How to Make a Dirty Chai Latte

How to Make a Dirty Chai Latte

To make a dirty chai latte, all you have to do is take your chai latte and dirty it up a little with some coffee. There. Wasn't that easy.

Doesn't it already have coffee in it?

It's a bit confusing, but a normal chai latte doesn't include any coffee despite the 'latte' in its name. Originating in India thousands of years ago, chai (a word meaning tea) was brewed and infused with spices. This could have been something as simple as mixing tea, water, sugar, and ginger - with milk making its way into the mix later due to British colonial influence.
Other spices may also be added such as cardamom, clove, cinnamon and possibly even peppercorns all in the aid of improving its medicinal qualities.
Today, the chai latte has found itself in coffee shops. This may be to offer a warming drink to people who are reaching their caffeine limit. But, for those of us who aren't, and really want a nice winter warmer, we can dirty things up a little.

Dirty Chai Latte Ingredients:

dirty chai latte spices in jar

The Spice Mix:

- 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon ground cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground fennel seed

This chai spice mix can be stored in a sealed container for up to 1 year, but we doubt you'll be able to make it last that long - chai latte for days!

Additional ingredients:

- 240 ml water
- 1 black tea bag (or however you brew your tea)
- Freshly Roasted coffee for espresso (See our Espresso vs filter article}
- 120 ml of milk (or MILK ALTERNATIVE)
- (optional extras): maple syrup, star anise


- small saucepan for brewing the spices and water
- fine mesh strainer (sieve, cheesecloth, etc)
- 1 selfishly sized mug (or 2 'sharing is caring' mugs - we won't judge)
- a way to brew espresso
- a way to froth milk


1. Combine the water, 1 tsp of spice mix, and the tea bag in the saucepan.
2. bring to the boil over a medium heat.
3. Remove from the heat and leave to rest for about 1 minute.
4. Into your mug, or mugs, brew some espresso - single, double, that's up to you.
5. Strain the rested chai spice through a fine mesh strainer and add it to the mug(s).
6. Foam the milk. Either with an espresso machine's steam wand, or you can use the saucepan to heat the milk (after giving it a quick rinse). Once a few bubbles have started forming at the edges and the milk is hot, remove from the heat and use a whisk or hand frother to foam the milk.
7. Let the foam rest for about 30 seconds.
8. Pour the milk into the mugs (add the optional maple syrup here) and top with a sprinkle of the spice mix and the optional star anise.
9. Sit back in a cosy chair, with a duvet on a winters day and enjoy looking at the winter weather through the window whilst cuddling your very own dirty chai latte.

Whether it's for the alleged medicinal properties of the spices, of you simply love the warming flavours, this is how you make a dirty chai latte that can really be enjoyed.


Written for Recent Beans by Jack Sheard, Freelance Writer - JACKEDCONTENT.COM

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