Green tea is becoming more and more popular among health aficionados for its many health benefits and its soothing effects. In Asian cultures, green tea has a long and rich history. Despite its popularity, green tea isn’t necessarily known for its taste. In fact, many people find it hard to drink because of its bitter, unpleasant taste.
If you have been trying to get into the habit of drinking more green tea, but you’re struggling to enjoy its taste, we are here to help. Luckily, we know some great tips that will transform the bitter flavors. Try implementing these tips and become a pro at brewing a truly delicious cup of green tea.
Why Green Tea Is Worth Adding To Your Routine
Before we get into discussing our methods for improving the taste of green tea, let’s talk about why it’s such a healthy drink.
- Reduce Inflammation: Green tea contains polyphenols, which have been proven to reduce inflammation. This makes it a great beverage for tackling illness or inflammatory diseases.
- Improve Brain Function: Green tea also contains a somewhat controversial ingredient - caffeine. Unlike coffee, which contains excessive amounts of caffeine, the levels of caffeine found in green tea are well-balanced to improve brain function without causing those infamous caffeine jitters. The amount of caffeine in green tea can improve your mood, reaction time, and memory function.
- Increase Fat Burning: Green tea is also wonderful as a fat burning supplement. Studies have shown that this type of tea can boost your metabolic rate, making it a wonderful companion to a workout, especially if you are trying to lose weight.
- May Lower Risk of Cancer: The antioxidants in green tea are said to lower your risk of some types of cancer. Studies have shown that green tea’s antioxidants can lower the risk of cancers such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colorectal cancer.
- Good For Oral Health: Green tea contains catechins that have the ability to kill bacteria such as the bacteria that causes plaque buildup in the mouth. By inhibiting these bacteria, green tea can contribute to improved dental health.
How To Make Your Tea Tasty
So, it’s pretty clear that green tea is an important part of a healthy diet. Here are our tips on making green tea a little bit tastier and easier to drink.
The first step in making an enjoyable cup of green tea, is to learn how to brew the tea properly. Lots of people assume that throwing a tea bag in a mug of boiling water is all they need to do. However, over-brewed or under-brewed tea can result in an unpleasant taste. The temperature of the water can also make a big difference in the tea’s taste.
1. Use The Right Water Temperature
Start by perfecting your water temperature. Water that has reached boiling point is usually too hot for brewing green tea. When the water is boiling, the tea will taste bitter and astringent. However, if the water is too cold, you will not get much flavor from the tea leaves at all. We recommend aiming for water that is between 160 and 180 degrees. If you use a kettle, boil the water then let it cool for 3-4 minutes before brewing.
2. Time Your Brewing
Once you’ve combined the water with the leaves, you will need to brew the tea for a very specific amount of time. Green tea is very delicate and too long or too short a brew time will result in overly weak or strong flavors. 2-3 minutes of brewing is usually ideal. Try tasting the beverage after 2 minutes. If it tastes too weak, allow it to brew for another 30 seconds. Keep testing your tea and note the exact time when you enjoy the taste most.
3. Use High-Quality Leaves
We recommend using the best quality leaves you can find. Ideally, use loose tea leaves rather than tea bags. Loose tea leaves are able to breathe in the air and you will get a more authentic, rounded taste. Be sure to measure your loose tea leaves carefully. The best ratio tends to be 2 grams of leaves for every 6 ounces of water. The more leaves, the stronger the taste.
4. Try Cold Brewing
Cold brewing is a little known technique that will remove most of the bitterness from your tea. However, this method takes between 8 and 16 hours, so it requires some planning. Cold brewing is a wonderful way to make tasty iced tea. However, cold-brewed tea doesn’t have the same soothing properties that come from hot water.
5. Try Adding Ingredients For Flavor
If a carefully brewed cup of tea still tastes a bit funny, try experimenting with different add-ons. Here are a few of our favorites.
- Lemon or Lime Juice: Adding citrus flavors to green tea can counteract the bitterness of the beverage. Plus, it can actually make your brew even healthier. Adding lemon can help your body to absorb the catechins in the tea. Without lemon, less than 20% of catechins are absorbed - with lemon, 80% remain in the system.
- Honey: Honey is often added to various types of tea as a natural sweetener. Again, adding honey can boost the beneficial properties of green tea as well. Be sure to add honey to warm tea, rather than boiling hot tea. If honey boils in the tea, it will lose all of its benefits.
- Dried Fruit: Lots of people find that dried fruit can provide a subtle sweetness to green tea to help balance any bitterness. You may find pre-mixed loose tea leaves, or you can try adding dried fruit yourself. You can add just about any type of fruit, including apples, berries, and oranges.
- Flower Petals: You may think that adding flower petals is a little unusual, but many people find that petals can offset the bitter taste. Try rose petals for a classic option. Adding rose petals to your tea will help to boost the benefits of green tea. For instance, adding rose will double the tea’s anti-inflammatory properties.
- Ginger: this is one of those well-loved ingredients that seems to go with just about everything. Adding ginger to green tea will give the beverage a spicy, refreshing taste. Plus, you’ll get some additional detoxifying benefits from this amazing ingredient.
- Mint leaves: these are a great way to freshen up a cup of bitter green tea. Just a few leaves will transform the taste into something fun and festive. Plus, mint has several therapeutic qualities. Adding mint will help to treat nausea, diarrhea, indigestion, and stress.
We hope this guide to green tea has encouraged you to give it another try. Lots of people initially find the taste of green tea too strong or bitter. However, by perfecting your brewing technique and adding some carefully selected ingredients, you’ll soon find your cup of green tea has become one of your favorite beverages.