My Turmeric and Ginger Tea Recipe

In 3 Common Spices that Reduce Inflammation, I highlighted some of the benefits of both Turmeric and Ginger for fighting inflammation and more. Turmeric, especially, seems to be the latest superfood due to it’s anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, brain-boosting properties. You can easily add turmeric, both fresh and ground, to your cooking but one of my favorite ways to enjoy both spices is in a turmeric and ginger tea.

Basic Turmeric and Ginger Tea Recipe

turmeric and ginger teaIf you haven’t seen turmeric root before, it’s similar to ginger (and from the same family). In the picture it’s the grub-shaped root. And once you peel off the skin, it’s a strong orange color, just like the ground version.

For this recipe, I have one piece of peeled fresh turmeric and a small piece of peeled fresh ginger, that I have broken off the larger root in the picture. I also have some cinnamon, because it was available; I love the taste and it has many wonderful properties (especially if you are insulin resistant).

Boil 2-3 cups of water in a saucepan. I wasn’t very exact, I just knew I wanted approximately 2 mugs full. When the water has boiled, turn it down to a simmer and add the turmeric, ginger and cinnamon. Add a saucepan lid to hold in all the goodness and let it simmer gently for 5-10 minutes. It very quickly turns a dark reddish-brown color.

simmer the turmeric tea

 

It’s important to have some heat in order to activate the release the antioxidants in the turmeric and ginger. But try not to let it boil or heat it for too long, as this will gradually reduce the effects of the curcumin.

Strain the liquid to remove the spices (I couldn’t find a jug so had to use a bowl).

strain the spices

Finally, stir in a pinch (about 1/4 teaspoon) of ground black pepper and stir well.

Why Black Pepper with Turmeric Tea?

The curcumin in turmeric is not absorbed easily by the body and the black pepper helps with that absorption.

An alternative to black pepper is to use a healthy oil like coconut or olive oil, but I don’t like the idea of oil in my tea. You may feel differently.

Alternative Methods & Ingredients

Turmeric root is not something you come across easily, although more and more health food shops and even some supermarkets are stocking it. If you can’t buy it fresh, then ground turmeric works just fine. Use approximately one teaspoon and simmer for the same length of time.

You don’t need to add cinnamon, that’s just my preference. You could also add a pinch of clove or nutmeg.

Some recipes recommend grating the turmeric and ginger. You can do this and I certainly recommend it if you choose to forgo the saucepan method and steep the spices in hot water for a few minutes instead. By grating it, you will help to release the flavors quicker.

If you like your tea sweetened then you can add some honey. You can also add a slice of lemon or some lemon juice for a different flavor.

If you find the flavor of the spices too strong then simply water it down with hot water to your personal taste.

Cold Turmeric and Ginger Tea

cold turmeric and ginger teaI’m not a fan of cold tea but this turmeric and ginger tea tastes delicious chilled. In this batch I made enough to have one mug hot and then let the rest cool down before covering it and popping it in the fridge.

Add some slices of lemon or orange for a fresh flavor.

I happen to be staying in Spain at the moment and my host’s house has lemon and orange trees in the garden, so I added some freshly squeezed lemon and orange juice to my chilled tea and it was amazing!

Why I Love This Tea

I’m predominantly a coffee drinker. I love good coffee. I’m sure I’m not alone in this. A number of years ago, I gave up coffee and started drinking herbal teas. I’ve only ever found one tea that took my mind off coffee and felt like a “grown-up” drink.

Most herbal teas are fruity, minty or flowery tasting; those that aren’t tend to use aniseed or liquorice in them, which I hate. The tea I liked was just a lovely blend of rooibos, cinnamon and some other spices that I’ve not been able to find since (the tea was discontinued). I don’t mind other herbal teas – I drink them – but not as a substitute for coffee.

I drink coffee again now but try to limit it to 2 cups of the good stuff per day, in an attempt to get the benefits but avoid the non-healthy effects of caffeine. The turmeric and ginger tea (with cinnamon) means I can drink another cup or 2 of something full of flavor and yet “grown-up” and healthy each day to keep me away from the coffee machine.

Final Thoughts

You may feel differently to me about other herbal teas, but I still urge you to try this turmeric and ginger tea. It has a wonderful flavor, but more importantly, it’s packed with health benefits. You may have read about the dangers of too much curcumin but 2-3 cups of tea a day should keep you well within healthy limits. If you’re worried about drinking it, especially if you’re taking additional curcumin supplements, cooking with it in EVERYTHING, or on blood thinning drugs, then talk to your doctor for advice.

 

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