Chai Tea Latte (like Starbucks)
A spicy, sweet, and creamy chai tea latte you can make at home that tastes almost exactly like Starbucks chai tea lattes!
10 ounces boiling water
2 teabags of Celestial Seasonings India Spice Chai tea
1 tablespoon "Sugar in the Raw" or organic sugar*
3 tablespoons real whipped cream**
1. In a large mug (14 ounces), place the 2 tea bags and boiling water. Steep 3-5 minutes, squeeze out tea bags, and discard teabags. Stir in the sugar until dissolved. Add whipped cream and stir. Enjoy hot!
*I use organic sugar (evaporated cane juice) from Costco. Use more sugar for a sweeter drink. Starbucks has a lot of sugar in theirs (more than 1 tablespoon) but I think a tablespoon is plenty sweet.
Starbucks Tall (12 oz.) Chai Tea Latte contains 31 grams of sugar. That's the equivalent of 7 3/4 teaspoons of sugar! This recipe using 1 tablespoons of sugar contains only 12 grams of sugar.
**Make real whipped cream by combining 1 cup heavy whipping cream with 1 tablespoon sugar (optional) and beating on high until fluffy.
You can use 1 tablespoon of cream (plain, not whipped) in place of the whipped cream with great results as well.
A note on chai tea and concentrates:
Starbucks uses the Tazo brand chai tea concentrate, which can be purchased in the coffee and tea section of the grocery store. The concentrate does taste very much like the teabags used in this recipe, but when Joshua and I did side-by-side comparisons, we definitely preferred this recipe versus making chai from the Tazo concentrate. The Tazo concentrate has a strange aftertaste (almost a "boxed" taste to it, which I didn't expect) whereas this recipe tastes fresh and vibrant.
I have had Starbucks' Chai Tea Lattes on two occasions, and I think this homemade version comes really super close to their flavor. Add in the convenience of making them at home and cost savings, and this is definitely the way to go, even over buying boxes of Tazo concentrate! :) And, helping to confirm my opinion that the Celestial Seasonings India Spice Chai tea tastes like Starbucks Chai Tea Lattes, I noticed several reviews of this tea at Amazon.com mentioning that this is the closest they've come to recreating the Starbucks Chai Tea Latte. :)
I sometimes get the Celestial Seasonings India Spice Chai tea at grocery stores with a coupon, or at Big Lots (usually $2/box) or on sale at Rite Aid ($1.49/box). Our local Big Lots has been out of this tea, and I haven't had many coupons or spotted good sales recently, so I ordered a 6-box case at Amazon.com for $15.31, using SwagBucks gift certificates. These Chai Tea Lattes are one of my favorite winter treats and I also love serving them to guests! :)
Cost comparison for 12 ounces:
Starbucks Chai Tea Latte $2.95 (or more)
Chai tea latte made with Tazo concentrate: $1.15
Chai tea latte made with this recipe: $0.40 ($0.32 if using milk instead of cream)
Joshua and I both taste-tested this recipe alongside Tazo chai tea latte concentrate and Starbucks Chai Tea Lattes. This recipe is our favorite!
Starbucks Chai Tea Latte? Expensive and very sweet (31 grams of sugar in 12 ounces!). Bonus points for being convenient if you live/work near a Starbucks. :)
Tazo Chai Tea Latte (made from concentrate)? Still expensive, still very sweet, and with a strange aftertaste. Bonus points to the Tazo concentrate for being convenient and really deliciously spicy though!!
This Chai Tea Latte recipe? Affordable, sweetness can be adjusted, and with a great flavor. Bonus points for using the least amount of packaging and something I can store long-term in the pantry in a small amount of space! :)