taro milk tea

The Best Taro Milk Tea Recipe

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Have you noticed them yet? That cool purple drink doused in cold water with just a touch of sunny southern California we find cruising all around us at all the best places in the local mall or even just downtown on a Saturday afternoon.

You know, those fancy sealed cups with those cool, fat straws and heavy balls of boba swimming around at the bottom emerging from a jasmine green tea ocean floating out of any one of the boba shops popping up all around us? Your local bubble tea store is a hive of these hip new delights, and you want the best.

You may want to try it, but this is not your classic milk tea. It’s taro milk tea or taro boba tea, sometimes called taro bubble tea. The boba tea has boba balls, those chewy tapioca balls that give this drink its name and you can buy it already made or you can make homemade boba, but we can also serve this versatile drink with no boba at all.

Like bubble or boba tea, you don’t need the boba pearls in your tea base to get this drink right. It would just be tea without the desert.

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You can get them with fruit flavors, or milk based, or fruit and cream based, the sky is the limit, but then, one day you notice the light purple hue of a new bubble tea emerging from your favorite local bubble tea shops, and you think to yourself, “What is that?”

taro milk tea

“What is in that drink?”

“Is that a different type of tea?”

It is just so enticing with all its velvety purple sweetness that surpasses the average pearl milk tea, and if you have a love of bubble tea’s rich and varied flavors, like jasmine tea, black tea, green tea or even jasmine green tea, this new flavor is halfway to tempting you already.

You May Also Like: How To Make Matcha Green Tea Latte

Why This Recipe Works

  • Homemade boba tea is healthier than store-bought
  • Budget-friendly
  • Amazing purple color
  • Easy to make and customize
  • Amazing taro flavor
  • Refreshing and delicious
  • The best taro milk tea recipe ever!


taro milk tea ingredients

Green Team Bags – Green tea is one of the main ingredients for making your taro milk tea. I love using jasmine green tea when making this amazing bubble milk tea.

Tapioca Pearls – Tapioca pearls can be found online or in Asian grocery stores. Black boba pearls will need to be cooked before enjoying in your bubble milk tea.

Brown Sugar – Because of the mild flavor of the tapioca pearls, boba tea does need to be sweetened. A little bit of brown sugar goes a long way, adding the perfect sweetness to your tea!

Taro Powder – Taro root powder is much easier to mix than taro paste. Please note that taro root powder is not the same as taro bubble tea powder. Taro root powder is what the cafes use to make boba tea. Your drink will taste more authentic than if you buy the taro bubble tea powder.

Ube Extract – This has a sweet vanilla flavor that will help bring out the authentic bubble tea purple color and taste!

Milk – Use your choice of milk. My favorite is this creamy pea milk for those that want to make this dairy-free.

Recommended Read: Copycat Starbucks Chai Latte Recipe


You can customize your bubble milk tea to your liking by using some of the variations below.

Tea: Not a fan of green tea? No problem! You can sub for black tea, or white tea as well.

Milk: You can choose any milk you like, but my favorite is using almond milk or oat milk. You can also try coconut milk for a sweeter variation.

Vegan Options: To make bubble tea vegan, you can use vegan milk options such as the ones listed above. You can also opt for a vegan taro root powder as well.

Taro Bubble Tea Milkshake: You can make a delicious milkshake by mixing 1 cup of cooled green tea with taro root powder, ube extract, your favorite milk, and vanilla ice cream. Pour on top of tapioca pearls and enjoy!

Taro Oat Milk Tea: Add your favorite oat milk to create a taro oat milk tea.

taro milk tea with straw

How To Make Taro Milk Tea

  1. Make the green tea. Simmer 2 cups of water in a tea kettle over medium heat. Remove from heat before boiling and pour water in a separate glass measuring cup. Add green tea (or your choice of tea) in the glass cup and steep for 5 minutes. Let it cool.
  2. Cook tapioca pearls. While the tea cools, cook tapioca pearls. Add cold water to a small pot and bring to a boil. Add the chewy tapioca balls, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 to 6 minutes.
  3. Strain the tapioca pearls. Carefully strain the pearls and transfer to a small glass bowl. Add in the brown sugar and set aside to cool.
  4. Add the taro powder. Mix in the taro powder, ube extract, milk, and cooled tea in a medium bowl. Whisk until thoroughly combined.
  5. Put it all together. Divide the tapioca pearls into two glasses. Add the taro bubble tea to each glass and top with ice.
  6. Enjoy!


