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chai cookies with tea

Chewy Chai Cookies

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  • Author: Elyse Villa


Soft, sweet, and perfectly spiced, these chai cookies are my new go-to 2 pm pick me up!


  • 8oz unsalted butter
  • 2 bags of Chai (about 1T + 1 1/2t  worth if you have loose leaf)
  • 1 3/4C all purpose flour
  • 1t cream of tartar
  • 1/2t baking soda
  • 1/2t kosher salt
  • 3/4C + 3T granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
  • 1t vanilla extract
  • 1/4t ground cinnamon
  • 1/4t ground ginger
  • 1/4t cardamom
  • A baby pinch of clove
  • A baby pinch of black pepper


  1. Cut open your tea bags and inspect the contents. If there are any large pieces, like chunks of pepper or clove, grind your tea using a spice grinder/mortar and pestle/muddler until it reaches a finer consistency. (No one wants to break a tooth on a full clove.) Set aside.
  2. Make the Chai brown butter: Plop your butter into a small saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, add the Chai and gently stir. Continue to heat the butter, stirring occasionally, until it begins to foam and appears slightly darker in color. You might also notice milk solids at the bottom of the pan. Take off the heat and let cool.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375F and line two baking sheets with either parchment paper or silicone mats.
  4. In a bowl, combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt.
  5. In a separate large bowl, whisk together the chai butter with 3/4C of sugar. Add the egg and yolk and whisk until the mixture looks homogenous, lighter in color, and fluffier. (This can take about 30 seconds of real whisking.) Pour in the vanilla extract and whisk to combine.
  6. Switching to a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, dump the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and combine just until there are no dry spots visible. 
  7. On a plate add 3T sugar, the cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves, and pepper. Mix together with your hands or a spoon.
  8. Use a 3T cookie scoop (or a spoon, or your hands) to scoop out 12 cookies. The dough will be fairly wet and not hold it’s shape very well, but that is A-Ok. (We can smush it back into a ball post sugar coating.)
  9. Thoroughly roll each cookie ball into the spiced sugar mixture and place on your baking sheets, keeping them at least 2″ apart. 
  10. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until juuuust golden brown on the edges. Take out the pan and give it a bang on the counter. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the pan and then let them cool further on a wire rack.