A bubble tea starter kit should include the essential ingredients to make bubble tea at home: tea, tapioca pearls, and milk. Many kits also include paper or stainless steel bubble tea straws to accommodate the tapioca pearls. Depending on the type of boba tea you want to make, you may also need a few more ingredients.
What Equipment Do You Need to Make Bubble Tea?
Bubble tea requires only a few pieces of equipment. You need a way to brew the tea by boiling water in a saucepan or tea kettle. You also need a saucepan to cook the tapioca pearls and a large glass for serving your bubble tea. You’ll need additional supplies to make fruit syrups or purees.
Here is all the equipment required to make any variety of bubble tea:
- Large glass (or bubble tea cup)
- Tea Kettle
- Rubber spatula
- Bubble tea straw (both metal and paper straws work well)
- Mason jar (or cocktail shaker)
What Ingredients Do You Need to Make Boba Tea?
Boba tea can be as simple as milk tea with boba pearls or contain fruit syrups and other add-ins.
Here are the main ingredients you’ll need to make a variety of boba teas:
Usually included in a DIY bubble tea kit:
Tea: Both tea bags and loose-leaf teas work well. Many kits come with an assortment of black tea, jasmine green tea, oolong tea, Assam tea, or matcha. You can also use your favorite herbal or fruit tea to make boba tea. These teas are available at most local supermarkets.
Tapioca pearls: Boba pearls are the signature of boba tea. They are made of tapioca starch and come ready-made from many online shops. Most tapioca pearls are unflavored, though some are simmered in fruit syrup or simple syrup for a fruity, sweet taste. You can substitute popping boba or jellies for the tapioca pearls if you prefer.
Milk: Many kits include milk tea powder. Any milk will work, though. Almond milk and coconut milk are lower in carbs. Soy milk or oat milk results in creamier bubble tea. Dairy milk is also a fine choice. Some kits even combine tea and milk into a milk tea powder. When brewed, these powders create a drink that resembles a latte.
Flavored powders or syrups: These flavorings enhance boba tea but aren’t required. You can also make homemade fruit or chocolate syrup with just a few ingredients.
Not included in a bubble tea kit:
Ice: Most people prefer cold boba teas.
Sweetener: Any sweetener will work—brown sugar, white sugar, maple syrup, honey, or monk fruit.
Fresh fruit or fruit purees: Fruit is common in boba tea but won’t be found in kits. You can use fresh fruit to decorate and flavor bubble tea. Additionally, you can turn frozen fruit into a puree to add a fruity component to your milk tea.
Is It Easy to Make Boba Tea at Home?
Boba tea is quick and easy to make at home; most boba teas take less than 30 minutes to combine. With just a few basic ingredients, you can make popular boba drinks, such as:
If you don’t have a bubble tea straw, you can use a spoon to scoop out the tapioca pearls as you enjoy your boba tea.
Are Homemade Tapioca Pearls Difficult to Make?
Tapioca pearls are easy to make at home and require minimal ingredients. Until you perfect the recipe, you should taste the boba pearls throughout the cooking process to see which texture and cooking time you prefer.
The dough is made from tapioca starch, brown sugar, and water and then rolled into small spheres. Once cooked, they can be frozen for a few weeks or used fresh in your boba milk tea.
How Much Does It Cost to Make Bubble Tea at Home?
Bubble tea doesn’t have to be expensive. Tea, milk, and sweetener will cost around $15. Ready-made tapioca pearls average $10 per bag. So for approximately $25, you can buy all the ingredients to make multiple servings of bubble tea.
You’ll spend more if you prefer fresh fruit or chocolate in your bubble tea. Choose fruit that’s in season to get the ripest, juiciest selection. Pineapple, mango, and strawberries are easy to find in the frozen section of your favorite grocery store at any time. If you prefer lychee or taro powder, check your local Asian market for their selection.
Where Can I Buy a Bubble Tea Kit?
Bubble tea kits provide many of the ingredients in one place. Amazon has a large selection of bubble tea kits, but you can also find them at Wal-Mart and in Asian supermarkets.
Three popular kits that you can purchase right now include:
The Fusion Select kit includes bubble tea powders in mango, honeydew, taro, strawberry, and brown sugar. It also provides tapioca pearls and bubble tea straws.
The J WAY kit includes ten milk tea packets, ten brown sugar boba packets, and ten paper bubble tea straws. Milk tea flavors include taro, pineapple, brown sugar, passion fruit, and creme brulee.
Pearly Drinks sells many different flavors of bubble tea kits. Their starter bundle contains two flavors of milk tea powder. They also sell single-flavor boba tea kits if you prefer one specific flavor. Their best sellers include taro bubble tea, classic milk tea, and passion fruit tea. Their kits come with milk tea powder and ready-to-cook boba pearls.