How to Make Tea Taste Good:
Tips, Tricks, and More
People all over the world drink tea daily, making it easy to forget that it can be an acquired taste.
After all, on its own, tea can taste a little bitter. And, when you venture towards varieties like green tea, it isn’t uncommon to encounter a grassy or vegetal flavor.
The silver lining is that you don’t have to stay away from tea if you have had an unpleasant taste test. There are many different ways that you can learn how to make tea taste good.
And, luckily for you, you can unlock all the secrets right here!
How to Make Tea Taste Better – Starting with the Right Base
Many people imagine that it is additions to the tea that help it to taste better. However, it is more important that you first select the right kind of tea.
After all, if you select a poor quality tea or a type of tea that doesn’t taste good to you, the additions won’t help.
Thus, here are some tips on selecting the right foundation for your cup of tea.
Best Tasting Tea Leaves
More often than not, you will discover that loose tea leaves are far superior when it comes to true teas.
For one thing, a loose leaf tea is often of higher quality, while the tea leaves in tea bags consist of dust or fannings.
Typically, loose tea leaves are long, uncut, and not confined by the material.
As such, these leaves can absorb the water during steeping, uncurl, and unleash their taste. This results in a more complex cup of tea.
Of course, brand matters quite a bit when it comes to loose tea leaves. Thus, you should stick with varieties that have a reputation for higher or purer quality leaves.
Best Tasting Tea Bags
If you prefer using tea bags, you don’t have to resign yourself to drinking bad tea.
Instead, focus on brands that carefully select the tea leaves that go into their bags. Furthermore, look for those that are longer as well.
It is also a good idea to make the switch to large, pyramid-shaped teabags as these provide a lot more room for the tea leaves to unfurl in hot water.
If you still can’t appreciate the fundamental taste of tea, your next option is to consider flavored tea. Black and green teas are most commonly flavored.
They may be flavored with flowers, spices, fruits, and other flavorings.
There are several different types of flavored tea but these have their ups and downs too.
If you want a drink that is both healthy as well as delicious, these are the types you should select:
Best Types of Tea Flavors
- Tea with Inclusions: here, the tea leaves also include dried herbs, spices, or fruit. These work to flavor the tea and also to add a more pleasing visual effect.
- Extracts: teas that have been flavored with extracts, have the essential oils of fruits or flowers added to the leaves. This makes for a more authentic – and healthy – taste.
- Nature-Identical Flavors: here, the flavoring agents are structurally similar to the real ones, but are whipped up by a chemist. The advantage of this option is the taste and a significantly lower price tag.
If you find that true teas aren't your thing, herbal teas could be an excellent option.
These teas can be composed of leaves, stems, petals, and roots from a wide variety of plants. As such, you can select a flavor that is more palatable to you.
As an added bonus, herbal teas don’t contain any caffeine either.
Best Herbal Tea Flavors
As you can imagine, the best herbal tea flavor is rather subjective. However, if you are looking for a starting point, these are the top ones to try:
What to Add to Tea
If you do like the taste of tea and simply feel that it needs to be enhanced or diluted a bit, here are some ingredients you can add to your brew:
Citrus fruits are known for their refreshing tang and lemons are no exception. This is a fruit that balances that fine line between sweet and tart.
As such, this is exactly what you should be adding to your tea when you squeeze some lemon into it.
It works wonders as a pick-me-up in the morning.
If you like a sweetened cup of tea, then you may want to consider adding honey rather than sugar to your cup.
Although sugar adds sweetness to your tea, honey goes one step further. It has a more complex flavor that can alter the entire taste of the tea.
If you want to sweeten green tea, then only use honey.
The Right Kind of Milk
If you would like a creamier or richer cup of tea, then milk is the way to go. However, there are some rules that you need to follow when adding milk to your tea.
You should only be adding milk to bold, black teas and gunpowder green tea. The other kinds of true teas such as oolong, white, and pu’erh don’t work well with milk.
Now, black tea is a rather versatile beverage. As such, you can add dairy and non-dairy milk to it.
Green tea is another story. In this instance, you should only use non-dairy milk as the proteins in cow’s milk can inhibit some of the health benefits of the tea.
Cinnamon is an interesting addition to your tea. It is both sweet as well as spicy, making for a cozy drink that is perfect for cold months.
With this drink, it is best to opt for whole cinnamon sticks. Simply drop these into your cup and wait a few minutes.
For a stronger cinnamon flavor, leave the stick in the cup while you drink it.
Mint is another ingredient that helps the tea taste more refreshing. It is especially tasty when added to green tea.
Simply add the mint leaves to your cup before adding the tea leaves and the water. Once the tea has reached the desired strength, strain the leaves out.
Mint is great with some honey and a twist of lime as well.
What better way to liven the taste of your tea than to include fruit juice to it? This way, you will be adding in sweetness and flavor all at once.
There are a few ways you can do this.
Your first option is to take fresh fruit and to slightly mash it up before pouring your tea in.
If this is too much of a bother, add a couple of splashes of fruit juice until you are satisfied with the flavor.
If you are having an iced tea drink, freeze the fruit juice and add it in as ice cubes!
Sorbet or Ice Cream
Can’t wait for the time it takes to make iced tea? Then, you may want to add some sorbet into the mix.
You will end up with a drink that is fruity, delicious, and instantly cold.
In case you prefer a milkier version, go ahead and add some ice cream. While vanilla will certainly be a winner, don’t be afraid to experiment with fruit-flavored ice creams either!
There are many different ways to make tea taste good. Thus, if you thought tea wasn’t the right beverage for you, think again!
With a little experimenting, you can figure out how to make your ideal cup of tea.
Dr. Dheena Sadik
Consultant Nutritionist and Dietician
Dr. Dheena Sadik is a consultant Nutritionist and Dietician. She has over a decade of experience in the health and fitness industry. However, her love for tea began long before she understood the health benefits of tea. Growing up in Sri Lanka, Dheena had the privilege of being surrounded by the world-famous Ceylon tea. This is what got her started on her exploration of the various types of tea. She has now extensively tasted and examined teas from all over the world.