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Chai Tea With Toasted Spices

This take on Indian masala chai uses almond milk, but feel free to use any milk you'd like.
a glass mug of chai
  • Makes 2 servings
  • Prep Time 5 minutes
  • Cook Time 10 minutes (see detailed instructions)


  • 5 green cardamom pods, lightly cracked
  • 2-inch piece of cinnamon, broken
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 6 whole black peppercorns
  • 2 or 3 slices of fresh ginger, about 1 1/2 inches in length, skin removed
  • 16 oz. water
  • 3 1/2 tsp. Assam tea (options: Irish breakfast tea or another quality black-tea “breakfast blend”)
  • 2 tbs. agave nectar or preferred sweetener (optional)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk or milk of choice


Place the cardamom pods, cinna­mon, cloves, and peppercorns in a dry skillet over medium heat, and lightly toast until fragrant, about three minutes, stirring occasionally.
Place toasted spices, ginger, and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and then remove from heat. Cover and allow to rest for eight minutes.
Return to heat and bring just to a simmer, then remove from heat. Add tea, sweetener (if desired), and milk; stir once and allow to sit, uncovered, for three and a half minutes.
Stir once more and strain tea into mugs or small pitcher. Serve.

Photography by: Terry Brennan; Food Stylist: Betsy Nelson

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Robert Hanson

Robert Hanson is a food and travel writer based in Southern California.


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