seasonings.
- 4. Let steep for 15 minutes then pour through a strainer.
- 5. Stir in sugar, cocoa, and vanilla.
- 6. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.
- 7. Shake concentrate well before using.