What are the benefits of Taro Milk Tea?

Taro root has health benefits, such as having a good source of fiber, vitamins and minerals. It’s high in potassium which can help regulate blood pressure and support heart health.

What’s The Difference Between Taro Milk Tea and Bubble Tea?

Bubble tea is a broad category of Taiwanese tea-based drinks that include different flavors and variations. Taro milk tea is a specific flavor made from taro root powder. Bubble tea may include other ingredients such as tapioca pearls, or fruit syrups, depending on the flavor of the bubble tea.

Is Taro Milk Tea Vegan?

Taro milk tea may not be vegan if it contains milk or honey as sweetener. However, it can be made vegan by using a non-dairy milk and a plant-based sweetener such as maple syrup, brown sugar, or agave nectar.

Where Does Taro Milk Tea Come From?

Taro milk tea is believed to have originated in Taiwan, but it has become popular in many parts of Asia and around the world.

Does Taro Milk Tea Have Caffeine?

Yes, taro milk tea can have caffeine if it is made with tea as an ingredient. Many recipes for taro milk tea include black tea, green tea, or oolong tea, all of which naturally contain caffeine. However, some versions of taro milk tea may not contain any tea and may be caffeine-free. It ultimately depends on the specific recipe and ingredients used to make the taro milk tea.

taro milk tea

Recipe Tips

Make sure to use taro powder instead of raw taro root for a more authentic flavor.

Use a jumbo straw so you can enjoy all of the tapioca pearls at the bottom of the drink!

Make sure to add plenty of ice if you like it cold, or keep it chilled if you don’t like ice in your drinks.

Try different flavors and variations. Boba tea doesn’t just have one flavor. Try other variations and see which one you like the best.

Enjoy your drink fresh! Taro milk tea is best when it is fresh. If you don’t plan to drink it right away, make it when you’re ready to enjoy it for the best flavor and taste.

Taro Bubble Tea Recipe

This recipe isn’t written in stone. There is a variety of recipes for taro bubble milk tea. You just must pick your favorite taro milk tea recipe from all the popular bubble tea flavors out there. There is no one best way to make the boba drink when you are using taro.

The best way is any way you like it. We can even make this rich taro milk tea without the milk, and it can still be the most refreshing taro tea you ever had, because this drink is all about the taro.  

The flavor you find in a taro drink comes from the taro root. It is this drink’s main ingredient, and this root comes to us from Southeast Asia or the Hawaiian culture.

Still, when you find it, it is usually found in Asian grocery stores or online, not in just any old tea bag. Online, they sell taro as a taro powder or a purple sweet potato powder that you just add to your drink to make it an easy recipe.

taro milk tea

If you are looking for a simple recipe, this is the way to go, but if you are looking for homemade fresh taro paste, the Asian section of your local grocery store is the place to start. You can make your own fresh paste at little or no extra cost.

To make homemade fresh taro paste from this root plant for a fresh taro milk tea in its bright purple color, we peel the root, cut it up into cubes that we place into a steamer and boil in hot water over medium heat until the taro is fork tender.

That way, you can mash them into a taro paste and add it to your favorite recipes. Taro’s nutty flavors, with just a hint of vanilla, go great with coconut milk, oat milk, fresh milk, whole milk, almond milk, or even a non-dairy creamer, and it is great in a cool taro smoothie with just a cup of ice or maybe, ice cream, and some imagination.

taro bubble tea

Taro Milk Tea Recipe

This delicious, creamy taro milk bubble tea recipe is easy to make, and can be enjoyed dairy-free and is gluten-free.
5 from 55 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine Asian, Taiwanese
Servings 2 drinks
Calories 242 kcal


Milk Tea

Tapioca Pearls (Boba)

Brown Sugar Syrup


Cook the Tapioca Pearls

  • Follow package instruction for cooking tapioca pearls. This should take 3-5 minutes.
  • Once cooked, drain tapioca pearls immediately under cold water and set them aside in a bowl of cold water. This prevents them from sticking together. Leave them in the cold water until they are ready to be added into the brown sugar mixture.

