Chinese Tea Eggs: An Easy Recipe
chinese tea eggs recipe

Chinese Tea Eggs: An Easy Recipe

Tea eggs are one of the favourite tea recipes of Chinese people. Not only do they make an amazing presentation, but they taste really good too. When it comes to street food, these eggs are one of the healthiest alternatives. In some places in China, you'll see a street vendor selling tea eggs virtually around every block. The eggs have a beautiful marbled look and reminds one of crackle glaze that you sometimes see on Ruyao ceramic teaware. 

Luckily, it's very easy to make it, but it does require a lot of waiting while the eggs absorbs the flavor while being stewed. Below you find a tea egg recipe from a skilled Chinese cook. Good luck!

chinese tea eggs recipe

Tea Egg Ingredients

  • 6-8 eggs
  • 4 table spoons of loose black tea leaves
  • 2 table spoons soy sauce
  • 2 table spoons salt
  • 1 tea spoon Chinese five spice powder (adjust according to taste)

How To Make Tea Eggs?

  1. Boil eggs for 20 minutes on low heat. Afterwards set eggs aside in cold water to let them cool down.
  2. Once eggs are cooled, crack the shells of the eggs, but make sure not to let the shell come off the eggs. Make sure to make cracks all around for a prettier cracked egg shell look as a result. This is tricky, what you want are cracks that are deep enough for the taste to get into the eggs, but not to much to the eggs shells won't fall of the egg itself during cooking. When you overdo this, the whole egg will end up looking brown, and the crackle effect will be less visible.
  3. Lay the eggs in a cooking pot and fill water to about one inch or 2.5 cm above eggs. Add more water later on if needed.
  4. Bring to boil the water with black tea leaves, salt, soy sauce and Chinese spices. The latter you can usually find in any grocery store. If not, check out your local Asian supermarket. If you can't find this at your local Asian grocery store.
  5. Cook the tea eggs for 60 minutes with all the ingredients on a very low simmer. Keep lid on, this will avoid the liquid mixture from evaporating.
  6. Afterwards let the pot cool down and let the boiled tea eggs sit overnight for about 8 hours) in the fridge to fully absorb the flavors.

Because it takes a long time to cook those tea leaf eggs you might want to make many eggs at once. Tea boiled eggs can be served deliciously hot or cold. You can store tea leaf eggs in the fridge for a few days. Keep them in the liquor with shells on.

Black Tea Alternative

Black tea is often the standard choice for this recipe. However, often times some places in China use their own local tea. One good example is using dark oolong, like Da Hong Pao, for making tea eggs. In fact, in Fujian province, oolong is used more often than black tea. You may also experiment with ripe pu erh tea (bo lei), which is often served in dim sum Chinese restaurants.

Teas with a light brew won't work, as you can't get the nice crackle surface. So avoid: white tea, green tea, light oolong tea and raw pu erh.

chinese tea eggs seasoned with seaweed

How to Serve Tea Eggs?

Tea eggs are normally used served plain, but you can also served more creatively. Can't finish it all? Then store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Japanese Salad with Tea Eggs

If you want to enjoy the tea eggs as part of a salad you can serve them beautifully with seaweed and black and/or white sesame seeds. The taste as well the colors match perfectly.

Noodle Soup with Tea Eggs

Another alternative is to cut them in half, and serve inside a bowl of noodle soup!

Tea Eggs & Tea/Wine Pairing

And if you are looking for an suitable beverage to pair with this authentic dish, there is nothing better than your favorite cup of tea. Need an alcoholic drink? In that case, a glass of Chinese rice wine would be the perfect match.


P.S. If you have tried this recipe then send us some pictures and let us know whether you like this recipe at [email protected] Also let us know if it's ok for us to publish your feedback, thanks!

May 10, 2022