As a tea drinker, you might wonder if tea leaves can be useful in your garden. Yes, you can give your plants a boost with tea and tea leaves! Tea leaves can be effectively used as both a fertilizer and a soil conditioner. For an additional benefit, use tea leaves in your compost pile.
From your tea bag to your plants:
Have some tea leftover? Give it to your plants! It will provide them with beneficial nutrients.
Reusing Tea Leaves for Fertilizer
Tea leaves are very rich in nitrogen and contain a lot of different micronutrients that will help enrich the soil. They are best used for houseplants, as you can easily add a small amount at a time.
Mix Lightly into Soil
Grind up your tea leaves, which helps with the breakdown of the leaves and releases the nutrients. Mix a small amount of the leaves into the top layer of the soil only.
Fertilize Every Few Months
As with any type of fertilizer, too much application can be harmful. When reusing tea leaves for fertilizing, you want to keep it to a schedule of about 2 tablespoons of tea leaves once every 3 to 4 months. Source.
From your garden to your teapot:
Not only can you add berries, fruit and citrus to your iced teas, but herbs like lemon verbena, peppermint, rosemary and lavender will also give it a nice twist.
Prepare the leaves by rubbing them between your fingers. This will bruise them and release their essential oils. For more information on tea-able flowers and herbs, go here.
Some tea & herb combinations:
Citrus Rosemary Herbal
Steep slices of orange, lime, lemon with sprigs of rosemary to make a light and citrusy treat. Add black tea—English Breakfast, for example—to give it more body.
Lime & Mint Green Tea
A delicious blend of fresh peppermint, green tea and lime juice makes a refreshing iced drink. Add sugar for a Moroccan iced tea experience, and garnish with sliced limes!
photo credit: Hummingbird on High
We thought this was so cute and loved that they used Stash Tea so we just had to share!
Note: this recipe adapted by Hummingbird on High is for high-altitude baking at 5,000 ft. To bake at sea level, read the notes in the ingredients list and instructions carefully.
Hummingbird Bakery Green Tea Cupcakes Recipe
For the Chocolate-Green Tea Cake Base:
(makes 10 - 12 cupcakes)
1/2 cup whole milk
3 green tea bags (We recommend Stash Tea Premium Green.)
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (for sea-level, reduce to 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon)
2 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
a scant 3/4 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder (for sea-level, increase to 1 1/2 teaspoons)
a pinch of salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 egg, at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the Green Tea Buttercream Frosting:
(enough for 12 cupcakes)
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 tablespoons matcha green tea powder (We recommend Stash Tea Matcha.)
2 tablespoons whole milk
To Make the Cupcakes:
Put 1/2 cup milk and 3 green tea bags in a liquid measuring cup, cover, and refrigerate for a few hours, or overnight if possible.
Preheat the oven to 350 (F); for sea-level, preheat the oven to 325 (F).
Put the 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour*, 2 1/2 tablespoons cocoa, 3/4 cup sugar, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder*, pinch of salt, and 3 tablespoons butter in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) and beat on slow speed until you get a sandy consistency and everything is combined.
Remove the green tea bags from the infused milk and strain into the measuring cup.
Combine the milk with 1 egg and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla; whisk the mixture together.
Slowly pour half the milk/egg/vanilla mixture, beating well until all the ingredients are well mixed. Turn the mixer up to high speed and beat to make sure there are no lumps.
Turn the mixture down to medium-slow and slowly pour in the remaining milk mixture, scraping any unmixed ingredients from the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Continue mixing for a couple more minutes until the batter is smooth.
Spoon the batter into paper cases lined in a muffin tin until each case is two-thirds full. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 - 25 minutes, or until the cake bounces back when touched. A skewer inserted in the center of a cupcake should come out clean.
Let the cupcakes cool slightly in the pan before turning out into a wire rack to cool completely. When the cupcakes are cold, spoon Green Tea Buttercream Frosting (recipe follows) on top and decorate accordingly.
To Make the Frosting:
Beat together 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, 5 tablespoons butter, and 2 1/2 tablespoons matcha green tea powder in a freestanding electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a handheld electric whisk) on medium-slow speed until the mixture comes together and is well mixed.
Turn the mixer down to a slower speed, and slowly pour in 2 tablespoons whole milk.
When the milk is completely incorporated, turn the mixer up to high speed. Continue beating until the frosting is light and fluffy, at least 5 minutes.
Visit Hummingbird on High for Tips & Addendums for this recipe.
Iced Tea Pops!
With the official kick-off of summer just around the corner, we’ve begun to round-up our favorite homemade iced tea popsicle recipes. Fun and simple to make, plus so many flavor combinations. The hardest part…deciding which one to make first!
Give our peppermint pops a try and be sure to check out our Tea Pops Pinterest board for more delicious ideas!
Stash Tea Presents a Pitcher-Perfect Summer!
Our iced tea guide is live! Browse through for brewing tips, drink + food recipes, and a few ideas on how to make your summer even better! Read it now.
Have you tried our Mangosteen Green? It was featured in Every Day with Rachael Ray as the Best Flavored Green Tea! Shop it now!
Guayusa (gwhy-you-sa) is a stimulating herb produced from the leaves of a holly tree native to the Amazon Rainforest of Ecuador. Part of the indigenous culture for over 2000 years, Guayusa is delicious, with a naturally smooth taste that is never bitter. It has a rich and earthy aroma and a slightly sweet finish.
Guayusa is also naturally caffeinated and has an awakening effect similar to that of coffee and yerba mate, but provides a slow caffeine release without the jitters or sudden crash. And as Guayusa is shade-grown, it helps the Amazon Rainforest thrive, and helps small farms in Ecuador.
Find our Guayusa teas online at StashTea.com!
Learn more about Guayusa.