NOTE: This is a long, information-packed article on The Many Health Benefits of Matcha Tea, How to Make Matcha Tea, Smoothies. To make it easier to navigate, use the Table of Contents button to your right!
What is Matcha Green Tea?
If you follow the health circles online or on television, you might have heard matcha tea being mentioned. This is a type of green tea that simply means powdered tea. Matcha is a type of green tea powder that comes from green tea leaves, as opposed to just using the tea leaves to make your cup of tea. Here is more information about matcha green tea.
The Plant is Treated Differently
Aside from the main difference of the tea, with matcha being a powder as opposed to using the leaves, the plant itself is also going to be treated a bit differently. When the tea plants are going to be used for matcha tea, they are covered with cloths prior to being harvested. This allows the leaves to have much more flavor so that they will work better as a tea once ground into a powder. As a consumer, you can get the powder in containers from your local health food store and some grocery store, which just needs to be broken up and whisked a bit before making your cup of tea.
There are Lots of Health Benefits of Matcha Green Tea
So, why are people going so crazy over matcha? Mostly because of the many health benefits of matcha tea. It is a more pure, higher quality form of green tea, therefore you have the same health benefits, but heightened. You can read more below on the health benefits of this tea. As with regular green tea, enjoying matcha tea 2-3 times a day is a great way to use it for health purposes.
You Can Use Different Recipes
If the taste of green tea is what is stopping you, don’t forget that you can make this with a lot of flavor combinations. Matcha can be used to add to a smoothie recipe, where you get the health benefits of the matcha powder, but the taste of the frozen fruit, juice, and yogurt that is added to the smoothie. You can also just make a cup of hot or cold tea with matcha and some fruit ingredients, along with honey and various other flavors.
Health Benefits of Matcha Tea
The reason matcha green tea is trending right now is because of how good for you it is. Not only do you get all the same health benefits as regular green tea from the tea leaves, but this powdered version is often higher in nutritional content, therefore you have even more health benefits of matcha tea.
It is Loaded with Antioxidants
There is a very high concentration of antioxidants in matcha green tea, even more than you will get with regular green tea or other types of tea. The antioxidants closely resemble what you get when you are consuming dark chocolate or spinach. With antioxidants, you are helping to avoid bacteria and various strains of illness, and you can even reduce certain types of cancer.
You Can Boost Your Energy Levels
Matcha green tea does have a small amount of caffeine, but that isn’t necessarily the only thing you get your energy from. First of all, the caffeine in green tea is known as a ‘natural source’ of caffeine. This combined with the other nutrients in matcha, including L-theanine, really give you that extra boost of energy. What’s more, the energy turns into lasting endurance, so you can get through your day or enjoy this tea shortly before your workout.
Matcha is Good for Weight Loss
If you are trying to lose weight, matcha green tea is highly recommended. This type of tea has nutrients that can help boost your metabolism, whichmeans you are burning more fat throughout the day than if you weren’t drinking it. The health benefits of matcha green tea also include helping you to burn more calories when you drink it regularly enough, along with having the extra boost of energy needed for workouts.
You Can Detox Your Body
Looking for a good and natural way to detox your body? If so, you will be glad you found matcha tea. There are high levels of chlorophyll in matcha tea that provides you with a healthy and natural detox, to help get rid of the toxins in your body that are built up from unhealthy food and drinks.
Your Cardiovascular Health is Improved
Matcha green tea is also great for a healthy heart and cardiovascular system. It helps to lower your bad cholesterol and raise your good cholesterol, while also lowering your blood pressure. If your doctor is concerned about your heart, it can definitely be worthwhile to add this green tea to your healthy diet.
How to Make Matcha Tea
It can seem a little intimidating to make your own matcha green tea, but it is actually much simpler than you think. and with the health benefits of matcha green tea, it is worth it. You do have the option of going the traditional route by using a bamboo whisk and a tea cup, but you definitely don’t have to do that. Here are some tips for making it with a more modern approach.
Start with a Good Matcha
While you can now find matcha powder just about anywhere, you do want to be careful of the brand and the quality. The best matcha powder is going to be imported from Japan, or at the very least, an organic top-quality version of it in the country where you live.
Try to find the highest grade matcha green tea powder you can find. If you can’t tell which is the best, look for all-natural, organic powder with no additives in the ingredients. Choosing powder from a natural health food store or vitamin store is typically better than from your ordinary grocery store.
The Simple Method
You can try making green tea matcha with a bamboo whisk and real authentic tea bowl, but that isn’t necessarily mandatory. For a more modern method, heat up some filtered water in a teapot, and add it to your bowl of matcha powder. Mix it together until it forms a paste, then begin adding more water and stirring it until it turns into a tea.
Regardless of the method you choose, you should not just add powder directly from the bag or container. It is often compacted, so you need to loosen it up with a whisk. You can also grind up the powder with a mortar and pestle.
