Loose Leaf Tea: The Better Way to Brew
Few things are better on a cold winter night (or morning, or afternoon) than a piping hot cup of tea. Something about the whole ritual of boiling water, steeping the tea, getting that first glorious whiff, and then slowly sipping seems to warm both body and soul. While it's easy to grab a tea bag out of a box, loose leaf teas have become increasingly popular, and with good reason. In this post, we'll discuss the benefits of losing the bag, and how to prepare the perfect cup!
Benefits of Loose Leaf Tea
There are a number of benefits to choosing loose leaf tea vs. the bagged variety. One of the biggest is that the quality of the tea is generally higher. Most tea bags are filled with tea dust and fanning, which are tiny pieces left over from the production of higher-quality loose teas. As such, when you buy bagged teas, you are literally getting the leftover/less desirable parts. Loose tea also tends to be fresher, as keeping the dried leaves whole allows more of the essential oils to remain intact. This also means loose teas tend to retain more vitamins and minerals than tea bags. There are even more tangible reasons to use loose leaf tea, but one of our favorites is that it just makes the whole ritual feel so much fancier!
How to Brew Loose Leaf Tea
Okay, so we've convinced you to ditch the tea bags, but won't that make brewing tea more difficult? The short answer is no. The process of brewing loose leaf tea is almost the same as using a tea bag. The biggest difference is that you will need an additional piece of equipment called an infuser. These come in a few different shapes and sizes. Perhaps the most common is the tea ball. This is a round mesh ball connected to a chain, which essentially acts as a tea bag for your loose tea. There are also a variety of teapots and mugs that have built-in infuser baskets, making things even easier.
As you get further into your tea journey, you may want to adjust things such as the amount of tea used, the temperature of your water, and steeping time. However, these basic suggestions should be a great starting point for just about any type of tea:
How to Brew Loose Leaf Tea
- Tea infuser
- Pot or Kettle (to heat water)
- Mug or Pot (for drinking or serving)
- Set water to boil.
- Measure out your tea leaves -- a good starting point is 1 teaspoon of tea per 6 oz cup of water.
- Add the tea to your infuser. Place infuser basket or tea ball in the pot or mug you wish to steep the tea in.
- Once the water is boiling (or at your desired temperature), pour it over the infuser in your mug or pot.
- Set a timer so you don't over-steep. It can vary based on the type of tea and your personal preferences, but 3-4 minutes should work well for most varieties.
- Once time is up, remove the infuser and serve the tea promptly.
Types of Tea
Here at Spice Jungle, we offer a wide selection of loose teas, across several different categories. Click one below to learn more about our offerings and try them yourself!
Rich, bold, and caffeinated, these teas are great when you need a little pick-me-up.
Mellow, grassy, and loaded with antioxidants and other health benefits.
Made from young tea buds, white tea tends to be delicate, floral, and fruity
Chai is made by blending black tea with a variety of spices, for a uniquely delicious Indian beverage.
Light, earthy, with a subtle sweetness, rooibos tea originated in South Africa and is said to have a host of health benefits.
Technically tisanes, these blends of herbs, flowers, and spices are the perfect way to unwind at the end of the day.