spiced milk tea the best masala chai dairy-free

The Best Masala Chai (spiced milk tea | dairy-free)

It will only take you 5 minutes to try and make The Best Masala Chai, which will soon be on your daily rotation if you follow this recipe. This authentic Masala Chai recipe is super easy as you can make it from scratch with only a few ingredients and the spices you have around! Dairy-free, vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, and nut-free. Great with breakfast or after dinner.

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Make sure you bookmark (or pin) this recipe so you have it on hand for when you are ready to try making The Best Masala Chai recipe!

the best masala chai (dairy-free)

You can also tag me on Instagram @thedorkyfrench if you try this recipe, or just leave a comment at the end of the page to let me know how it went for you! It always makes me so fulfilled to see you guys recreating my recipes.


A Masala Chai is simply black tea made with milk and a few spices such as cardamom and turmeric. If we break it down into pieces, Chai means ‘tea’; and Masala means ‘spices’. Hence the English translation of ‘spiced milk tea’.

Masala Chai originates from India even though it has now gained worldwide popularity; more commonly known as ‘chai latte’ in coffee shops and coffee houses. 


Traditional Masala Chai requires more preparation as it involves boiling the tea, and it has (to me) much more flavor than a chai latte. To make a chai latte you just need to froth the milk with a mix of sugar and spices that are similar to the ones used in Masala Chai and add it to the black tea. Methods vary depending on coffee shops.

masala chai in blue and pink mugs with frosted milk


For this recipe, you can use either classic black tea bags, which naturally contain caffeine; or decaf black tea bags that contain very little amount of caffeine. You can find both either online, or in most food stores and supermarkets. I use the brand Yorkshire for my tea bags for ethical and quality reasons.

The level of caffeine varies depending on the type and origin of the tea bags you use and on how the drink is prepared.


To give you an idea, an average cup of coffee contains about 95 mg of caffeine. While for one mug of tea made with one black tea bag, the amount of caffeine can rise to 36 mg of caffeine after 3 minutes of steeping. (Reference: Healthline)

For this recipe, we will need 3 tea bags for 2 servings, which is therefore equivalent to approximately 54 mg of caffeine for one serving. 

You can also use 4 tea bags instead of 3 if you like more caffeine in your tea, which I usually do when I make spiced milk tea early in the morning.

tea bags in spiced milk tea


My partner, the owner of HS Athletics, originally comes from Punjab. So he is the one who introduced me to traditional Indian Masala Chai 2 years ago when we met. Since then I have made it and loved it every. single. day. I drink Masala Chai most of the time either in the morning with breakfast, or at night after dinner.

Traditional spiced milk tea is made with cow milk. We use soy milk for this recipe to make it dairy-free and vegan; which absolutely does not affect the authenticity of the taste of traditional Masala Chai.

To understand why this recipe is made with soy milk instead of cow milk, you can watch this 5-minutes video dealing with dairy and its industry.

If you are interested in trying more Asian vegan recipes, I recommend this Coconut Red Lentil Dhal (gluten-free | oil-free) or this Easy Chickpea Curry (in only 30 minutes!).

the best masala chai thedorkyfrench


We use the following spices in The Best Masala Chai recipe:


-black pepper


The next 3 spices are optional for this recipe, but highly recommended for the best results!


fennel seeds

-fresh ginger.

frosted masala chai


Due to the use of Indian spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, and turmeric, this hot drink has high antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties.

Moreover, turmeric combined with black pepper can increase the absorption of curcumin in turmeric by 2000%! The spices in Masala Chai all work together this way to increase the health benefits of consuming this delicious sweet drink.

Masala Chai is also traditionally sweetened with jaggery sugar, also referred to as gur sugar, which is an unrefined product of sugarcane. It is slightly less sweet than maple syrup and tastes like a mix of sweet caramel and molasse… Gur sugar is known for aiding digestion and therefore preventing constipation; for helping clean the liver; and it is also full of antioxidants and minerals!

gur jaggery sugar for milk tea

Lastly, spiced milk tea provides energy for an extended amount of time compared to coffee, due to the caffeine from the tea bags, put together with the energetic properties of the gur sugar.

