This article will talk about the famous chai tea latte, it's health benefits and how to make an iced chai tea latte Starbucks recipe at a fraction of the cost!
The Starbucks iced chai tea latte has emerged as one of the coffeehouse’s most popular drinks. Undoubtedly the beverage’s popularity skyrocketed when the Kardashians and Oprah Winfrey all declared the refreshing beverage as their favorite.
It quickly became a trendy ‘must-have’ with spinoffs such as “Oprah's Cinnamon Chai Tea Latte”.
Social media quickly started buzzing about Starbucks’ iced chai tea with people around the world posting photos of their chai lattes. Bolstered by a bevy of influencer approvals, the refreshing beverage has become a hip drink to order at the popular coffee shop throughout the Western world.
A refreshing iced chai latte is nothing new. The drink’s history goes back hundreds of years in India where it is the favored drink of the working class who believe it offers a multitude of health benefits.
So grab yourself a warm or iced chai latte and let's dive in deeper.
One of the most appealing things about an iced chai tea latte is its spicy aroma. Most chai connoisseurs can immediately recognize the smell of masala chai.
The black tea is brewed with milk and various spices like ginger juice, fennel, black pepper, star anise, or cloves. Starbucks uses its own unique chai tea latte recipe that is also rich in spices.
You can order one of Starbucks' amazing chai tea lattes or you can make your own using a store-bought concentrate. The iced chai tea latte taste is rich in warming spices.
In the early 1990s, Starbucks added the Iced Chai Tea Latte to their menu and by 1994 it had become one of their biggest sellers.
If you are wondering what all the hype is about surrounding Starbucks’ iced chai tea latte then let's look at the ingredients.
Starbucks mixes a concentrate of masala chai dried tea leaves with spices such as clove and cinnamon. The concentrate is not made with water and is stronger than packed chai concentrates.
According to Starbucks' official website, the chai tea latte contains a combination of black tea, cardamom, ginger, cinnamon, star anise, cloves, black pepper, and natural flavors.
The barista will add water to dilute the chai concentrate. They then add milk and ice. That's it!
The beverage is a combination of sweet and spicy flavors that tantalize the tongue. It appears as a deliciously cold tan-colored beverage.
The nutritional breakdown of the Iced Chai Tea Latte at Starbucks is as follows:
Serving Size: Grande Starbucks chai tea latte, 16 fluid ounces / 473 mL (changing your Starbucks drink size will alter the calories and fat found in the beverage).
Starbucks chai tea lattes come in Tall, Venti, and Grande sizes.
If you want a healthier version of this drink, then you can opt for the chai tea bags, which will reduce the sugar content quite a bit. But keep in mind that the flavor will not be the same...
With the average price of a Venti Starbucks Iced Chai Tea Latte hovering at $4.75, why not save money and make a homemade version?
You’ll find many Starbucks copycat recipes but the wonderful thing about making a chai blend beverage is that you can customize it to your own tastes. You don’t have to duplicate the Starbucks drink.
The process is extremely easy.
Invest in a quality chai concentrate (available at most stores in the tea and coffee section). Many people opt to use the Oregon brand chai concentrate because they feel that it tastes the most similar to the Starbucks chai concentrate.
You’ll find the Oregon chai tea latte concentrate quite easily online, such as on Amazon (see below), and it comes in several options and flavors: caffeine-free, sugar-free, slightly sweet, vanilla, salted caramel, etc.
When shopping, you’ll see chai tea bags but do not use these to make a chai latte. Instead, you want actual chai concentrate.
Use 2% cold milk or whole milk and ice. If you use smaller cubes of ice then it will more rapidly chill the beverage.
Add 1/2 of a cup of chai concentrate to 1/2 a cup of milk. Mix well and then add ice. To ensure maximum flavor make your ice from filtered water.
You can add various amounts of spices such as cinnamon, ginger, and cloves to tailor the beverage to meet your own taste.
To make the iced chai tea latte healthier you might want to replace the 2% milk with nonfat. You can also use diary free milk such as oat, coconut milk, or almond milk.
Have you heard of the Dirty Chai Latte?!