Brown Sugar Syrup

  • In a small saucepan, heat brown sugar and water over medium heat. Stir occasionally until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Simmer for 3-5 minutes to thicken the mixture (it will thicken as it cools).
  • Remove from heat and add the cooked, tapioca pearls to the brown sugar syrup mixture.

Steep Jasmine Tea

  • Bring water to near boil in tea kettle on stove.
  • Steep tea bag (or tea leaves) in hot water for 5 minutes.
  • Remove tea leaves (or tea bag) and add taro powder and mix well. Set aside to cool.

Assemble Taro Milk Tea

  • Make sure you're using tall glasses. Add in brown sugar and tapioca pearls mixture to the glass.
  • Add the tea and then finally the milk.
  • Enjoy!


  • To infuse the boba with more flavor, let the tapioca pearls and brown sugar syrup mixture sit for about an hour for an incredible flavor.
  • If you want to enjoy the boba milk tea iced, steep the tea first before doing any of the steps above in the recipe. This way, the tea has time to cool.
  • Make sure you make the boba fresh as they will become hard as they chill. It’s best to consume the boba within 4 hours of making it.
  • Serving warm tapioca pearls is the best way to serve your boba milk tea as they are the softest at this time and will taste the best. The longer you let them sit out, the harder they will become.
  • To adjust the sweetness to your liking, add less or more of the brown sugar syrup – or omit it altogether if you’re using a store-bought brand of taro powder that is already sweetened.


Serving: 16ozCalories: 242kcalCarbohydrates: 56gProtein: 2gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 5mgSodium: 53mgPotassium: 272mgFiber: 2gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 88IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 99mgIron: 1mg
Keyword bubble milk tea, taro bubble milk tea, taro milk tea
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recipe Notes

Just be careful. Taro is a starchy root vegetable; it will thicken your drink. Taro is a starchy root like a potato. Most of the fresh taro root recipes don’t have a yogurt in them. When you add yogurt, you don’t have a smoothie anymore. With yogurt, this drink is the consistency of a milkshake.

Powdered taro root for purple bubble tea has less starch in it. The taro root powder yields a much tinner consistency.  

This is one of the first things you will want to consider when choosing the best bubble tea recipe for you. The second is whether to add the boba pearls. Just remember, the boba adds more sweet flavor to your drink.

This gooey, chewy, sweet, tea flavored ball makes this much more than a smoothie. It makes it more like a desert with its black tapioca pearls, and it adds extra sugar to your indulgence when you are looking for a sweet treat. The boba bubble has a more subtle hint of sweetness than the rest of your taro milk tea, and if you like its chewy goodness, it is easy to add.

taro milk bubble tea

Your base is where you have the taro flavoring. The base is part taro powder or perhaps your pre-prepared taro paste, the milk, the tea of your choice, and a sweetener.

This sweetener can be extra sugar, simple syrup, cane sugar, sweet brown sugar syrup, maple syrup, or even coconut sugar. You make the rules here. Just add a few cups of water and you’re almost there. The only thing left is to mix it all up and enjoy.

What started as a bit of curiosity about a sweet new treat has blossomed into a whole new way to enjoy your afternoon tea parties that all your friends are sure to enjoy. It doesn’t matter if you are using real taro root or falling back on a bag of taro powder you bought off the internet.

Those sweet and nutty flavors of the orient can bring even the stuffiest of affairs back to life with their hint of vanilla and a whisper of a dream of shopping in Los Angeles for just the right dress to wear to this year’s sports banquet. Your taro root has done its job well, and all your parties will receive the five-star rating you deserve.

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