To understand what tiger milk tea is, first we must understand what boba or bubble tea is.
Bubble tea was first created in Taiwan in the 1980s.
It was originally called “zhenzhu nai cha”, which literally translated means “pearl milk tea.”
The tea gets its name from the pearls that are used to make it.
These pearls are made of tapioca starch and are also known as boba.
Bubble tea quickly became popular in Taiwan and soon spread to other parts of Asia.
It eventually made its way to North America and Europe.
There are many different types of bubble tea.
The most common type is black tea with milk and tapioca pearls.
Other popular types include green tea, oolong tea, and fruit tea.
Other variations can also be the type of milk used.
While whole milk is most commonly used, boba tea is popular in Asia, where a vast percentage of the population is lactose-intolerant, leading boba tea shops to offer dairy-free, plant-based alternatives such as:
- Almond milk
- Soy milk
- Rice/Oat milk
Tiger milk tea is a brown sugar boba drink that gets its name from the streaks of syrup that run down the sides of the glass, closely resembling tiger stripes.
This popular beverage has a sweet, toffee flavor, silky, creamy texture, and aesthetically pleasing colors.
This type of boba tea was first prepared in the 1980s, but today it comes in many forms, flavors, or thicknesses.
It is a drink of many names, like:
- Tiger boba tea
- Brown sugar bubble tea
- Tiger sugar milk tea
- Brown sugar pearl milk tea
- Pearl bubble tea
This is one of the most elegant-looking boba tea drinks, but the tiger milk tea recipe uses very simple ingredients.
This rich, creamy beverage has a sweet caramel taste and a super silky texture with chewy tapioca pearls.
What is Tiger milk tea made of?
You can easily make tiger milk tea at home. Here’s how!
Making the syrup
- The first step would be to make the syrup that gives the drink its brown stripes
- Use brown sugar, not white
- Take a pot, and add 1 cup of muscovado sugar or brown sugar with an equal amount of water.
- Heat the saucepan until it boils, and then reduce to a low flame to allow it to simmer.
- Remember that we need a thick consistency, and a thin syrup must be avoided, so avoid mixing continuously.
- Now, once properly melted, set this mixture aside to cool when you’ve achieved the desired thickness.
Make the tea
- The next step is to boil only one or a half cup of milk.
- Add two black tea bags to the boiling milk or use tea leaves to make steeped tea
- Certain loose black tea leaves have a pleasing scent and complex flavors, which enhances the flavors.
- Steep for 3-5 minutes, steep the black tea leaves. Discard the tea bag or sieve the loose leaves and let your tea cool entirely, ideally to room temp.
- Put the brewed tea into your shaker, along with a few ice cubes.
- Shake well, then transfer it to your cup.
Add the pearls and syrup
- Add as many pearls as you want into the mixture
- Black tapioca pearls are commonly found in Asian grocery stores.
- Pour the tea in
- Pour the syrup in, allowing it to touch the sides of the glass
- You’re all set!
What does Tiger milk tea taste like?
Brown sugar compliments the strong tea flavor and causes the stripes of brown to run down the sides of the glass, hence, giving the drink its name.
This sugary milk tea may taste delicious, toasted, and nutty, based on how well the syrup was made.
This tea has become very famous all around the globe with a plethora of different types and flavors available.
Be warned, tiger milk teas are sugar bombs and can be remarkably sweet!
If you don’t have that much of a sweet tooth, make sure you request a drink with lower sugar content.
Excessive sugar consumption has been linked to numerous health problems such as hypertension, obesity, and diabetes.
Despite this, the bubble tea explosion has hit almost all parts of Southeast Asia and bubble tea stores have made their way into the US, from New York to Los Angeles.
Social media is one of the main culprits for this explosive growth.
Countless YouTube channels are available, each surveying bubble tea shops in the respective areas of the authors, while posting aesthetically pleasing photos of their elaborate arrangements of bubble tea seems to be a fad that is catching on, and catching on fast.
The bubble tea craze is here to stay, that much is clear.
With countless shops everywhere in Asia, and more by the minute popping up in the US, Canada, and Europe, bubble tea is now a common sight!
Enjoy, but be careful of all that sugar!