Craving a simple, refreshing, non-coffee iced drink, you can easily make at home? Try an iced chai!
Many coffee chains offer their version of the iced chai tea latte, a creamy, comforting blend of warming spices, black tea, and milk.
Your taste buds will rejoice at this delicious treat which lends itself well to any type of milk and is invigorating whether served hot or cold.
Today’s post gives you an easy recipe for the creamiest drink with natural flavors and antioxidants that will leave you feeling refreshed and invigorated.
Let’s get to it!
What is the Dunkin’ Iced Chai Latte?
The Dunkin’ Donuts chai latte is a popular drink with a mix of spices, including cinnamon, cardamom, and nutmeg.
Flavored with chai concentrate syrup, the Dunkin’ chai latte blends black tea flavors and milk.
The iced version is, as you would expect, served over ice.
What’s in a Dunkin’ Chai Latte?
You can easily recreate this drink at home with a few simple ingredients.
Coffee shops differ when it comes to the black tea flavor that forms the foundation of this drink. Many coffee houses use an all-in-one mix that includes spices and black tea together but allows the customization of milk.
And some homemade chai mixes call for Lipton iced tea powder to give the mixture the tea flavor.
My preference is decaffeinated, freshly brewed black tea.
Feel free to use the fully caffeinated version of this drink if caffeine isn’t an issue for you.
You can add powdered iced tea to the spice mix if it is more convenient. When using sweetened tea, you may need to back off on the extra sugar you add to avoid an overly sweet drink.
Traditional chai is made with a blend of different spices, which may include black pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg.
I’m not a fan of the black pepper flavor; feel free to add it if you like a bite to your chai.
And I generally add less cardamom and cloves to my mix because I otherwise find the mixture too bold for my taste.
But the beauty of making this recipe at home is that you can customize for however you like it!
When it comes to adding a hint of sweetness to this drink, you also have options.
Brown or cane sugar will add a hint of caramel flavor.
White sugar tends to dissolve the best in hot water, so I generally add the mix while the tea is steeping and then strain the mixture over ice to remove the spices.
You can also sweeten this drink with honey or add a bit of homemade simple syrup.
Maple syrup is another option that would give a slightly caramel flavor to the final drink.
And if you’re cutting down on sugar, try Stevia.
Almond or even whole milk works well in this drink. The creamier the milk, the creamier the final product.
If you like more body to the drink, you can froth the milk before adding it. A countertop or handheld frother works exceptionally well for drink recipes like this one.
Other types of milk that work well in this drink include:
- Skim milk
- Oat milk
- Non-dairy milk, such as the Lactaid brand
- Half-and-half is another option that would give you a full-bodied experience
Copycat Dunkin’ Iced Chai Latte
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1 black tea bag
- 1/4 cup boiling water
- 1/2 cup milk
- Boil water for the tea.
- While the water is boiling, combine the sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves, and nutmeg in a bowl. If you have a spice grinder, run the mixture through it to get a fine powder.
- Once the water is hot, add 1 tablespoon of the dry mixture and stir.
- Add the tea bag and steep the tea for 4-6 minutes, removing the tea bag once the time has elapsed.
- While the tea is steeping, you have the option of running the milk through a milk frother if you want a creamier texture. You certainly don't have to do this step if you are fine with a thinner consistency.
- Add ice to the glass of your choice.
- Pour the tea mixture through a strainer and into the glass with ice if you did not previously run the spice mixture through a grinder to avoid "sludge" at the bottom of your glass.
- Top with whipped cream or soft top and enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is an iced chai a seasonal drink?
No. Although there are different flavor additives, such as a pumpkin spice latte, that may have seasonal availability, you can order either the iced or hot version of the chai latte any time of year.
Does the Dunkin Chai Latte have caffeine?
Yes. But most chai lattes don’t contain the high caffeine content of coffee-based drinks.
According to the caffeine information on their website, the small size from Dunkin’, a 16-ounce drink, contains 70 mg of caffeine. This is less caffeine than a small iced coffee which contains 198 milligrams of caffeine.
If you want to reduce your daily caffeine intake, swapping out an iced coffee for an iced chai might be a good choice.
And if you want to cut the caffeine entirely and put your own spin on the drink, make your own version at home with decaffeinated black tea.
Is a chai latté healthy for you?
Whether hot or iced, chai does offer mood and hormone-supporting antioxidants.
The downside is that when you get one from coffee shops, they pack a punch in the sugar department, which negates their other benefits.
For example, a medium iced chai from Dunkin’ has 40 grams of sugar. A medium iced caramel craze latte has 57 grams of sugar.
In comparison, a 12-ounce can of Mountain Dew contains around 54 grams of sugar.
One of the most straightforward solutions is to make the drink yourself at home and either swap out the sugar for Stevia or simply add less sugar.
Although slightly more work, the upside of making your own drinks at home is complete control over all the ingredients.
Can you add other flavors to an iced chai?
Absolutely! Vanilla is a great option, as is caramel. Raspberry is another flavor that blends well with the underlying flavors of the chai, as does white chocolate.
Play around with different flavor combinations until you find one you love!
Can you buy premade chai mix?
Yes. My favorite is the Oregon Chai liquid mix. Buying the premade mix simplifies the recipe preparation, although it gives you less control over the final product.
The premade version also contains preservatives and other additives that you may find unappealing.
You can find the premade version on Amazon and at most large grocery stores.
The iced chai is a timeless classic regardless of how you make it. Packed with phytonutrients and plenty of feel-good flavors, this drink is one of my all-time favorites!
And by mixing up a batch ahead of time, you can quickly whip one out when the weather turns sultry.
Remember that buying the premixed version is also an option, making this recipe a breeze!
I’ve even found that the decaffeinated version is one of the best ways to wind down after a long day.
Give it a try, and let me know what you think by commenting below!
And if you’re looking for more coffee inspiration, don’t miss my previous posts:
- How to Make a Copycat Raspberry Green Tea with Bubbles
- How to Make a Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew with Caramel
- How to Make an Iced Blonde Vanilla Bean Coconut Latte
- How to Make a Raspberry Chai Tea Latte
- How to Make a Caramel Raspberry Espresso Shaker
- How to Make an Oreo Cookie-Flavored Iced Coffee
- How to Recreate a Vanilla Spice Dunkin’
- How to Make a Delectable Raspberry Mocha
- How to Make Your Own Dutch Bros Campout Cold Brew
- The Great Latte Debate: Is a Latte Supposed to be Hot or Cold?