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This summery matcha boba tea (green milk tea) is sweet, rich, and earthy, packed with antioxidants, can be enjoyed warm or on ice, and is much cheaper and healthier to make at home!

process shot of adding matcha powder to glass

Bubble tea (boba tea, pearl milk tea, and tapioca milk tea) is a popular beverage that traditionally combines warm or chilled milk tea – most traditionally, black tea – with chewy tapioca pearls for a super satisfying beverage. This time, we’re making sweet, creamy, slightly earthy, energizing matcha boba tea (green milk tea!).

Not only is making non-dairy milk tea at home more cost-effective, but it’s healthier, too. It’s preservative and additive free, you can control the amount of sugar and fat, and – unlike many tea shops which use a ‘matcha mix’ – this version uses 100% matcha powder, meaning 100% of the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, brain-boosting benefits.

Best of all, this dairy-free matcha milk tea is really simple to make. Just cook the boba, prepare the tea, and combine all the ingredients in a tall glass. This is a simple and delicious way to satisfy your bubble tea cravings, chilled or warm, all year long. You might also enjoy chocolate milk tea, mango bubble tea, and strawberry milk tea.

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The Ingredients

ingredients for Matcha Boba Tea (Green Milk Tea) measured out against a white surface
  • Green tea: The quality of the matcha green tea powder matters. We recommend using a ceremonial grade or premium grade matcha, which has better color, flavor, and more antioxidants. Avoid culinary-grade matcha if possible.

Look for matcha powder that is lighter/brighter over powders that are dark, murky, and/or brownish.

  • Water: To make the matcha base.
  • Tapioca pearls: Use regular or quick-cooking tapioca balls in brown or white. Adjust the amount to between ½-1 cup per serving.
  • Plant-based milk: Any will work. I.e., coconut milk, almond milk, oat milk, soy milk, etc. (the latter two are creamiest). For an even creamier version, use vegan creamer.
  • Sweetener: Use your preferred sweetener. i.e., agave, maple syrup, coconut sugar, regular sugar, or a sugar alternative (like swerve/erythritol). Adjust to taste.
  • Ice: Optional. Use matcha ice cubes to avoid watering down the bubble tea.

What Else Could I Add to Green Milk Tea?

  • Vanilla extract: Use natural vanilla for the best flavor.
  • Strawberry matcha boba: Make a simple strawberry puree combining ⅓-½ cup strawberries with a little sweetener. Leave them to macerate for 10-15 minutes, then muddle/mash the berries slightly. Add it over the boba layer.
  • Vegan jelly: There are several popular jellies to add to boba. Coconut or mango fruit jelly work well in matcha bubble tea.  
  • Brown sugar boba: Make a quick brown sugar syrup by combining 1-2 tbsp of brown sugar and boiling water and mixing until the sugar dissolves. Mix this into the boba at the bottom of the glass and leave it to soak for 10-15 minutes.
  • Whipped vegan coconut cream: To garnish the matcha boba tea when serving.  
  • Red beans: A sweet red bean topping (canned or homemade) pairs well with matcha.

How to Make Matcha Boba Tea?

  • 1) First, cook the tapioca pearls according to their package instructions.
  • 2) Meanwhile, bring the water to just below a boil, then leave it to cool for 2-3 minutes.

The ideal temperature is 80C/175F. If the water is too hot, it can make the matcha bitter.

  • 3) Then, in a small bowl, whisk the matcha powder (using a matcha whisk is best!) and water for about a minute until fully dissolved. Then set aside the mixture to cool.

You can mix the sweetener directly into this or add it directly into the glass later.

  • 4) To assemble the matcha boba tea, scoop the cooked tapioca pearls into a tall glass along with the sweetener (if you didn’t add it to the matcha). Then, add the plant-based milk before slowly pouring in the matcha to create a beautiful layered green milk tea.

To enjoy the green tea milk tea cold, you can optionally add ice to the glass first. For a warm version, heat the plant-based milk first. Serve it with a long spoon or a wide bubble tea straw, and enjoy!

FAQs

Does matcha bubble tea have caffeine?

On average, a cup of matcha contains about 70mg of caffeine (compared to between 100-140mg in coffee). However, the caffeine in matcha regulates your energy in a far more even way than coffee, providing a slow release for a prolonged energy boost (and no jitters!).

Can I mix matcha without a whisk?

If you don’t have a whisk, use a small handheld frother, an immersion blender, or even a regular blender.

Can You Make Boba Milk Tea Ahead?

The matcha milk tea mixture can be prepared up to 3 days in advance. However, the tapioca pearls should be made fresh, as they will become tough after just 3-4 hours of cooking them.

Top Recipe Tips and Notes

  • Use warm water: Boiling water can scorch the matcha and turn it bitter. 80C/175F is the ideal temperature.
  • Whisk matcha thoroughly: It should be thicky, frothy and lump-free.
  • Sweeten to taste: In fact, you can tweak the ratios of any element in this matcha boba tea.
  • Cook boba fresh: It needs to be consumed in 3-4 hours before becoming tough/chewy.
  • Enjoy it warm, chilled, or on ice: Enjoy it as is or with ice for refreshing colder versions. To enjoy it warm, heat the plant-based milk.
completed Matcha Boba Tea (Green Milk Tea) in a glass against a light background

More Fun Vegan Drinks

Or enjoy browsing our entire collection of budget-friendly vegan drink recipes!

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Matcha Boba Tea (Green Milk Tea)

5 from 49 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 tall glass
This summery matcha boba tea (green milk tea) is sweet, rich, and earthy, packed with antioxidants, can be enjoyed warm or on ice, and is much cheaper and healthier to make at home!

Ingredients 

  • cup of cooked tapioca pearls
  • 1 teaspoon of green matcha powder
  • ¼ cup of boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon of agave or maple syrup
  • 1 cup of plant-based milk
  • 1 cup ice (optional)

Instructions 

  • In a small bowl, whisk the matcha powder with boiling water for at least one minute. Set this mixture aside and let it cool down.
  • To a tall glass, add the tapioca pearls and sweetener of choice. Mix well to combine.
  • Add the ice, if using. Then add the plant-based milk and slowly add the matcha to create a layer.

Notes

  • Use warm water: Boiling water can scorch the matcha and turn it bitter. 80C/175F is the ideal temperature.
  • Whisk matcha thoroughly: It should be thicky, frothy and lump-free.
  • Sweeten to taste: In fact, you can tweak the ratios of any element in this matcha boba tea.
  • Cook boba fresh: It needs to be consumed in 3-4 hours before becoming tough/chewy.

Nutrition

Calories: 303kcalCarbohydrates: 64gProtein: 4gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 0.02gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 361mgPotassium: 144mgFiber: 2gSugar: 17gVitamin A: 204IUVitamin C: 12mgCalcium: 332mgIron: 2mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Toni Okamoto
Course: Drink
Cuisine: Asian
Method: Stovetop
Diet: Vegan
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂
About

Toni Okamoto

“They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
‘Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways…
we got to start taking better care of ourselves ” – Dead Prez

More about Toni Okamoto

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Love making boba tea at home and matcha version was absolutely delicious! Will definitely be cooling down with this often!