Customize the Tea
If you like the taste of green tea, you will probably be just fine with regular matcha green tea as-is. However, many people want a little more flavor to their tea, so this is when it is up to you to customize the flavor. If you are trying to lose weight, just be careful what you add to it.
Using cream and sugar in the tea can change the taste, but this is also going to add the extra fat and calories as well. Instead, you might want to try mixing up your tea with some fruit flavorings or a sugar substitute. Some natural sweetness can be obtained from a little honey or nut milk.
5 Matcha Flavor Combos to Try Out
Matcha green tea is extremely good for you, but not everyone wants just regular green tea. If this sounds like you, then you will definitely enjoy at least one of these different drink combos that use green tea and other delicious ingredients, and you will also reap the health benefits of matcha green tea.
Minty Iced Matcha
This first recipe is a type of iced matcha green tea that also uses some mint. It is a clean and refreshing taste that is perfect for a hot summer day when you want that coolness in your drink, but you also want the health benefits of the matcha. Use filtered water and combine your matcha powder with mint, juice from a lime, some crushed ice, and a little honey for added sweetness. You can put it in a jar or shaker with the lid on and give it a nice shake.
Iced Matcha Latte
Are you a fan of green tea lattes? If so, you will probably like this matcha version. Just like a regular green tea latter, you want to start with your favorite type of milk, whether you go with regular cow’s milk, cashew milk, almond milk, or other milk substitute. Unsweetened is best when you are adding a sweetener like honey or maple syrup. Otherwise, you can skip that and use sweetened nut milk instead. You will add your matcha powder and a little bit of vanilla extract, then add the ingredients to a blender. Pour it over ice, and it’s ready to serve.
Green Tea Limeade
For a hot summer day, it doesn’t get much better than limeade or lemonade. You can add some health to your limeade by using matcha green tea powder. For a limeade, you want to use hot water with matcha green tea powder, lime juice, cold water, and a sugar of your choosing. For true limeade, pure cane sugar is usually best. Dissolve the powder in the hot water, then mix in the other ingredients and cool it in the fridge. Once cool, you can add ice to your pitcher.
Coconut Latte with Matcha
Another latte drink that will use green tea powder is one flavored with coconut. This has a fun tropical flavor to it, plus extra nutrition from the matcha as opposed to just a regular coffee latte. You still get a little caffeine with this drink. You will make this similar to the other latte, except you are going to add some coconut oil to the drink. You can make it a stronger flavor by using coconut milk in lieu of the other milk options.
Mocha Green Tea
When you want a little mocha mixed in with your drink, you can combine matcha green tea powder with some cacao powder, ground vanilla bean, and dairy of your choice. Coconut milk, cashew milk, and almond milk are all great options.
4 Matcha Green Tea Smoothie Options
If you are interested in the health benefits of matcha tea, but don’t enjoy hot drinks, why not make a smoothie? It uses the supremely healthy matcha green tea powder, but is combined with yummy fruit ingredients to cover up the taste. Here are four different types of matcha green tea smoothies to try out.
Green Tea Berry Smoothie
This first smoothie lets you have your favorite fruit smoothie, but with the added health benefits of matcha green tea. It is a berry smoothie, so go ahead and add any berries you like. It can be one type of berry, or a mixed berry like with frozen blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries. In a blender, combine the berries with a nut milk of your choosing, matcha powder, chia seeds, and a banana. You can also season it up with some cinnamon or honey if you like. For a thicker powder, add some protein powder as well.
Matcha Banana Tea Smoothie
This next smoothie is super easy to make. It is best to use a frozen banana because it gives the smoothie a nice cool consistency, without having to use a lot of ice. Add the frozen banana to the blender with your matcha powder, milk and some maple syrup to sweeten it up a bit. There are some stores that sell latte-grade matcha powder which is best when making a smoothie.
Banana Cacao Matcha Smoothie
This goes one step further by using the same ingredients as in the banana smoothie, but adding a chocolate flavor as well. This doesn’t taste much like green tea, so it really is best when you want a banana chocolate smoothie but a healthier one. You can use matcha tea already made in the smoothie, or use the matcha powder. Add to that a frozen banana, almond or cashew milk, cacao powder, and some maple syrup. Maca powder and chia seeds also add even more nutrients to the smoothie.
Matcha Smoothie Bowl
Are you a fan of smoothie bowls? If you are, why not try one with matcha green tea! Remember that smoothie bowls are thicker than regular smoothies, so you want to add matcha as the powder instead of the tea. This really thickens it up. For the bowl, also add to a blender your frozen banana, frozen berries, yogurt, spinach, and a little bit of almond milk. Pour it all into a bowl and add toppings like coconut shavings and cacao nibs.
- Photo by Akuppa
- Photo by NuCastiel
- Photo by ilyayakubovich.com
- Photo by mhiguera
- Photo by stu_spivack