How To Brew a Cup of Herbal Tea
Herbal tea can be enjoyed with the same preparation as any other tea, but when drinking herbal tea for medicinal purposes, a slightly different brewing technique can be of some benefit.
We encourage you to experiment with the length of steep time to find your desired brew strength. Varying the water temperature isn't recommended, as water that is too hot will over-extract the bitter components of tea, while water that is too cool might not fully draw out the aromas and flavors of tea.
Hot Tea: Bring fresh water to boil. Once the water has come to a boil, remove it from heat and choose one of the following methods:
- Place your loose leaf tea into a tea strainer, put it in your cup, and pour water over it.
- Place your tea bag into your cup and pour water over it.
- Place your bag or loose tea directly in the saucepan. If using loose, you will need to strain your tea before drinking, or use a Bombilla (tea straw).
While steeping, cover the cup or pan with a lid or plate. This ensures that the tea’s essential oils don’t escape with the steam. It will also keep your tea warm while steeping.
We aim to provide times and temperatures that reduce the risk of allowing the actual tea leaves (or other delicate herbs in blends) to taste bitter due to too much steep time or to get scorched from too much heat. If you desire a stronger cup, we suggest using more tea rather than a longer steep time to minimize the potential for a more bitter flavor.
Generally, the more delicate the herb, the faster it brews. Allowing faster brewing teas to steep for too long can result in a powerful medicinal tea, but may have flavors that are too strong or bitter.
Most ground herbal teas and tea bags need 5 minutes of steeping to best release their health benefits, while root and seed-based teas need around 8 minutes of steeping for best results. Because the majority of The Herbal Toad's Teas are a combination, we suggest 8 minutes for maximum health benefit.
Iced Tea: To make cold or iced herbal tea, follow one of the three methods above. Once the tea has cooled, add some cool, filtered water to dilute the flavor if needed. Sweeten if necessary and pour the tea over ice cubes.