Hong Kong Bubble Tea


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Discover the rich flavors and chewy textures of Hong Kong Bubble Tea with our authentic recipe. Originating from Hong Kong, this beloved beverage has gained popularity worldwide for its unique combination of tea, milk, and chewy tapioca pearls. In this blog post, we will guide you through the process of making Hong Kong Bubble Tea at home, allowing you to experience the true taste of East Asian refreshment. Prepare yourself for a delightful blend of flavors and textures that will transport you to the bustling streets of Hong Kong.

Bubble tea, also known as boba tea or pearl milk tea, is a delightful and refreshing beverage that originated in Taiwan during the 1980s. Its creation is often credited to a small tea stall owner named Lin Hsiu Hui, who added tapioca balls, also known as “pearls” or “boba,” to her iced tea. This unique addition gave birth to a worldwide sensation.

Over time, bubble tea has evolved into a diverse range of flavors and variations, including the Hong Kong-style bubble tea. Hong Kong-style bubble tea typically includes strong black tea, sweetened condensed milk, and chewy tapioca pearls. It’s a beloved drink in Hong Kong, where residents enjoy it as a tasty and refreshing treat.

Hong Kong Bubble Tea

Hong Kong Bubble Tea is a delightful drink that blends the aromas of freshly brewed tea, creamy milk, and the delightful surprise of chewy tapioca pearls. The key to its popularity lies in the balance of flavors and the fun experience of sipping through a wide straw to enjoy the pearls. This recipe uses traditional Hong Kong methods to create an authentic and satisfying beverage that captures the essence of this beloved drink. Follow our step-by-step instructions and immerse yourself in the world of Hong Kong Bubble Tea.

Tools and Equipment

Prep Time 10 mins Cook Time 20 mins Rest Time 1 hr Total Time 1 hr 30 mins Difficulty: Intermediate Servings: 2 Calories: 221.6 Best Season: Suitable throughout the year


For the Tea Base:

For the Milk Tea:

For the Tapioca Pearls:

Step-by-Step Instructions

Cook the Tapioca Pearls:

  1. In a large pot, bring water to a boil.

  2. Add the tapioca pearls and stir gently to prevent sticking.

  3. Cook the pearls according to the package instructions, usually around 10-15 minutes or until they are soft and chewy.

  4. Once cooked, drain the tapioca pearls and rinse them under cold water to remove excess starch.

  5. Transfer the pearls to a bowl and cover them with cold water until ready to use.

Prepare the Tea Base:

  1. Place the black tea bags in a teapot or heatproof container.

  2. Pour hot water over the tea bags and let them steep for 5 minutes.

  3. Remove the tea bags and set the brewed tea aside.

Make the Milk Tea:

  1. In a saucepan, combine the brewed tea, milk, and sweetener.

  2. Heat the mixture over medium heat until it reaches a gentle simmer.

  3. Stir well to dissolve the sweetener and create a smooth and creamy milk tea.

Assemble the Hong Kong Bubble Tea:

  1. Fill serving glasses with cooked tapioca pearls.

  2. Pour the milk tea over the pearls, leaving some space at the top.

  3. Add ice cubes to chill the drink.

  4. Insert bubble tea straws into each glass and serve.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 2

Amount Per Serving
Calories 221.6kcal
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1.97g4%
Saturated Fat 1.14g6%
Cholesterol 7.34mg3%
Sodium 28.56mg2%
Potassium 117.81mg4%
Total Carbohydrate 49.08g17%
Dietary Fiber 0.34g2%
Sugars 16.7g
Protein 2.15g5%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. Please note that the nutritional values provided are approximate and may vary depending on the specific ingredients and portion sizes used. It's always best to double-check with your specific ingredients and measurements for accurate nutritional information.


Tips and Variations:
  • Adjust the sweetness of the milk tea by adding more or less sweetener.
  • Customize the tea base by using different types of tea, such as jasmine tea or oolong tea.
  • Add a touch of flavor by incorporating syrups like caramel or almond.
  • For a blended version, combine the milk tea, ice, and sweetener in a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Experiment with toppings such as whipped cream, chocolate sauce, or crushed cookies.
Serving Suggestions:
  • Enjoy Hong Kong Bubble Tea as a refreshing beverage on a hot day.
  • Pair it with a delicious street food snack like egg waffles or pineapple buns.
Allergen Information:

Here's the allergen information for Hong Kong Bubble Tea:

  • Dairy: This recipe typically includes sweetened condensed milk, which contains dairy. If you have lactose intolerance or a dairy allergy, consider using a dairy-free milk alternative.

  • Gluten: Tapioca pearls are often made with cassava starch, which is naturally gluten-free. However, some brands may add wheat starch, so be sure to check the packaging if you have a gluten sensitivity.

  • Nut Allergies: Ensure that any flavorings or syrups used in the bubble tea do not contain nuts if you have nut allergies.

Wine or Drink Pairing:

While bubble tea is a delightful beverage on its own, you can pair it with certain foods and snacks for a complete experience:

  • Dim Sum: If you're enjoying bubble tea at a dim sum restaurant, it pairs wonderfully with various dim sum dishes like dumplings, spring rolls, and buns.

  • Asian Snacks: Bubble tea goes well with Asian snacks such as sesame balls, pineapple cakes, or egg tarts.

  • Fruit Plates: Pairing bubble tea with a fresh fruit platter can be a refreshing and healthy choice.

Storage and Leftovers:

While bubble tea is best enjoyed fresh, you can store leftover bubble tea in the following way:

  • Refrigeration: If you have leftover bubble tea, it's best to remove the tapioca pearls and store the tea and pearls separately. Refrigerate the tea in a sealed container for up to 24 hours. Tapioca pearls can be kept in a separate container and refrigerated for a similar duration. Be aware that the pearls may harden over time.

  • Avoid Freezing: Tapioca pearls do not freeze well, so it's not recommended to freeze leftover bubble tea.

  • Reheating: You can reheat the tea portion of the bubble tea by gently warming it on the stove or in the microwave. Be sure to stir it well to prevent scorching.

  • Fresh Pearls: If the tapioca pearls become too hard after refrigeration, you can refresh them by briefly soaking them in hot water or tea before adding them to your fresh bubble tea.

Keywords: Hong Kong Bubble Tea, Bubble Tea, Tapioca Pearls, Milk Tea, Chewy Pearls

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