How to Make Boba Tea (Bubble Tea) At Home

DIY Bubble Tea = your new best friend.
How to Make Boba Tea (Bubble Tea) At Home - Mosi Tea

Homemade boba tea probably sounds more like a pipedream than anything else. This go-to summertime drink is often considered a delicacy that you can only find at special bubble tea shops. But each time you treat yourself to a boba milk tea, you're dropping excess cash on a drink that could actually be made even better right from your own home. The trick to insanely delicious boba tea at home? Starting with high quality tea. In this blog, we'll share all the best tips and tricks to make bubble tea right from your own kitchen -- so you can save those dollars for a delicious pastry to go with.

 

 

Bubble Tea

What is Boba Tea?

For starters, if you aren't already familiar with this magical tea drink, it's time for an education. Bubble tea, also known as boba tea, tapioca milk tea, or boba milk tea, is a Taiwanese drink that originated in the 1980s. Since then, this milk tea delicacy has gained popularity across Asia and now, the world. A traditional boba tea is made with tapioca pearls, milk and tea, but there are now variations that include coconut jelly, grass jelly, mango, and popping boba. Some bubble teas also do not include milk.

 

 

Why You Should Make Bubble Tea At Home

While boba tea shops have been popping up at the rate of frozen yogurt joints in 2010, there are still many reasons to make your own bubble tea at home. Firstly, as we mentioned in the intro, you can save a ton of cash by making bubble tea at home. If you purchase your tapioca pearls in bulk and keep a ton of great tea on hand, you can have a boba tea at home for near 1/4 of the price of the local shop. Here are some other reasons to make bubble tea at home:

  • You can control the quality of the tea. While you are adding other ingredients to your boba tea, starting with a base of a really high quality tea will be an absolute game changer for the resulting bubble tea drink. Shops often use the cheapest tea they can find, which may lack in flavor and health benefits. If you start with a trusty brew, you'll end with a delicious tea.
  • You can control the sweetness. Store bought bubble tea may taste scrumptious -- but it's also absolutely packed with sugar. When you buy bubble tea at the store, many of the fruit flavors are not from actual fruit, but are from fruit syrups. Stores often also pack the drink with brown sugar syrup, which is much harder to measure than actual brown sugar or honey. Bubble tea can contain as much as 30-60g of sugar, and upwards of 500 calories.

 

 

What You Need to Make Bubble Tea At Home

  • Tapioca Pearls - you can find these online or at an Asian grocery store
  • Sweetener of choice - honey, stevia, monkfruit, brown sugar or brown sugar syrup can all be used to make a delicious bubble milk tea
  • Tea - for plain boba tea, we recommend using a basic black tea. Mosi's Morning Black Tea or Rose Black Tea are great, high quality options. You can also use jasmine tea for a unique floral flavor. To make your homemade bubble tea taste extra special, we recommend using loose leaf tea. Loose leaf tea makes for the most robustly-flavored tea.
  • Milk - bubble tea is usually made with dairy milk, but milk alternatives can be used.
  • Ice Cubes
  • Fresh Fruit - this is optional, but if you're making a fruit flavored bubble tea at home, fresh fruit can really add a lot to the experience.

 

 

Boba Tapioca Pearls

What Are Boba Tapioca Pearls?

We now know that the base of a DIY boba tea is tea, milk, sugar and tapioca pearls. You likely have three of those items on hand already -- but what the heck are tapioca pearls? Boba pearls, or tapioca pearls, are made from the starch of cassava root, which is known as tapioca starch. The resulting "pearls" are chewy, almost gelatin-like balls that add a really enjoyable texture to your tea. Plus, tapioca pearls are entirely gluten free, so even the gluten intolerant can enjoy this yummy, chewy treat.

To make bubble tea, you do need to cook your tapioca pearls ahead of time. Luckily, there are many quick-cooking tapioca pearls on the market, which keeps this recipe short and sweet.

 

How to Cook The Tapioca Pearls

To cook the tapioca pearls, all you need to do is boil them:

  1. Fill a large pot halfway with water and add a bit of liquid sweetener (stevia, honey, monkfruit) if desired.
  2. Once the water is boiling, add the uncooked tapioca pearls. Stir until they float, then cover and boil for three minutes. You should use about 1/3 cup of boba pearls for 2 servings of your homemade bubble tea recipe.
  3. After boiling, remove from heat and drain the pearls.
  4. Transfer to a bowl and cover with room temperature water until they cool. Coat in your liquid sweetener of choice.

 

 

Bubble Tea

How to Make Boba Tea At Home:

Basic Homemade Boba Tea Recipe

While your tapioca pearls are cooking, you can begin to prepare the other elements of your boba tea. Most importantly, of course, you have to brew your tea. While you can make a fruit bubble tea that does not include any actual tea, if you're looking for that traditional milk tea flavor, you should first brew a black or jasmine tea.

For the best bubble tea, you'll want to use a high quality tea base. We recommend brewing a loose leaf black tea to make bubble tea boba:

 

Directions

STEP 1: Fill the silicone sieve with Mosi Morning Black tea and secure it to the infuser lid.

STEP 2: Pour water (about 185 degrees which has small boiling bubbles) into your infuser through the spout.

STEP 3: Attach the lid, switch up the lock, and flip the infuser upside down for 2-4 minutes.⁠ Flip over and chill in refrigerator about 15 minutes.

STEP 4: Add your cooked tapioca pearls to a glass with lots of ice. Pour 1 cup of the cooled tea over the ice with 1 1/2 tablespoons of milk and 1 1/2 tablespoons of your sweetener of choice. Stir, taste, and adjust proportions as you wish.

STEP 5: Serve with a large boba tea straw!

 

 

Matcha Bubble Tea

Iced Vanilla Matcha Bubble Tea Recipe

If you're looking for a more unique bubble tea recipe, we highly recommend trying a matcha bubble tea. This is a simple recipe that combines everything you love about a matcha tea latte with your favorite bubble tea.

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon Mosi Vanilla Matcha powder
  • 2 Tablespoons hot water
  • 2 Tablespoons honey, or other sweetener, to taste
  • 1 cup (240 ml) milk of choice
  • ½ cup (120 g) ice cubes, plus more for serving
  • ¼ cup (50 g) cooked tapioca pearls

Directions

STEP 1: Add Mosi Vanilla Matcha powder to your infuser.

STEP 2: Pour water (about 185 degrees which has small boiling bubbles) into your infuser through the spout.

STEP 3: Attach the lid, switch up the lock, and flip the infuser upside down for 2-4 minutes.⁠ Flip over and let the tea sit for 15 minutes or until it is cooled off.

STEP 4: Add your cooked tapioca pearls to a glass with lots of ice. Pour 1 cup of the cooled tea over the ice with the milk and your sweetener of choice. Stir, taste, and adjust proportions as you wish.

STEP 5: Serve with a large boba tea straw!

 

 

Tips and Tricks for Homemade Bubble Tea

  • Cook your tapioca pearls shortly before you make it. Tapioca pearls can get mushy if you don't use them within a few hours of cooking. To avoid mushy tapioca pearls, ensure you're using them within 4 hours of cooking and do not over boil them.
  • If you make extra tapioca pearls, store them properly. To properly store your cooked tapioca pearls, keep them in an airtight container and cover them in the simple syrup or honey you used.

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