How to Make Tea Without a Tea Bag – 6 Clever Ideas

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Have you ever wondered how to make tea without a tea bag?

The process sounds so simple: just pour boiling water over some tea leaves, wait approximately 3 minutes, strain, and then voila, your tea is ready! It may sound simple, but there's more to it than that.

To make the perfect cup of tea, you're going to need patience, water and tea leaves. You'll also need a few accessories, like teacups and a spoon. 

how to make tea without a tea bag

Gather your equipment

The first order of business is to get a strainer, which will help you switch from tea bags to loose leaf tea. 

If you've put off drinking loose leaf tea in the past because you don't have a strainer, worry not! There are other alternatives in your kitchen that you can use in its place. 

Glass or mug brewing

One of the simplest methods for making tea without a tea bag is glass brewing, which is especially idea for green tea flavors like Tai Ping or Dragon Well

If you're interested in mug brewing, add between 3 to 5 grams of oolong tea to your mug and add boiling water. You can drink directly from the cup even with the leaves inside. 

Make a homemade filter

You can make homemade tea simply by using coffee filters, which are ideal for brewing loose leaf tea. If you also drink coffee, there are bound to be some paper filters in your kitchen, and the process is the same as making a fresh coffee.

Simply grab a mug and place a filter over it filled with loose leaf tea. Pour hot water over the top in a circular motion slowly and within minutes you'll have a fresh cup of tea. 

The double cup brewing method 

Another brewing alternative involves two mugs and a cup.

Using one mug for pouring your loose leaf tea, you will then pour the hot water inside. Once it has been brewed, get the other mug ready by placing the cup partially in the mug as you pour the tea into the other mug. This method involves a bit of gymnastics and the best advice is to do it all over your sink to avoid burning your hands and in case of spillage. 

Using a sieve

If you don’t have an infuser in your kitchen, more than likely you have a sieve on hand that you can use to brew some loose leaf tea.

The brewing method is the same as for a single cup of tea. Once it is brewed, simply grab another mug and place a sieve over the top.

Then, pour the cup of brewed tea into a clean mug and your filtered tea is hot and fresh to drink. 

Using a clean cheese cloth

A cheese cloth is an essential kitchen item. They're extremely versatile and you can easily use one to make a cup of tea.

Using an empty mug, place your cheese cloth over it and then pour water into it. Another way to use a cheese cloth to make tea is to wrap your tea leaves in fabric to make a sort of sachet and then pour water into your mug.

Using a small plate

You can also use a small mug and a saucer to make a homemade gaiwan, just be sure to use cups that are on the thinner side as they're easier to work with.

To get started, steep the tea in one mug (we'll call it mug A) and then cover it with a saucer. Leave an opening to pour the liquid into another mug but make sure it's small enough so the leaves don't make it into the other mug (mug b). 

Hold mug A with both hands and pour the tea into mug B. This brewing method is fine for most teas, especially those that don’t require a higher water temperature. 

Final thoughts

All of the brewing methods mentioned above can be used if you don’t have conventional tea equipment in your home. Any of them will allow you to make a delicious loose leaf tea without having to invest in teaware.

Now you see, there's no reason you can't enjoy your favorite blend of tea at home, even without a tea bag!

Hannah Jordan

On the day Hannah discovered the source of true happiness, she was sitting on a cushion in a tiny teahouse tucked away on a side street in Kyoto. Between her palms, she cradled a warm teacup that emitted the fragrance of orchids and fresh grass. Now a sports journalist, Hannah collects antique teapots and has a brown belt in Jiu Jutsu.