In our opinion, there is nothing better than a cup of hot traditional Moroccan mint tea. If you’ve never tried traditional Moroccan tea, especially mint tea, we highly recommend doing so.
However, if you want to experience the full flavor profile and health benefits of Moroccan mint tea, you need to know how to make it the right way.
In this beginners’ guide, we’re going to be explaining what Moroccan mint tea is, how you can benefit from drinking it, and what separates it from regular mint tea.
We’ll then be sharing the most common methods for making Moroccan mint tea, including our favorite method, and providing the best recipe for this incredible tea!
What Is Moroccan Mint Tea?
If you’ve read this far and are thinking ‘what is Moroccan mint tea?’ don’t worry—we’re about to explain.
Moroccan mint tea is also known as Maghrebi mint tea, and the beverage was first created after the 1860s, when gunpowder green tea from China was introduced to Morocco.
Traditionally, Moroccan mint tea is made with a Moroccan teapot, which is especially curvy with a long and elegant spout.
This spout makes it easy to pour the tea in a more elaborate way, which is part of the art of Moroccan tea: serving guests in a way that feels ceremonial.
Now, you don’t necessarily need a traditional Moroccan teapot to make the drink itself, but we think it’s nice to have one for special occasions in order to honor this incredible tea and show hospitality to your guests.
Why You Should Drink Moroccan Mint Tea
Moroccan mint tea doesn’t just taste amazing. It also provides many health benefits, which is part of the reason we recommend it so highly.
Studies have shown that mint can help to soothe the digestive system and facilitate the healthy and easy digestion of food.
It is able to do this by causing the muscles in the digestive tract to relax so that bile flow can increase, assisting with fat digestion in particular.
This is why many people will use mint as a natural remedy for conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and general indigestion.
Because green tea, which is a key ingredient in Moroccan mint tea, is known for containing many antioxidants, it can also be used to boost your immune system.
If you have a cold, drinking green tea or Moroccan mint tea can help to alleviate some symptoms due to its mucous-thinning properties.
One lesser-known benefit of Moroccan mint tea, thanks to the fact that it contains green tea, is that it may speed up metabolism and reduce your levels of bad cholesterol.
This means that if you have a goal to lose weight or want to be more heart-healthy, Moroccan mint tea could help you on the way.
All About Gunpowder Green Tea
As we have mentioned, green tea is one of the main ingredients in Moroccan mint tea. However, in traditional Moroccan mint tea, gunpowder green tea is specifically used.
Gunpowder green tea was brought to Morocco from China in the 1860s, and the Chinese name for the tea is Zhu Cha.
You can physically tell the difference between regular green tea and gunpowder green tea because the latter looks like small pellets with a glossy sheen.
That’s because gunpowder green tea is made by heating the leaves inside a tumbler. When you make it into tea by adding it to boiling water, it produces a green-gold liquid.
It’s also easy to differentiate between gunpowder green tea and other varieties of green tea by taste and smell. Gunpowder green tea tastes nutty and smells quite vegetal.
If you don’t want to spend a lot of money buying gunpowder green tea, you can purchase mechanically-processed products, which account for most gunpowder green tea on the market.
However, you can also find some hand-processed gunpowder green tea on the market if you’re willing to spend more time and money finding it.
Spearmint In Moroccan Mint Tea
Another core ingredient of the traditional Moroccan mint tea recipe is, of course, mint. Now, you could use any variety of mint to make this tea, but we specifically recommend using spearmint.
The reason spearmint is our mint of choice for Moroccan mint tea is, firstly, because it’s easily accessible. You can find it in most food stores and farmers’ markets, and you can even grow it yourself relatively easily in your backyard.
We recommend using fresh spearmint sprigs if possible, since these will deliver the most flavor when brewed into tea. However, if you can’t find any fresh spearmint, it’s okay to use dried leaves.
3 Methods For Brewing Traditional Moroccan Mint Tea
We have to say that we love the traditional method of brewing and serving the tea.
However, it’s important to note that there are other methods of making Moroccan-style mint tea if you don’t have the time or resources to go all-out with the traditional method.
Here are your options when it comes to making Moroccan mint tea:
If you want to make Moroccan mint tea using the traditional method, you should use fresh mint (approximately a handful) and put it into your Moroccan-style tea pot.
You’ll then add the gunpowder green tea along with cane sugar for added sweetness and fill the pot with hot water to infuse.
The stove top method of making Moroccan mint tea is the one we’ve provided a recipe for in this article, because it doesn’t require a Moroccan tea pot, so it’s more accessible for everyone to follow.
To make Moroccan mint tea on the stove, you’ll just need a regular teapot and saucepan. You’ll start by heating the water and infusing the leaves in the teapot before transferring the liquid to your saucepan and adding the sugar.
After that, you will transfer the tea back into the tea pot and serve from the pot rather than from the saucepan.
