Dairy free “Milky” Chai Recipe

We’ve always found authentic chai to be particularly comforting. During the cold autumn months, when the weather gets unbearably miserable, a hot cup of home-made milky chai is capable of lifting anyone’s spirits! Particularly so, if it’s dairy free and incredibly yummy!

Spice it Up

There are so many variations of chai. First of all, you need to decide which spices you’re going to use. Here are the options: ginger, star anise, cloves, black peppercorn, cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander and fennel seeds. You can put as many or as few of those spices as you wish. We’re sharing our recipe below, but you’re free to experiment and add more spices or subtract those you don’t like.

Strong Black

Then, of course you need to decide which tea to use. For a tasty chai, you need a strong brew. Therefore, we would suggest sticking to Indian black teas (black Darjeeling or Assam). Nepalese and Sri Lankan black teas work really well too. However, tonight since we’re breaking a few rules already, we’ve decided to go for a strong Rwandan black tea (you’ll be able to find it in our upcoming black teapro box next month).

Milky Dairy-Free

Traditionally chai is made with milk, which is perfect for balancing out the spices. You could also make chai with just water, but it can often taste thin and overpowering. Therefore, our preferred method is to dilute the milk with some water (usually in 1:1 ratio). Also, today we’ve tried to make chai with coconut milk, as we wanted to create a dairy free option. Coconut milk is often used in Indian curries, so it is known to balance the Indian spices really well. Unsurprisingly, our chai tasted really delicious and we felt inspired to share the recipe with you! teapro chai recipe dairy free blog post teapro chai recipe dairy free2

Dairy Free Chai

Chai is the perfect brew to warm you up and lift your spirits during this cold and rainy autumn days. Feeling adventurous, we've decided to modify the traditional recipe by substituting normal milk with coconut milk. The result was super yummy, so we decided to share it with you!

  • 300 ml coconut milk
  • 200 ml water (filtered)
  • 1 tbsp black tea
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 whole cardamom seeds
  • 2 slices fresh ginger
  • 1/8 nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp honey

Prepare Spices

  1. crush cardamom seeds with a spoon

  2. slice or grate fresh ginger

  3. grate nutmeg

  4. add the above spices as well as cinnamon sticks, cloves and anise star to a pot

It's Chai Time

  1. add milk and water to the spices

  2. bring to boil and take from the stove

  3. add honey to taste


  1. pour the chai through a sieve into cups

Feel free to experiment with spices – you can add or subtract them to your preference. 

Also, the ratio of milk and water depends on how rich you want your chai to be. We’ve made it with just coconut milk the first time and found it slightly too rich. 

When adding honey, we would recommend to do it at the end, as it might otherwise burn in your pan. We like our chai quite sweet, so 1-2 tbsp of honey isn’t an uncommon occurrence for us. Some people prefer sugar, which is totally fine as well. In fact, that’s what they often use in India. 
We sometimes use flavoured honey (such as Honeyberry). They sell chilli flavoured and ginger flavoured honeys which are particularly suitable for this recipe. 

What’s your favourite chai?

Let us know what your favourite chai recipe is! Also, if you decide to try out our dairy free coconut milk version, please let us know what you think and give our recipe a rating! teapro chai recipe dairy free happy diwaliteapro chai recipe dairy free cinnamonteapro chai recipe dairy free coconut milk dairy-free-milky-chai-recipe

Teapro co-founder. Favourite tea - Long Jing Dragon Well Green Tea. Obsessed with film, photography and travelling.

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