A refreshing iced milk tea recipe made with black tea, sweetened condensed milk, and half & half. It’s sweet, creamy, and hits the spot on hot summer days.
What’s Iced Milk Tea?
- When you add milk to any type of tea, it’s a milk tea. Add ice and you’ve got iced milk tea.
- This recipe is a Hong Kong-style milk tea in that it’s made with sweetened condensed milk.
- It’s full-bodied from the robust black tea.
- Quick and easy — made in just 8 minutes!
- Black tea
Any black loose tea or black tea sachet will work.
- Filtered water
Better tasting water makes better tasting tea, so use filtered water instead of tap.
- Half & half
I’m using this instead of evaporated milk, which is what’s usually in a Hong Kong milk tea.
- Sweetened condensed milk
Aside from the half & half, this is what makes it a Hong Kong milk tea.
If you want to see the swirls from the half & half, make sure to use smaller ice cubes.
My Black Tea Pick:
How to Make Iced Milk Tea
1. Make sweetened half & half
2. Make iced tea
I use my electric kettle with temperature setting and set it to 190°F. If you don’t have an electric kettle, bring water to a simmer then turn off heat.
I don’t like using boiling hot water (212°F) for making iced tea since I need to cool it down quickly and I find boiled water just too hot to work with.
Steep tea and discard tea sachets.
Tea Sommelier’s Tip: When adding milk and sweetener to tea, make a nice strong brew so that the tea flavor comes through.
In a cocktail shaker combine ice and tea.
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Tightly close cocktail shaker and shake 10 times. Ice quickly cools down the tea and it’s ready to drink.
3. Assemble drink
Pour ice-chilled tea into 2 cups of ice. Leave a little room at the top for the sweetened half & half.
Pour in sweetened half & half. Make sure to stir before drinking.
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Notes & Tips
- To give it an extra twist, try dulce de leche instead of sweetened condensed milk.
- If you want to recreate the swirls, you must use half & half. Milk won’t work as well.
- You can use any black tea for this recipe from Earl Grey to English breakfast tea.
Questions You May Have
Yes, milk tea is made with black tea which contains caffeine.
Cloudy tea can be an issue when ice chilling tea but I counter that by using a lower water temperature. When using higher temperature for tea, it releases a lot of tannins and that’s what can make the iced tea cloudy.
No more than 4 days.
I like to use loose tea but if you want the ease of tea bags, get tea sachets instead, which usually contain 1.5 teaspoons of tea and are of better quality tea than tea bags.
It’s half whole milk and half heavy cream. It’s perfect when heavy cream is too much and milk isn’t rich enough.
Variations on Milk Tea
- Bubble tea
Milk tea with tapioca balls.
- Hong Kong-style milk tea
Black tea with evaporated milk and sweetened condensed milk.
Spiced milk tea that originated in India.
- Thai iced tea
A sweetened black tea with spices and milk from Thailand.
- Matcha latte
Milk and matcha green tea.
- Iced matcha latte
Matcha and milk, iced.
- London Fog (Earl Grey Tea Latte)
Earl Grey tea with milk.
Milk Tea Cheat Sheet
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Easy Iced Milk Tea
- Mix sweetened condensed milk and half & half. Set aside.
- Boil water.Bring water to a simmer (180°F if setting water in an electric kettle) and turn off heat. Filtered water is best for a better tasting cup of tea.
- Put loose tea into a pitcher and add hot water.
- Steep for 5 minutes.
- Put 1/2 cup of ice in a cocktail shaker.
- Add strained tea into the cocktail shaker.
- Tightly close cocktail shaker lid and shake 10 times.
- Pour tea into 2 cups of ice.Leave a little room at the top for the sweetened half & half.
- Pour in sweetened half & half.Stir before drinking.