Chocolate may not have a reputation as the healthiest of snacks, but it does make for a tasty cup of tea. That’s right — chocolate tea exists, and it carries that same familiar, sugary, and smooth taste as your favorite candy. A decadently flavored type of tea, chocolate isn’t among the most common choices for tea lovers, but it’s one that blends the deliciousness of dessert with the natural, healthy benefits of every other tea.Though you may typically avoid taking a bite out of a chocolate bar, you don’t have to avoid tea; fulfill your sweet tooth’s cravings by sipping chocolate tea.
Chocolate tea is a surprisingly healthy and delicious variety of tea. Typically, tea leaves are a blend of different aromatic natural herb; chocolate tea is the same, but features cacao in some form. The different types of chocolate — candy bars, filled candies, hot cocoas, and others — all get their irresistible flavor from cacao, a tree that produces seeds which are dried and turned into the chocolate we all know and love. Chocolate teas come in many different varieties, all of which feature cacao in some way. Many loose leaf blends feature cacao nibs, tiny cacao seeds that are roasted, peeled, and crushed into pieces. Cacao nibs exude a flavor similar to that of dark chocolate, making their taste in a chocolate tea variety more subtle. Other varieties use other parts of the cacao seed, such as the shells or pods in which the seeds grow.
Loose leaf chocolate teas are typically a mix of unbroken and uncrushed black tea leaves, as well as those roasted cacao seed nibs. There are some types of chocolate tea, though, that don’t include cacao pieces. Some ground tea varieties, available at Trader Joe’s and similar grocery stores, crush and blend the cacao with black tea leaves, which gives a more chocolatey flavor to the tea. If you love the taste of plain chocolate, these teas can become your favorite dessert drink. Of course, there’s more to chocolate tea than just cacao and its familiar flavoring; The Republic of Tea offers a wide variety of chocolate tea, including options like strawberry chocolate, dark chocolate, and even red velvet chocolate. David’s Tea also features a host of chocolate dessert teas, making it easy to find your very own favorite.
So, what does chocolate tea taste like? Although the word “chocolate” may make you imagine strongly sweet teas, chocolate tea is actually nothing like its close relative hot cocoa, or hot chocolate. Instead, because actual cacao nibs, shells, and even pods are used in these loose leaf teas, they take on less obvious chocolate taste than you might anticipate. As you sip on these dessert teas, you’ll inhale the wonderful aroma of chocolate, which enhances its chocolatey taste, all while avoiding the unhelpful calories that come with every chocolate bar.
Of course, what makes chocolate tea such a great option for tea drinkers and chocolate lovers alike is its health-friendly nature. While a piece of chocolate is loaded with sugar, calories, and fat, chocolate teas feature only good-for-you ingredients. Low in calories, mildly sweet without added, unnatural sugars, and delicious without any added cream or dairy, chocolate tea is a dessert drink you can enjoy without feeling guilty about your diet. If you’re a chocolate lover, this type of tea brings the scent, the taste, and the happiness of your favorite treat in a natural, herbal beverage.