This Masala Chai Mix is an aromatic and warming blend of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, star anise, vanilla, nutmeg, cloves, and pepper. Forget the additive-laden and expensive store-bought Chai Mix and easily make your own.
Masala Chai means Spiced Tea. Yes, it can be used in black tea to make a spiced tea, but it can also be used in a Chai Latte, Dirty Chai, smoothie, chia pudding, or cake mix.
Shopping for the ingredients
To make this an inexpensive mix, I buy my spices in larger packets and transfer them to recycled peanut butter jars for storage. If there is a spice that you think you may not use much of, for example, ground cardamom, then simply leave it out and you will still get a good flavour. The ground cardamom can be replaced with Allspice (Pimento) for a slightly different flavour.
The main ingredients of this Masala Chai Mix are cinnamon and ginger and these are sure to be used as they are common baking ingredients. Cinnamon is used in my popular Double Chocolate Banana Bread and also in the Almond Flour Oat Cookies.
I am a fan of the taste of star anise. I always have some on hand for Asian cooking so it easily gets used up in this household.
Don’t be worried about the black pepper being too strong. It is a small amount there to increase the warming effect of the mix and is also nutritionally beneficial. If you are too worried you can leave it out or reduce the amount by half.
I have included sugar in the recipe to make it an alternative to the store-bought packets, however, the sugar can be left out so it can be used just as a spice mix. Or you may like to use honey or maple syrup as your preferred sweetener.
There appear to be many nutritional benefits of many of the ingredients in this Masala Mix.
- Cinnamon may lower blood pressure.
- Cinnamon, ginger, and black pepper may have beneficial effects on blood sugar levels.
- Cinnamon and black pepper may help lower cholesterol.
- Ginger is well-known for its anti-nausea effects and as an aid for digestion.
- Cinnamon, cloves and cardamom, all of which have antibacterial properties, appear to help prevent digestive issues caused by bacterial infections.
Using this Masala Chai Mix will also allow you to indulge in a Chai Latte or Dirty Chai knowing you aren’t ingesting artificial flavours and refined sugar.
Take a look at the ingredients of a couple of examples of the store-bought varieties.
The second example has more salt than cinnamon!! Even so-called “Natural” flavours are dubious as they can start as a natural substance and then go through so many chemical processes that the end result is anything but natural. “Vegetable Fat” is another ingredient that sounds healthy but after the chemical processes of extracting, bleaching, and deodorizing a mix of different cheap seed oils, it becomes one of the worse fats for optimum health. See the book From Lab to Table by nutritionist Cyndi O’Meara if you want to know more.
Anyhow, let’s not worry about all the additives in store-bought alternatives because you now have an alternative that you can customise to your own taste. Add about two to four teaspoons of this sweetened Masala Chai Mix to a cup of warm milk of choice and you have a delicious caffeine-free morning or nighttime drink. Enjoy!