Homemade Chai Tea (Hot, Iced, and Concentrate)

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

As you are reading this post today, I am happy to be snuggled up with a warm blanket at a blogging retreat in Park City, Utah.  There is snow falling outside our door, good blogging friends are near, and I am happy to be nestling in for some much needed R&R.

I don’t know about you, but it seems like fall has gotten off to a busy start.  Busy, busy, busy.  Always a little more busy than I’d like.  Always trying to work on that.  I embarrassingly didn’t even realize that the leaves were changing in Kansas City until I saw it on Instagram!!

Still, the transition into fall is one of my absolute favorite times of the year, and I have been trying to take small moments during the day to pause and soak it up.  I’ve learned that one of the small habits that seems to always help with this is to cozy up with a warm drink first thing in the morning or at the end of the day.  There’s something about holding a steaming hot mug and then taking slow, thoughtful sips that is the essence of comfort and calm.

So today, I thought I would share with you a recipe for one of my favorite comfort drinks — homemade chai tea.

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

I first learned to love chai back in the day at — you guessed it — Starbucks.  I instantly got hooked on the drink and all of those delicious spices, and began stopping by to order an iced chai almost every day for work.  Then the $4 daily expense got a little ridiculous.  So I learned to buy Tazo chai concentrate at the grocery store.  Then (bonus!) I learned that it was sold even cheaper at Costco!

But after years of buying those mega 3-packs of concentrate, I began to get tired of the uber-sweetness of that brand of chai.  I loved the spices, but the sugar was too much.  So I finally learned how to make homemade chai.

And friends — it is so easy!!!

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

My version is all based around making a chai concentrate so that you can refrigerate it and keep it around for multiple batches.  All you need are a handful of spices and seasonings and about 20 minutes, and then you’ll have plenty of concentrate ready to make as much hot chai or iced chai as you’d like.

But the best part is that you can totally tweak the recipe according to your taste.  If you really love the sweetness of the chai you get at Starbucks, by all means, add in more sugar and/or honey.  If you like yours really peppery, add in more peppercorns.  If you like yours really strong or really weak, that’s the joy of concentrate — you can control exactly how much flavor you get.  Bottom line, everyone has their own preferences with chai, so with a homemade recipe you can make it your own!

With the holidays coming up, I’ll also add in that this is a perfect comfort food gift to jar up and give to your chai-loving friends.

Hope you enjoy!

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

Homemade Chai Tea Concentrate

Make homemade chai tea with this delicious and simple chai tea concentrate recipe.


  • 12 cardamom pods, gently crushed
  • 8 whole black peppercorns
  • 8 whole cloves
  • 4-inch piece of fresh ginger, sliced
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 whole allspice (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar (more or less to taste)
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 vanilla bean, sliced down the middle
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • 4 black tea bags


Bring all ingredients except tea bags together to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Add tea bags and let steep for 5 minutes. Pour mixture through a strainer and reserve the liquid for concentrate, and let cool to room temperature.

Mix equal parts concentrate with water or milk to make chai tea. Or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to one week.

If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #gimmesomeoven. I'd love to see what you cook!

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

To Make Hot Chai Tea:

Combine 1 part chai tea concentrate with 1 part water or milk (cow’s milk, almond milk, soy milk, etc.), and stir to combine.  Heat in a saucepan over medium heat until simmering, stirring occasionally.  Or heat in the microwave until simmering.

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

To Make Iced Chai Tea:

1 part water or milk (cow’s milk, almond milk, soy milk, etc.), and stir to combine.  Serve over ice.

How To Make Homemade Chai Tea | gimmesomeoven.com

Leave a Comment:


  1. Kimberly Mitchell — July 28, 2014 @ 11:21 am (#)


    Thanks for the recipe. Now I can make it anytime and not have the preservatives from my favorite concentrate. I’m working on being healthier and cutting out overprocessed items from my daily food intake. This will help me let go of one of my last hold outs.


  2. Teresa — October 25, 2014 @ 4:17 pm (#)

    Wow. I read this recipe this morning and went straight to my local spice market. 

    This is fantastic!! I forgot fresh ginger, so I used a ton of ground ginger. It definitely lacked the gingery bite, so I’ll be sure to use fresh next time. 

    Also, I prefer a stronger  chai, so I used less milk. Perfection!!

    Thank you for this recipe. It will get heavy use this winter. 

  3. D — October 30, 2014 @ 7:10 pm (#)

    oh my goodness!!! i made this exactly as described, except had to substitute whole anise seeds as i could not find star anise, and used ground allspice as i couldn’t find whole. then strained it all. TO DIE FOR!

