Taro Milk Tea Guide: What Is Taro Tea, and How to Make Your Own?

Taro milk tea is a bubble tea made with taro, tapioca pearls, and milk. It has a sweet and creamy taste, pastel purple color, and can be enjoyed hot or cold. In this article, we’ll discuss what taro is, and how to make your own taro tea at home!
taro tea

What Is Taro?

Taro, or taro root, is a starchy vegetable native to Southeast Asia and parts of the Pacific Islands. It has a purple or brown exterior, and a white interior that tastes similar to a sweet potato.

Taro is often used as an ingredient in Asian and Southeastern Asian dishes, and it’s the distinguishing ingredient in the purple bubble tea – taro tea! If you’re interested in making your own, keep reading.

Should You Get Taro Root or Taro Powder?

If you want to make taro tea from scratch, using fresh taro root is the best option. It’s available at some Asian grocery stores. But if you can’t find it, taro powder is a convenient substitute. It’s more widely available, and it tastes almost as good! In fact, most bubble tea shops use powdered taro for convenience. So your friends won’t be able to tell the difference in taste.

What Tea Is Best for Taro Boba Tea?

Black tea and jasmine green tea are both popular choices for taro milk tea. Black tea will give the taro a stronger, bolder taste, while green tea will make it lighter and more refreshing. You can also experiment with other types of tea, such as oolong or chai, to find your perfect taro tea blend. We recommend using loose tea leaves over tea bags for better flavor.

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Taro Milk Tea Recipe – 7 Ingredients

You’ll need a blender to make taro milk tea at home. The ingredients you need are (for 3 servings):

  • ½ cup of uncooked tapioca pearls (boiled in 6 cups of water);
  • ⅓ cup of cane sugar or equivalent sweetener (combined with ⅓ cup of water);
  • 1 tablespoon of loose leaf tea (steeped in 1 ½ cups of water);
  • 3 tablespoons of taro powder;
  • 1 cup of whole milk (or full-fat coconut milk);
  • a pinch of salt;
  • ice cubes.

First, cook the tapioca pearls according to package instructions, stirring occasionally so they don’t stick together. In the meantime, make a simple syrup by combining sugar and water in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then let it cool down.

Reserve 3–4 tablespoons of the syrup and pour the rest into a medium-sized mixing bowl. When the tapioca pearls are cooked, strain them and add them to the syrup bowl. Let them sit for at least 30 minutes to absorb the syrup.

Now make the tea base by steeping the tea in hot water (175–180 °F for jasmine tea, 200 °F for black tea) for 2–5 minutes. Allow the tea to cool before combining it with taro powder, milk, 3–4 tablespoons of simple syrup and a pinch of salt in the blender. Blend until smooth.

Finally, put 3–4 tablespoons of tapioca pearls in each glass, then add ice cubes and taro milk tea mixture. Serve immediately, and enjoy!

How to Make Taro Bubble Tea Your Own?

If you’re not quite happy with the taro tea recipe above, don’t be afraid to experiment with different ingredients and flavors. Some bubble tea variations include adding other flavors, such as hazelnut or caramel, or swapping taro for matcha powder.

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You can also make taro tea with taro-flavored syrup or taro ice cream instead of taro powder. The possibilities are endless! If you’re feeling extra creative, try adding taro purée for a unique twist on the classic bubble tea.

How to Make Taro Paste?

If you decided to use the root, you’ll need to make paste out of it. To do this, peel taro root and boil it until it’s tender. Mash or purée the cooked taro in a food processor or blender, adding water as needed to achieve a smooth paste.

The amount you’d use for bubble tea will depend on how strong a taro flavor you want. 3 tablespoons is a good place to start. You can freeze the rest of the paste and use it in other recipes, such as taro buns, buttercream, or taro latte.

Does Taro Tea Have Caffeine?

Did you come here to see whether taro tea is a caffeine-free option? Unfortunately, it does contain caffeine – unless you make it with decaffeinated tea. If you were considering getting some at a bubble tea shop, you can ask whether it can be made with decaf tea.

Taro itself is a root vegetable and doesn’t contain caffeine. The only issue is the tea, so feel free to experiment with taro milk tea made with herbal tisanes, such as chamomile or rooibos.


Taro tea, also known as taro milk tea or taro bubble tea, is a popular Asian drink. This tea is made with taro root powder, which has a slightly nutty taste and a vibrant purple hue. Tapioca pearls are also added for a chewy texture. You can make taro milk tea at home with taro powder, boba pearls, tea, milk, and simple syrup. Feel free to experiment with different flavors and ingredients to make it your own!

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Trying taro tea for the first time? Or looking to add a new flavor to your bubble tea rotation? Let us know how it goes in the comments below. Happy sipping!

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