Skip to Content

How To Make Iced Milk Tea? (5 Tips For the Best Bubble Tea)

How To Make Iced Milk Tea

Milk tea has been enjoyed for centuries all over the world, and in particular in Southeast Asia.

In the hot and humid climates of the tropics or hot summer days in the north, ice cubes are frequently added to regular hot tea to make iced milk tea, a cold, refreshing beverage that is frequently found in anything from street vendors to Thai restaurants.

To make iced milk tea, first make milk tea with black tea bags or leaves, hot water, and ¼ cup of whole milk or condensed milk.

Then, simply allow the tea to cool to room temperature, then add ice cubes. If you like, you can add sweeteners like brown or white sugar, but if you use condensed milk, the beverage will already be sweetened.

Ingredients for iced milk tea:

  • 3 tablespoons loose-leaf black tea or a tea bag
  • 1 cup just-boiled water
  • ¼ cup chilled full-cream evaporated milk
  • Ice cubes

Possible sweeteners, add 1 teaspoon or to taste:

  • Simple syrup
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Maple syrup


  • Add 3 tablespoons loose-leaf black tea to hot water and let steep for about 10 minutes
  • Set aside until the brewed tea is cooled to room temperature.
  • Add ice cubes to a 12oz or 16 oz. glass. Pour tea into a glass.
  • Add chilled evaporated milk to the glass. Add sweetener, if desired, and stir. Enjoy!

Varieties of black tea are the best type to use for the right flavor.

Varieties include Ceylon, Orange Pekoe, or English Breakfast, and a combination of these teas also works well.

For a more distinct taste, use green tea or matcha tea.

For stronger tea, add one more tablespoon to steep in the same amount of water.

Feel free to use non-dairy evaporated milk if you are dairy-free. Add fewer ice cubes if you do not want your tea to get too diluted.

Options to sweeten your tea, add a teaspoon (or to taste):

  • Simple syrup: to make simple syrup, heat together equal parts water and granulated sugar stir until the sugar dissolves. Let cool completely.
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Maple syrup

To get real fancy, add boba pearls to make bubble tea.

Boba tea is a recent rage that has swept all over the globe, with strong roots in Thai ice tea and Hong Kong milk tea.

This popular drink has the newest addition to the classic milk tea – chewy tapioca pearls made from tapioca starch.

These chewy tapioca balls can be found in any Asian grocery store, or you can get creative and make them at home! Make a large batch, and freeze the unused portions for future use.

Should I put ice in my milk tea?

Should I put ice in my milk tea

Absolutely! Adding ice in your milk tea gives you a great recipe that hits the spot during hot summer days! Crisp and refreshing homemade iced tea is easy to make and easy to scale up for a crowd.

This is always a hit at summer gatherings.

You can add your favorite sweetener or serve iced tea unsweetened.

Use black tea bags for a strong brew, and if you can boba pearls, make sure to have a big straw with which to suck them into.

Bubble tea is all the rage these days and this popular drink can be easily made at home.

Is milk tea good iced?

Is milk tea good iced

Iced tea does indeed have health benefits, and cold tea is perfect for a hot summer’s day or a tropical climate.

It’s packed with antioxidants and has much less acidity than coffee, making it a great option for folks with a sensitive GI system.

And as a bonus, it is an absolutely delicious drink!

Tips for the Best Iced Tea

  1. Be sure to measure the water. To prevent your tea from turning out too strong or too watery, measure the water to make sure you aren’t adding too much or too little.
  2. Set a timer for the steeping. Don’t let the tea steep longer than 10 minutes, or else it will turn bitter. Set a timer so you don’t forget to remove the bags.
  3. You don’t have to stick to the classic black tea! Experiment with different teas to find out what kind of tea is your favorite. You could also go caffeine-free and use a variety of herbal teas. Mint tea is especially delicious iced.
  4. Play around with different sweeteners for a different tea flavor. You can use honey, brown sugar syrup, coconut sugar, or even maple syrup to sweeten your tea. Play around with different sweeteners and tea combinations to see what you like best!
  5. Use filtered water. Use filtered water instead of tap water to get the smoothest flavor. There are lots of additives and minerals in tap water that can dull the taste.

Almost 70% of people in the world are lactose intolerant to some degree.

Should you be one of them, there are plenty of healthier, plant-based milks for you to try out, like:

  • Almond milk
  • Soy milk
  • Oat milk
  • Rice milk

How to make iced milk tea with tea bags?

How to make iced milk tea with tea bags

While you can make large batches of iced milk tea with loose tea leaves, if you simply want a cup of tea, it might be easier to use tea bags.

To make iced milk tea, first you must be regular milk tea, then let it cool and add the ice cubes.


  • 8 bags of black tea
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 3/4 cup quick-cooking tapioca pearls
  • whole milk to serve, or your choice of milk
  • simple syrup to serve, or your choice of sweetener

To make simply syrup, mix equal parts sugar and water and boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves.


  1. Prepare the tea
  • Steep the tea bags or leaves with 4 cups of freshly boiled water. Let the tea sit in water until it cools completely.
  1. Prepare the simple syrup
  • Add the water and sugar to a saucepan and quickly stir everything together.
  • Heat the water on medium-high and cook until the water boils and the sugar completely dissolves.
  • Remove the saucepan from heat and let the simple syrup cool before transferring to a jar.
  1. Cook the tapioca pearls
  • Bring about 4 cups of water to boil and add the tapioca pearls.
  • Stir the pearls and wait for them to float to the top. Then, cook them for another 5 minutes.
  • Test a pearl to see if it has reached the desired level of softness and chewiness.
  • Cook the pearls for another few minutes if they are still stiff. Use a slotted spoon to remove the pearls from the hot water.
  • Quickly rinse the pearls with water.
  • Transfer the pearls into a bowl, and mix the pearls with a few tablespoons of simple syrup or brown sugar to taste.
  1. Assemble the drinks
  • Strain the tea into a pitcher.
  • 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 or milk mixture and the jar of simple syrup ready so that each guest can adjust their drinks to their taste.

The drink is usually served with a big straw, 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.

How many calories are in iced milk tea?

How many calories are in iced milk tea

The basic iced milk tea is made from black tea from bags or loose leaves soaked in hot water. 

Then, it is mixed with a milk base from a creamer.

To finish off, tapioca pearls are added to the drink. For a 700 ml or 24 oz serving of iced milk tea, which is usually the large cup size in most boba shops, the total bubble tea calories are 700 kcal.

Boba or milk teas have to be enjoyed moderately.

They contain large amounts of sugar, sweetener, or syrup that when consumed in excess, might be detrimental to your health.

Excessive amounts of sugar can lead to diabetes, obesity, hypertension and heart probems.

A full serving of boba or milk tea often contains about 60 g of sugar.

Let’s assume that the daily maintenance calories for an average adult man are 2,500 kcal, and for an average adult woman are 2,000 kcal.

In this case, one large cup of 700 ml bubble milk tea would take about one-third of the daily required calorie intake!

We could even consider a cup of the beverage as a meal replacement from a nutrition point of view.

Therefore, we find this quite concerning as many boba fans consider the beverage as an after-meal treat!

If you’re ordering boba tea at a store, you can control the amount of sugar in your beverage as more stores allow some flexibility in choosing how sweet you want your drink.