This easy homemade Chai Concentrate is based on the flavors of traditional masala chai. Customize the spice and sweetness to your preferred levels!
- 4 cups water
- 12–15 green cardamom pods
- 12–15 whole cloves
- 3–4 whole star anise
- 18–22 whole black peppercorns
- 8–10 slices ginger
- 2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks
- 1 (3-inch) strip orange peel, optional
- 8 black tea bags, decaf as needed
- 1/3-1 cup sweetener of choice – sugar, coconut sugar, honey, maple syrup, etc. Feel free to adjust to achieve your desired level of sweetness.
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, optional
To extract the most flavor, gently crush the spices, breaking them into a few pieces without creating a powder. You can use a mortar and pestle or the bottom of a glass. If you like a milder chai, skip this step.
In a medium pot, stir together the water, cardamom, cloves, ginger, star anise, cinnamon, peppercorns, orange peel and sweetener. Bring to a simmer, remove from the heat and stir in the tea. Cover and let steep for at least 20 minutes and up to several hours.
Stir in the vanilla extract and strain the concentrate through a fine mesh strainer into a large jar. Use immediately to make a chai latte or refrigerate.
Cardamom: Use whole green cardamom or cardamom seeds. To help with the math, there are about 8-12 seeds per pod.
Orange peel: a nice long strip peeled using a vegetable peeler or knife, not a zester. The orange peel is completely optional, but it adds a nice flavor note.
Storage: Chai concentrate will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week. Serve iced or reheat on the stove. For longer storage, pour the chai concentrate into ice cube trays and freeze. Transfer to a ziplock bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Serve as ice cubes with milk for a spin on an iced chai, or thaw in the fridge before using.
- Serving Size: 1 cup concentrate, no milk, made with 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- Calories: 84
- Sugar: 20g
- Sodium: 15mg
- Fat: 0mg
- Saturated Fat: 0mg
- Carbohydrates: 20g
- Fiber: 0mg
- Protein: 0mg
- Cholesterol: 0mg
Keywords: cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, latte, iced, hot,