Not everybody has time to go through the traditional or even stove top process every time they want a cup of mint tea, so if you prefer, you can also buy ready-made blends of Moroccan mint tea(see also: How To Make Mint Tea).
Using these blends, you can add the recommended amount of the green tea and mint to hot water and infuse.
Our Favorite Method For Moroccan Mint Tea
We’re about to share our recipe for stove top Moroccan mint tea because this is the easiest method to follow without having to invest in an expensive teapot or relying on ready-made blends.
However, our favorite method of making Moroccan mint tea involves combining the ease of the stove top method with the elegance of the traditional serving method.
After following the recipe below to make Moroccan mint tea on the stove, we recommend transferring the brew to a teapot. If you do have a traditional Moroccan teapot, that’s amazing, but you can use a regular tea pot as well.
Something we definitely do recommend buying if you’re able to is a set of glass cups called ‘keesan’. These cups are small and usually decorated with colorful embellishments.
Because they are made of glass, you can also see the tea itself through the cup. Since these tea glasses are traditional for serving tea in Morocco, they’re a great way to add an authentic aspect to your tea presentation.
Recipe For Traditional Moroccan Mint Tea
Here’s what you’ve all been waiting for: the best recipe for traditional Moroccan mint tea that you can easily make at home.
Before you start, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Gunpowder green tea (4 teaspoons)
- Fresh mint (6 sprigs)
- Cane sugar (4 tablespoons)
- Hot water (4 cups, filtered)
These ingredients will be enough to make 4 servings of Moroccan mint tea. If you would like to make more tea, simply adjust the ingredient quantities accordingly.
Once you have all the key ingredients ready, just follow these simple steps to brew an incredible mint tea:
- Heat your water to 190 degrees Fahrenheit. Don’t bring it all the way to the boil. If you have a thermometer, it’s a good idea to use it to make sure you get the right temperature.
- Put your water to the side and add your mint leaves and gunpowder green tea leaves to your tea pot.
- Allow the leaves to infuse in the hot water inside the tea pot for around 5 minutes before straining the liquid into your saucepan.
- Add your cane sugar to the tea in the saucepan and turn up the heat so that the water begins to simmer. Stir continuously to allow the sugar to caramelize.
- Take the saucepan off the heat and pour the mixture back into the teapot.
- Pour equal quantities of the tea into your chosen cups or glasses. If you want to add a layer of froth on top, start pouring from a low height and raise the teapot as you pour until it’s 12 inches away from the brim of the cup.
- If you wish, you could add some extra mint as a garnish.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can You Serve Moroccan Mint Tea Cold?
Yes, Moroccan mint tea can be served cold if you want a refreshing, mint-flavored beverage during the warmer months. This is known as iced Moroccan mint tea and it’s absolutely delicious.
To make iced Moroccan mint tea, you’ll need to heat the water and infuse the leaves as usual before straining the liquid into a container of your choice—ideally, a pitcher.
You can put it in the refrigerator to chill. When you’re ready to serve the tea, put some ice into cups and pour the tea over the top.
There’s also the option to pour a bit of sparkling water into each cup. Some people even like to add a splash of vodka to the tea pitcher before serving.
What Embellishments Can I Add To Moroccan Mint Tea?
The basic recipe for traditional Moroccan mint tea, which simply consists of green tea, mint leaves, cane sugar and hot water, is wonderful by itself.
However, the beauty of mint and green tea is that these flavors are versatile, meaning you can add various embellishments and flavors to your tea if you like.
Honey and lemon are both flavors that work extremely well with green tea and mint, but if you’re feeling more creative, you can even add lavender or pieces of fruit.
Pomegranate arils are a great choice, but almost any kind of berry will do the job. If you want your tea to taste a little spicy, try adding some ginger.
Will Moroccan Mint Tea Help You To Sleep?
Most people drink Moroccan mint tea because of its taste, but we mentioned earlier that this specific type of tea can improve your health as well.
As we noted, green tea contains antioxidants which have anti-inflammatory properties. Not only can antioxidants benefit your immune system, but they can even promote relaxation in the body.
Because of this, you may find that drinking Moroccan mint tea may improve your ability to fall asleep by promoting relaxation and even have an impact on the quality of sleep you get.
With that being said, in Morocco, mint tea is traditionally served after mealtimes. Also, since green tea contains caffeine, it’s best to drink it during the day and not right before bed if your goal is to get more sleep or get better-quality sleep.
In our opinion, traditional Moroccan mint tea is one of the most delicious teas out there. The traditional and cultural role of mint tea in Morocco is also a beautiful thing, representing elegance and gracious hospitality.
If you want to serve Moroccan mint tea in the most traditional, authentic way possible, buy yourself a Moroccan tea pot.
However, it’s perfectly fine to make Moroccan mint tea in a saucepan and transfer it to a regular tea pot for serving, as our recipe recommends.
Next time you want a comforting, hot drink, make a pot of Moroccan mint tea and experience the delicious taste and health benefits for yourself!
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