When it comes to pairing soups and tea, the usual convention of matching like flavors will work just fine -- but sometimes opposites attract, too. The strong spices of a good chai, for instance, can help bring out the similar but more subtle flavors in pho.
Brothy soups usually pair well with lighter teas like whites, greens, and some herbals. Our own Garden Grove green tea is a lovely accompaniment to a sausage, spinach, and white bean soup, and the Afternoon High Tea is perfect served with chicken barley stew.
For heavier cream soups, like seafood chowder, you’ll want something that cuts through the dairy. A tart and fruity tea like Sunshine In a Cup would do nicely, and so would an Earl Grey varietal like Mindful Morning.
Now, about those “opposites” I mentioned. For an unexpected twist, pair creamy teas like Vanilla Latte with spicy soups like pumpkin chili. An herbaceous cream tea like Reading Nook would go nicely with taco tortilla soup. The creaminess of these teas is a terrific offset to the warm spices in the soups.
Put It All Together
As great as they are, don’t limit yourself to side-by-side pairings. Tea can work extremely well as an ingredient in your soup, too. We love chamomile in corn chowder, and a nice jasmine tea makes for a delicious chicken noodle soup like the one in our featured recipe, below.
Jasmine Chicken Noodle Soup
- 1/4 cup diced carrots
- 1/4 cup peas
- 2 tablespoons diced celery
- 1 cup spaghetti noodles, broken into 1-inch pieces
- 3 cups water
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons Joy Blend tea in an infuser ball
- 2 cups cooked and sliced chicken breast
- sea salt, to taste
In a small pan over high heat, cook carrots, peas, celery, noodles, and water until boiling. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are cooked, about 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
In a medium saucepan or soup pot, heat chicken stock until it begins to steam. Remove from heat, add tea leaves, and cover. Allow to sit for 2 minutes, then remove infuser.
Return stock to stove over low heat. Add the noodles, vegetables, and chicken to the pot along with salt, to taste. Warm all ingredients through, then serve.