A few days ago, I found this post over on Judicial Peach. Homemade chai is something that I have been longing to make.

It is surprisingly easy and delicious to make. Never did I expect it to be as easy and so delicious as it turned out. I was amazed at the quality of the final drink as it tasted just as good as what I would spend $4 on at a coffee shop, and I can customize it as much as I like (want less sugar, soy milk, organic?)

My mistake was that I thought I had some cardamom in my pantry. Turns out that I didn’t, nor did the grocery store near me have cardamom pods either, so I had to make it without.

I know cardamom is an essential spice in chai, but it wasn’t a problem in the end. It is true that cardamom is kind of the signature spice in chai, but I have to say that without it, the drink was still freaking delicious.

I have included below the recipe and prices which are not inclusive of the missing cardamom.

Don’t hesitate to try new things, do with Apronese with the recipe below.

Chai Concentrate

This concentrate is rather expensive to make. You have to be very careful about buying the spices as they tend to be quite expensive, so shop smart when you shop.

I found a bag of cinnamon sticks (pictured below) at the Hispanic food section for only $1.50. If you buy cinnamon sticks from the spice department, you will have to pay three times that amount.

Cloves, on the other hand, can be quite expensive. However, fortunately you don’t need a lot of them to make this recipe.

There is a lot of variation in prices for tea as well. As usual with Chai, black tea is used to make it, but I had some Stash Black and Green Earl Gray that I used.

In addition to adding an extra floral note, the bergamot in the Earl Gray tea added a wonderful floral scent as well.

The box of organic Stash tea I purchased at Target cost me $2.29 (18 bags). There are many teas that are 10x more expensive.

Chai Concentrate

With the help of fresh herbs and spices, you can make your own chai concentrate at home to experience a new and exciting level of flavor.

Author: Beth

Prep Time: 10 mins/ Cook Time: 10 mins/ Total Time: 20 mins

Servings: 4 1 cup concentrate + 1 cup milk


  • 4 bags black tea ($0.51)
  • 4 small sticks cinnamon ($1.50)
  • 1 inch fresh ginger ($0.11)
  • 10 whole cloves ($0.39)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla ($0.14)
  • 1/2 cup sugar ($0.08)


  • You will need to boil water for four cups, add cinnamon sticks, tea bags and whole cloves to a medium pot, add the freshly peeled and sliced ginger to the pot and cover the pot.
  • Make sure it is brewed strong by bringing the pot to a boil, placing a lid on top, reducing the heat, and simmering for five minutes.
  • Using whole spices makes straining spices much easier and adds more flavor. Remove the pot from the heat and carefully remove the teabags and spices (Place a colander over a bowl and pour in the tea).
  • You can use the chai concentrate right away, or you can store it in the refrigerator when you are ready to use it. Stir the sugar and vanilla in while the spiced tea is still hot.
  • The drink is made by mixing one part chai concentrate with one part milk and heating it before serving.

Cardamom pods should be slightly crushed before adding them to the pot with the rest of the spices in order to achieve the best results.


Serving: 1 Serving ・ Calories: 117.63 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 31.18 g ・ Protein: 0.43 g ・ Fat: 0.3 g ・ Sodium: 3.33 mg ・ Fiber: 4.45 g
The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.

top view of homemade chai concentrate in mug

Step By Step Photos

green and black earl grey tea bags
My favorite tea to use for this recipe is Earl Gray, which I used as the white tea in this recipe, since I am not very fond of flavored teas, and I usually prefer loose leaf teas.

If you are unsure, just use plain black tea instead. I find that the Earl Gray blended well with the spices.
cinnamon sticks in packaging
The cinnamon sticks that I found for a really low price can be found at Asian markets and local supermarkets. These cinnamon sticks were found for a really low price at Asian markets and local supermarkets.
whole cloves in jar
Luckily, the recipe does not require a lot of cloves, so I didn’t have to worry about shopping around for this one. Once you purchase all the cloves you need, the recipe is ready.
close up of whole cloves
It’s true that you have never seen a whole clove, but that’s what they look like when they’re whole.
fresh ginger with peeler and sliced on counter
Fresh ginger should be peeled and sliced into one inch pieces.
all ingredients in pot to boil
I would recommend throwing it all into a pot with 4 cups of water (sugar and vanilla will be added later).
steamy and simmering spiced tea in pot
Put the pot on the stove top and turn it to high heat, place a lid on top of it and let it boil for a few minutes and then reduce the heat to low.
spiced tea drained through strainer
Remove the tea bags and spices from the strainer.
sugar and vanilla added to hot spiced tea mixture
Add the sugar and vanilla to the pot while it is still hot and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
Finished Chai tea in mug
This drink is made by mixing one part of chai concentrate with one part milk (I did 8 oz of each). Place it in the microwave for a few minutes and enjoy.
close up of finished tea in mug with whipped cream
I would suggest adding some whipped cream if you feel like adding an extra special touch to your dessert.

In just 10 mins we have finished the Chai Concentrate excellently. Apronese thinks this is a simple recipe that anyone can follow.

Remember to share with family and friends so they can learn many interesting things too.