Have you heard of boba tea, also known as bubble milk tea, pearl milk tea, or tapioca milk tea? With its social media presence, you may wonder what the appeal of this somewhat new sensation is…well, at least new to the western world.
What is Boba tea?
Originating in Taiwan in the early 1980s, Boba tea is a cold-served, tea-based drink with a fruit or milk flavor and edible pearls or chewy tapioca balls. It is considered a delicious, comfort and is made with black or green sweetened tea with the unique boba pearls that sink to the bottom of your cup.
What is boba made of?
Because the chewy-textured, gluten-free, boba pearls are flavor-free, you can make them any flavor that you like depending on the makeup of the tea and added ingredients.
Types of boba drinks
There are a variety of boba teas, but do not let the word “tea” make you think it is healthy. As a matter of fact, the amount of sugar in boba tea is equal to drinking soda. This may not be much of a surprise to those who enjoy the sweet flavor of this delicious drink.
The most common tea flavors are milk tea, Thai tea, and pearl milk tea, with the black tea with tapioca pearls with honey and sugar (also called pearl milk or bubble milk tea) being the most popular in the United States.
In Western cultures, orange food dye may be added to make the tea color orange, most likely for the purpose of differentiating the Thai tea from the black tea, but it does not change the flavor.
There are also fruity and creamy variations of this popular drink, as well as smoothies, with the tapioca pearls.
How to make boba at home
For the boba or tapioca pearls, the easier most convenient method is to purchase the pearls in a bag for you to