The Best Old Fashioned Himalayan Style Chai Recipe

Chai—One Pot Method (makes two cups)

This delightfully authentic Chai recipe (slightly modified by me) comes right out of The Happiness Revolution which is available free here. Totally worth reading now.


  • 1 cup of cow milk
  • 1 cup of water
  • ½ inch fresh ginger root
    • More or less to taste
    • More concerned with juice then mass, that is where the flavor is)
  • 1 pinch powdered saffron
    • More or less to taste
  • 6 whole pods of cardamom
    • Green
    • More or less to taste
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • More or less to taste
  • 1 tablespoon black tea
    • Black tea as the benefit of caffeine to which you don’t develop a tolerance. It works the same every time.
    • I like Wagh Bakri
  • 3 grinder turns of black pepper
    • Usually only during winter
    • More or less to taste


  • Pot big enough to hold the ingredients
  • Vessel big enough to hold the the number of cups of water and milk that you are using
  • Ginger Grater: extracts the ginger juice quickly and extracts every drop of juice
  • Coffee Grinder: for the cardamom
    • only hold the cup over the pot instead of the grinder when you dump in the seeds otherwise the steam will get inside the grinder and make it unhappy
  • Tea Spoon: to peel the ginger
    • Or paring knife if you are a ninja


  • Place pot on counter-top. Add pepper, black tea, saffron, and cardamom.
  • Add water to vessel. Peel and grate ginger. Grab ginger fiber and place in pot. Use water to rinse grater into pot. Add all of remaining water to pot.
  • Bring pot to a boil. Fill vessel with milk.
  • When water reaches a boil, pour in milk.
  • Allow chai to come to a boil, then quickly remove from the heat. Stare at pot the entire time otherwise it will boil over. Maitain focus without distraction here. Do this two more times.
  • Strain through a fine strainer so as to filter out tea and herbs.
  • Either add sugar to individual servings so everyone can sweeten to their taste or add it to pot.
  • Serve. The chai party begins.

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