As promised, the recipe I use for DIY chai concentrate. This is an amalgam of recipes found in various places on the internet, plus things I had in my kitchen and minus ingredients I don’t go for (fake sugar, anyone?). The result has no calories and no dairy (or dairy substitutes) and can be mixed up with a number of different bases. Notably, as lattes.


4 cups water

10 whole cloves
12 whole cardamom pods, crushed slightly to expose seeds
12 whole black peppercorns
2 cinnamon sticks
1 star anise (optional)
1-1.5 inches fresh ginger, thinly sliced

6 tsp black tea, or 8 tea bags

  1. Bring water to a boil. Add spices, simmer covered 15 minutes.
  1. Add tea bags or tea (in strainer), let sit 5 minutes.
  1. Remove tea and star anise. Let sit 30-120 minutes.
  1. Strain (or pick spices off the top) and pour into a jar. The straight concentrate looks like rich apple cider and packs quite a punch. It will keep in the fridge for at least a month.


Chai latte
1/3 c chai concentrate
1 c milk

Heat milk and concentrate in saucepan over medium heat, swirling pot occcasionally, until thick steam rises from the top. Pour into cup from about 8 inches up to create foam.

Coconut chai latte
I hear it’s also very tasty with coconut milk. Haven’t tried it yet, though. For a less rich beverage, try one part each coconut milk, water and concentrate.

Chai soda
Add dash of concentrate to club soda or ginger ale.