What Is Butterfly Pea Tea?

Butterfly pea tea is a caffeine-free herbal tea made from Clitoria ternatea, a plant species native to Southeastern Asia. This type of tea is most famous for its vibrant colors, as the tea has a strong blue hue after being steeped in water. Lemon juice and other acidic elements can be added to butterfly pea tea to alter the drink's pH levels, further changing the tea’s color to violet. Butterfly pea tea has been gaining popularity around the world in recent years as one of the top tea trends, making it a great menu addition for your coffee shop or restaurant. Below, we’ll cover how you can make butterfly pea tea and some of the best ways you can integrate the trend into your menu.

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How to Make Butterfly Pea Tea

How to Make Butterfly Pea Tea

Making butterfly pea tea is simple, which makes the drink an easy addition to your menu. Although different ingredients can be added to the beverage, creating the base drink is no different than making any other herbal tea. To make butterfly pea tea, follow the steps below:

  1. Place dried leaves in a tea infuser, resting the tea infuser in a teapot or teacup.
  2. Heat a cup of water to around 212 degrees Fahrenheit before pouring the water over your infuser.
  3. Let the tea steep for at least five minutes. You can extend the time for a few minutes if you’re looking for extremely vibrant colors and a strong taste.
  4. Remove the tea infuser and serve.

How to Make Butterfly Pea Tea Video

To learn how to properly make butterfly pea tea, watch the video below for a step-by-step guide on the process:

Butterfly Pea Tea Benefits

Butterfly pea tea is much more than a niche drink that changes colors, as it has a lot of health benefits to pair with its unique look. As such, butterfly pea tea can be promoted to customers as a healthy alternative when introduced to your menu. Here are some of the most common health benefits butterfly pea tea has to offer:

  • Boosts Immune System - Many antioxidants can be found in butterfly pea tea. These antioxidants boost your immune system, helping you fight off colds and other illnesses.
  • Augments Brain Activity - Butterfly pea tea is known to contain acetylcholine, a molecule that is key in memory retention and concentration.
  • Improves Eye Health - Proanthocyadin, a flavonoid associated with improved eye health, can be found in butterfly pea tea.

Butterfly Pea Tea Side Effects

Butterfly pea tea is considered safe to consume in moderation and is more well-known for its health benefits rather than its side effects. There are anecdotal reports of minor side effects like stomach pain and nausea, but no claims have been backed by scientific research. The drink is considered a healthy beverage with lots of positive immune-boosting benefits, making it a great drink to include in diets.

What Does Butterfly Pea Tea Taste Like?

What Does Butterfly Pea Tea Taste Like?

Butterfly pea tea has a mild and earthy taste, similar to green tea. For those who find green tea’s flavor profile too strong, butterfly pea tea can serve as a milder substitute. The taste of butterfly pea tea is often altered with lemon juice or honey to change its color from blue to violet, adding some extra flavor to the drink. Butterfly pea tea can also be mixed with other drinks such as matcha, lemonade, and alcoholic beverages, creating entirely new flavor profiles and combinations.

Butterfly Pea Flower Tea Cocktail

As butterfly pea tea continues to trend, its use in cocktails is constantly evolving. Butterfly pea tea allows bartenders to get creative when coming up with new drinks, as wildly different color combinations can be made depending on what mixers are added. For bartenders looking to create trendy new cocktails with vibrant natural colors, butterfly pea tea is a fantastic option. The tea is also great for making mocktails, combining with several other ingredients to create striking non-alcoholic beverages that resemble real cocktails.

Butterfly Pea Tea FAQ

Below we cover some of the most common questions regarding butterfly pea tea:

Why Does Butterfly Pea Tea Change Color?

Why Does Butterfly Pea Tea Change Color?

Butterfly pea tea is made from the Clitoria ternatea plant, getting its strong natural blue coloring from the plant's blue leaves. These leaves contain anthocyanin, an acid-base indicator that changes color in response to changes in pH levels. When acidic elements like lemon juice are mixed with butterfly pea tea, the drink's pH alters and the tea's color changes.

Does Butterfly Pea Tea Have Caffeine?

Butterfly pea tea is a caffeine-free beverage, making it a great decaf addition to any menu. Caffeine-free diets are already a popular consumer trend, and many others are looking to reduce their caffeine consumption. Adding butterfly pea tea to your establishment’s menu can be a great way to cater to these customers, giving them more decaf options to choose from.

Whether you’re just starting a tea bar or are looking to expand your menu, butterfly pea tea can be a great addition to your beverage list. The trendy drink’s vibrant colors and great taste are sure to appeal to customers and boost sales. Butterfly pea tea’s health benefits and lack of caffeine position the drink as a great alternative to coffee and other caffeinated beverages. You can also get creative with butterfly pea tea, integrating the drink into your menu in a way that best appeals to your customer base.

Posted in: Coffee & Tea|Foodservice Trends|By Kevin Singhel
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