how to brew tea
Making Hot Tea
There are many ways to make tea—and none of them wrong—but here’s a handy steeping chart to get you started!
How to Get That Perfect Cup of Tea
- To make a tea stronger, don’t steep it for longer. Unless it’s an herbal, steeping a tea for too long will make it bitter rather than strong. Instead, add more tea leaves or bags!
- As a general rule, use one level teaspoon or 2 grams for every cup (8 oz) you’re making. Fluffier ingredients like mint and chamomile, or teas with larger leaves like green tea or oolong could use an extra teaspoon.
- Tea bag teas are usually one per cup (8 oz) of tea, though you can always double-up when you want it stronger!
- Spring water is ideal for brewing, but not necessary for making a good cup of tea. If possible, use fresh cold water. Never use water from the hot water tap. Let the tap water run for a few seconds until it is quite cold; this ensures that the water is aerated (full of oxygen) to release the full flavor of the tea leaves.
- Try not to let your water reach a rolling boil, as that will release oxygen and result in a flat-tasting cup of tea.
- If brewing with loose leaf tea, there are several different types of infusers available; sometimes you’ll need to experiment a little until you find the perfect one for you.
- Many teas are good for a second (even third!) steeping. Multiple steepings can bring out more subtle flavors and notes. Commonly, oolong, green tea, white tea and pu-erh fall into this category. Give it a shot—you might end up liking the second infusion better than the first!
If a tea doesn’t taste quite right the first time around, experiment with changing the steeping time, water temperature, and tea amount until you find the flavor you enjoy.
Our Fool-Proof Guide to the Perfect Iced Tea
- Use twice as much tea as you normally would. This will make sure your iced tea is bold in flavor.
- Add your sugar or sweetener while the tea is still hot. If your iced tea is already chilled, we recommend adding agave nectar to sweeten your tea; unlike sugar or honey, agave will easily dissolve in cold tea.
- You can use tea bags or loose leaf tea. Not all pitchers come with a handy infuser for loose tea brewing, but filter bags work in a pinch!
- Put in 2 teaspoons of loose tea or 2 tea bags for every cup (8 oz) of tea.
- Fill your pitcher or glass halfway with hot water.
- Let the tea steep for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on personal preference.
- Fill the pitcher or glass up the rest of the way with cold water, then take out the tea leaves or bags.
- Pour your tea over ice and serve.