Vanilla is one of the most common flavors in the world today, and we’ve all used it at least once. We’ve added it to cakes, waffle batter, ice cream, and just about every other baked good on the planet. But have you ever considered making it into a tea?
Vanilla Tea has that cool, relaxing flavor that we love while also providing some surprising health benefits. Vanilla was originally used as a medicinal drink among the Aztecs and Mayans of Central America, but it didn’t gain worldwide popularity until it was discovered by Cortes, who shipped it to Europe.
Vanilla is said to have antioxidant and anti-bacterial properties, and it has even been suggested that vanilla can help fight some types of cancer. It can also soothe nausea, increase libido in men, help regulate menstrual cycles in women, reduce stress, help with toothaches, and much more!
The secret is that the Vanilla bean contains niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, and small amounts of calcium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, iron, and zinc. It also contains vanillin, a polyphenol that gives vanilla its strong odor.
Making your own vanilla tea is quite easy, and you only need three ingredients:
1 cup of loose-leaf black tea (such as English Breakfast)
1 whole vanilla bean (preferably organic)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (make sure it’s true vanilla extract and not a synthetic compound)
Split the vanilla bean down the middle to release the flavor, then you can leave it whole or cut it into 1-inch pieces. Place the cup of tea in a clean glass jar and add the bean and extract. Seal the jar and shake it around to distribute the flavor. Give the jar a good shake about once a day and you’ll have a delicious (and healthy) vanilla tea in about a week.
To learn more about the wonderful benefits of Vanilla tea, or to get more recipe ideas, check out these websites: Diet Health Club, Buddha Teas, A Spoon full of Sugar, and Tching. The photos came from Spoonfull of Sugar and Tching.
Have you every tried Vanilla tea? Let us know in the comments!