Homemade Chai Concentrate

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homemade-chai-concentrate

I’ve been drinking Masala Chai since I was a kid. Sure, back then my mom probably made it with more milk than tea, but the flavor was still there. Growing up in an Indian household, freshly made chai was served at least two times a day, more so if we had guests. It didn’t matter whether it was 100 degrees outside, my parents would still drink their two cups of creamy, hot chai.

My mom continues to drink her two cups of chai every day. So twice a day, she washes her teapot and goes through the tedious process of crushing spices and boiling tea. For her it’s nothing, but personally, I don’t know how she does it (patience? what’s patience?). I love freshly made chai, but I just don’t have the time to make it every day, let alone twice a day.

That’s Why I Started Making Homemade Chai Concentrate

homemade chai concentrate by myheartbeets.com

It’s infused with all the masala flavors that I love: fresh ginger, cardamom, cloves, and fennel seed. The best part is, that I only have to make it once a week.

There’s nothing like drinking a fragrant cup of spiced masala chai in the mornings. The smell of sweet cardamom and spicy ginger is enough to wake you up. With this homemade chai concentrate, I can have my daily cup of chai without all the work that goes into making it.

Mom’s “Rules” for Drinking Chai

Even though I’ve streamlined the chai-making process, I still follow my mom’s instructions on how to enjoy a cup of chai to a Tea (heh, get it… T & tea 🤓).

  1. The chai must be HOT, not warm.
  2. Rinse your cup in hot water before pouring the chai. This keeps the chai HOT for a longer period of time.
  3. Drink the chai in a fancy china cup. Non-negotiable.

If you love chai, you can double, triple, or quadruple this recipe to make even more chai concentrate. If you’re keeping it all for yourself, just freeze the concentrate into ice cubes so they’ll last longer! In the summer, you can use these cubes to make a tasty iced chai drink!

Homemade Chai Concentrate

homemade chai concentrate by myheartbeets.com

Homemade Chai Concentrate

4.67 from 3 reviews
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Ingredients
 

Instructions
 

  • Lightly crush the cardamom pods and cloves with a mortar pestle.
  • Add the ginger, spices, and water to a large saucepan and bring to a full boil.
  • After 3-4 minutes, add the tea bags and reduce heat to low-medium.
  • Put on the cover and let simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  • Strain the chai and store in a mason jar or a glass container in the fridge.
  • To make a cup of chai, mix the concentrate, hot water and steamed milk of choice to taste.

Notes

Use this concentrate within a week. If you want to make a big batch, you can freeze the concentrate into cubes and use as needed.
After boiling, you’ll end up with 3-4 cups of concentrate.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @myheartbeets on Instagram and hashtag it #myheartbeets!

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Comments

  1. Samantha L says

    4 stars
    Hi there, I may made this recipe and I enjoyed it but wished it was stronger in flavor. I already used very limited oat Milk. What would your suggestion be for a spicer chai? I additionally added black pepper corns and a half stick of cinnamon for my personal preference

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Samantha, if you want a spicier chai, you can add more ginger (that’ll definitely help!) and you can also simmer the spices/ginger longer. The longer you simmer them, the spicier the chai should be. Let me know if that helps!

  2. TB says

    Hi,

    The recipe asks to mix the concentrate, hot water and milk. I’m confused about what you mean by 1:1. Do you mean 1:1:1? So equal parts concentrate, hot water and milk?

  3. anjuli says

    Love this idea. Thank you!
    Moving to the West I miss chai here. I grew up drinking it as well. I am too lazy to make it every day. But, this works perfectly. And the freezing option 🙂

  4. Dan says

    Hi I made a batch and it was great! Thanks! I was wondering if I wanted to up the recipe by four times, should I also boil and simmer a lot longer??

  5. Sybil says

    Thank you so much for posting this! I love Chai and I look forward to makings own concentrate that’s not full of sugar! I love your recipes and your blog!

  6. Sandra says

    Bitter!! The first batch I made was a little bitter so I made a second but added the tea after the spices simmered for 20 minutes. More bitter. 🙁 What am I doing wrong? (Yes I peeled the ginger.)

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Sandra, are you mixing the concentrate with milk and adding sweetener? Tea is typically bitter unless mixed with milk and sugar. Maybe use less concentrate and more milk when making your cup of tea? Hope you’ll let me know if you’re able to figure out what the problem is.

