How to Make the Best Hojicha Latte

Erika Marty

There are dozens of different types of green tea, but one of our all-time favorites is known as hojicha. This green tea stands out from the crowd thanks to its nutty, caramel flavor that rivals a freshly brewed cup of coffee.

Doesn’t sound like a green tea, does it? Instead of mild, vegetal flavors, this Japanese green tea hits the spot when you’re looking for a more robust tea. Best of all, brewing it as a latte makes it feel like an even more indulgent treat. Try hojicha green tea today by brewing it using one of our favorite hojicha latte recipes.

What is Hojicha Tea?

Hojicha is one of the rare Japanese green teas that is roasted rather than steamed during the drying process. The green tea leaves are placed in a porcelain pot and then roasted over charcoal fires. The roasting process causes the green leaves to change to a brilliant burgundy orange hue. In contrast to most vegetal and herbaceous green teas, hojicha offers a nutty flavor with toasty notes of caramel.

Hojicha green tea can be made using a variety of green tea leaves including bancha, sencha, and kukicha. Like matcha lattes, it is wildly popular in Asia though it contains significantly less caffeine than green tea powder. In fact, most of the caffeine is removed during the roasting process so the tea is often consumed in the late afternoon and early evenings.

Hojicha green tea typically comes in powder or loose-leaf form. Both types of hojicha can be made using just the stems of the leaves or a combination of the leaves and the stems. While you can use hojicha powder to make hot tea, it is more commonly used to flavor baked goods.

The flavor of hojicha - often described as similar to espresso or cold brew coffee — can be strong for people who are used to the milder flavors of green tea. As a result, the tea is often served as a milk tea or latte to balance out the flavors. Here are our favorite hojicha green tea latte recipes.

Basic Hojicha Latte Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 6 ounces of water
  • 1 tablespoon hojicha loose leaf tea
  • 6 ounces milk (dairy, coconut, and almond milk work best)
  • 1 teaspoon sweetener if desired (brown sugar, maple syrup, or agave)
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  • Cinnamon (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Bring water to 203 degrees Fahrenheit using a temperature-controlled teapot. If you don't have one, bring water to a rapid boil in a pan and set the boiling water aside for 2 minutes.
  2. Place the hojicha tea leaves in a tea strainer and set in a mug. Pour the hot water on top and steep the leaves for 3 minutes.
  3. Add sweetener if desired.
  4. Simmer the milk in a small saucepan on the stove. Use a milk frother or whisking tool to whip the milk into a thick foam.
  5. Place the frothed milk on top of the tea concentrate. Add a dollop of whipped cream and cinnamon powder as garnish if desired and enjoy!

Iced Hojicha Latte Recipe With Chai Spices

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Bring water to 203 degrees Fahrenheit using a temperature-controlled kettle.
  2. Steep all the tea leaves for 3 to 4 minutes and remove.
  3. Add in the maple syrup and sea salt.
  4. In a small saucepan, simmer the milk and use a frother to whip it into a thick foam. Pour into the teacup, stir well and enjoy!

Try Something New With Roasted Green Tea

Hojicha is a unique Japanese green tea that can be brewed as an iced tea or a hot tea using loose leaves, hojicha powder, or tea bags. Its rich flavor profile features caramel tasting notes and nutty undertones. It's more robust than a standard green tea and pairs well with other roasty flavors including chai and oolong tea. Try out this rich and indulgent green tea with one of our favorite hojicha tea latte recipes above. It'll knock the socks off those sugar-laden, syrupy drinks at Starbucks.


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Erika Marty

As a digital nomad, I get to work from anywhere in the world and discover new teas every week. When I'm not working, you can find me mountain biking, hiking, and petting every stray dog I meet.

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