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Authentic Masala Chai Recipe

Authentic Masala Chai: Learn How to Make Masala Chai So Good You're Going to Think You're in the Middle of Mumbai at Rush Hour

Authentic Masala Chai (vegan)

Whether you've been to India or you've seen it in Starbuck's, Masala chai is now one of the most popular drinks in the world. Made of a spicy, warm blend of different spices, tea, milk, and sugar, this delicious drink will satisfy the palette as well as help the body.

Masala chai consists of healing spices like black peppercorns, fresh ginger root, and cloves that also help detoxify the body and aid in digestion. While there are similar treats in neighboring countries, Indian Masala Chai is our fave. Served hot or cold, with or without milk, and sweetened with whatever you choose, masala chai can be enjoyed during the summer and winter, caffeinated or not.


'Masala' = 'Spiced' ; 'Chai' = 'Tea'

A Quick History

While it's still debated, masala chai is believed to date back 5,000-8,000 years ago to a king in need of an elixir to settle his stomach and help his digestion. It wasn't until the early 1900s that masala Chai really began to explode in popularity.

Indian man & sacred cow

Masala chai did not initially include black tea, but, thanks to the British-owned Indian Tea Association and their promoting of Indian tea to fellow Brits in India, the tea market exploded throughout the country. Soon, black tea became incredibly expensive, and this forced vendors to get creative: they used milk, sugar, and spices to keep their brews flavorful, yet affordable for vendors and customers.

As you stroll through Indian cities, expect to find ample options to indulge in the moment: street vendors and train vendors called chai wallahs ('tea person') serve masala chai, on almost every corner, at the markets, and just about where ever else you look. Traditionally, masala chai is served in little clay pots called chai kullads. Expect to be handed a kullad or small glass of masala chai soon upon entering someone's home, and don't be surprised if you find yourself enjoying small servings throughout the day.

It's customary to have a chai break up to four times daily, and the afternoon break invites accompanying snacks and finger foods, both sweet and savory. Think traditional Indian samosas, pakoras, farsan, and nashta - it's more than just a feast for your mouth, it hits all the senses.


Health Benefits of Masala Chai

Indian spices; masala chai recipe
  • Boosts immunity

  • Enhances digestion

  • Reduces inflammation

  • High in antioxidants

  • May help prevent diabetes

  • Improves heart health

  • Reduces blood-sugar levels

  • Ayurvedic in nature

  • Reduces stress & anxiety

  • Grounding properties


Masala Chai Recipe - Authentic & Ayurvedic


Masala chai recipe
  • 1-2 Cinnamon sticks

  • 4 Star Anise

  • 5 Whole Cloves

  • 10 Black Peppercorns

  • 5-7 Green Cardamom pods (smashed open)

  • Fresh Ginger (peeled & sliced)

  • 1 cup Water

  • 1-2 tsp. Black Tea (optional)

  • 1-1 1/2 cup Milk of choice

  • Sweetener of choice

Step 1: First Things First

Gather your ingredients, and get your little sauce pot. Add the water and spices to your pot, and bring to a boil. Let boil for a minute or so, then reduce flame/heat to a simmer.

Step 2: Simmer & Smell

Continue to simmer the chai mixture (cinnamon to water) until it has reduced by about half, maybe 10-20 minutes. As this deliciousness reduces, enjoy the scents wafting through the air.

Step 3: Add Milk, Then Tea.

Once the liquid has reduced by about half, add your milk. Maintain at a simmer to ensure the milk doesn't scald or burn so give it a stir often. Once it has reached a nice tawny color, takeout off the fire, add the black tea (either bagged or loose leaf works great here) and let it steep for about 5 minutes.

Step 4: Steep Time

Remove the tea after 5 or so minutes (to avoid any bitter flavors) by straining completely into a glass, OR remove the tea, and let the concoction sit and steep with the spices until you are ready to enjoy.

Step 5: Serve & Enjoy

When it comes time to serve, simply strain the chai as your pour into your kullad, mug or smaller glasses to share with others. Add any sweetener you like, and let yourself be whisked away to the Land of Ganesh.

Cheers to your new favorite Masala Chai recipe!


Baba Ganesh Web & Wellness Blog

About Baba Ganesh

Hi, I'm Hannah, and I'm here to help you be the best version of yourself. 

Online, at home & in the boutique, I offer healthy recipes, wellness tips & lots of resources to make adopting & maintaining a healthy lifestyle a breeze. Be sure to stay tuned by checking out my webpage and following Baba Ganesh Wellness on Instagram (hang in there as I re-build the content). BG is a proud member of The SC Collective. Looking for Wellness & Lifestyle Coaching? Look no further. Have any questions or topics to explore together? Send me an email to

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