Matcha Me-Time: The Perfect Super Green Tea for Busy Parents

Photo by Federica Di Marcello / Stocksy United / 168638
Photo by Federica Di Marcello / Stocksy United

Have you ever found yourself wishing you could somehow feel calmer and peppier at the same time? Of course you have—you’re the parent of a toddler. Well, we have a trick up our sleeves to help: Brew a cup of matcha green tea!

Matcha is a high-grade Japanese green tea powder that has been used in traditional tea ceremonies for centuries—and it’s totally on trend today, popping up in ice cream, lattes, smoothies, and donuts! The proper way to prepare it involves using a bamboo whisk and tea bowl (they’re quite affordable!) to whip the matcha into a frothy, vibrant green beverage, but you can also make it with nothing more than a spoon and a cup (recipes below).

Because you consume the entire leaf (not just the brewed water), matcha is green tea with super powers: One cup is equivalent to 10 cups of regular green tea, which means you’re getting a mega dose of antioxidants, chlorophyll, and other nutrients, including l-theanine, an amino acid which helps relax the mind and improve mood while also improving focus and alertness. Combine that with matcha’s caffeine (roughly triple the amount in regular green tea, but only half the amount in coffee), and the result is a calm but energized you—voilà!

Made with only hot water, matcha has a distinctive, full-bodied flavor that is both earthy and a little sweet. If the vegetal notes are a tad too much, just add a little lemon juice and/or honey.

Short on time (and what parent isn’t)? You only need five minutes to prepare and sip. While you enjoy your matcha, listen to music, flip through  a magazine, or just stare at the wall and revel in the you time. Then take a deep breath and saunter, charge, or dance your way back to the rest of life!

Photo by bhofack2 / iStock
Photo by bhofack2 / iStock

Get Your Matcha On

Doing it the traditional way with a tea bowl and bamboo whisk:

1. Heat a kettle of water on high until boiling. Remove it from the stove and let sit for a few minutes.

2. Using a fine mesh strainer, sift 1–2 teaspoons of matcha into your tea bowl (matcha straight from the can may clump). Don’t force it through the strainer—just give it a few shakes instead and then gently push through any final clumps.

4. Add 2 ounces of the hot water to your bowl. Start whisking the mixture slowly in a zig-zag or brushing (not circular) motion. Pick up speed and continue whisking quickly until bubbles start to form. When the matcha is frothy, keep whisking quickly but slowly raise the whisk up toward the surface as you do so—when the whisk reaches the surface, slow your movements a little. This final step produces a lovely, tight crema. Enjoy!

* Still feeling a little unsure about the steps? The Kitchn offers a more detailed matcha how-to with helpful photos and video.

Making it work for you with no fancy supplies:

1. Heat a kettle of water on high until boiling. Remove it from the stove and let sit for a few minutes.

2. Measure 1 teaspoon of matcha into a regular tea or coffee cup. Add a few drops of water to the cup and use a spoon to mix into a paste.

3. Add 6 ounces of hot water to the cup and stir. You may want to add a little more matcha or water depending on your result. It won’t have the traditional frothiness, but you’ll still reap all the calming benefits. Enjoy!

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