March 03, 2021 3 min read

How to Make Delicious Hojicha Latte with This Simple Recipe

Matcha is taking the world by storm and gaining popularity by the day, but perhaps not many have heard of its Japanese tea cousin, Hojicha. You can instantly see the difference between matcha and hojicha: matcha is bright green, while hojicha is a dark brown more similar to black tea. Hojicha also smells different too, roasted and nutty and fragrant. And while matcha is a fine powder, hojicha comes in the form of tea leaves and bags.

To make hojicha, green tea leaves are slowly roasted until brown, and the roasting process is what gives it that nice, slightly charred smell. As a result of the roasting process, hojicha also contains lower levels of caffeine when compared to matcha, so if you’re looking for a delicious drink that won’t keep you up at night, hojicha is a great choice.

In Japan, hojicha is readily found in tea houses and cafes. It can be enjoyed on its own, as a latte, or even as milkshakes and desserts! Read on to find our recipe and step-by-step instructions on how you can make your own hojicha latte at home.

To Make the Perfect Hojicha Latte

Ingredients

  • 3 tsp hojicha tea leaves, or 1-2 teabags
  • Some hot water
  • 1 cup milk (regular, soy, almond, etc.)
  • Sugar (optional)
  • Measure the amount of hojicha tea leaves needed and place in your favourite cup or tea bowl. If you have hojicha tea bags, you may use those. Hojicha is milder in taste compared to matcha, so feel free to add a little more tea leaves if you like stronger flavor. 
  • Pour some boiling hot water into the cup, enough to cover the tea leaves or teabags. Here, we want to create a concentrated brew of hojicha. Set it aside and let the tea leaves steep for about 3-5 minutes.
  • Add a little bit of sugar (about 1 teaspoon) or sweetener into the hot hojicha brew. 
  • To make warm hojicha latte, warm up a cup of milk in a saucepan over low heat. Make sure to keep an eye on it and stir occasionally to make sure the milk doesn’t boil.

Skip this step if making iced hojicha latte.

  • If you have a milk frother, you can use it to froth up some of the milk to give your latte a pleasant, foamy texture. This step is optional.
  • Remove the tea leaves or tea bags from the cup, and pour the milk carefully into the hojicha brew. Your perfect cup of hojicha latte is ready to enjoy! For a really cool summer drink, add a few ice cubes.

Topping Ideas

Adding toppings is a fun way to customise an an already delicious drink, and there are a few ingredients that go really well with hojicha. Here are some topping ideas for the ultimate hojicha latte!

  • Shiratama: Usually found in Japanese desserts, shiratama are little balls made of glutinous rice flour. They have a nice and chewy texture and are easy to make- just mix some glutinous rice flour, roll into balls, and cook in hot water for a few minutes until they float to the surface.
  • Whipped cream: Add a swirl of whipped cream on top an iced hojicha latte to recreate a Starbucks-worthy drink at home.
  • Caramel syrup: Caramel complements the roasted, nutty flavour of hojicha really well, so if you have some on hand, add it in for a nice and comforting drink!

There’s so much more to discover in the world of Japanese tea, so why not start with a good steaming cup of hojicha latte?