How to make jelly using your preferred type of tea: easy, refreshing and healthy dessert
Nothing is more refreshing than a light gelatin dessert or jello on a hot day. And let’s not forget the irresistible appeal of a cold glass of tea, right?
Well, this incredibly simple recipe brings together the best of both worlds: gelatin and tea.
And when I say easy, I truly mean it. You don’t even need to turn on the stove!
What you’ll need
You can use gelatin in powder, flakes, or sheet form, depending on your preference.
Personally, I usually use gelatin powder because I always have some in my pantry.
For a vegan version, you can use agar-agar (vegetal “gelatin”), but then you’ll need to cook it following package’s instructions.
Feel free to select any tea that matches your mood and taste preferences, be it real tea, herbal tea, or blends.
Bellow you’ll find some examples!
You can also use either loose leaf tea or teabags, depending on what you have.
In my mother’s case, she often uses rooibos teabags for this recipe.
As for most pictures in this post, I chose white jasmine tea to satisfy my cravings for floral and light flavor.
I find this gelatin delicious even without adding sweeteners.
On hot days, it’s refreshing and satisfying on its own.
And if I have a sweet tooth, I can always enjoy combining it with fresh fruits or some ice cream.
But you prefer a sweeter taste, you can add some sweetener while the tea is still hot, and it will dissolve effortlessly.
How to make it
Time needed: 10 minutes
How to make tea gelatin
- Bloom the gelatin
Hydrate your gelatin according to the instructions on the package.
If you’re using gelatin powder, mix it with a small amount of water.
If you have gelatin sheets, soak them in water until they become soft and pliable.
- Make tea
Steep the tea in hot water.
Important: be mindful of the steep temperature and time depending on which tea you are using.
After the steep time is over, remove the tea solids.
- Add gelatin
Add the hydrated gelatin into the hot tea and stir with a spoon until the gelatin has completely dissolved. It just takes some seconds.
- Allow the gelatin to set
Once the mixture has cooled to room temperature, place it in the refrigerator and let it chill for approximately 3 hours or until it has solidified.
- You may use a slightly higher amount of tea compared to what you would typically use for drinking so you get a flavorful gelatin
- Don’t steep the tea for too long and stick to the recommended water temperature for your specific tea to achieve the best flavor.
- Make sure that the tea is heated to at least 60°C (140°F) to allow the gelatin to dissolve properly.
Luckily, even delicate green teas can usually withstand this temperature without any issues.
Ideas to make tea gelatin
Here are some examples of how you can enjoy tea jello:
Jasmine Tea Jelly
The floral aroma of jasmine green tea or jasmine white tea is particularly delightful on hot days.
Prepare jasmine tea according to the vendor’s instructions.
For example, in the case of jasmine white tea, it may need to be brewed in water at 60°C – 140°F.
After brewing the tea, add the bloomed gelatin as described in the recipe provided in this article.
Butterfly pea tea Jelly
This herbal tea makes for such a beautiful gelatin dessert that I am even planning to write a separate post dedicated to the recipe.
Steep chamomile flowers, teabags, or tea sachets in freshly boiled water. After 10 minutes, strain the flowers or remove the tea bags, and then add the hydrated gelatin.
You can also use chamomile blends.
In the picture, I used chamomile vanilla teabags from Higher Living, and the result was irresistible.
The best part is that since it’s caffeine-free, it’s perfect as a nighttime treat, especially during hot summer nights!
Milk tea gelatin
Adding milk to your tea is also a great way to create delicious tea jelly!
Personally I find milk tea jelly tastes better sweetening it.
Use high-end tea
Don’t hesitate to use your favorite high-end tea for making jelly, as it’s a wonderful way to savor its flavors.
Just make sure to keep your fridge free of strong aromas while the jelly cools, or place it in a closed container.
For this picture I used shincha (the first harvest of the year).
Look at how beautiful shincha tea jelly looks!:
Recommended water temperature for different types of tea
Different types of teas call for different water temperature and steeping time:
- Herbal tea – it’s recommended to steep these (everything that isn’t real tea) in fresh boiled water. You can steep them for 5-10 minutes, since they usually don’t get bitter even if you steep them for longer.
- Black tea – most times you can steep black tea at around for 3-5 minutes at a temperature of 95°C (203°F)
- Green tea – green tea, especially Japanese green tea, is quite delicate, so it’s important to avoid using water that is too hot. Usually green tea is prepared with water ranging from 60-80°C (140-175°F) and steeped for approximately 1-3 minutes.
You can use cold brewed tea or also any type of cold tea, but in that case, you’ll need to heat the tea liquid to at least 60°C (140°F) to ensure the gelatina melts properly.
This unsweetened gelatin can last for 3-5 days when stored properly in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
However, the edges and surfaces may dry and harden over time.
Easy Tea Gelatin Recipe
- Tea pot Or mug to make tea
- Glass or cup
- Container to set gelatin
- 1 Tbsp. Powder gelatin Around 3 sheets gelatin
- 3 Tbsp Water
- 3 tsp Tea of choice or 3 teabags
- 2 Cups Hot water
- Bloom the gelatin according to package’s recommendations.If you use powder gelatin, combine it in a glass with a small amount of water (around 3 Tbsp).If you use gelatin sheets, hydrate them im room temperature water until they are soft.
- Make tea by steeping the tea leaves or teabags in hot water.Follow the recommended water temperature and steep time for the tea you are using (check cheat sheet in the post).
- When the steep time is over, remove the tea solids and add the hydrated gelatin. Stir with a spoon until the gelatin is dissolved.
- Pour into mold. When the mixture isn’t hot anymore, let it set in the fridge for at least 3-6 hours.
- You can adjust the amount of gelatin to your desired texture. Decrease it to 2 teaspoons of powder for a softer gelatin, or increase it for a firmer consistency.