Taro is a kind of purple sweet potato whose origins lay within the dense, lush rainforests of India and Southeast Asia.
Evidence of this starchy root vegetable being cultivated in Papua New Guinea reveals this plant has been around for a very long time.
Scientists uncovered farming earthworks used to control water in the Kuk Swamp of Papua New Guinea that dates back 10,000 years.
Stone implements were discovered in the Solomon Islands of Papua New Guinea, which dates 28,000 years back.
These two discoveries, coupled with the abundant presence of taro plants in both areas, lead researchers to believe that this plant was domestically grown as a source of food.
Taro has been used for thousands of years in traditional medicine to treat numerous ailments and continues to be used today in Ayurveda and Eastern medicine.
Taro plants continue to grow in the Papua New Guinea area today and the Pacific Islands, Africa, Southeast Asia, and China.
Fresh taro milk tea is an easy recipe with a vast range of different flavors that has made its way into boba shops all over the world. Making this boba drink at home is easy!
Ingredients for Taro Bubble Tea
Taro Powder: If you are close to an Asian grocery store, buy the powder from there as they will have the best prices.
If not, it’s easy to order it online. Some places sell a container of powder, others sell sachets of 25g.
Jasmine Green Tea: The tea base of a classic milk tea typically uses jasmine green tea, but really, any type of green or black tea works.
You can also use loose leaf tea leaves, just make sure to strain the leaves once the tea has steeped.
Granulated Sugar: This is for making the simple syrup that will coat the cooled boba.
Other sweeteners can be used to give the pearl milk tea its sweet flavor.
Cup of Ice Cubes: A taro smoothie or milk tea is typically served cold.
Milk: In the place of regular fresh milk or other dairy products, you can use soy or almond milk, or non-dairy creamer.
You can use coconut milk as well but coconut milk has a very unique flavor that can overpower the taro flavor.
Black Tapioca Pearls (aka boba peals): For next-level fresh taro milk tea, add a topping.
These will be the cheapest to buy from an Asian supermarket, but you can also find the same brands online.
Other ingenious toppings can be red bean, aloe vera, or grass jelly.
Taro Powder vs. Real Taro Root
You may find some different ways to make taro bubble milk tea, some using taro flavored powder and some using real taro root, and wonder which one you should use.
First off, when you order from a bubble tea store, they make taro boba tea using this powder.
So you actually get a more “authentic” tasting milk tea using the powder rather than the actual root.
Basically, this version will taste more like the version you are used to buying from the bubble tea store.
The best thing, it is so much simpler and faster to use the powder!
Stirring in a powder rather than cooking taro root plant saves way more time.
It is easier to find taro powder as opposed to raw taro root.
Your local Asian grocery store will have both, but not everyone is close to an Asian grocery store.
For those who aren’t, it’s easy to order taro powder online.
Is Taro The Best Bubble Tea?
Have you ever seen someone sipping on a purple bubble tea that they can’t get enough of?
The taro milk tea flavor selection is one of the best and if not the best boba flavor out there.
It’s creamy, delicious, and refreshing.
This flavor of boba is typically made with taro root powder mix made for smoothies and bubble tea.
If you’re curious, the taste of this delicious beverage isn’t anything crazy but it is sweet and super addictive!
Some people say it has more of a rich vanilla nut-like taste, better than your typical vanilla milkshake or vanilla lattes.
If you’ve never had taro before, taro bubble tea is probably the best way to first try it.
Taro is one of the most popular boba tea flavors and not just because it is a beautiful bright purple color.
Taro is a starchy root vegetable, like a potato.
It’s hard to describe taro flavor using other flavors.
It has a very sweet taste, with a slight hint of nutty flavor and vanilla.
In taro boba tea, there is sugar and milk added so it will taste much sweeter than eating the vegetable on its own.
But no description will give the unique flavor of taro justice on its own. You just have to try it, and boba tea is the easiest way!
Is taro milk tea good?
Milk Tea, Bubble Tea and Boba Tea.
These three terms are often thrown around a lot and you may wonder what the difference between each of these drinks is.
There is none!
They are all referring to the same drink.
typically a tea base with some type of flavor added, in this case, jasmine tea with taro flavor.
Some recipes will add milk, others will add cream or sweetened condensed milk.
Most versions add in extra sugar, which could be granulated sugar, brown sugar syrup or even honey.
And normally all versions will contain tapioca pearls which are the defining characteristic of bubble tea.
Is taro milk tea purple?
While the taro milk tea sold in boba shops often is a purple in color, however, taro tea is not naturally purple.
Despite the presence of small purple flecks, taro produced a cream-colored drink once processed.
The color you see in the commercial varieties of taro tea usually comes from food coloring added to taro power or from the addition of purple yam for coloring purposes.
Does taro milk tea have dairy?
This recipe does contain milk.
However, it is easy to substitute the milk for almond milk or oat milk to make this milk tea dairy-free.
Also, make sure to buy a taro powder that contains non-dairy creamer.
Health Benefits of Tea
Tea has been used for centuries to treat ailments such as high blood pressure, hypertension, and gastrointestinal upsets.