4 Inventive Ways to Add Tea to Your Meal

August 16, 2022

by Kimberley K

We all know that teas can be a wonderful addition to sweet treats and great to bake with, but have you ever considered adding tea into savory dishes?

Think of tea as more of an accent than a flavoring when it comes to cooking, especially when creating savory dishes. Match tea with the flavor profile that already exists in the dish. The versatility of the tea means that there are so many different ways to work it into dishes! Let's explore four great ways.


Replacing the water in your broth with steeped tea is a great way to enhance your soups! Your tea choices will depend on the dishes and the flavors you want to compliment. For example, you might try Chili Lime Green in a Tom Kha recipe, or an Assam in a lentil soup.

You can also use tea as poaching liquid for things like eggs, pears, or fish.

Really, any recipe that calls for a liquid can be made instead by adding tea into the mix. If water is required, use steeped tea instead. If the recipe calls for milk you can use milk infused with tea (add tea to milk overnight). And voila- and you’ve just taken your dish to the next level!

Rubs, Marinades, and Brines

A great thing to try this summer, or any time the grill is in use, is to take your dry tea leaves and pair them with other herbs and spices by finely grinding them to create a rub!

If you’re a big fan of barbecue - you've got to try this! This works best with super savory teas like Lapsang Souchong with its intense smoky notes.

Using steeped tea as the base for brine is another unique way to add an extra oomph of flavor to your dishes, umami green teas work best with things like fish and veggies.

It really is just a matter of finding the right combination of flavors between your food and teas so they compliment each other and meld together perfectly.

Infused butter

This little trick is often used for great baked goods or sweet treats! Almost all baked goods call for the addition of butter, but it can also be used for savory dishes as well. It’s incredibly easy to make tea infused butter.

Simply melt the butter needed in a saucepan on the stove.

Once it’s fully melted add in your chosen tea and steep it in the melted butter until you notice a slight color change.

Leave it to cool for a few minutes, and then strain the tea out of the butter.

Be sure to let it at least cool to room temp before adding it to your dish.

You can also let it cool and add it back into the fridge should the butter need to be solid for your recipe.

Besides adding this as an added layer of flavor to your savory dish, you'll be surprised by the amount of flavor your butter packs just on toast!

If you’re wanting to use powdered tea instead of loose leaf, matcha butter is just as delicious and works wonders in both sweet and savory dishes.

Tea Salt

Quite possibly this is the easiest thing on this list to do!

All you need is two things: the salt and powdered tea of your choice. Try salt that isn’t granulated and is instead larger crystals like coarse salt.

The powdered tea you use is completely up to you but we find this works best with matcha, and Adagio offers more than green tea matcha, you can also try with oolong or black matcha.

To make, take ¼ cup of your chosen salt and 1-1½ tsp powdered tea. Combine the two together, mixing well to assure that all the salt is evenly covered.

To use, use it in exactly the same way as you would use salt to season any dish. Matcha salt works well with veggies due to its vegetal notes, and is fantastic sprinkled onto sushi.

Store it in an airtight container away from direct light.

Should you use any of the methods included in this post to make some delicious tea infused dishes, rememher to share them with us on social media tagging @adagioteas and using the hashtag #myadagio. We're sure that whatever you create will be delicious!