Chai Latte from Scratch

 

I can never turn down a chai latte.  It’s the perfect, warming comfort-drink for cold weather.  And if coffee gives you the jitters, it’s a great alternative.  Chai has black tea, which will give you a slight caffeine boost that is not overwhelming.

 

 

If you’re a chai latte lover like me, I have some good news for you… your days of paying $6.00 for a latte are over.  Chai lattes are actually incredibly easy to make at home, and in my opinion, the homemade version is much better than anything you can buy at a coffee shop.

 

Usually when you get a chai latte at a coffee shop, the base is a chai-flavored syrup.  This means that store-bought chai lattes tend to be very sugary and sweet.  When you make a chai concentrate at home, you can customize the sweetness to your liking.  I personally like to make my latte mildly sweet so that the flavors of the spices can really shine.

 

FAQ:

 

Can I use ground spices instead of whole spices? 

No, you cannot use ground spices in this recipe.  You will not be able to strain ground spices out of your concentrate, so you will end up with a gritty texture at the bottom of your latte.

 

What is the best type of milk to use in this latte?

I always make my chai lattes with oat milk.  I like the flavor it provides, and it’s definitely the creamiest type of plant milk.  If you’d rather use real dairy milk, I recommend 2%.

 

Can I make my latte iced?

Yes!  This recipe works for both iced and hot lattes.  If you want your latte iced, just combine the chai concentrate with milk and pour over ice.

 

3 tips for the best possible latte:

 

  1.  Taste test your concentrate as you add the sugar to find your perfect sweetness level.  Sweetness is totally a preference thing, and you may like your latte more or less sweet than I do. 
  2. Do not substitute the whole spices for ground ones.  You will not be able to strain ground spices out of the concentrate, and you will end up with a gritty texture at the bottom of your latte.
  3. Use vanilla beans or vanilla paste, not vanilla extract.  Vanilla beans will give you the purest vanilla flavor.  Vanilla extract is often made with alcohol, which can give your latte an undesirable flavor.

 

 

Chai Latte Recipe


 Prep Time:
5 minutes
 Cook Time:
25 minutes
 Total Time:
30 minutes
 Serves:
4 lattes

 


Ingredients:

  • 4 cups water
  • 4 black tea bags
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar (give or take depending on your preference)
  • 10 whole peppercorns
  • 12 whole cardamom pods
  • 6 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 star anise pods
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 3 whole allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 1’’ piece of ginger, cut into small pieces
  • 4 cups milk or plant milk
Directions:
  1. Place all of the ingredients except for the black tea bags in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Cover and simmer for 15 minutes for a more mild-tasting latte, or 20 minutes for a stronger flavor.  Remove from heat.
  2. Place the teabags in the mixture and let seep for 5-8 minutes, then discard them.
  3. Refrigerate the concentrate until you are ready to serve.  
    1. For a hot latte: Combine 1 part concentrate with 1 part milk and heat over the stove or in the microwave
    2. For an iced latte: Combine 1 part concentrate with 1 part milk and pour over ice.

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I can never turn down a chai latte.  It’s the perfect, warming comfort-drink for cold weather.  And if coffee gives you the jitters, it’s a great alternative.  Chai has black tea, which will give you a slight caffeine boost that is not overwhelming.

 

 

If you’re a chai latte lover like me, I have some good news for you… your days of paying $6.00 for a latte are over.  Chai lattes are actually incredibly easy to make at home, and in my opinion, the homemade version is much better than anything you can buy at a coffee shop.

 

Usually when you get a chai latte at a coffee shop, the base is a chai-flavored syrup.  This means that store-bought chai lattes tend to be very sugary and sweet.  When you make a chai concentrate at home, you can customize the sweetness to your liking.  I personally like to make my latte mildly sweet so that the flavors of the spices can really shine.

 

FAQ:

 

Can I use ground spices instead of whole spices? 

No, you cannot use ground spices in this recipe.  You will not be able to strain ground spices out of your concentrate, so you will end up with a gritty texture at the bottom of your latte.

 

What is the best type of milk to use in this latte?

I always make my chai lattes with oat milk.  I like the flavor it provides, and it’s definitely the creamiest type of plant milk.  If you’d rather use real dairy milk, I recommend 2%.

 

Can I make my latte iced?

Yes!  This recipe works for both iced and hot lattes.  If you want your latte iced, just combine the chai concentrate with milk and pour over ice.

 

3 tips for the best possible latte:

 

  1.  Taste test your concentrate as you add the sugar to find your perfect sweetness level.  Sweetness is totally a preference thing, and you may like your latte more or less sweet than I do. 
  2. Do not substitute the whole spices for ground ones.  You will not be able to strain ground spices out of the concentrate, and you will end up with a gritty texture at the bottom of your latte.
  3. Use vanilla beans or vanilla paste, not vanilla extract.  Vanilla beans will give you the purest vanilla flavor.  Vanilla extract is often made with alcohol, which can give your latte an undesirable flavor.

 

 

Chai Latte Recipe


 Prep Time:
5 minutes
 Cook Time:
25 minutes
 Total Time:
30 minutes
 Serves:
4 lattes

 


Ingredients:

  • 4 cups water
  • 4 black tea bags
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar (give or take depending on your preference)
  • 10 whole peppercorns
  • 12 whole cardamom pods
  • 6 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 star anise pods
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 3 whole allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 1’’ piece of ginger, cut into small pieces
  • 4 cups milk or plant milk
Directions:
  1. Place all of the ingredients except for the black tea bags in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Cover and simmer for 15 minutes for a more mild-tasting latte, or 20 minutes for a stronger flavor.  Remove from heat.
  2. Place the teabags in the mixture and let seep for 5-8 minutes, then discard them.
  3. Refrigerate the concentrate until you are ready to serve.  
    1. For a hot latte: Combine 1 part concentrate with 1 part milk and heat over the stove or in the microwave
    2. For an iced latte: Combine 1 part concentrate with 1 part milk and pour over ice.

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