A dirty chai latte is a great way to ramp up your caffeine intake. To make this dirty iced chai latte you just have to add a shot of espresso or two.
Many chai tea latte lovers are surprised to learn that their iced beverage isn’t just refreshing and delicious but also offers an array of impressive health benefits.
Chai tea contains an abundance of antioxidants such as theaflavins and catechins that support cellular health (1). The antioxidants help your body fight oxidative stress which has been shown to cause cancer and other chronic health conditions.
Chai tea and cinnamon have all been shown to lower blood pressure which promotes heart health in studies (2). Other research indicates that the cinnamon used may reduce cholesterol and triglyceride levels by 30% (3).
The flavonoids found in black tea are believed to prevent the buildup of plaque in arteries which is a leading contributor to cardiovascular health (4).
A Starbucks iced chai tea latte contains caffeine which can boost physical energy and mental alertness. Many people visit the famous coffeehouse to order an iced chai tea latte as a late afternoon pick-me-up.
Not only has black tea been shown to reduce inflammation throughout the body but so does cinnamon, cardamom, and ginger according to research in the Journal of Advanced Pharmaceutical Technology & Research (5).
Pregnant women suffering from nausea regularly turn to ginger to gain much-needed relief. Luckily, the Starbucks iced chai tea latte ingredients list contains ginger.
If you are suffering from an upset stomach then you might want to replace milk in the chai tea latte with almond or oat milk because cow's milk can further aggravate your stomach. Just make sure you consult your doctor before drinking it as it contains caffeine.
Many dieters are surprised to learn that chai tea can actually help them shed unwanted weight. The mixture of chai combined with cinnamon may help prevent weight gain when using the chai tea bags instead of the sweetened concentrate and combining the beverage with exercise and a healthy diet, according to studies (6)(7)(8).
Iced chai tea lattes contain a combination of cinnamon and ginger which have been shown through research to balance blood sugar levels and reduce insulin resistance (9).
Starbucks makes its iced tea lattes using a combination of pre-sweetened chai tea concentrate, milk, and water. Their chai latte tastes smooth and rich. They only use filtered water to ensure optimum flavor.
The amount of chai concentrate used in the iced chai tea latte Starbucks recipe varies by cup size. Usually, the barista will use three pumps for a tall, four pumps for a grande, and six pumps for a venti.
The Starbucks barista does not exactly add sugar to a Starbucks Chai Tea Latte, but that does not mean the beverage contains no sugar. The chai tea concentrate that is used in the creation of the beverage contains sugar. Each 16-ounce Grande Starbucks chai latte contains 42 grams of sugar.
There is no way to order a sugar-free Starbucks iced chai latte because the chai concentrate comes pre-mixed with spices and sugar. However, you can reduce the sugar in the beverage by ordering a grande chai tea latte which contains four pumps of chai. Instead, request that the barista only place one pump of chia with two pumps of sugar-free vanilla. The beverage will still taste amazing but have far less sugar.
Alternatively, you can purchase the sugar-free or slightly sweet Oregon Chai Tea Latte Concentrate from Amazon and make this drink at home!
One of the best things about Starbucks is that they let you customize your order. There are several ways you can make a Starbucks iced chai latte better such as the following:
The caffeine in the Iced Chai Tea Latte Starbucks will keep you awake. It is ideal as an energizing beverage in the morning but at night the caffeine-laden black tea in the drink can keep you awake.
Yes, iced chai lattes in general can be good for you. The Starbucks iced chai latte can be made relatively healthy if you minimize the sugar based on our tips above. This drink is low in calories with many benefits such as lowering blood pressure, helping with weight loss, increasing antioxidants in the body, promoting heart health, and more.
Next time you are in the mood for something different than a coffee drink, why not order a Starbucks iced chai tea latte?
The spicy, sweet beverage will tantalize your taste buds while providing you with sufficient energy to face the day.
If you don't want to order the iced chai tea latte from Starbucks, you can always make your own at home to enjoy!
This article is intended for informational purposes only. It is not meant to replace professional medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. Do not consume any type of coffee, tea or herbal infusion if you are allergic to it. The information in this article is not intended to treat serious medical conditions. Please seek professional medical advice before using home remedies.