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This Starbucks Chai (Tea) Latte is my favorite afternoon pick-me-up. It only takes a few minutes to make and is the perfect combination of a sweet treat and a caffeine boost. Top it with whipped cream and extra cinnamon or enjoy it as is, either way it is delicious. Plus it is way better than Starbucks because you can customize it to your liking.
Chai is my favorite kind of tea. I typically brew a cup in the afternoon to propel myself through the rest of the day. Since the temperature has been dropping lately, I have been gravitating towards a hot chai with some milk and honey.
I also love to order chai lattes when I am out at a local coffee shop or Starbucks. If I have already had my coffee, of course.
I decided to try making a “fancier” chai drink at home, like the coffee shops. And it seriously turned out so tasty, I knew I had to share the chai tea latte recipe.
There are a few different methods I tried to replicate the Starbucks chai at home. My personal favorite is making the chai concentrate from tea bags because you can control the sweetness level. Hope you enjoy!!xx
- Enjoy this Starbucks chai (tea) latte hot or iced
- Only a few ingredients needed
- Can be made with regular or non-dairy milk
- Instructions for making your own chai or using store bought concentrate
- Less caffeine than coffee
- Chai Concentrate: If you are using a store bought concentrate other than the Tazo brand or the ones mentioned above, be sure to check the concentrate to milk ratio. Some do not call for a 1:1 ratio. Follow the ratio on the packaging.
- Milk: Any unsweetened milk or non-dairy milk, like almond, coconut, or oat milk, will work.
- Honey: The Starbucks chai concentrate contains honey. So to make this a true copycat Starbucks chai tea latte, I like to sweeten my unsweetened concentrate with honey. If you are using a sweetened concentrate, you will probably not need any more sweetener.
Chai Concentrate Options
1. Chai Concentrate from Tea Bags
This is my favorite method because chai tea bags are easy to find and have a long shelf life. You can also use as much (or as little) of any sweetener of choice or make a sugar free chai latte. You can easily whip up a small or large batch of the concentrate and you only need 2 ingredients, chai and water. I steep 2 tea bags in about ½ cup of boiling water for about 8 minutes. Sweeten with honey, sugar, brown sugar, stevia, monk fruit, Splenda, etc.
Chai concentrate to milk ratio: 1:1
2. Tazo Chai Concentrate (Starbucks brand)
Tazo is a very popular tea brand owned by starbucks. You can find their products in most grocery stores. This is the tea that Starbucks uses for their tea lattes and other beverages.
Starbucks uses a special (and more concentrated) version of the Tazo Chai Concentrate that is not sold commercially. The Tazo Classic Chai Concentrate is already sweetened and I find it to be a little too sweet. They also have a skinny version that I have not tried (perfect for making a skinny chai tea latte like Starbucks). It has less sugar so it might not taste as sweet.
Chai to milk ratio: 1:1
3. Homemade Chai Concentrate
I have never made chai concentrate from scratch. It is a combination of black tea bags and spices. These recipes are very highly rated and the ones I recommend if you want to make your own chai.
4. Best Store Bought Chai Concentrate
I have tried the chai concentrate by Tazo and Trader Joe’s. Unfortunately they are both already sweetened and too sweet for me. This is why I typically make my own concentrate from chai tea bags. This article ranks and reviews some popular chai brands if you are looking to find the best store bought option.
Oregon Chai makes a sugar-free chai concentrate that has great reviews on Amazon.
Helpful Equipment & Tools
- Milk Frother: Great for aerating milk or whisking matcha or other additions into the chai concentrate.
- Calphalon Classic Hard-Anodized Nonstick Pots and Pans: The small pot in this set is what I use to make my homemade chai concentrate from tea bags (method 1).
- LUXU Glass Coffee Mugs Set of 4: Great quality and sized mugs for coffee or tea lattes.
- Combine chai concentrate and milk.
- Serve over ice or hot.
Step by Step
Step 1: Combine hot or chilled chai concentrate with hot or cold milk.
Step 2: Serve over ice or hot with whipped cream and cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice on top.
Make Ahead & Storage
- Make Ahead: You can make homemade chai concentrate in advance and store it in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days.
- Store bought chai concentrate should have storage instructions on the back of the container. Most are good for about one week after opening in the fridge.
- Copycat Starbucks iced chai (or hot) lattes are best consumed right away. I do not recommend storing the chai concentrate and the milk mixed together.
- I do not recommend freezing chai concentrate or chai tea lattes (copycat).
- For a Starbucks copycat iced chai latte, make the chai concentrate ahead of time. You want the concentrate to have time to chill. I recommend making it at least one day in advance. It will last for 4-5 days in the refrigerator.
- For a hot chai latte, froth and warm the milk. The frothed milk makes the drink taste like a traditional latte. I also recommend warming up the concentrate for about 30 seconds in the microwave.
- This Starbucks copycat chai tea latte recipe is very customizable. This is one of the reasons I love making chai lattes at home. You can adjust the amount of milk or sweetener to your taste.
- Chai concentrate: See the Chai Concentrate section above for different methods for making your own and store bought options for chai concentrate.
- Chai pumpkin spice latte: Add 1 Tablespoon of pumpkin puree and a pinch pumpkin pie spice to the milk to make a pumpkin chai latte. You can also add homemade pumpkin cream to your chai tea latte.
- Chai matcha latte: Whisk in ½ - 1 teaspoon of matcha powder into the chai concentrate.
- Keto chai tea latte: Use method 1 to make the concentrate or buy the sugar-free chai concentrate mentioned above. Use any low carb milk (like almond or coconut) and keto sweetener, like monk fruit.
- Dirty chai latte: Add 1 shot of espresso or strongly brewed coffee to the chai latte.
- Vanilla sweet cream chai latte: Add a splash of vanilla extract to the chai concentrate.
- Cold foam: Top your Starbucks iced chai latte with homemade cold foam.
Starbucks Chai (Tea) Latte
- ½ cup chai concentrate, see Chai Concentrate Options section above*
- ½ cup milk*
- honey, simple/maple/brown sugar syrup, or sugar, to taste*
- whipped cream
- cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
- Review all recipe notes and instructions before beginning.
- Combine hot or chilled chai concentrate with hot or cold milk.
- Serve over ice or hot with whipped cream and cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice on top.