how to make brown sugar milk tea without boba

The term "bubble tea" refers to a sweet, milky tea that usually contains tapioca pearls (or boba) and is topped with whipped cream. It's often served cold or iced. The drink can be

Creamy, smooth and with a delicious touch of brown sugar, this iced milk tea will improve your mornings. Simple to make and totally addicting, you’ll never drink iced tea in any different way!

3 glasses of brown sugar milk tea with frothed cream and reusable straws

I like simple things. Easy recipes that I can make in less than 10 minutes and be totally satisfied. Those are the best, don’t you think? They rarely get as popular as a 18 hours long pumpkin brioche, but who cares? I like being real, and I enjoy writing about what makes a crappy day better.

My milk tea can transform even the worst rainy Monday into a beautiful warm (Satur)day. It’s so ridiculously easy to put together your kids can help you do it! You only need milk, brown sugar and strong black tea. A bit of heavy cream is totally optional and you can save it for when having an extra awful day.

Tapioca Pearls

My milk tea is made without tapioca pearls, so if you’re looking for a bobba milk tea, I have 3 great recipes for you here.

If you’re looking for a recipe without the tapioca pearls, keep reading.

What Tea Should I Use?

I always use black tea for this recipe, although you can try this with oolong and green tea. I love having my milk with green tea, hot or cold, but for this specific recipe my choice is always black tea.

If you still don’t know, black tea is quite healthy: it has a lot of antioxidants, and some studies even said it can reduce stress and give you an energy boost!

Just remember: black tea has caffeine on it, so my milk tea can make you stay awake till longer than you need to if you drink it at night.

For my iced milk tea, I always use Assam black tea, or a blend that has mostly Assam on it, as it makes a stronger taste black tea.

Brown Sugar and Milk Substitutions

Brown Sugar. I use brown sugar for this recipe. This is one of the ingredients responsible for the final taste. You can substitute it for a low-calorie sweetener, but you’ll lose on the taste.

  • milk pouring over black tea in transparent glass

Milk. You can make a dairy-free version of this recipe by using cashew milk, almond milk, or any vegan milk but coconut. Coconut milk competes too much with the taste of black tea.

How To Make It

This is such an easy recipe I can’t really think of many things that can go wrong: you just need a strong black tea, brown sugar, milk and heavy cream if desired. Ice to make it extra chilled.

Brew black tea. Boil the water. Pour the boiling water over the tea or tea bags, and steep for 5 minutes. Let it cool for about 10 minutes.

Add brown sugar. Remove the tea bags/tea leaves and stir in the brown sugar. You can use dark brown sugar or light brown sugar.

Add milk and heavy cream. If using dairy, prefer using whole milk for this recipe. It’s smoother and makes the black tea even more delicious, as it hides its bitter notes along with the brown sugar. If using plant milk, almond and cashew milk are great matches for this recipe. Skip the heavy cream if making a vegan/dairy-free version.

Whip remaining heavy cream. It’s the perfect topping for your milk tea. Stop whipping it before you get peaks: you don’t want it to sit on top of your tea, you want it to blend with your delicious black tea milk.

brown sugar milk tea step by step collage

Tips For Making The Best Drink

  • Make sure to brew a strong black tea for the best taste;
  • If making a non-dairy version, omit the heavy cream and use almond milk;
  • There are some low-carb options for substituting the brown sugar. Swerve has a brown sugar version of its zero calorie sweetener that is very close to the real thing.

Can I Make This Recipe Ahead?

Yes, you can! Jus remember to store in a jar or any container with a lit on and inside your fridge!

If making ahead, add the whipped cream (if you’re using it) just before you drink your milk tea.

Is There Caffeine In Milk Tea?

Yes, there’s caffeine in black tea, unless you buy a decaf one.

Can I Make It Without Heavy Cream/Whipping Cream?

You can, and will still taste great. I like to add heavy cream to make it even smoother, and I find the frothed heavy cream makes a great addition for this drink.

But you can have a great milk tea with milk only: just remember to use whole milk for a smoother result.

3 glasses of iced milk tea


Store your leftovers inside the fridge, in a jar/glass with a lid. Milk tea keeps for up to 3 days if stored correctly.

Although you can make it ahead, I recommend doing it as soon as you pretend to drink it.

More Tea Recipes

Starbucks Green Tea FrappuccinoBlack Iced Tea RecipesCaffeine-Free Iced Tea Recipes

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