  4. Carly — January 2, 2015 @ 7:34 pm (#)

    My husband’s back story with Starbucks and then Tazo concentrate for Chai Tea mirrors your story. . . .so funny how worlds apart yet the same! We live in Wyoming and love this receipe, as getting to the store or starbucks is a two hour drive. Thank you!

  5. Fernando — May 15, 2015 @ 2:48 am (#)

    OMG! This recipe is awesome, so tasty and spice! I’m glad that I found it because I’m gonna use it for the rest of my life! Thanks a lot!

    • Ali — May 15th, 2015 @ 7:51 am

      Thanks Fernando! : D

  6. Starbucks Ground Coffee in Chicago — June 5, 2015 @ 9:29 am (#)

    I want that chai tea. I want it in my mouth. 

  7. Rhonda Welsh — August 27, 2015 @ 12:17 pm (#)

    Sounds yummy! I have green cardoman pods, would they work? Thanks

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — August 27th, 2015 @ 12:34 pm

      Rhonda, we think those should work fine – we hope you enjoy! :)

  8. Maria — September 1, 2015 @ 11:26 am (#)

    Thank you for posting this!!! This is the closest recipe to Starbucks chai I have found! Delicious!! I doubled the peppercorns only because I love that spicy zing but the recipe is delicious as is. The family loved it. 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 2nd, 2015 @ 11:16 am

      You’re welcome Maria, we’re glad you and your family enjoyed it! :)

  9. Kelly Berthiaume — September 11, 2015 @ 7:36 pm (#)

    I want to make this recipe, like yesterday. I have all the spices, however, not in their whole forms. The cardamom, the cloves, the cinnamon, all of it is ground. Except the vanilla bean which I do have whole. Oh and the peppercorns. So can I do this recipe with the ground spices? If so, could you please help me out with the quantities? Thank you in advance. :)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 15th, 2015 @ 11:40 am

      Hey Kelly! Unfortunately we’re pretty sure this recipe won’t work unless you use whole spices.

  10. Shauna — September 12, 2015 @ 8:48 pm (#)

    I have made this twice in 2 weeks (&I double it cuz I’m a tea junkie). I’m obsessed,  it’s sooo good and so easy and customizable.  LOVE LOVE LOVE, thank you for this recipe.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 15th, 2015 @ 11:24 am

      That’s awesome Shauna, thanks for sharing — we’re so happy you love it! :)

  11. Amanda R. — September 21, 2015 @ 11:25 am (#)

    Love this recipe! Thanks so much for sharing.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — September 23rd, 2015 @ 9:35 am

      Thanks Amanda, we’re happy you like it!

  12. Jessicah — October 22, 2015 @ 1:37 am (#)


    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — October 22nd, 2015 @ 12:24 pm

      Jessicah, you’re so sweet, we’re thrilled that you love this! :D

  13. SUZAN — November 6, 2015 @ 11:11 am (#)

    I love Chai Tea. Bless you for sharing this awesome recipe. I’ve drank it everyday since I discovered your
    recipe about 2 weeks ago. I make it and as soon as it’s gone I make more. The cold weather is here and
    the snow is on its way and your Chai Tea will be comforting over the long winter and then enjoyed cold
    in the summer. It’s so nice to enjoy something knowing it isn’t filled with chemicals or preserveatives.
    Thank you so much.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 6th, 2015 @ 1:22 pm

      Awww thanks Suzan, that’s so sweet, and we’re so glad to hear you like this! And we agree, it’s so comforting to enjoy a hot mug of chai tea when it’s cold and snowy outside! :)

  14. Tameka Abrams — November 11, 2015 @ 4:05 pm (#)

    I love Tazo Chai Teas! I also got to try it free from Smiley360 as a mission!

  15. Lily — November 28, 2015 @ 2:12 pm (#)

    Can the concentrate be frozen to last longer? I love the way it tastes, and id rather make a ton at once rather than a triple batch each week.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — November 29th, 2015 @ 10:20 am

      We haven’t tried freezing it Lily, but we think that should work fine! :)

  16. Gail — December 20, 2015 @ 4:35 pm (#)

    I LOVE Chai tea. Found your recipe while looking for mulled wine ingredients,and I can’t wait to get the ingredients and try it. It sounds delicious. Where can I find a similar glass container for storage? It is an amazing gift for friends too! Thank you so much for sharing. 

