Masala Chai
20 Min

Masala Chai

There are many versions of masala chai, from a simple one powered with ginger or just cardamom, with a medley of spices or sometimes with the addition of herbs like lemongrass or mint. Here is the recipe for the masala chai we have been making for over a dozen years at Pondicheri, using our hand-ground Chai Masala – it is hands down our most popular hot beverage and despite traipsing India several times every year, we’ve never tasted a better chai.
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Cook Time

20 Minutes



Step 1
Smash the ginger on the countertop using a rolling pin or in a mortar and pestle until it is small bit and pieces. This extracts the juices from the ginger most effectively.
Step 2
In a large stockpot over high heat, combine the water with ginger and chai masala and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 5 to 7 minutes.
Step 3
Add the milk and the mint and bring it to a boil. Immediately, add the tea bags and as soon as the mixture has come to a boil, turn it off, again cover it and let it rest for 5 minutes. The chai should be a golden-brown color. Using a fine metal strainer, strain and enjoy!

6 cups water

2 to 3-inch piece fresh unpeeled ginger

1 Tablespoon Chai masala

2 cups whole milk

Few sprigs of mint or stalks of lemon grass

4 PG Tips* tea bags

Honey to sweeten as needed

Notes & Variations

  • To make your own chai masala, use a combination of crushed cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and black pepper.
  • Whole cow’s milk is best for masala chai. If you must substitute, try using oat or cashew milk.
  • PG tips is a brand that is commonly available at most Indian or Middle eastern stores. You could switch to another brand like Tetley or Lipton, however, we would suggest using 5 or 6 tea bags.
  • The chai will keep in a thermos for up to 6 to 8 hours. Alternately, you could refrigerate it and bring it to a boil when ready to drink it.
20 Min

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