There are so many different types of teas on offer, and bubble tea is no exception, with its delicious sweet fruity taste, and jelly pieces at the bottom of the glass are enough to please anyone’s taste buds. However, what if your vegan? the question you what to know Is Bubble Tea Vegan?
Yes, bubble tea can be vegan, however, this really depends on the ingredients that are used to make this tea. There are different types of bubble tea, that are mainly made from milk, fruit, and of course tea. Ingredients like tapioca, jelly, are vegan, but the milky versions, unfortunately, are not.
What Is Bubble Tea?
Bubble tea aka ‘Boba tea’ is a milk tea that was first discovered in Taiwan, where it’s known as ‘Boba Tea’ this tea is easy to identify, by it’s signature chewy tapioca balls.
The tapioca balls are referred to as ‘Pearls’ or ‘Boba, getting the name Boba tea, but over time this name has changed to what we know now as bubble tea.
Bubble tea can actually be served hot or cold, but the most common types are served cold. Flavors in the tea can be added in the form of powder, pulp, or syrup to oolong tea, black or even green tea.
This tea now has a very large presence in places like the Bay Area, which is populated by many Chinese and Vietnamese backgrounds and is served in most Asian restaurants.
Bubble tea is usually served in large transparent cups with a fat straw, this is so the tapioca balls can shoot up though the straw and then chewed.
It’s called bubble tea both because of the tapioca balls and the floating bubbles that are created by the shaking involved in its blending.
Is Bubble Tea Healthy?
There are Some health benefits of bubble tea including its high calcium content, a mineral that’s required by the body for healthy bones.
The tapioca pearls used in bubble tea also contains many essential vitamins and minerals and iron, that’s great to improve things like blood and muscle tissue.
However, that being said, there are high amounts of sugar in bubble tea from high fructose corn syrup, made from a mixture of fructose and glucose.
By adding high fructose corn syrup to your diet, this can increase the potential risk of both liver and heart diseases. Because of the high amounts of sugar, if you consumed bubble tea regularly, this can lead to weight gain over time.
Bubble Tea Ingredients
The pearls are made from tapioca starch, that’s extracted from the cassava plant in South American, which then came to Taiwan from Brazil between 1895 and 1945.
The tapioca pearls start off white, hard, and tasteless, they are then boiled and steeped in sugary caramelized syrup for hours, until transformed into those’s black tapioca pearls.
The oldest known boba tea contains a mixture of hot Taiwanese black tea, small tapioca pearls, condensed milk, and honey. bubble tea can be served hot or cold, but the most common types are served cold rather than hot.
There are different types of milk used in bubble tea, for example, There is condensed milk, powdered milk, almond milk, coconut milk, skim milk, and fresh milk.
But the most important question still remains is bubble tea vegan? Well, this really depends on how your tea is made, there are many types of bubble tea on offer, that are typically made in two ways, the milky version and the fruity version.
Unfortunately the milky versions of the bubble tea, as good, and as sweet as they taste are not vegan. The good news is, the tapioca pearls are. By adding fresh fruit to your tea, that’s known as the fruity versions, you can enjoy a vegan boba tea.
These fruity versions are full vegan, and are typically made with a fruit based syrup in place of milk, that can taste just as good as the milky versions.
So you can still enjoy a refreshing, great tasting tea that is made with all vegan ingredients. Boba tea is so popular now that finding a vegan version shouldn’t be that hard.
Not all sugar or sweeteners used in boba tea are vegan friendly, for example, White sugar gets its color from a refining process, and even though it’s not directly an animal product, it’s still not vegan.
The average cup of bubble tea contains up to 20 teaspoons of sugar, as a result the drink itself is very sweet, but at the same time very enjoyable.
A Great Sweetener for bubble tea is Maple Syrup, not only is it served at most restaurants, but this will give your tea a nice sweet taste, and most importantly it’s vegan friendly.
There are other sweeteners you can use that are vegan friendly, but maple syrup would be the best choice if you want to replicate that sweet flavor you get from boba tea.
Making your own boba tea that’s vegan can be a challenge, but with plenty of practice the rewards are well worth the wait.
Being able to control the ingredients, what level of sweetness and type of milk, or fruit in your bubble tea, can be better than any tea served at restaurants.
You can easily find the ingredients at any supermarket or Asian store, and the best thing about making your own bubble tea at home is, you can make multiple servings that won’t cost you any more.
Bubble Tea Flavors
There are many flavors you can add to bubble tea, not to mention the different types of tea you can use, the possibilities really are endless.
There’s a variety of fruit flavors you can use, you can also go slightly more adventurous adding things like avocado or ginger, whatever you fancy.
The main flavor for most boba tea recipes comes manly from a syrup or powder. The most popular flavors are fruits, particularly tropical fruits, that gives bubble tea that fresh fruity taste.
It’s very important to know that boba teas that are flavored with certain sour fruits shouldn’t include any milk. The reason being, acids in these fruits tend to curdle the milk.
The List of the most popular bubble tea flavors…
- Passion Fruit
- Winter Melon
So is bubble tea vegan? yes of course, but as we discussed in this article, it really depends on the ingredients, and what you add to your tea that makes it vegan or not.
The best thing about fruit Boba teas is.. not only do they taste delicious, but are packed with vitamins and antioxidants, that’s great for cleansing the body of toxins and keeping the immune system strong.
When you first make home made bubble tea, it’s best to experiment with different fruits and flavors, to get that perfect balance and taste.
Experiment with different types of tea as well, like Green tea, Black tea, and Matcha tea which is also great for lattes.