June 29th, 2016
I remember the first time I had chai. It was at my hometown coffee shop and I was visiting my best friend who worked there. I had no interest in trying chai, I didn’t understand what it was and for some reason it weirded me out. At the time, I believe I thought it was some sort of combination of tea and coffee. Boy was I wrong.
Well, my friend decided I needed to try it and proceeded to make me one; presenting it to me in a huge coffee mug, with a fancy little design on top the way they do. I think that’s what got me.
Even with the pretty design, I was suspicious but gave it a try. I think that’s when I first fell in love. Since then, I’ve definitely had my fair share of chai tea. Especially now that I can see Starbucks from my front door [some days I’m not sure if that’s the best thing ever or the worst].
I miss my hometown coffee shops. But even more, I miss the $3.50 that seems to leave my wallet on these brisk mornings. So I decided I needed to make my own chai tea mix. Yes, I could just buy the Tazo Chai Tea Latte Concentrate that Starbucks uses and make it that way, but personally I usually don’t like the word “concentrate”; plus if I can make it from scratch, I know exactly what’s going in it and more importantly, what’s going in my body. Wouldn’t you agree?
To make this chai mix a bit healthier with far less chemicals, I found coconut milk powder to use in place of the typical powdered creamer [I found it at my local Asian market though it can also be found online!]. Though creamer is generally less calories then milk, looking at the “ingredients” list makes me cringe – sugar, hydrogenated soybean, corn syrup, artificial flavors, and a bunch of others I can’t pronounce, much less spell. Yuck.
That being said, you can also just increase the nonfat milk powder instead if you can’t find coconut milk powder. The coconut milk powder just helps give it that thick creamy consistency you’re used to ;)
1/2 c. organic nonfat dry milk
3/4 c. coconut milk powder
1 c. coconut sugar
3/4 c. unsweetened 100% tea mix
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
**I was able to find all of the spices at Whole Foods; though I had heard cardamom was an expensive spice, I had no trouble buying a small amount for minimal cost. Either way, it is fine to leave out as well but I found it definitely helped with the overall flavor!
Incorporate all ingredients in a large bowl. Measure out about a cup at a time and blend/grind into a fine powder if needed. Transfer into an airtight container.
To enjoy your chai, mix a heaping tbs. with about 8 oz. of hot water or almond milk.
For a quick gift idea, make a couple extra batches and package with a cute mug, a good read, and a couple cinnamon sticks!
Fun Fact: “Chai” means tea in Hindi, so saying chai tea is actually being redundant.
- ½ c. organic nonfat dry milk
- ¾ c. coconut milk powder
- 1 c. coconut sugar
- ¾ c. unsweetened 100% tea mix
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. ground ginger
- ½ tsp. allspice
- ½ tsp. ground cloves
- ½ tsp. nutmeg
- ½ tsp. cardamom
- Incorporate all ingredients well in a large mixing bowl.
- Measure out about one (1) cup at a time to blend/grind into a fine powder.
- Repeat with remaining mix.
- Transfer powder into an air tight container.
- Serve 8oz of hot water or almond milk with approximately 1-1/2 tbs. of mix.