This 5-Minute Iced Rooibos Latte is caffeine-free, easy to make with your preferred kind of milk, and so refreshing and tasty.
Meet…my latest obsession this spring.
This Iced Rooibos Latte. ♡
Actually, it seems I’m not alone in this latte love. Starbucks just released a new line of tea lattes on their European spring menu, and their new rooibos lattes seem to be the hit of Barcelona right now. And with good reason. Its warm, earthy, smoky, sweet flavors mixed into a refreshing chilled latte make for the perfect drink for spring. And, by contrast to most chai lattes, rooibos is herbal, which makes it naturally caffeine free. Which works out well for this body of mine that recently decided to call it quits on caffeine post-12pm. (Bah, adulthood.)
That said, as much as I love paying for good coffee at my favorite cafés, I’ve always struggled to justify paying $5 for tea drinks when they’re so easy (and so inexpensive!) to make at home. So when the iced rooibos latte crazy hit Europe this spring, I was the first to hit up our neighborhood market to bring home a fresh box of rooibos and brew up a quick latte for myself. And now, weeks later, I’m still hopelessly, happily hooked on this one.
Wanna have a tea date?
What Is Rooibos Tea?
Alright, first off, let’s talk about rooibos tea. (Hehe, feel free to practice your Spanish on my box above. ?) If you happen to be new to this tea, here are a few important things to know:
It’s pronounced “roy-bus”. I still remember the first time I ordered it at a coffee shop years ago and asked for “roo-ee-bose” tea, and the barista kindly smiled and very kindly corrected me. ;)
It’s also known as “red tea”…but it’s not technically made from black or green tea. Similar to other herbal teas, rooibos is actually an herbal plant used to make teas. It comes from the red rooibos bush, grown in South Africa. And since it’s herbal…
It’s naturally caffeine-free. Big win in my book.
It tastes…all the things, depending on who you ask. I find it earthy, smoky, and slightly sweet. Often it’s combined with other flavors in tea bags, such as vanilla, berries, or cocoa.
It’s said to be all kinds of healthy. It’s rich in iron, calcium, potassium, zinc, magnesium, and all sorts of other antioxidants. And people claim that it helps with everything from headaches to insomnia, asthma, eczema, allergies, and more. Google it to learn more.
I became a big fan of rooibos tea about a decade ago when I was transitioning into caffeine-free drinks in the later half of my day, and was looking for something with a bit more complex flavor than the usual herbal teas. (Here’s lookin’ at you, chamomile and mint.) And it’s still one of my faves today. I prefer mine with a hint of vanilla mixed in, which I find really compliments the rooibos flavors well. So speaking of…let’s talk about how to make this latte!
Rooibos Tea Latte Ingredients:
I keep mine pretty simple! You’ll need:
Rooibos Tea:Nowadays, rooibos tea is available at most grocery and specialty stores. But if you’d like to order online, here is my favorite brand of organic rooibos tea bags, or you can order loose-leaf.
Milk: Your choice on what kind! I prefer almond or oat milk, but up to you.
Vanilla Extract: Just a little splash.
Honey: Or your preferred kind of sweetener. I don’t usually like sweetener in my tea, but enjoy just a touch in this latte.
Bring some water to a simmer. (I pop mine in the microwave in a mason jar because it’s speediest. But feel free to use the stovetop instead.)
Steep two tea bags for about 2 minutes. You want the tea to be nice and strong (which is no prob, since it’s caffeine free!), so I recommend at least two tea bags.
Stir in a splash of vanilla extract and honey. Both are technically optional, but I recommend them. Stir until the honey is dissolved.
Add ice, then milk. In order to prevent any kind of milk from curdling or separating, I add the ice in first and give it a quick stir. Then add in the milk (any kind will do, I generally use almond), and give it a good stir. Or if you’re using a mason jar, pop the lid on and give it a good shake. Add extra ice if needed.
Have not tried these before. But will now. Thanks for your crash course on Rooibos, and for your recipe. I especially like your sharing how to pronounce it. Decades ago when Pilates was new, I signed up to take classes at our local YMCA. And I pronounced it pea-lots. lol Glad you and Barclay are enjoying Barcelona.
This sounds awesome. I love rooibos tea. I’ll have to give the latte version a try! ?
Now I know the secret to the perfect Rooibos tea!!it was the vanilla extract! :) Thanks for bringing it over!
Tea is great
Yum! I just got some rooibos tea for my birthday so I’ll have to try making this!
Hi I am from South Africa,
And only drink RooiBos (Red Bush) tea, I prefer it black with a hint of honey. Red Cuppacino’s are also very popular here but a little too milky for my taste.
This looks delicious.
Hi! I wonder… I *do* need some caffeine in the morning and this sounds like a fun drink to try. Can I try it with an Earl grey or Red Rose black tea?
Sure thing! Enjoy! :)
noon is my caffeine cutoff time too! Nice to have this as an alternative to some of my other “go to” drinks, I don’t like to drink even caffeine fee colas or other, so thank you for this!
YUM! What a perfect and refreshing drink! I will definitely be drinking this all summer!!
Love rooibos tea. One reason is that it tastes more like real tea than anything else. I like the Good Hope Vanilla from Republic of Tea, and also their Organic Green Rooibos. Definitely need to try this.
Made it this morning! Delicious! I used vanilla almond milk and a bit of honey. Had a hard time paying $6 for the NUMI tea bags, but in the grand scheme of things, I will get at least 6 lattes from it, so well worth it. :-)
Thanks so much for posting this. I have made it every day since getting my tea bags!
Hi Ali, I am from UK. And I never tasted rooibos! I really loved your recipe! It is looking so delicious! I would love to try it. Pinning! Thanks for sharing!
Yum! I made the recipe just like you said, with reconstituted dairy milk and 2 tablespoons of honey which I was worried would be too sweet, but I didn’t know, and it’s fabulous!
It’s 4 PM and I’m out of chai mix and I have two boxes of red rooibos – thank you for telling me how it’s pronounced – to go through, so I was thrilled to come upon your recipe when I looked for “red rooibos ice tea recipe.“
Going to try this with my live today
I love that I found this recipe. I usually just drink water all the time, with an occasional cup of hot cocoa. But I happen to have a good supply of Good Hope Vanilla Rooibos tea, so this would be a great way to use it. This tea has been my go to brew for years because I can’t do caffeine at all. I may just make some this afternoon…