Instant Pot Chai or Masala Tea with Video (both instant pot and stove top instructions). Chai or Tea is a magical beverage that is sure to pep you up and enhance your mood. The whole of India runs on “Chai”.
The more “Kadak” (strong), the better.
How can you forget the flasks of tea at your side when you were preparing for your exams, studying hard or
when you could simply wrap your palms around a hot mug during the cold winter season and gently blow on the steam before taking small sips hmmm.... bliss....
And btw, to the people of the West and the unknown it is not “Chai tea” folks!!! as you would like to call it. The word "Chai" itself translates to "Tea". So there you go.
Now why would I wanna make tea in Instant Pot or Electric Pressure Cooker, when I have always made it on stove top?
To answer that, while the reason for making tea may not have changed, the methods can change with the arrival of new gadgets, making the process fuss free.
Besides, WHY NOT?
Whether you are making tea just for your lone self (single serving) or especially for a crowd,
- It is easy
- Needs no supervision
- Just dump everything into the instant pot to brew and its done
- And let's not forget the "keep warm" mode till its time to drink.
So, do give it a try, seriously...
Steeping the Tea in Instant Pot:
Tea in an Instant pot gets done in exactly 2 to 3 mins when making for 2 to 4 servings.
Though you can immediately release the pressure manually for use, I would highly suggest the you wait for the recommended time of natural pressure release (npr).
This resting time gives the tea a chance to steep (soak in) the flavours of the masala that we prepare from fresh and whole dry spices.
The resulting brewed tea is not only aromatic but also has a strong flavour and soothing to your throat.
What tea to use?
If you prefer a strong cup of tea (kadak chai), I would suggest you to use Assam dust tea
But if you love your tea, full of flavour and rich in colour, use tea granules.
Assam Tea granules are very popular across the world not only for their bold flavour but also for their superior high quality.
Though you can also use Darjeeling tea, do note that not all Darjeeling teas are suitable to drink with milk.
Can I use Pot in Pot method?
Absolutely. I just wanted to show that you can brew tea directly in the inner pot without any mishaps.
The tea will not boil over seeping out of the cooker and the milk will also not spray all around like it happens in stove top pressure cooker at times.
If you are a person who uses Instant Pot extensively, then you may wish to use the inner pot without having to clean it up to cook your next item immediately.
In that case, definitely use pot in pot method, so that your inner pot stays clean & good to go for next round of cooking.
Just add water to the inner pot and place another tall vessel into it with all the ingredients.
No need to place any trivet. I have tried without trivet and it does work.
Can I use regular stovetop pressure cooker?
I’m sure you can but personally I have not tried making tea in a pressure cooker. I always felt that it would foam up and spray all around.
I did not want to waste my time cleaning up the said mess which would totally defeat the purpose of saving time, so I have never tried it.
What else can I add to tea?
You can flavour your tea using your favourite fresh or dry herbs and flowers, whole spices like
Rose petals, Rose hips, Coral jasmine, Brahmi leaves (Indian Pennywort), Karpooravalli Leaves (Indian Borage).
Whole black pepper corns, Fennel seeds, Nutmeg, lemon grass (fresh or dried) to name a few.
The above mentioned ingredients taste good in tea made with milk.
Now to Sugar...
Many add sugar while brewing the tea itself. But I don’t do it for the following reasons,
- Sugar thins out the tea making it watery in my opinion.
- So even when I was taking tea with sugar, as I preferred a slightly thick tea, I always add sugar only before drinking it and not while brewing it.
- Moreover I stopped taking sugar since 2017.
Having said that, it is solely your personal preference.
You can also sweeten your tea with honey, stevia or cane sugar.
How can I make Masala Chai quickly?
You need not have to gather ingredients and crush it before adding to water for every single time.
If you like adding tulsi or mint, just add it to the water and instead of the whole spices, you can prepare this Homemade Chai Masala Powder, and add it to the water and continue to make tea following the process.
For every cup of tea that you wish to brew, just add ¼ to 1 tsp of this tea masala powder depending how much spice you prefer to add to your tea.
Point to note while making Tea on Stove Top:
Tea is allowed to come to a boil for several minutes and times while making on stove top to make it taste stronger and for the essences of the whole spices to release.
This makes the tea astringent or rancid thereby increasing the "pitha" dosha. This increases your body heat. So to avoid this, what I do while making tea on stove top is to let it come to a boil just once and switch off the stove.
Close with a lid and let the tea rest for 5 to 10 mins for it to help steep better before straining into mugs.
Love Iced Teas, do check out,
Instant Pot Chai video tutorial:
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Instant Pot Chai Recipe Card with Video below:
Instant Pot Chai
- Instant Pot or Electric Pressure Cooker
- Fresh ginger - 2 inch piece peeled
- Cardamom - 2
- Cloves - 3
- Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
- Tulsi (Indian Basil) or Mint leaves - 5 or 6
- Water - ½ cup
- Dust tea - 2 tsp if using black tea leaves, use 3 tsp
- Toned 2% milk - 1-½ cups
- Sugar - to taste
Instant Pot Method:
- Crush together fresh ginger, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon coarsely using a mortar and pestle. You can also grind this to a coarse paste without adding water in a small spice grinder.
- To the inner pot of the Instant Pot, add water, coarsely crushed spices, tea leaves, milk and tulsi or mint leaves.
- Close with the lid in place and switch the vent to lock position. Switch it on and set to pressure cook - “high" for 3 mins.
- After the natural pressure release, open the lid and strain the tea using a tea filter.
- Add sugar or any sweetener, if using according to your taste and mix.
- Instant Pot Chai is ready. Pour into mugs and enjoy your hot cuppa.
Stove Top Method:
- Crush the spices. Heat water in a sauce pan and add the spices-herbs and let it come to a boil.
- Add tea leaves and once again let it come to a boil for few mins.
- Add milk and let it once again come to a boil. You can either let it boil for few more mins before switching off or close with a lid for the flavours to release. Strain the tea, add sweetener and mix well.
- Masala Tea is ready to enjoy.