In this article, we're discussing rooibos tea.
We'll tell you everything you want to know about how it tastes and how to drink it as well as what you can do to make it even tastier.
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What Does Rooibos Taste Like?
The African red bush tea called rooibos is often a welcome change from the caffeine-free tea standards like chamomile and peppermint.
Its flavor is rather unique.
Rooibos tea is soft and sweet with a dash of vanilla.
Some people get nutty notes, which may be stronger or weaker in different cuts.
The natural sweetness is the most amazing thing about this tea.
What Does Rooibos Smell Like?
The scent of rooibos is almost identical to the taste, though it's stronger with robust vanilla and slight chocolate aromas that are released when the tea is steeped in hot water.
In dried form, it smells a bit tart, somewhat like a Meyer lemon.
It's also frequently described as woody, though it's very fresh and sweet-smelling.
The scent is certainly complex, but in a nutshell, it's potently vanilla-like and herbal.
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Do You Have Milk with Rooibos Tea?
For the most part, rooibos is prepared the way chamomile tea is.
That is, without milk.
But there are plenty of people who do add milk and sweetener to their cup of ruby-tinted rooibos.
A splash of almond milk or any other nut milk would complement the subtle nuttiness of the tea, but any vegan milk would work nicely.
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How Do You Make Rooibos Tea Taste Better?
You generally don't need to worry about a bitter, over-extracted flavor in rooibos tea as it doesn't contain the hefty dose of tannins found in black teas.
But if you're not one for the flavor of straight rooibos tea, there are many ways to make the taste more pleasant.
You could try the vegan milk method or add a squeeze of lemon and a drop of agave syrup.
Otherwise, rooibos blends with fruits and herbs are lovely.
Experiment with brewing it with other teas, ginger, oranges, lavender and even thyme or rosemary.
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Rooibos Serving Tips
Speaking of ways to spruce up your rooibos, we've linked some videos with recipes that'll get you started.
Warning: they may make you want to run out and buy a box of rooibos tea.
This video shows you how to make a minty, citrusy version of an iced rooibos tea.
It's delicious on its own, but you may even use it in mocktails and smoothies.
Here's what you'll need:
- Rooibos tea
- Maple syrup
- Lemon and lime
- Ice cubes
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You can also make chai tea with rooibos. This recipe is made with chai-spiced rooibos, but you can use regular rooibos and add a chai spice blend. If you have these ingredients, vegan milk, cocoa powder and sweetener, you can make this rooibos chai.
The sweet vanilla taste in rooibos tea makes it a delicious alternative to typical herbal teas.
Drink it plain, with coconut sugar or with a creamy nut milk.
If you like iced tea, you'll love iced rooibos with fresh-squeezed lemon and a sweetener like maple syrup or agave.
And for the chai lovers, try rooibos instead of black tea in your chai for a decadent caffeine-free option.
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