In a nutshell, a mug of Masala Chai a day shall keep the doctor away!


Even though there is no evidence for it, spiced milk tea is commonly used for weight loss. But let’s be honest, the deep sweet taste of spiced milk tea is, to me, a good enough reason to drink milk tea every day! One full mug of The Best Masala Chai contains only 91 calories. See the nutrition facts at the end of the page for more information.

For more healthy and low-calorie easy meal ideas, try these Spicy Potato Chips (oil-free | easy) or these Giant Chocolate Chips Cookies (only 3 ingredients).


Please note this is just an overview of the recipe. Scroll down to the end of the page to see the full printable recipe.

Making Masala Chai probably is much easier than you think, in only 3 steps and 5 minutes total.

1- Put all ingredients together in a saucepan.

2- Turn on the heat on high until milk tea is boiling, lower the heat, and simmer for 3 minutes while stirring constantly.

masala chai in saucepan spiced milk tea

3- Serve the tea using a fine mesh strainer to get a super smooth spiced milk tea as an outcome.

masala chai thedorkyfrench


Masala Chai is a sweet hot drink which, therefore, does not taste spicy at all! The spices in this recipe have for purpose to give more taste to the sweet tea by seasoning it. 


Follow TheDorkyFrench on youtube for more vegan recipe videos.

thedorkyfrench the best dairy free masala chai

The Best Masala Chai (spiced milk tea | dairy-free)

It will only take you 5 minutes to try and make The Best Masala Chai, which will soon be on your daily rotation if you follow this recipe. This authentic Masala Chai recipe is super easy as you can make it from scratch with only a few ingredients and the spices you have on hand! Dairy-free, vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, and nut-free. Great with breakfast or after dinner.
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Drinks, Snack
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: dairy-free masala chai, spiced milk tea, the best masala chai recipe, vegan drink
Prep Time: 0 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 91kcal
Author: Marlene Mamia (TheDorkyFrench)


  • fine mesh strainer
  • Saucepan
  • wooden spoon
  • mugs


Optional but recommended:


  • Watch the one-minute recipe video (scroll down a bit) to see all instruction steps.
  • Heat up a saucepan on high heat and add all ingredients in the saucepan.
    masala chai with soy milk
  • Bring milk tea to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 3 minutes while stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Occasionally gently press the tea bags against the pan when stirring.
    masala chai in saucepan spiced milk tea
  • Squeeze the liquid out of the tea bags by taking them out of the tea and gently pressing them against the saucepan, and remove the tea bags from the saucepan.
    tea bags for milk tea
  • Serve the tea using a fine mesh strainer.
    masala chai thedorkyfrench
  • Optional: froth 1/4 mug of soy milk using a milk frother (linked is the one I use) and pour it evenly into the drinks.
    frosted milk for masala chai



*Soy milk is the best dairy-free option to make vegan Masala Chai. I have tried making it with other milks such as almond, rice and oat milk, and soy milk has always worked best to make this drink as good and creamy as possible. I do not recommend substituting with another milk, but oat milk also works fine if you are allergic to soy.
**The cardamom has to be slightly opened in order to get the flavour out of it. To open your cardamom, gently bite into it or squeeze it between your thumb and forefinger to crack it open.
***I recommend using jaggery sugar for the best result, but you can substitute with brown sugar, maple syrup, or agave syrup. Keep in mind jaggery sugar is slightly less sweet than other sweeteners, so you would have to use slightly more sweetener than the recommended amount.
Tried this recipe?Mention @thedorkyfrench or tag #thedorkyfrench on instagram!


Serving: 1mug | Calories: 91kcal


Please note that all nutrition facts and information found on this website are for informational purposes only. I am not a doctor nor registered nutritionist, so please refer to a professional for medical advice.

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