Japanese Royal Milk Tea

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Japanese Royal Milk Tea is a rich and creamy hot black tea sweetened with sugar or honey make for a delicious afternoon tea.

A cup of Royal Milk Tea on a saucer with a spoon next to it.

Welcome to #SummerGamesWeek 2021 hosted by Amy from House of Nash Eats!  We are celebrating the start of the Tokyo Games with over 50 recipes representing more than 25 countries competing in the upcoming Summer Games! Come join me and my fellow Summer Games Week bloggers as we bring you recipes from appetizers to drinks to entrées and desserts!

This week I’m sharing recipes from Japan since they are the host country for the Summer Olympics.  When I started researching recipes to choose I knew that I had to include some type of tea.

Tea is the most popular drink in Japan and it’s an important part of their culture.  I know a lot of people think of Matcha whenever they think of Japanese tea but the most popular tea is actually Sencha.

Since most people know how to brew a cup of tea I wanted to find a recipe that was a little more involved.  That’s when I came across Japanese Royal Milk Tea.

Royal Milk Tea is a popular tea drink served in restaurant, supermarkets, and even in vending machines in Japan.  It’s a sweetened black tea made primarily with milk.

Ingredients:

  • loose leaf black tea
  • whole milk
  • water
  • sugar

To make the tea combine the milk and water in a saucepan over medium heat.  Once the mixture begins to simmer add in the loose leaf tea.

Add in the sugar and stir.

Cover the pot and steep for 5 minutes.

Strain the mixture into a tea cup and enjoy.

I’m not one to add milk to my tea or make my tea with milk so I was concerned that I would not like this tea.  I’m used to enjoying my tea made with water and a little bit of honey.

So when I took a sip I was pleasantly surprised by how much I did like it.  It’s super creamy thanks to using whole milk and the sugar adds just enough sweetness.

Pin Image: A cup of Royal Milk Tea on a saucer with a spoon next to it, text, a cutting board with a cup of water, a cup of milk, a teaspoon of sugar, and a spoonful of black tea.

Can I use a tea bag instead of loose leaf tea?

You sure can.  I prefer loose leaf tea as I think it has a bolder flavor but you can use a tea bag in a pinch.

Can I use honey instead of sugar?

Absolutely.  I plan on doing this next time because I know honey will add a different flavor to the tea but I really enjoy honey sweetened tea.

Can I use 2% or skim milk?

I wouldn’t.  Milk is the entire base of this drink and the whole milk really results in a rich, creamy tea.  That won’t occur with 2% or skim milk.

Can I double this recipe?

Yes!  You can double it, triple it, or quadruple it if you want to make multiple cups of tea.

Because there is still some water used to make the tea it isn’t too rich.  I used a strong black tea in order to flavor the milk.  The recommended tea to use is either Assam, Darjeeling, or Ceylon.

Don’t get worried if your milk tea is a pale golden color.  I expected it to be a deeper color but because of using milk instead of water it doesn’t turn a deep color.  It was still full of flavor.

A cup of milk tea on a saucer with a spoon in the cup.

More Tea Recipes:

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A cup of milk tea on a saucer with a spoon in the cup.

Japanese Royal Milk Tea

Yield: serves 1
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Japanese Royal Milk Tea is a rich and creamy hot black tea sweetened with sugar or honey make for a delicious afternoon tea.

Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon black tea (Darjeeling or Assam)
  • 3/4 c. milk
  • 1/2 c. water
  • 2 teaspoons sugar

Instructions

  1. Place the milk and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
  2. Add in the black tea and sugar and stir well.
  3. Remove from heat and cover with a lid for 5 minutes.
  4. Strain the mixture into a tea cup and enjoy.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Coriander and Lace

A cup of Royal Milk Tea on a saucer with a spoon on the saucer.

7 Comments

  1. This tea is my daughter’s favorite one next to oolong. I personally like this tea which is similar to our chai minus spices. Your recipe is amazing and would love to have this tea for a great start in the morning.

  2. Well this would be a spectacular way to get in some calcium! Can’t wait to try!

  3. Being a daily tea drinker, this looks so yummy to me. I think I will try it this morning!

  4. What a wonderful afternoon pick-me-up! I love that it’s such a simple thing but let’s you feel connected to another culture.

  5. This is the perfect tea recipe when you have youngsters that would like to join during tea time. Thanks for sharing Heather.

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