Masala chai (chai tea)

Masala Chai is a flavoured tea made by brewing black tea with a mixture of aromatic and warming spices, such as cinnamon and cardamom. Originating in South Asia, this aromatic tea has gained popularity in Australia where it is usually called chai tea. 

There is no fixed recipe or preparation method for masala chai and many families have their own versions of the tea. It is easy to prepare and we have chosen to share the following recipe with you: 

This recipe makes 2 cups of tea. 


  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • 8 whole cloves
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 6 tsp. sugar (or to taste)
  • 3 teaspoons any unperfumed loose black tea


  1. Put 1-1/2 cups water in a saucepan. Add the cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and bring to a boil.
  2. Cover saucepan and turn heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Add milk and sugar and bring to a simmer again.
  4. Add the tea leaves, cover, and turn off the heat.
  5. After 2 minutes, strain the tea into two cups and serve immediately.


Alternately you can also make masala spice mixture to keep and use whenever you want to make chai tea. Click here for this recipe.


Source: Madhur Jaffrey's Indian Cooking, Barron's, New York, p. 196 (1983). 



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