Masala Chai Tea

Tony Bowles

Masala chai is a popular drink in the Indian subcontinent, where it originated during the Mughal Empire, and is very popular in other South Asian countries. It is made by brewing tea leaves.

This popular tea can be made with green leaves instead of black leaves. The spices are the same but the ingredients are different. For example, ginger is replaced with lemon grass and cardamom with aniseed. The spices are usually powdered or ground before they are added to the tea.

masala chai tea

The masala chai was created by Indian tea vendors to please their customers. They would boil milk with various spices to make a drink that would be spicier than regular chai but not as spicy as coffee. Today, masala chai has been adopted by people all over the world who are looking for an alternative to coffee or tea with milk.

The word "masala" is derived from the Sanskrit word “masal” which means a mix of spices in Hindi and Urdu languages. The word "chai" means tea in Hindi language. Some other names for masala chai include: masala tea (Indian English), spiced tea (British English).

Masala chai was popularized by the British Raj as the drink of choice for their colonial officers working in India. This drink was brought to England in the 1800s by those officers who had grown accustomed to drinking it in India.


Masala chai tea has many health benefits. It contains antioxidants that help reduce inflammation and protect against cardiovascular disease. It also contains caffeine and theanine which are both stimulants that can improve cognitive abilities like memory and attention span.


There are many variations on the basic recipe, but some common ones are cardamom, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, peppermint leaves, star aniseed and black peppercorns. milk, water. Heated cream can be used and sugar or honey for sweetness and sometimes fruit.

The Spices


Cardamon is a popular Indian spice that is used in masala chai tea, and it has a sweet, peppery taste. It’s not just for adding to tea, Cardamom is well-known for it's distinctive flavour and aroma which is used in many different types of Indian cuisine! Cardamom also has some medicinal benefits, it can help to ease indigestion and aid in digestion.

Cardamom is primarily grown in India, Sri Lanka, and Guatemala. The plant grows to about 3 feet tall with oval leaves that are either green or deep purple on the underside. The plant produces small white flowers that grow in clusters at the end of branches. Cardamom has been around for centuries with mentions as far back as ancient Rome where it was known as “the queen of spices”.


Ginger is used in masala chai because it has a warming effect on the body. It has also been used for medicinal purposes since ancient times. It has been used to treat nausea and vomiting, as well as motion sickness. Ginger is a plant that grows in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean.


Cloves are the dried flower buds of a tree from the Myrtaceae family. They are often used as a spice in cooking and have many health benefits.
Cloves have been used for centuries to treat a variety of ailments. Cloves can help with toothaches, relieve pain, and reduce inflammation. It is also said that clove oil can be used as an alternative to chemical-based insect repellent.


Cinnamon is a spice that has been used for thousands of years. It has a sweet and spicy taste that is often used in recipes to add flavour. Cinnamon has many health benefits, including reducing inflammation, helping with digestion, boosting immunity and regulating blood sugar levels.

Star Aniseed

Star aniseed is a spice that is widely used in Indian cuisine. It has a strong, sweet and liquorice-like flavour and is believed to have many health benefits. It can be used as an antispasmodic, as well as to treat coughs and colds. Furthermore, it also has some anti-inflammatory properties and can help with digestion of food.

Black Peppercorns

Black peppercorns are the unripe berries of the black pepper plant. They have a distinctive taste and smell. The berries are picked before they ripen and then dried to form peppercorns. Black peppercorns can also be found in Asian cuisine, as well as in Indian, Middle Eastern, and African dishes.


Lemongrass is a herb that is grown in tropical and subtropical climates and has has been used in Southeast Asia for centuries. It has a very strong aroma and flavour and can be used to add flavour to food. It is used in many cuisines, especially Thai and Vietnamese dishes.

Lemongrass is also used as a herbal remedy. the oil from its leaves are used in aromatherapy. Lemongrass oil can be extracted from the plant's leaves by distillation or expression. The essential oils of lemongrass are composed of citral, geraniol, citronellal, nerol, linalool and limonene.

You could have fun making your own masala chai. Why not experiment using green and black tea leaves and using varying ingredients, until you find your perfect warming tea!