Jasmine tea is an exotically scented, sensually delicious, but simple tea to make at home. Save money & “tea” like royalty with this DIY preparation.
There are three potential areas of any given store that capture my attention more than others – the nursery/florist areas, bulk herbs (duh), and the tea aisle. The first because, well, plants and flowers. The second because I am an herbalist and a home cook – I am always out of something. And finally, the tea aisle… While it is true that I make most of our teas – the allure of the array of teas in their sleek, quasi-vintage packaging is very real to me. Occasionally, I indulge in one of these selections. Jasmine Tea has been a particular favorite. But, lo and behold – jasmine tea can be replicated at home too.
And I have done just that. I guess I need to set my sights on a new tea “crush”.
Jasmine tea tastes of exoticness – something I am squarely not with my blue jeans and dishwater blonde hair. It is a tea that suggests sensual longing glances, and the tender brush of a secret lover’s skin (sexy mystery being not in the vocabulary of this dedicated farm wife in flannel shirts and rubber boots). It is just a tantalizing tea.
As exotic as I may have made it out to sound, jasmine tea is merely green or black tea (Camellia sinensis) that is fragranced with jasmine flowers. I am particularly fond of Assam black tea or Rooibos green tea from Mountain Rose Herbs as the base for this scented tea. This tea is easily achieved by layering tea and fresh jasmine flowers in a vessel, adding a weight of some kind, pressing, and allowing the aroma to perfume the tea for at least 24 hours, up to a few weeks.
When choosing the right “jasmine” to scent your tea, choose that specifically of the Jasminum species such as J. officinale, J. sambac, or J. polyanthum. These flowers should be plucked during the warmth of the day when the dew has dried, as buds or freshly opened flowers. I drop them directly onto a layer of tea in a large jar with a wide opening. This can be done indefinitely while jasmine is in bloom, always “sandwiching” the blossoms between layers of tea. It would be wise to pluck from plants like this once they have been established in your own garden, free from spray and/or chemical fertilizers; avoid plucking flowers from new nursery stock as they are likely a contamination risk. NOTE: Do not use “star jasmine/confederate jasmine/jessamine” (Trachelospermum jasminoides) or “Carolina jessamine” (Gelsemium sempervirens) – which is toxic, not exotic.
This sweetly, sensually scented tea is a perfect complement to hours spent luxuriously reading a book or planning romantic trip. Or, if you’re like me, simply to celebrate the fact that you made it another day without face planting in the muddy pastures.
Jasmine Tea Recipe
- black or green tea bulk
- fresh jasmine flowers
- Using black or green tea, place a layer of tea in the bottom of a jar with a large opening. Place a layer of fresh jasmine flowers over tea. Add another layer of tea over top. Repeat as jasmine blooms, if desired. Note: I use 1/4 cup of tea, and just enough jasmine flowers to cover the tea, then add the second tea layer of 1/4 cup. Place a can or small weight on top of the tea. Cover tightly with lid.
- Allow jasmine flowers to perfume the tea for at least 24 hours, up to several weeks. Remove weight. It is okay to leave dried jasmine flowers in the tea. Store in a cool dark place.
- To prepare, steep a heaping teaspoon of jasmine tea in 8-10 oz for water just off the boil. Steep for 5-7 minutes, strain and serve.
Why not use the jasmine essential oil?
Hi Kim! I generally do not recommend medicinal internal use of essential oils unless under the care of a trained aromatherapy professional, and even then usually as a last resort. So on that note, I really prefer to avoid essential oils as a food additive. Beyond that jasmine is an extraordinarily expensive essential oil, so I prefer to use the raw, natural flowers instead.
Hope that answers your question!
I was wondering can I use the flower of Star Jasmine in tea? Thank you!
Unfortunately, star jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides) is toxic and can’t be used for this recipe.
Hi, im looking for info on the toxicity or edibility of star jasmine which is how I found your blog. A friend told me that it’s toxic but I have been reading it is commonly used in Chinese medicine. Very curious about this! I know it’s not a true jasmine but is actually in the milkweed family..
Hi Em! I wish I could offer you more information on star jasmine. In all the literature that I have come across it is indicated as toxic. I am not trained in TCM and have only a cursory knowledge of the methodology – so I am wondering if it is used in such small amounts to avoid toxicity. I just don’t feel that I can properly speak to its safety.
Thank you for sharing the recipe 😊
Am gonna try and share how it went..fingers crossed.
Can I ask what type of jasmine plant I need to buy for this recipe I love the scented jasmine is it the same? Thanks
Hi i was wondering will the Maid Of Orleans Jasmin work with this recipe I was wondering because it has the strongest scent out of all the Jasmin flowers i was just wondering if it would over power the tea if you put it in a sealed jar for so long.
Yes. Just make sure that your Maid of Oreleans is truly a J. sambac and not another plant tagged incorrectly!
I’ve been looking at this recipe for a few weeks now looking forward to my jasmine blooming! Re-reading your post, coupled with some research finding that I actually have star jasmine (Trachelospermum Jasminoides). So thank you for the warning. Also by coincidence (or creepy advertising that I have not registered ha) I picked up your book today. Excited to dig in (:
-Danielle from Portland,OR
I am so glad that you could this post useful!
And that is funny about the advertising. I am assuming it was an Amazon ad? I know that my publisher has been doing some targeted advertising lately.
How long can you store the tea after perfuming it? I’m thinking of making this as Christmas presents, because my Jasminium sambac plant is blooming up a storm!
Easily a year if kept in a cool location in a jar with a tight fitting lid, out of direct sunlight!
Hello I’m looking for night scented jessamine infusion /tea can you help cheers Russell
Where is good source to purchase organic Jasmine flowers? I don’t have source any locally…
Hi Devon enjoy your site. i bought a Jasmine Sambac plant from local nursery in May and started using the flowers to perfume loose leaf organic tea that I had. After reading your article I started wondering if the plant had been sprayed with pesticides. The nursery told me that they never spray their plants but the farms they use to source the plants in Florida did. I haven’t used the tea since even though the plant was bare and had no flowers or buds when I got it. Do you think I should throw that tea out? Also if I take some cuttings from this plant to start new plants will I be able to use those flowers safely? I’m in NYC and unable to keep Jasmine growing outdoors all year. I would also be interested in buying organic Jasmine Sambac flowers if you know a reputable nursery that ships them. Thanks, Al
Hi The NSW poisons information centre told me that Jasminum polyanthus is toxic and not to be used for making any tea. I told them I drank some and I feel ok, they told me not to do it again as it is toxic and can cause stomach problems…