So today’s recipe is a liiiiiiittle bit different. I decided to finally get my ass to it and develop a good masala chai recipe. Well. A good vegan masala chai recipe, that is. It’s one of my favourite hot beverages so I’m excited to share this will you all!
And you know what? This is the first Indian-ish recipe on this blog. It’s the first drinks recipe too. Double first!
Maybe I should briefly explain what masala chai is. Masala = spice. Chai = tea. It’s an Indian spiced milk tea, basically.
Chai tea, as it is commonly known in the West, means tea tea. It makes no sense to me. Chai would be the way to say it, but chai on it’s own means milk tea without any spice. So…that’s not quite right either. The right way to say it is masala chai. Even though chai tea gets wayyy more hits on Google than masala chai, I decided to stick with masala chai as the title. FOR EDUCATION!
Okay. Back to the recipe.
For this vegan masala chai recipe, I used soy milk, simply because it’s the cheapest and most easily available plant milk in my country (Singapore). You can feel free to use whatever plant milk you like!
Now on to some disclaimers. I’d love to say that this is as good as the non-vegan version, but I’d be lying if I did. It is still good though, don’t get me wrong. But is it as good as the best masala chai I’ve ever had? No.
I believe it is lacking the creamy, fatty content that is in dairy. I have no idea how to replicate that without including products with a bunch of additives and/or sugar like some vegan creamers. I also want to keep this relatively cheap and simple, you know? Coconut milk is probably “fatty” enough, but I doubt anyone wants their masala chai to taste like coconut milk, lol.
If anyone has an idea on how I can overcome this, please let me know. I’d be more than happy to try it and update this post! I’ll definitely credit you too 🙂
I’d like to mention that it’s important to steep the spices in hot water for about 10-15 minutes and crushing the spices beforehand to get as much flavour out of them as possible.
I’d also like to add that I’ve tried replacing the cinnamon stick with cinnamon powder and it sucked. The powder doesn’t dissolve and it just doesn’t really add the required flavour.
If you’ve never tried Indian spiced milk tea before, you should! It’s not the most authentic one, but it’s easy and it’s delicious! Give this vegan masala chai recipe a shot and let me know how it goes!
- 3 teaspoons assam black tea
- 6 cardamom pods
- 6 cloves
- 1 1 inch cinnamon stick
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup unsweetened soy milk
- 2 teaspoons sugar optional
Crush cardamom pods and cloves roughly in a mortar and pestle.
In a small saucepan, boil 1 cup of water with the cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon stick.
When it reaches a rolling boil, turn the heat off and let it steep for about 10-15 minutes (preferably with the lid on). If you can let it steep longer that's even better, up to 30 minutes.
After 10-15 minutes, turn on the heat again. Once it starts to boil, put in 3 teaspoons of black tea and sugar if you want it sweetened.
Let it boil for 3 minutes, then turn off the heat and add in 1 cup of soy milk. If the soy milk is cold, you might want to heat it a little further to ensure the tea is hot.
Strain and serve!
You can replace soy milk with any plant milk of your choice.
If you don't have a mortar and pestle, you can try a ghetto way to crush it, between two spoons or something maybe.