Don’t like tea? I get it, I’m not a huge fan either. If I could, I would drink coffee all day. I just don’t think that’s the healthiest thing to do.
In fact, if you don’t put milk in your tea, it’s as healthy, if not slightly healthier than water. This is only because water doesn’t have antioxidants in it.
We still need plain water, so don’t give it up completely.
But what this means is that especially during the colder months, you can still stay hydrated, give your health a boost, and stay warm by drinking tea regularly throughout the day.
This is what I do in winter when I behave. But if you hate tea or just can’t muster up the motivation to endure it, this may seem like a terrible idea.
I’ll give you a few tips on how to acquire a taste for tea. That might not give you confidence considering that I said I’m not a huge fan.
But don’t worry, there are ways to find a tea that’s at least somewhat enjoyable or to make it taste much better.
While it’s still not my favorite beverage, I manage to drink at least two cups per day during the summer and around four cups during the winter months. Sometimes, I even enjoy it.
How to Acquire a Taste for Tea
Follow these tips to find an option or options that suit you. There is something for every potential future tea lover.
1. Try Flavored Tea
I put this first because this is how I get it done. And it makes sense. Want to know to drink tea if you don’t like it? Change it.
Flavored teas are widely available. Many brands use actual fruit pieces, spices, and herbs to flavor their teas. I generally prefer naturally flavored tea to artificially flavored tea.
If you really want to experiment, get a pack that has various flavored teas. These will usually come in the form of gift packs or variety packs.
When I was young, my mom picked up a bag of teas at a factory/salvage store that also sold other yummy goodies that came out misshapen or the packaging got overly squashed.
It was with this pack that I discovered various types of tea and flavored versions of those teas.
Before this I’d only tasted plain green tea, black tea, and drank rooibos with lemon on occasion. It broadened my horizons.
Otherwise, just get a flavor you think you’d enjoy and go for it.
Here are some of the nicer flavorings I’ve come across:
- Passion Fruit
- Earl Grey
Of course, there are many more that you might like better, but these have been the ones I liked best.
These flavors go quite well with black tea and especially green tea which most people don’t drink with milk.
2. If You Enjoy Spicy Flavors, Try Chai Tea
I put this tip second because this is one of the few teas that I truly enjoy, particularly when the spices come through nicely.
Chai tea is traditionally from India. It’s usually referred to as masala chai there, since the word chai means tea.
There they make it with a base of black (Ceylon) tea, milk, and cinnamon, cardamom, pepper, ginger, fennel, cloves, and star anise.
There may be different variations of these spices in the tea, I tend to prefer those without anise, which doesn’t seem to sit well with my tummy.
You can make your own chai tea from scratch, or if you’re on the lazier side of the spectrum like me, you should be able to find plenty of options in-store.
I’ve come across brands that make it with green tea, chamomile, rooibos, or just spices in addition to the usual black tea version. It’s divine when it includes vanilla too.
3. If Black Tea is too Bitter, Try White, Green, or Oolong Tea
Black tea is quite bitter, especially without milk. I also find that I don’t really enjoy the taste even with milk most of the time, especially since I don’t drink sugar or any other sweetener in my tea.
The thing that all these teas have in common is that they come from the Camellia Sinensis plant. The difference is how much oxidation the tea leaves have gone through.
Black tea is the most oxidized version of the plant, whereas white tea is the least oxidized. Green tea is the second most oxidized and oolong the third most oxidized.
Look, I still don’t like these plain, but they are definitely drinkable, especially if you prefer your tea without milk.
White and green tea, in particular, have a much milder flavor.
And for benefits like a huge boost in antioxidants, potential anti-cancer properties, heart-protective properties, and even anti-bacterial properties, I’m going to make sure I drink some regularly.
4. Try Herbal Teas
Maybe you don’t need to learn how to drink tea if you don’t like it. Herbal tea, is technically, not tea. Actual tea is made from Camellia Sinensis.
We just tend to call most things steeped in hot water tea. Herbal teas are more like tisanes.
Some herbal teas may have different benefits than the aforementioned green or black teas, but they are still very beneficial.
If you’re sensitive to caffeine, you definitely want to try some of these as they are all free from caffeine, unlike the Camellia Sinensis teas.
For example, chamomile tea is commonly consumed for relaxation, has antibacterial properties, lowers inflammation, and may have heart-protective properties.
Peppermint tea may have soothing properties for the tummy, have antiviral and antibacterial properties, and provide an antioxidant boost. It’s also quite refreshing if mint is your thing.
You can even make peppermint tea from the leaves in your garden if you grow it.
Rooibos (red bush)is full of antioxidants and may have heart-protective properties, benefit bone health as well as cognitive health.
If you don’t enjoy regular rooibos, try the unfermented version, green rooibos which has a taste similar to green tea, but milder.
Ginger tea doesn’t taste great in my opinion, but maybe you like ginger. I use it to reduce my PMS symptoms. It lowers inflammation and may combat nausea.
It’s also a digestive enhancer, so if you struggle with bloating and feeling full for longer than you should, give it a go.
Here are more options that you may enjoy:
- Lemon balm tea
- Lavender tea
- Fennel tea
- Cardamom tea
- Cinnamon tea
- Dandelion tea
5. Give Fruit Tea A Go
If you like fruit, you may be pleased to find out, if you didn’t know already, that fruit tea exists.
Personally, I find that fruit tea isn’t nearly as tasty as actually eating fruit. The berry teas in particular are a little sour.
But peach tea, mango tea, and apple tea aren’t bad, and any sourness is easily combatted with healthy natural sweeteners like stevia, xylitol, or erythritol. You can also try raw honey.
Fruit teas are also caffeine-free and may retain some of the nutrients of the original fruit. This type of tea is made from dried fruit and sometimes contains flowers, herbs, and spices too.
They are colorful and smell nice too. Try a variety pack to see which tea you like best.
6. Add Your Own Flavors
Sweetening tea is a common practice. Try to stay away from sugar and rather use those natural sweeteners I mentioned.
Adding milk is common too, especially to black tea. Just bear in mind that this affects some of the beneficial effects of tea.
Milk, both cow and soy milk, reduces the bioavailability (ability to be absorbed) of antioxidants. This reduction is only around 30% though. Still, it’s way more goodness than you’ll get from soda.
Fruit, Spices, Herbs
Try adding fruit. My favorite fruit to add to tea is lemon, which also just so happens to boost the bioavailability of the catechins (antioxidants) in green and black tea.
I also enjoy adding cinnamon. Get creative to see what you prefer. Just a bit of advice, less is more.
7. Make an Experience of It
Maybe it’s not about how to start liking tea itself, but rather to enjoy the process of drinking tea.
Green and jasmine tea is never as enjoyable as when eating at a Chinese restaurant and being served the tea in Chinese tea sets.
At a tea café, I stared in wonder as I watched as the flowering tea that I’d ordered unfurled before me and started coloring the surrounding water. The teapot was a translucent glass one. Super cool.
Tea parties are fun and high teas are so delicious (mainly because of the eats… we all deserve a little treat sometimes) and fancy. I actually like serving tea using the china set I inherited from my gran.
Of course, these measures might seem a bit much if it’s just you. But why not? Sit there with your teapot and teacup and saucer and take a few minutes to relax.
Plus, if you do want to serve tea using a tea set when your friends or family come over, it’s worth the extra dishes it creates. I have never seen anyone disappointed to be served tea in such a special way.
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