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Chai Spice Mix

Cozy up with a comforting cup of warm chai tea or chai latte by making your own Chai Spice Mix at home with spices from your own pantry. Easy to make and will have your hands around a spicy mug in no time!

closeup of chai mix in a jar


Chai is technically the word for tea. That’s it!

When I found this out I was totally surprised. Every time I have been order a chai tea I was actually ordering a tea tea!

The word chai, comes from the Chinese word for tea which is “cha,” and has is now used as a general word for Masala Chai, or “spiced” tea.


Masala chai is what we think of as chai tea. It means “mixed spice” tea which is made by brewing black tea with various spices and herbs.

There are many different combinations of the spices and amounts included in the masala mixture depending on the region where it is being made or used.

Many families have their own “recipe” that they like to serve.

Let’s start with the basic ingredients.


  • cardamom
  • ginger
  • nutmeg
  • allspice
  • cinnamon
  • cloves
  • white pepper, optional

The basic masala recipe has uses tea, water, milk, sugar, cardamom, and ginger. Based on the country and region, other spices can be added or omitted.

In some cases, black pepper is used instead of white pepper which adds a spicy kick to the mix.

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The Americanized version is quite different than the Indian version. The Indian version is mostly cardamom with ginger being the secondary spice.

In America we like to add a few other spices to make it feel like other warming spice mixes like apple pie, pumpkin pie, and mulling spice mixes. So our version usually contains cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and cloves.


To make a traditional masala chai, start by combining the water, cardamom, ginger, and other spices if being used. Bring to a simmer and let it become fragrant.

Next, add the milk and tea leaves. Let it simmer for a minute or two. Strain this mixture into a cup, filtering out the spices and leaves.

Sweeten with sugar if desired. Some other options include coconut milk, almond milk, frothed milk, and vanilla extract.

You can also make a tea latte by making a spiced tea concentrate and adding that to a cup of steamed milk. This is what you usually get at the big name coffee houses because it’s quick and easy instead of brewing all the spices and leaves from scratch.

Tea bags are also used. You can find tea bags with the spices included in the market to make it even easier.

A Chai latte is a tea version of a regular latte. A regular latte is a shot of espresso in steamed milk whereas the chai latte is just spiced tea concentrate in steamed milk.

You can also get a “dirty chai” which is a tea latte with a shot of espresso added to it. Talk about an energy boost in the morning!!

overhead picture of chai spice pouring out of jar

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Depending on the tea that is used, the caffeine levels can vary. On average the black tea used contains about 1/3 the amount as coffee.

I love that you can have multiple cups and get a little caffeine kick without feeling jittery. I am not a coffee drinker so I have to get my caffeine kick any way I can get it.

I will say that some coffee shops will brew their iced tea through the same machines that they use to brew their coffee.

This results in a little residual coffee getting mixed with the tea which is a nice surprise in the morning when I need an “extra” boost.


The typical spices included in a masala mix may have many benefits! Eastern medicine uses various spices and herbs to treat ailments and claim that they have special properties.

The natural spices, herbs, and tea leaves contain many antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, and anti-microbial agents.

The ginger can help with digestion and nausea. Cloves can help with minor aches and pains, and cardamom has high levels of Vitamin C and many immune boosting properties too.

The tea and cinnamon can help with blood pressure and lower bad cholesterol.

I am not a doctor so please consult a physician for actual health benefits and uses in treatments.

If you love this recipe as much as I do, please write a five-star review in the comment section below (or on Pinterest with the “tried it” button – you can now add pictures into reviews, too!) and be sure to help me share on facebook!

pinterest image of chai spice mix



overhead of spicy Chai Spice Mix spilling out of a glass jar on to a table with a spoon next to it.

Chai Spice

Yield: 1 cup
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Keep this chai spice mix in your spice cabinet or next to your coffee maker for a quick spice to your morning brew!


  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper


  1. Add all your spices together and store in an airtight container until ready to use in your favorite drink!
  2. Use as needed.


*If you like this recipe, leave me a comment and rate it with some stars.  Thank you!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 26Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 4mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 3gSugar: 0gProtein: 1g

This nutrition information was generated via a third party, Nutritionix, and can not be held liable for any discrepancies in the information provided. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.

Ericka M

Thursday 30th of December 2021

Hi, Can’t wait to try this, this combination of spices looks really good. How much do you suggest adding to water/milk and do the spices dissolve in the liquid or does it have to be strained with a sieve every time? I love the mixture for its convenience but hate the residue on the bottom of the cup.


Monday 10th of January 2022

It's pretty strong so you need to try it to make it to your liking. I would suggest starting with a teaspoon of spice mix per cup of water/milk. They spices should all dissolve but depending on how fine they are ground you might need to strain them.

Erica Gilpin

Thursday 1st of August 2019

This recipe if fantastic! I mix it with coffee, tea, oatmeal, warm milk, and on and on...


Friday 2nd of August 2019

Thank you so much!!


Tuesday 6th of March 2018

I was so happy I tried this! One of my most favorite drinks is an iced chai tea so thats what i had in mind when i mixed all the ingredients. I was out of white pepper but I put everything else in. i ended up making an iced chai latte, I just wanted to see how it would taste without actual tea in it. So I heated up a little 2% milk and added a scant 1/4tsp. of the mix, added a couple spoons of sugar, let it cool and then poured over ice. It was delicious!! As good as any Starbucks or Paneras. And I didnt miss the pepper or the tea in it.

Tuesday 6th of March 2018

I am so glad you liked it! I want to try it know without the pepper! I never really liked all the strong spices but as I get older I love them. I didn't think I would like my Golden Milk Latte but after a few of my Indian bloggers kept telling me about how good it was for me I took the plunge. Since I am in AZ now I want to try it over ice as it gets so hot here. Thank you for sharing your version and being a reader:) Check out my Golden Milk Latte and let me know what you think of that one too:)

Nutmeg Nanny

Tuesday 23rd of February 2016

I love making my own spice blends - this looks awesome!

Thursday 25th of February 2016

Thanks!! I am doing that more and more. Hate preservatives and non-caking agents...

Healing Tomato

Monday 22nd of February 2016

My favorite spice is Basil. It must have been so awesome to grow up in around your family's Italian restaurant. I grew up around a lot of Chai, being Indian. I can tell you that your recipe looks so delicious and it is perfect for any Chai recipe

Thursday 25th of February 2016

I like it too but I have the same problem with cilantro. It tastes like soap when I eat too much of it. I have to take baby steps...

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