What does Rooibos Tea Taste like? 10 Best Flavor Blends + Brewing Tips

Pure rooibos teas may all taste alike, but every rooibos blend has something special to offer. Rooibos makes perfect herbal base for making delicious flavorful blends that are caffeine free and may offer many benefits. We made a list of 10 best rooibos blends to make you feel warmer, bring back memories of summer, or to get you into the holiday mood.

What is rooibos tea?

Rooibos is a South African tea made from red bush or Aspalathus linearis. This plant is grown native to South Africa and used for making either green – unfermented, or red – fermented rooibos teas. Rooibos became popular because of its delicate flavor and numerous health benefits, often compared to those of real tea. However, their chemical composition is very different. Rooibos is completely caffeine free, and suitable for drinking at any time of the day or night.

What are the benefits of rooibos tea?

Rooibos contains a high level of antioxidants able to fight free radicals that cause damage to cells. Research showed that drinking rooibos tea may have numerous health benefits, including reducing stress,[1] managing type 2 diabetes and blood sugar[2], lowering blood pressure[3] and anti inflammatory properties.[4] Rooibos has very little or zero side effects, and it’s considered very safe[5].

The flavor or rooibos tea

Although rooibos brews into a cup of intense red tea, the flavor is very different from black teas. Unlike real tea, rooibos has two main flavors, with only subtle flavor notes. The most common red rooibos has a light, earthy, recognizable taste with natural sweetness, that is either liked or disliked by tea drinkers. However, it’s strong enough to hold many other added ingredients like chocolate, spices, flower, dried fruits and other herbs. Blending them with rooibos gives a tasty, full-bodied drink that you can use for both hot and cold brewing and making lattes. On the other hand, green rooibos is much more delicate, light, somewhat similar to the taste of light, vegetal green tea, with a light earthy sweet note.

10 best flavor blends

1.    Herbal Pinacolada

This sunshine in a cup shows rooibos is perfect for any season. It’s one of our favorite rooibos flavors because it shows both sweetness and versatility of this unique tea. Shredded coconut, vanilla, rooibos and pineapple create a tasty, caffeine free blend that can make you start daydreaming about tropical sand beaches in just one sniff.

2.    Campfire Herbal

Campfire Herbal is almost like chai, but better. This winter warmer contains cinnamon, almonds, orange peel and sweet cinnamon orange spice flavor. It’s intensely red and warming, great for relaxing and just taking time to enjoy the moment.

Campfire Herbal rooibos blend

Campfire Herbal rooibos blend

3.    Green Berry Delight

Green tea rooibos is still a rare find among rooibos blends. In Green Berry Delight, four different berries, rhubarb, and blue and orange flowers blended with green rooibos create a slightly earthy, slightly sweet treat. This blend is great choice for those who like the flavor of real green tea, want to enjoy the benefits, but want to avoid caffeine.

Green Berry Delight - green rooibos tea blend

Green Berry Delight – green rooibos tea blend

4.    Phoenix Mills

Phoenix Mills brings true autumn flavors with honeybee pollen, caramel and vanilla. This tea is sweet, delicious, and a great choice for making a hot bedtime rooibos latte.

5.    Blood Orange

One of the most beloved blends, Blood Orange has zero bitterness, unlike some orange blend. Sweet and tangy, this tea brings back the memory of summer warmth and candies. Perfect for making an iced tea too.

Blood Orange rooibos blend

Blood Orange rooibos blend

6.    Pumpkin Spice Herbal

Intensely red and full of pumpkin pie spice flavor, this herbal tea is almost a must for all autumn lovers. Pumpkin Spice Herbal is our favorite rooibos tea for cool days. Great for making Pumpkin Spice latte.

7.    Earl Grey “De La Crème”

Tired of black or green tea Earl Greys? This rooibos Earl Grey blend enriched by vanilla and cornflowers is all a decaf tea drinker could ask for. Decaffeination process doesn’t remove only caffeine, it removes other beneficial substances too, making rooibos a much better choice for a decaf blend.

8.    Kimberly Herbal

This well-balanced blend of linden blossoms, rose petals, lemon and orange granules is a great choice if you enjoy citrus flavor. With just a touch of floral notes, antioxidants rich rooibos and cold-fighting linden[6], Kimberly Herbal is our go-to tea during cooler months.

9.    Banana Delight

Another favorite blend and a must try for all banana lovers out there. Banana Delight is one of those teas you will want to sniff all day long. Addictive scent, sweet and earthly notes and a dash of tropical notes can make every morning joyful.

10.  Rusty Roots

Have you ever tried a green rooibos chai? Rusty Roots combines green rooibos, warming spices and a touch of lemon myrtle. Which flavor can you expect? Light chai with a green heart.

Rusty Roots

Rusty Roots – green rooibos tea blend

Rooibos brewing tips

To make a tasty cup of rooibos tea you don’t need any special equipment except a teapot and a strainer. Strainer is very important when brewing rooibos because of its small particles. Teapots with ceramic strainers will not be able to prevent particles from ending up in your cup. Measure one teaspoon of loose leaf tea per cup and steep in boiling water for at least 5 minutes. Rooibos can usually be steeped only once, so leaving it for at least 10 minutes will give a better flavor. Brew green rooibos in the same way. It’s not a green tea, so brewing with boiling water won’t cause any bitterness.

Read how to make rooibos tea in 6 ways

 

Disclaimer: The purpose of this article is not to diagnose or treat any diseases, or to replace an opinion of a professional doctor. Never self-treat any diseases, or drink large quantities of tea, real or herbal, if you are suffering from serious diseases, are pregnant or breastfeeding. As every person is different, it’s impossible to make a general statement about the benefits or side-effects.

References:

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24022885

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30044119

[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3866779/

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19419525

[5] https://www.researchgate.net/publication/41014117_Possible_hepatotoxic_effect_of_rooibos_tea_A_case_report

[6] http://cms.herbalgram.org/expandedE/Lindenflower.html?ts=1573232155&signature=45f27861bfd2c16598fb3993ecfa7529

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Rooibos

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