  7. Hedgerow Cottage says

    I was wondering if you think this could be bottled/canned well for long-term preserving? I was thinking of making up a big batch and putting bottles of it in the holiday baskets I’m making. I’d probably use flip top bottles and sterilize them. What are your thoughts?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Hedgerow, I’m sorry I don’t know enough (truthfully anything) about canning and so I can’t give you advice on long-term preserving. If you figure this out, will you please report back to let us know? Thank you, and I hope you enjoy the recipe!

  8. Angela says

    Have you used this to make bulletproof/butter chai? I’m wondering what the right ratio of concentrate and water would be if you’re adding butter and MCT oil.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Angela! I haven’t tried this but if I were to guess proportions, I’d probably try 1 cup to 1 tablespoon of butter for a strong cup of chai. If you try this, let me know what proportion works for you!

  9. Sruti says

    You are a girl after my own heart. I struggle with missing the taste of masala chai because of how tedious it is to make on the daily. Thanks for this awesome idea

  10. Jena says

    I don’t drink black tea, but i have an herbal chai tea mix, do you think that would work in this recipe? I always want to drink tea, but as i leave it to steep i forget about it and its cold when i remember about it.

  11. Jayne says

    The chai recipe I use the secret ingredient is ground black pepper, to give it that extra hotness.
    Curious why use tea bags instead of loose tea?
    Also read the Devil in the Milk about A1 vs A2 milk which explains why milk from Indian and Jersey cows are much better for you. There was a genetic change from A2 to A1 about 8,000 years ago; the A1 cows produced more milk so have been bred into Western herds. It’s a thing called beta-casomorphin

  12. Heather says

    I bet your mom would tell you that a big part of the whole chai experience is in the making 😉
    But… I totally get where you are coming from! I don’t often have time to sit and enjoy it after I take the time to make it! That said…. I thought traditional chai tea is “continuous brew” …. Always sitting on the stove and you just add milk/spices as needed to fill the pot. (I know, totally just grossed out a few people but …. ) personally, I do like you …. Make a jug full and add to hot milk when desired.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Marie, you can try a 1:1 ratio – and if the chai is too strong, dilute with water. If it’s too weak, add less milk next time. Let me know if you try this and how it turns out for you!

  13. Suzanne | Agent Athletica says

    I just finished making this! I’ve idly thought about making my own chai concentrate but never actually *done* it, so when I saw this and realized I had ALL the ingredients, I had to do it! I remember thinking “what the heck will I ever do with whole cloves and cardamom pods”–well now I have my answer! 🙂 It’s too late for a whole cup, but I snuck a little shot glass-sized sample. Already looking forward to more in the morning!

    Question for you: I foresee myself experimenting with (read: butchering) this recipe in the future with other spices I have laying about… I was thinking it might be good with some vanilla (ideally a bean, not extract). Do you think a whole bean would be too much for this recipe, or just right? Is vanilla-ifying chai blasphemous? 🙂 And, any thoughts about whole allspice? Thanks!!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Suzanne, so glad you made this! You should definitely experiment with other spices: cinnamon, vanilla, allspice, etc. Since you boil the spices to extract flavor, this might be a good way to use up a leftover vanilla bean pod/shell once you’ve already used up what’s inside. And, I’m all for changing things up – so in my opinion, vanilla chai is a-ok 😉

  14. Chelsea Elizabeth says

    Have you tried it with coconut milk or almond milk? I can’t do dairy.. and the last time I tried to make chai with coconut milk it was a disaster. Thoughts?

    I’m currently living in Delhi and I know it makes my company sad that I never have milk in my house to make proper chai. In winters I serve coconut milk hot chocolate… in summers I make smoothies – but nothing does it like classic chai.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Chelsea! I use almond milk – and I agree, coconut milk + chai just don’t work for some reason. I’m curious – have you tried the milk in India? I recently read this article about the milk in India (I’ve also noticed that I can tolerate milk from grassfed Jersey cows much better than milk sold in grocery stores – I stay away from that stuff). Anyway, let me know how this turns out for you!

      • Chelsea Elizabeth says

        I will definitely try almond milk, thanks!

        I have tried milk in India – back in 2012. I’m really sensitive to milk – and it still upset my stomach. Though the dahi and paneer doesn’t seem to bother me. Since I’ve been in Delhi though I haven’t tried it again. The fact that it’s packaged in a plastic bag and has to be boiled before you use it kinda makes me nervous.

        My mom gets full fat milk straight from the dairy in washington state and that seems to fare quite well with everyone back home though.

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