Whether you serve it hot or poured over ice, this boozy chai tea cocktail is soothing on a chilly winter day.
Originating from India, chai tea is a combination of warm, spicy flavors like ginger, cardamom, nutmeg and cloves. These spices make for a soothing cup of tea that is a treat to drink poured over ice in warmer months, but chai tea usually served hot with sugar and cream during the fall and winter.
I have loved chai tea for a long time. For a recent gathering with friends, I turned my favorite tea into a boozy cocktail. I added Kahlua and honey to hot mugs of chai tea and milk.
“This is so rich and delicious,” remarked a friend. “It is comforting and warms you from the inside out.”
The richness of this cocktail comes from Kahlua. Aribica coffee beans, sugar, vanilla and rum are blended together to make this coffee liqueur, a dark blend of flavors coming from Mexico since the 1930s. Kahlua is commonly used to make drinks including the White Russian and the Espresso Martini.
The spicy-warm flavors of the chai tea blend perfectly with the richness of the Kahlua, and the honey adds a bit of sweetness to balance out the slightly bitter taste of the coffee liqueur. The result is a rich blend of creamy goodness. Coffee and tea lovers alike will enjoy this hot sipper.
It is simple to make. Boil some water and milk and add your tea bags. Steep the tea for 10 minutes before adding the rest of your ingredients. If desired, pour the mixture over ice. I like it best when served steaming hot in a festive holiday mug.
Have some fun when garnishing this one. A cinnamon stick, some whipped cream and a pinch of crystalized ginger will add some extra warmth. Serve the cocktail with gingersnap cookies for an inviting after-dinner indulgence.
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 chai tea bags
- 1/25 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 ounces Kahlua
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/4 cup heavy cream or coffee creamer
- cinnamon sticks, whipped cream, pinch of nutmeg for garnish
- In a small saucepan, heat the water and milk to boiling.
- Turn off the heat and add the cinnamon sticks and tea bags to the saucepan. Steep the tea for 10 minutes.
- Add the vanilla, Kahlua, honey and heavy cream. Heat until warm.
- Pour into mugs and garnish with a cinnamon stick.