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How to Make Bubble Tea (Boba Tea) with Brown Sugar

Author: Jee Choe
Decadent, delicious bubble tea drink made with tapioca balls, dark brown sugar, and milk tea.
4.6 from 130 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Steep Time 5 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Drinks
Yield2 servings


Black tea

  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons black tea

Dark brown Simple Syrup

Tapioca Balls

Cream Froth



  • Boil water.
    Boil 2 3/4 cup of water. If using an electric kettle with a temperature setting, set the water to 208°F. Use filtered water if possible.
  • Steep tea in hot water for 5 minutes.
    Combine tea and 2.5 cups hot water and steep. (We're saving the leftover 1/4 cup of hot water for the brown sugar simple syrup.)
  • Strain tea leaves and let tea cool.
    Using a teapot with an infuser makes straining the tea leaves super easy.


  • Stir together hot water and dark brown sugar until sugar dissolves.
    Take the remaining 1/4 cup hot water and stir in 1/4 cup brown sugar.


  • Boil water and add tapioca balls.
    Boil 4 cups of water on the stovetop then add tapioca balls. In a couple of minutes, they'll start floating to the surface. Cover the pot and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes. Stir occasionally. (Follow directions on your tapioca ball packaging if you're using a different brand than the one I'm using.)
  • Strain tapioca balls.
  • Combine tapioca balls and brown sugar simple syrup.
    Stir in dark brown simple syrup into the pot with the strained boba. Let cool slightly.


  • Lightly whip heavy cream and sugar.
    Cream froth is a lightly whipped heavy cream. Use a handheld milk frother and whip for 10 seconds. Cream should thicken slightly and should be pourable.


  • Divide each component into two cups.
    Spoon in boba in brown sugar simple syrup, add ice, then black tea, and top with cream froth. Stir together before drinking.


  • Make sure your tapioca balls are still warm when you assemble the drink. They'll be nice and soft with a little chew.
  • Instead of loose tea, you can use 3 tea sachets or 6 tea bags.
  • If you want less tea, use 4 teaspoons of tea which is 2 tea sachets or 4 tea bags.
  • Use an extra wide straw to drink your bubble tea.


Calories: 427 | Carbohydrates: 82g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 60mg | Potassium: 59mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 437IU | Calcium: 77mg | Iron: 1mg
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