what is a tea egg

what is a tea egg

What is a Tea Egg?

A tea egg is a traditional Chinese snack that is boiled or simmered in a tea-based liquid until it is flavored with the tea and spices. It’s a savory-sweet treat that is often enjoyed in the morning as an alternative to coffee or tea.


Tea eggs have been around for over a thousand years, with records first appearing around the 12th century during the Song Dynasty. They are thought to have been created by palace chefs as a way to use up extra eggs.

How to Make a Tea Egg

Making tea eggs is a simple process:

  • Place a dozen eggs in a pot filled with cold water.
  • Add black tea and spices, such as star anise, cinnamon sticks, and cloves.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and let the eggs simmer for 1 hour.
  • Remove the eggs from the pot and allow them to cool.
  • Crack the shells using a spoon, creating a patterned design.
  • Return the eggs to the tea mixture and simmer for another hour.
  • Remove the eggs from the pot and let them cool before serving.

Serving Tea Eggs

Tea eggs are often served as part of a traditional Chinese breakfast with congee, soy milk, and other side dishes. They can also be enjoyed as a snack any time of day.

Tea eggs can be served cold or warm, depending on personal preference. They can also be cut into halves or quarters to be served as an appetizer.


Tea eggs are a traditional Chinese snack that have been around for centuries. They are easy to make and can be served as part of a traditional breakfast or as a snack any time. Enjoy this unique and flavorful snack!


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