What is Hojicha?

Hojicha is a type of roasted Japanese green tea. The roasting process imparts this tea with a toasty, nutty flavor that sets it apart from most other Japanese teas. We’ll cover what Hojicha is, how it’s made, and how to brew this tasty tea.

Our Hojicha Teas

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About Hojicha Green Tea

Hojicha is technically a green tea, but that’s a bit of a misnomer: the leaves are actually a chestnut brown. Hojicha is also sometimes spelled houjicha. In Japanese, Hojicha translated to “roasted tea.”

The roasting process that Hojicha undergoes sets it apart from other types of Japanese green tea. This process turns the tea leaves a light brown color, somewhat similar in appearance to a black tea. Hojicha is low in caffeine, with a medium body and a warm, nutty flavor with a hint of natural sweetness. Because of its low caffeine content and mild taste, in Japan Hojicha is especially popular among children and people who may be sensitive to caffeine.

Our Hojicha is sourced from Shizuoka, Japan. It is a smooth and satisfying tea with toasty and nutty notes, and brews up a beautiful caramel color. It’s a great tea to enjoy on a chilly afternoon.

What is Hojicha made out of?

Hojicha is made out of loose leaf tea leaves harvested from the camellia sinensis tea plant. Hojicha also often contains the stems of the tea plant. Like other types of Japanese green tea, these leaves are roasted after harvesting, which imparts a toasty, nutty, slightly sweet flavor.

The history behind Hojicha

The story goes that, in 1920s Japan, an enterprising tea merchant tried to repurpose the tea leaves and stems left over after processing. By roasting these leftovers over charcoal, the merchant created a new type of tea: Hojicha. Today, Hojicha is popular not only in Japan, but also other countries around the world. Hojicha can be enjoyed on its own, but is also often used as the base for milk tea and tea lattes.

Hojicha loose leaf tea vs. Hojicha powder

Traditionally, Hojicha is made from roasted tea leaves, stems, and twigs. This traditional loose leaf tea can be enjoyed on its own as a cozy alternative to more caffeinated blends. But Hojicha is also available in powdered form. Similar to the way that matcha powder is made from finely ground shade-grown Japanese tea leaves, Hojicha powder is made from ground loose leaf Hojicha. This powder is ideal for making lattes or for adding to baked goods. Our Hojicha powder is sweetened with cane sugar, so that all you have to do is blend it with milk for the perfect cozy treat.

Hojicha vs. Kukicha

Hojicha and Kukicha are both Japanese green teas. Unlike other types of loose leaf tea produced in Japan, these teas include the stems and twigs of the tea plant in addition to whole tea leaves. This makes them naturally lower in caffeine, and gives them a subtle natural sweetness.

Unlike Kukicha, Hojicha is lightly roasted, which turns the tea leaves a deep brown color and gives the tea a pleasantly toasty, nutty flavor. While Hojicha can technically be made out of other types of Japanese green tea, such as Bancha or Gyokuro, it’s most often made from Kukicha.

What does Hojicha taste like?

Hojicha is creamy and smooth, with notes of honey, earth, nuts, bark, baked fruit, cinnamon, and baking spices. It has a fuller body than most other types of Japanese green tea. The roasting process brings out the natural sweetness present in the tea leaves.

Does Hojicha have caffeine?

Hojicha is very low in caffeine, containing a smaller amount even than most other green teas. This is because Hojicha contains the twigs and stems of the tea plant, which tend to be lower in caffeine. The roasting process also contributes to the lower caffeine levels.

How to brew Hojicha

To prepare Hojicha, we recommend using one teaspoon of tea leaves for every sixo ounces of water in your pot or cup. Heat water until it is briskly steaming but not boiling, around 175 degrees. Infuse your tea for three minutes. For best taste, do not over steep.

We recommend using a teapot, tea infuser, or tea filter to prepare Hojicha. These brewing methods give the tea leaves enough room to expand as the tea steeps, resulting in a richer, more flavorful cup.

How to make a Hojicha latte

Powdered Hojicha can also be used to make a tea latte. To prepare a Hojicha latte, stir one teaspoon of latte mix into eight ounces of hot milk until fully mixed. Use an electric milk frother for an extra velvety taste.

Our Hojicha

We carry two types of Hojicha: Hojicha Roasted Green Tea, which is a loose leaf tea, and Hojicha latte mix, which is a powdered tea.

Organic Hojicha Roasted Green Tea

Hojicha is a roasted Japanese green tea made from the stems and leaves of the tea plant. This classic tea brews up into a lovely golden-brown umber color with a warm and nutty flavor. Sourced from Shizuoka, Japan, our Hojicha is soothing, nourishing, and satisfying.

Organic Hojicha Latte Mix

This mix is a unique twist on hojicha—it features powdered hojicha green tea along with a touch of organic cane sugar, perfect for whipping up into a latte.

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