Spicy, warming and immune-boosting Turmeric Tea is a staple in our household. I make this healthy, healing drink for myself on occasions usually after dinner or before bedtime. This simple recipe is made with just 5 pantry and spice cabinet staples in only 5 minutes, meaning it’s easy enough to pull off even when you’re feeling under the weather.
About Turmeric Tea Recipe
While I’ve long been a fan of Turmeric Milk (a.k.a. Golden Milk), I’ve recently started developing a slight intolerance to dairy products. As a result, I started mixing turmeric with water and other spices to make this simple homemade tea.
Simply said, turmeric tea is a kind of tisane or herbal tea made with ground turmeric root or fresh turmeric roots and a bit of black pepper with or without additional spices/herbs, healthy fats and sweeteners.
As I mentioned earlier, I make this Turmeric Tea often. The ingredients I add are what suits me, but the recipe should be approached as more of a template than as law. Feel free to change the other herbs and spices per your body constitution and preferences.
An ayurvedic variant of this tea, also includes addition of a bit of healthy fats (like ghee or coconut oil). Fats help in better absorption of turmeric.
Also, generally speaking, fats help in absorption of fat soluble Vitamins – A, D, E and K. Feel free to add a bit of Ghee or coconut oil or sesame oil or avocado oil or olive oil to the golden tea if you prefer.
In addition to being quite tasty and nutritious, this tea is:
- Made In Less Than 5 Minutes. It’s fast and easy, so there’s no reason you can’t enjoy a cuppa every day!
- Naturally Vegan. Unlike Golden Milk, this spicy ginger turmeric tea is made with just water. It’s light and refreshing rather than rich and creamy.
- Uses Just 5 Ingredients. I can almost guarantee you already have all the components you need in your spice cabinet. But feel free to leave out any spice that you do not have except for black pepper and of course turmeric.
- Is Naturally Sweetened With Raw Sugar. While you don’t *need* to sweeten this tea, adding a bit of raw sugar makes it feel a little indulgent.
In India, turmeric has been used for centuries. These bright yellow roots are added to all kinds of recipes and are often used in Ayurvedic medicines. Turmeric is a staple spice that you will find in all Indian kitchens.
Turmeric’s health benefits are improved by cooking, which is why it is always heated in Indian recipes. Even a short exposure to heat increases the bioavailability of curcumin, the substance that is responsible for the bright yellow color and the antioxidant properties of this root.
I always use organic ground turmeric or GI-tagged turmeric because some packaged turmeric has metanil yellow added as a coloring agent.
Whenever possible, make sure you are getting unadulterated turmeric to reap all the health benefits without any strange, possibly toxic ingredients.
Benefits of Turmeric and Other Spices
As you might have guessed, this turmeric tea isn’t just gorgeous and tasty. It’s really good for you, too! The ingredients I use in my homemade tea recipe are filled with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, among other health benefits.
- Turmeric – Curcumin is a naturally occurring substance in turmeric that has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It boosts immunity, helps with brain function, and is good for the skin, too. In the recipe you can add either fresh turmeric roots or ground turmeric powder.
- Black Pepper – Black pepper helps the body absorb curcumin. It also stimulates the appetite, aids in digestion, can help maintain stable blood sugar, and has its own antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Ceylon Cinnamon – Aromatic Ceylon cinnamon has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. It is also good for boosting immunity, maintaining healthy blood sugar levels, reducing bad cholesterol, and providing a wide range of vital nutrients like beta carotene. Note that true cinnamon or ceylon cinnamon has greater health benefits than cassia cinnamon.
- Ginger – The roots of ginger contain gingerol which has immense anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits. Ginger also helps in digestion, reducing nausea and aids in relieving cough and cold. In the recipe you can use both fresh ginger root or ground ginger powder.
Note: If you are pregnant or have allergies to certain spices used in this recipe or a special medical condition then kindly consult your doctor before attempting this recipe.
Why is my Turmeric Tea red?
When we think of turmeric, yellow is the color that comes to mind. So, why does this turmeric tea turn deep red?
Ginger and cinnamon make the water alkaline. When turmeric is added to an alkaline medium, it turns red. Cool, right?
Don’t worry about the color though. The tea is still good and turmeric when heated for a shorter time is better for digestion and absorption.
That is why in Indian cooking, we always heat turmeric. I have also made this turmeric tea recipe without the ginger, cinnamon, sugar and the color was yellow.
How To Make Turmeric Tea
This simple recipe for ginger turmeric tea comes together in no time. Here’s how it’s done. The recipe makes for 1 cup but feel free to scale it accordingly.
1. In a saucepan, add 1 cup of water.
2. Add ½ to 1 tablespoon raw, unrefined sugar. You can also use jaggery or maple syrup or skip the sweetener completely.
3. Let the water come to a boil and add ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger (a.k.a. dried ginger powder).
½ teaspoon of freshly grated ginger root or crushed ginger can be used instead.
4. Next add ⅛ teaspoon ground ceylon cinnamon (also known as true cinnamon powder, not cassia cinnamon powder).
5. Add ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
6. Add ½ teaspoon ground turmeric (turmeric powder). If using fresh ginger root, add about 1 to 1.5 inches of peeled and grated root.
