Why You Need To Steep Your Tea Multiple Times

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Why You Need To Steep Your Tea Multiple Times

One of my favorite movies is National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. The weird thing is that it wasn't one of my favorite movies the first time I saw it. I definitely liked it, but it took about 10 more Christmas' of non-stop network TV play for me to really love it. Some movies are just like that. The first time you see them they are good, but not great. By the 10th time they are one of the funniest things you have ever seen. Now, here is a hint that a lot of serious tea drinkers know. Not only can you steep teas multiple times, but some teas actually get better the more times you steep them. And not only that, but you also save money because you get to use your tea for much longer. So here is a quick guide on which teas can be steeped multiple times and how to do it. But remember, each tea is unique so this guide will be very basic. 

Oolong Tea Can Be Steeped Up to 25 Times

Rather, I should say some Oolong teas can be steeped up to 25 times. This is only for some legendary teas that most people cannot get their hands on. For a good quality Oolong, you should get a minimum of 7 steeps out of it. Here is the timing you should use, but remember each tea is unique so this guide is very loose: 1st Steep

  • 1 minute 2nd Steep
  • 30 seconds 3rd Steep
  • 45 seconds 4th Steep
  • 1 minute Each Additional Steep
  • Add 15 seconds to the previous steep time. 

Green Tea Can Be Steeped Up to 3 Times

Green tea is a bit more tricky. The key to making it properly is to be sure your water is around 170 degrees Fahrenheit. If anything, err on having your water too cold than too hot. 1st Steep

  • 1 minute 2nd Steep
  • 1 minute 30 seconds 3rd Steep
  • 3 minutes 

White Tea is a Wild Card

There are differing opinions surrounding White tea. Some recommend steeping it once for 15 minutes, while others advise steeping it for less time and doing multiple infusions. With White tea you want to make sure you use enough tea. SInce it is so fluffy, many people tend to use too little tea. Here is a general guide for multiple infusions using White tea: 1st Steep

  • 3 minutes 2nd Steep
  • 4 minutes 3rd Steep
  • 6 minutes 4th Steep
  • 9 minutes 

Pu-erh Can Be Steeped Like an Oolong

Be very careful with Pu-erh. If you over-steep this tea it can get extremely bitter very quickly. Here are instructions on how to properly steep your Pu-erh: 1st Steep

  • 30 seconds 2nd Steep
  • 30 seconds 3rd Steep
  • 45 seconds 4th Steep
  • 1 minutes 15 seconds 5th Steep
  • 2 minutes Each Additional Steep
  • Add 1 minute to the previous steep time 

Black Tea is NOT Good for Multiple Infusions

Black tea can be steeped multiple times, but you will find it's flavor quickly disappears. So, if you are going to go for a second steep, increase the time by about 2 minutes. 


As you can see, most teas can be steeped numerous times, which increases the flavor and reduces the price. After all, if you have been only using your tea leaves once, each additional tea you pour is free. And just like Christmas Vacation, it keeps getting better and better.

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1 Response


January 21, 2016

I’m wondering how to store the used tea for multiple steeping. Does it need to dry? Do you store it in the fridge or a plastic bag? Can’t find that info anywhere.

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Loose Tea Serving Size Guide

Here is a quick guide to how many cups of brewed tea each of our serving sizes makes.

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