Liquid Sweeteners for Tea
There’s nothing wrong with liking your tea sweetened. In fact, different sweeteners can take one single cup of tea in many delicious taste directions. Think of an Assam without sugar, with agave or maple syrup or even molasses. Pretty different, huh?
We’ve brought together a quick rundown of common and uncommon liquid sweeteners for tea, and how they can make a difference to what’s in your cup. The nuanced quality of tea allows a sweetener’s personality to stand out, so the impact is noticeable. Bear in mind that some liquid sweeteners possess more nutrients than others, and they all contain sugar.
This is the honey you find on any store shelf and is the most processed. Regular honey is pasteurized, which removes impurities and unfortunately, nutrients. It can add a bit of sweet astringency to a tea’s taste. Check to make sure no sugars or other sweeteners were added back in the honey’s processing. Because of its thickness, regular honey disperses easiest in hot steeped black teas, like Assam or Cream of Earl Grey.
Organic Honey comes from bee farms that follow organic livestock standards, meaning the hives must be free of chemicals and the bees not fed antibiotics. While organic honey is strained, it’s not heated beyond pasteurization like regular honey, and can maintain nutritious vitamins and minerals. Locally crafted organic honey can also help build immunity to local allergens and can give any robust black, oolong or green tea a flavour boost.
Dark, thick molasses is a by-product of sugar cane’s refining process and is the superstar of sweet. The more often the juice is boiled, the darker and richer it gets. Boiling reduces sugar content, while boosting nutrients. Molasses lifts Masala Chai's exotic spice mix to another level. It’s also offers a rich tanginess to other straight black teas like an Assam, or maybe even a Cacao Pu'Erh.
These are just a few suggestions on liquid sweeteners for tea. Each can take the taste experience of a single cup of tea in its own delicious direction, and change the personality of your everyday cup. While some liquid sweeteners pack more nutritive value than others, they all contain a fair amount of sugar. Like all things good, moderation is key.