A cool glass of iced tea is always enjoyable on a hot day.
But did you know that the best way to make tasty and refreshing iced tea is to cold brew it? Keep on reading as we dissect the best method to make a perfect cold brew tea.
What is Cold Brew Tea?
Similar to cold brew coffee, cold brewing tea involves letting tea dilute in cold or room temperature water for a few hours. As no hot water is involved, this method is very suitable for warm summer months.
It’s a slower way to make tea compared to using hot water, but it creates a much more gentle and sweeter tea. This is because the chemical compounds that cause bitterness in tea (called tannins) are only activated by hot water.
Required Ingredients and Equipment
- Tea sachet or loose tea leaves (any kind of tea can be cold brewed)
- Clean and filtered water
- Container or pitcher
- Mesh strainer
- Additives like sliced lemon, sugar, mint leaves, etc (optional)
How to Make It
- Place your teabag or tea leaves into the container or pitcher
- Pour in room temperature or cold water into the vessel, before then covering it and placing it in the refrigerator
- Allow the tea to be submerged in the water for 6 to 8 hours (white and green tea) or 8 to 12 hours (oolong or black tea)
- After the time is up, remove the tea bags from the container or pour the liquid through a mesh strainer to strain the loose tea leaves
- Serve the cold brew tea with any of the optional additives you like
Tips and Guidelines for Making the Perfect Cold Brew Tea
- You can also use a cold brew maker for more convenience. Cold brew makers have infusers that allow you to strain the tea leaves without needing a strainer.
- Ice is not necessary since the tea is already chilled, but you can add it when serving so that it will remain colder longer.
- Not all teas are made equal with some more difficult to brew than others. Green tea is notorious for being tricky to brew as it will taste very bitter if not made properly.
- If not served immediately, you can keep your tea covered in the fridge and have it last for 3 to 5 days.
- Always remember to use a glass vessel because a plastic container stains very easily and may leave behind unpleasant odours.
Which is Better: Tea Leaves Better or Tea Bags?
In general, tea leaves are of much higher quality than tea bags. This means that they will result in a much smoother and flavourful tea. However, there are tea bags that can also produce exceptional tea.
Does Cold Brew Tea Contain Caffeine?
Yes! Nearly all kinds of tea, with the exception of herbal tea, contains caffeine. Cold brew tea tends to have a lower caffeine content than tea that is brewed with hot water.
What is the Water to Tea Ratio for Cold Brewing Tea?
For each serving of tea, we recommend using one cup of water along with one tea bag or 1.5 teaspoons of loose tea leaves.