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — December 20th, 2015 @ 10:41 pm

      Thanks Gail, we hope you and your friends enjoy this! We used a weck jar. You can find them here:

  17. Steve — December 23, 2015 @ 11:32 pm (#)

    Chai … the name and brew are Indian and all my life I have been a great experimenter with Chai (which means tea). 
    In India on train journeys, at each little station there are men walking up and down the train with a kettle and cups (used to be earthenware! years ago… plastic trash now) calling “Chai! Chai! Chai Garam!” (Garam=Hot, both As pronounced like the U in run or rum).
    I always say Chai has four important ingredients.
    The water … very important. Some water makes better tea than other water.
    The leaves .. so many different sorts and flavours, try what you like. If you like strong flavours and “Wake Up now!” Chai then go for Assam or Ceylon otherwise Darjeeling for lighter subtler.
    Time … Makes all the difference. The best leaves can be ruined and mediocre leaves made to taste heavenly depending on how quickly or belatedly you strain the eta or remove the tea bags. 
    Mindfulness … I believe I make my best tea when I am There (Zen There, fully Present).
    The recipe you have is what we would call Masala (Spice) tea… there are many variations. 
    Tea leaves are always better than bags… (Leaves swell and need space to release their flavour. Also tea bag fabric is treated in some way ….)
    Simple great recipe for a cold winter day ..
    Take water in a pan .. crush a quarter inch piece of fresh root ginger and a peppercorn and chuck them in.
    Boil up the water… turn down heat and add tea leaves (one teaspoon for an 8 oz mug say)
    Turn off the flame and cover the pan. Leave it to brew for 4-5 mins while you pour a little room temp milk into the bottom of your mug (hot milk gives its smell and flavour to the Chai…which i don’t like)
    Strain the brewed chai into the mug into the milk. Add sugar to taste and enjoy !
    Traditionally in India we boil up the milk, leaves, sugar and spice all together and boil it for a minute or so before straining it piping hot into cups. 
    Enjoy your ‘Chai Garam’!

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — December 26th, 2015 @ 8:50 pm

      Thanks so much for sharing this with us Steve! :)

  18. Robin — March 3, 2016 @ 5:32 pm (#)

    I love the idea of a concentrate.  Looking now for a combination of spices that floors the flavor

  19. Robin — March 12, 2016 @ 10:33 am (#)

    It is the 4th time i am making this concentrate.  It lasts about 3 days as i drink it all the time.  I am still tweeking it to get the best  flavor for my taste, to give  the flavor a FLOOR, so to speak.  Not sure how to do that yet beyond consulting with my nephew who reputedly makes the best chai ever and has been to india several times.  I am feeling competetive to surpass his recipe even though i havent had the pleasure of tasting his concoction yet.  This drink is a real winner.
    .  I stopped drinking coffee for about a week as it was simply a morning habit with no real pleasure, maybe my palette was tired of the same flavor day after day?  Then had a mug at Petes hotdogs in Newburgh, ny, which was one of the best ever.
    I am interested in discovering personal taste in general, self expression, that stuff.   So,the connection is that the coffee tasted much better after abstinence.  the chai always tasted good however.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — March 12th, 2016 @ 4:27 pm

      We’re happy you enjoy this Robin! :)

  20. Karen — April 30, 2016 @ 1:45 pm (#)

    Can you convert this recipe to use ground spices as I that is what I have.

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — May 1st, 2016 @ 11:53 am

      Hi Karen! Unfortunately this recipe is really designed for whole herbs. We hope you can give this a try sometime!

  21. Emily H — July 26, 2016 @ 7:33 am (#)

    I found this recipe yesterday and went straight to my local grocery store’s bulk spices. I made this last night and added a little ice and equal part milk this morning. It’s not quite as spicy as I’d like but it has a beautiful flavor. I will be using this as a base and tweak it to my taste. Thank you SO much for sharing, I did a little bit of searching for the right recipe. I think this is it! :)

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — July 26th, 2016 @ 9:39 am

      Thanks for sharing Emily, and for giving this a try! We’re glad you enjoyed it — definitely feel free to tweak the spices as you like. :)

  22. Maria — October 9, 2016 @ 11:56 pm (#)

    Thank you for sharing this! I, like you, fell in love with the chai latte at Starbucks, started buying the concentrates, became overwhelmed by the sugar content, and am interested in a big batch of brew I can use morning after morning! And here I stumble upon your recipe!!! Where do you get your spices?

    • Ali — October 12th, 2016 @ 4:21 pm

      Awesome, hope you enjoy it! I buy mostly McCormick spices, or pick them up at my neighborhood farmers’ market. :)

  23. Becky — October 14, 2016 @ 6:32 pm (#)

    Is there a substitute for the whole vanilla bean?    Is there a way to use vanilla extract in a pinch?

    • Hayley @ Gimme Some Oven — October 16th, 2016 @ 11:11 am

      Hi Becky! We haven’t tried this with vanilla extract instead, but we think that should be okay. We’d suggest 2 tsp of vanilla. We hope you enjoy!


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