How to Make Bubble Tea

How to Make Bubble Tea - a simple tutorial on how to make bubble tea at home!

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I used Chinese breakfast tea for my bubble tea recipe, but any other black tea or strong tasting green teas will also work! In the recipe, you may notice that I use 8 tea bags to steep just 4 cups of water. Because the tea will be watered down with milk and ice cubes, you want to start of with a pretty strong tasting tea.

If you enjoy a lot of tapioca pearls in your drinks, I recommend cooking 1 cup of tapioca pearls instead of the 3/4 cup I listed below.



For the Simple Syrup


  1. Prepare the tea: Steep the tea bags with 4 cups of just boiled water. Let the tea sit until it reaches room temperature. There’s no need to remove the tea bags from the water as the tea is steeping. You can stick the tea in the fridge to speed up the cooling process.
  2. Prepare the simple syrup (if using): Add the water to a saucepan and heat the water until it starts to simmer. Add the sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves. Remove the saucepan from heat and let the simple syrup cool before transferring to a jar.
  3. Cook the tapioca pearls: Bring about 4 cups of water to boil and add the tapioca pearls. Stir the pearls and let them cook for about 5 minutes. The pearls should have floated to the top by now. Drain and rinse the pearls under cold water. Transfer them to a bowl.
  4. Assemble the drinks: Divide the cooked tapioca pearls into 4 large glasses. Next, add a few ice cubes to each glass. Pour 1 cup of the tea into each glass. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of milk and 1 1/2 tablespoons of simple syrup into each glass. Stir and taste the milk tea. Add more milk or simple syrup to your taste. If you are serving the beverage to guests, have a small pitcher of milk and jar of simple syrup ready so that they can adjust the drink to their taste. The drink is usually served with large boba straws (large enough for the tapioca pearls to go through). If you don’t have the straws on hand, you can use spoons to scoop out the tapioca pearls.