Chamomile Tea: What It is, Steps to Make It Properly, and Benefits

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Chamomile tea is a popular caffeine-free drink made from dried chamomile flowers. See how to make chamomile tea properly, step-by-step, from a certified Tea Sommelier.

Chamomile tea steeping in a teapot.

What is Chamomile Tea?

  • Chamomile tea is an herbal drink made from dried chamomile flowers steeped in water. It can be made both hot and iced. It’s naturally caffeine-free.
  • Chamomile is a flowering plant with white petals and a mustard-yellow center that looks like a daisy. There are a few varieties of chamomile and only two types are used for tea — German chamomile and the Roman Chamomile.
  • One of the most popular herbal teas, chamomile tea dates back to ancient Egypt where it was used for medicinal purposes.

See how to brew herbal teas properly like rose, lavender, rooibos, barley, and hibiscus.

Chamomile Benefits

Ingredient Notes

  • Chamomile tea
    The more intact the chamomile flowers, the higher the quality, so go for loose tea. If you open up chamomile tea in tea bags, you’ll find crushed tiny bits of chamomile flowers which makes a lower quality tea.
  • Water
    If possible, use filtered water since it’ll make the tea taste better than tap.
My Chamomile Pick

Photo Credit: Harney.com

Flavorful Egyptian chamomile flowers from Egypt. (Free shipping!)
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Steps to Make Hot Chamomile Tea

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

  1. Boil water.
    Boiling water for tea is easy when you use an electric kettle with temperature setting. Boil extra water to warm the teapot.
  2. Warm up teapot.
    Pour some hot water into the teapot and swirl it around a bit. Discard the water.
  3. Put chamomile tea into the teapot and add hot water. Cover teapot and steep.
  4. Strain chamomile solids and pour hot tea into a teacup.

Tea Sommelier’s Tip: Keep the teapot covered while tea is steeping to make sure the water temperature stays consistent.

Steps to Make Iced Chamomile Tea

If you want to make iced chamomile tea, the best way is to cold brew it.

Two photo collage showing how to make iced chamomile tea.
  1. Put chamomile tea and water in a pitcher or glass container. Cover and place in refrigerator to cold brew.
    Use cool or room temperature filtered water.
  2. Strain chamomile solids and pour tea into a cup.
    Cold brewed tea is already chilled so adding ice is optional.

Expert Tips

  • Use a glass teapot to make herbal tea so you can see the pretty herbals in water.
  • If you want to sweeten your chamomile tea, use simple syrup (half water, half sugar). It’ll be the easiest to incorporate into your tea.
  • Cold brewed chamomile can be steeped for over 24 hours in the refrigerator since it won’t get bitter like black or green tea.
  • Chamomile tea can be brewed and stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Keep it covered or airtight glass container or pitcher.
  • Loose chamomile tea and tea sachets should be stored in an airtight container away from light, odors, humidity, and heat.

Questions You May Have

How do you pronounce chamomile?

There are two ways to pronounce chamomile and both are correct. The “h” is silent so it’s pronounced as either KAM-MAH-MEEL or KAM-MUH-MILE.

What does chamomile tea taste like?

Chamomile tea has a strong, heady aroma and tastes earthy with floral and apple notes. If it’s steeped for too long it has a very medicinal taste that I’m not a fan of. 

Is there caffeine?

Nope, there’s not a trace of caffeine in chamomile tea. It makes for a great nighttime drink since it’s caffeine-free.

Loose tea, tea sachets, or tea bags?

For the best quality chamomile tea, use loose tea. Tea sachets are next in quality and tea bags are the lowest in quality since the chamomile are all crushed into tiny bits.

Is chamomile tea a real tea?

All herbal teas, including chamomile, are not real or true teas. Real tea only comes from the Camellia sinensis plant, and since chamomile comes from the chamomile plant it’s not a real tea. 

Steeping chamomile flowers in a teapot with hot water.

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Chamomile Tea

Author: Jee Choe
How to make chamomile tea properly, hot & iced.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 2 mins
Steep Time 5 mins
Total Time 7 mins
Course Drinks
Yield1 serving

INGREDIENTS
 

  • 1 cup water + more to warm teapot
  • 1 tablespoon chamomile tea

INSTRUCTIONS
 

  • Boil water.
    If using an electric kettle with temperature setting, set it to 208°F. Boil a little more water than needed so that it can be used to warm up the teapot. Filtered water is best.
  • Warm up teapot.
    Pour hot water into a teapot halfway and swirl it around a bit. Discard the water.
    Warming up the teapot is an extra step that all tea professionals take the time to do, so that when the tea steeps, the water temperature won't drop drastically.
  • Put chamomile tea into the teapot and add hot water. Cover teapot and steep for 5 minutes.
  • Strain chamomile flowers and pour hot tea into a teacup.

NOTES

How to Make Cold Brew Chamomile Iced Tea

  1. Put chamomile tea and cool or room temperature water in a pitcher or glass container. Cover pitcher and put in refrigerator for at least 12 hours.
    Stir to make sure chamomile get dampened by the water and isn’t sitting dry on top of the water surface. Use filtered water for a better tasting iced tea. 
  2. Strain chamomile solids and pour tea into a cup.
    Ice is optional since the tea is already cold.

Brewing Guide

Hot Chamomile Tea
  • TEA: 1 tablespoon chamomile tea
  • WATER: 1 cup (8 oz.)
  • WATER TEMPERATURE: 208°F
  • STEEP TIME: 5 minutes
Cold Brew Chamomile Iced Tea
  • TEA: 1 tablespoon chamomile tea
  • WATER: 1 cup (8 oz.)
  • WATER TEMPERATURE: Cold water
  • STEEP TIME: 12 hours in the refrigerator

Tips

  • Use loose tea instead of tea bags for a better quality cup of tea.
  • For a stronger cup of chamomile tea, add a couple of more minutes to your steep time or add 1/2 teaspoon more of loose tea.
  • Use a glass teapot to make herbal tea so you can see the pretty herbals in water.
  • If you want to sweeten hot tea, you can use any kind of sweetener from sugar to date syrup, but for sweetening iced tea, always use simple syrup since it’ll be the easiest to mix into a cold drink.
  • Cold brewed chamomile can be steeped for over 24 hours in the refrigerator since it won’t get bitter like black or green tea.
  • Chamomile tea can be brewed and stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Keep it covered or airtight glass container or pitcher.
  • Loose chamomile tea and tea sachets should be stored in an airtight container away from light, odors, humidity, and heat.

NUTRITION

Calories: 1 | Carbohydrates: 1g | Sodium: 12mg | Potassium: 5mg | Calcium: 7mg
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6 thoughts on “Chamomile Tea: What It is, Steps to Make It Properly, and Benefits”

  1. Great article. I am planning to make a litre of chamomile tea (roughly 4.5 US cups/ 34fl oz), every night to drink at room temperature the next day. I only have chamomile teabags to use. My plan was to boil water and leave it on the kitchen table to brew overnight. Do you know roughly how many teabags I should use for this? I’m assuming it’s fewer than the amount you’d use ratio-wise for having the same amount of individual mugs Many thanks.

    Reply
  2. Such an interesting article! I love chamomile tea for its taste and lightness, when ordinary black tea bothers me, I turn to chamomile. I did not know that there were any subtleties in its preparation. Usually I just make boiling water and let the tisane brew. Chamomile tea calms well and helps with stomach-ache.

    Reply

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