Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba)

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A pretty, caffeine-free blue colored bubble tea you can easily make at home. Get tips and easy step-by-step instructions.

Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba) with the blue tea and white milk swirling together in a glass.

Recipe Highlights

  • Butterfly pea flower tea bubble tea (also called butterfly pea flower milk tea) is a cold drink made with butterfly pea flower tea and tapioca balls. This recipe makes it sweet and extra creamy with brown sugar, and half & half.
  • Butterfly pea flower tea is a flowery, vegetal tea that naturally colors water blue. It’s sometimes called blue tea.
  • The bubbles, or boba, are the tapioca balls at the bottom of the drink. This recipe uses dried, store-bought tapioca balls that you just have to cook in hot water to soften them up.
  • My secret to the best boba is to make the drink with warm (not hot) tapioca balls. This will make the difference between a good bubble tea and a great one.

RELATED: Strawberry Bubble Milk Tea (Strawberry Boba Milk Tea)

Ingredient Notes

Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba) ingredients in measuring cups and labeled.
  • Butterfly pea flower tea
    Use tea bags instead of loose tea since you don’t need high quality tea for this recipe.
  • Tapioca balls
    Store-bought tapioca balls are the easiest way to make boba at home. They just need to be cooked in water to make them soft and chewy.
  • Brown sugar
    Brown sugar has a slight toffee, caramel flavor that works really well with tea. You can use white sugar if you that’s what you have.
  • Half & half
    Any milk can be used in the drink, but you won’t get the pretty swirls as you would pouring the half & half into the blue tea.
  • Water
    Using filtered water, when possible, to cook the boba and steep the tea will make your drink taste better.
  • Ice
    Make ice using filtered water if you can for a cleaner taste.
My Tapioca Balls Pick

Photo Credit: amazon.com

The tapioca balls I use to make bubble tea at home.
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Step-by-Step Instructions

Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba) first two steps for how to make it.

For full ingredients and instructions, scroll down to see the recipe.

  1. Steep tea in hot water. Discard tea bags and stir in brown sugar.
    Set aside to cool.
  2. Cook tapioca balls in brown sugar and water.
    Boil water and brown sugar together then add tapioca balls.
Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba) last 4 steps for how to make it.
  1. Put warm tapioca balls and brown sugar syrup into a cup.
  2. Add ice.
  3. Pour in cooled tea.
    Make sure the tea isn’t too hot since it’ll completely melt the ice.
  4. Slowly pour in half & half.
    Watch the blue and white swirls. Serve immediately. Stir before drinking and use an extra wide straw.

RELATED: Taro Bubble Tea

Recipe Notes

Make bubble tea using warm tapioca balls.
Slight cooled, very warm tapioca balls have the perfect soft and chewy texture. Just make sure the tapioca balls aren’t too hot to eat or you’ll burn your mouth.

Use tea bags instead of loose tea.
Bubble tea is made with sugar and milk, so the subtle qualities of high quality loose tea gets lost in the sweet drink. Tea bags are also easier to clean up.

Half & half vs milk.
Any kind of milk can be used in this drink, including plant-based milk like oat milk or almond milk. But, I’ve found that if you want to create the pretty swirls, nothing creates them in the blue tea like half & half. Plus, they make the drink a lot creamier.

A Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba) in a clear glass with a wide straw and boba at the bottom.

Expert Tips

  • Butterfly pea flower tea can be steeped then stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Don’t add the sugar until you’re ready to make the drink.
  • It’s not recommended to make boba ahead of time since tapioca balls start to harden after 4 hours. It’s best to make it right before you want to serve it.
  • Don’t make more tapioca balls than needed since they can’t be stored for later use.
  • Bubble tea is always served with a wide straw because that’s the only way to get a few tapioca balls with each sip of the milk tea.

RELATED: Thai Bubble Tea

Questions You May Have

What does butterfly pea flower tea taste like?

It has a mild woody and vegetal flavor. In my opinion, it’s not the best tasting tea.

Does this drink contain caffeine?

Nope. Butterfly pea flower tea is a caffeine-free herbal tea.

Can I use a non-dairy milk?

Yes, you can use any milk you like but it will be creamier and create prettier swirls with half & half.

How can I adjust the sweetness?

Add in less of the brown sugar syrup that is cooked with the tapioca balls to reduce the sweetness.

Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea (Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea with Boba) fully assembled and solid blue color drink with boba at the bottom and ice on top.

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Butterfly Pea Flower Bubble Tea

Author: Jee Choe
A pretty and caffeine-free blue colored bubble tea you can easily make at home.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 2 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 12 mins
Course Drinks
Yield1 serving (16 ounces)

INGREDIENTS
 

Butterfly Pea Flower Milk Tea

Tapioca Balls

  • ¾ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ¼ cup tapioca balls

INSTRUCTIONS

MAKE TEA

  • Steep butterfly pea flower tea bags in ¾ cup of hot water for 5 minutes.
    Set the temperature to 175°F if you're using an electric kettle with a temperature setting. Use filtered water if possible.
    Cook tapioca balls in brown sugar and water.Boil water and brown sugar together then add tapioca balls.
  • Discard tea bags and stir in brown sugar.
    Set aside to cool.

COOK TAPIOCA BALLS

  • Boil water and brown sugar in a saucepan. Add tapioca balls.
    Combine ¾ cup of water and 2 tablespoons of brown sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Once you see big bubbles (2-4 minutes), add tapioca balls. Keep boiling for 8 more minutes on medium-high heat. Cool slightly, until tapioca balls aren't too hot to eat. They should still be very warm.

ASSEMBLE DRINK

  • Put warm tapioca balls in brown sugar syrup into a cup. 
Add ice, then the cooled down butterfly pea flower tea.
  • Slowly pour in half & half.
    Serve immediately and stir before drinking. Use an extra wide straw to drink.

NOTES

  • Slight cooled, very warm tapioca balls have the perfect soft and chewy texture. Just make sure the tapioca balls aren’t too hot to eat or you’ll burn your mouth.
  • Use tea bags instead of loose tea. Bubble tea is made with sugar and milk, so the subtle qualities of high quality loose tea gets lost in the sweet drink. Tea bags are also easier to clean up.
  • Any kind of milk can be used in this drink, including plant-based milk like oat milk or almond milk. But, I’ve found that if you want to create the pretty swirls, nothing creates them in the blue tea like half & half. Plus, they make the drink a lot creamier.
  • Butterfly pea flower tea can be steeped then stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Don’t add the sugar until you’re ready to make the drink.
  • It’s not recommended to make boba ahead of time since tapioca balls start to harden after 4 hours. It’s best to make it right before you want to serve it.
  • Don’t make more tapioca balls than needed since they can’t be stored for later use.
  • Bubble tea is always served with a wide straw because that’s the only way to get a few tapioca balls with each sip of the milk tea.

    NUTRITION

    Calories: 352 | Carbohydrates: 72g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 65mg | Potassium: 132mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 214IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 113mg | Iron: 1mg
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