You can also add less of the ground turmeric powder if you prefer.
7. Boil further for a minute or two. If you have added grated turmeric root, boil for 5 minutes.
8. Remove pan and pour the tea in a cup or mug. You can strain the tea while pouring if you prefer. Enjoy turmeric tea hot or warm.
- If you don’t like having sediment in your tea, consider adding the ground spices to a piece of cheesecloth or a paper teabag for easy straining. You can also prepare paper teabags in advance so that all you have to do is place one in your boiling water!
- Boil cool, filtered water for the best flavor. Water that comes from the hot side of your tap typically has more contaminants than the cold side.
- Don’t boil the spices for too long. While heating turmeric makes the curcumin more bioavailable, boiling it for extended periods of time breaks it down.
- Tangy Tea: If you like sour flavors or want your tea to be a little tangy, then add some fresh lemon juice.
- Sweeteners: I usually prefer sweet tea, so I sweeten them with a bit of raw sugar or jaggery. You may opt to use maple syrup, honey, or any other sweetener you prefer. Please note that if you are using honey as your sweetener, wait until the tea cools to warm as honey becomes toxic when heated.
- Herbal Tea: You can add some fresh or dried mint leaves, nettle leaves, or lemongrass in your turmeric tea recipe for a bit of herbal goodness.
- Floral Flavors: Add dried flowers like chamomile, rose petals, hibiscus, or lavender and steep for a few minutes.
- Fresh Herbs: Instead of dried ginger powder, add ½ inch of grated ginger to the water and boil for 5 minutes. You can also use 1 to 1.5 inches of freshly grated turmeric root in place of dried turmeric powder and boil for 5 minutes.
- Additional Spices: Depending on your health needs, you can add spices like carom seeds, fennel seeds, cumin seeds or coriander seeds in the tea. Cloves, cardamoms or a bit of ground nutmeg can also be added. You can add these spices whole or in powdered form to this turmeric tea recipe.
Absolutely! The recipe as written is free from any caffeine, which makes it a lovely nightcap. If you’re feeling indulgent, try pairing it with Butter Cookies as your dessert.
I always recommend that my readers consult with their doctors before changing their diets. Typically speaking, pregnant women, people who are about to undergo surgery, or those with gallbladder problems, diabetes, bleeding disorders, GERD/acid-reflux, iron deficiency, digestion issues, infertility, liver disease, hormone disorders and arrhythmia should speak with a physician before ingesting large amounts of turmeric.
It’s advisable to drink turmeric tea first thing in the morning or last thing at night to most effectively combat inflammation. In addition, note that curcumin is fat soluble, so taking the tea with a meal will help your body absorb it more readily or add some healthy oils like olive oil, avocado oil, sesame oil, coconut oil or fats like ghee to your turmeric tea.
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Turmeric Tea Recipe
Spicy, warming and immune boosting Turmeric Tea recipe made with ground turmeric and optional spices like ground cinnamon, black pepper and ginger powder. This simple recipe is made in only 5 minutes, meaning it’s easy enough to pull off even when you’re feeling under the weather.
Prep Time 0 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Prevent your screen from going dark while making the recipe
In a saucepan take water and raw sugar or jaggery. You can even use maple syrup or skip the sweetener completely.
Heat the water and let it come to a boil.
Add turmeric powder, ground ceylon cinnamon, ground ginger and crushed black pepper.
Boil further for a minute or two.
Pour and serve. You can even strain the tea.
Enjoy turmeric tea hot or warm.
- For kids add ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder or less.
- Other spices can be skipped but do add black pepper. You can add some more additional spices or herbs if you prefer.
- Lemon juice can be added for a bright tangy taste.
- Fresh Ginger can also be added instead of dry ginger powder. Add ½ inch ginger crushed or grated or ½ teaspoon of grated or crushed ginger.
- Grated turmeric roots can be also added. Add 1 to 1.5 inches of peeled and freshly grated turmeric root in the water and boil for 5 minutes.
- Sweeteners can be skipped or you can add your choice of sweetener like agave syrup, maple syrup, jaggery or honey. If adding honey then add once the tea is warm as jaggery becomes toxic when heated or added to hot liquids.
- If you are pregnant or about to undergo surgery, or have gallbladder problems, diabetes, bleeding disorders, acid-reflux, iron deficiency, digestion issues, infertility, liver disease, hormone disorders and arrhythmia or are on any kind of medicines or treatments, do consult your doctor before consuming turmeric or any of these spices.
- The recipe is scaleable to make for more servings.
Turmeric Tea Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 30 Calories from Fat 1
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 0.04g0%
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.02g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.02g
Vitamin A 2IU0%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 0.1mg1%
Vitamin B6 0.02mg1%
Vitamin C 0.3mg0%
Vitamin E 0.04mg0%
Vitamin K 1µg1%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 0.5µg0%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
This Turmeric Tea recipe from the archives first published in April 2020 has been updated and republished on February 2022.