There is a new kid on the block when it comes to beverages. Here in San Francisco you see boba tea shops popping up everywhere. They are a huge hit!
Chances are, if you live in a big city or anywhere with a large Asian population, you will see them.
What is a "boba tea" drink?
According to Wikipedia, Bubble tea is a Taiwanese tea-based drink invented in Tainan and Taichung in the 1980s. Boba means bubble and it usually refers to the tapioca pearls that sink to the bottom of this cold beverage.
What is in boba tea? Boba tea is a brewed tea with the addition of various ingredients including sugar, fruit juice, tapioca, cream, milk, fruit jellies, whole fruits like lemon, or ice cream.
Pictured below are the tapioca pearls, which add a huge appeal to this tea drink.
The serving size of boba can often compare to a large soda, ringing in at 16 ounces or larger. This one is called "milk tea" because it is made with whole milk and black tea and it contains the tapioca pearls at the bottom. Like all boba tea drinks, it has a plastic seal on the top, which makes them very convenient because they do not spill.
While tea has been mentioned in many of our articles for its excellent phytochemical properties, the additions to tea are always not in the same league!
- If you are ordering a boba drink, make sure you specify "unsweetened" or you could consume more calories than you think. Stick with green tea or unsweetened varieties.
- For a handy chart that shows the calories for a sweetened boba drink, see the MyFitnessPal chart here.
- Keep the boba drinks that include ice cream or cookies for really special occasions or when sharing with someone else.
- Request skim milk or soy milk instead of whole milk or cream.
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Judy’s passion for cooking began with helping her grandmother make raisin oatmeal for breakfast. From there she earned her first food service job at 15, was accepted to the world-famous Culinary Institute of America at 18 (where she graduated second in her class), and went on to the Fachschule Richemont in Switzerland where she focused on pastry arts and baking. After a decade in food service for Hyatt Hotels, Judy launched Food and Health Communications to focus on flavor and health. She graduated with Summa Cum Laude distinction from Johnson and Wales University with a BS in Culinary Art, holds a master’s degree in Food Business from the Culinary Institute of America, 2 art certificates from UC Berkeley Extension, and runs a food photography studio where her love is creating fun recipes.
Judy received The Culinary Institute of America’s Pro Chef II certification, the American Culinary Federation Bronze Medal, Gold Medal, and ACF Chef of the Year. Her enthusiasm for eating nutritiously and deliciously leads her to constantly innovate and use the latest in nutritional science and Dietary Guidelines to guide her creativity, from putting new twists on fajitas to adapting Italian brownies to include ingredients like toasted nuts and cooked honey. Judy’s publishing company, Food and Health Communications, is dedicated to her vision that everyone can make food that tastes as good as it is for you.