Thursday, October 02, 2008

Saving Your Pennies with Tea

Use it up
Wear it out
Make it do
Or do without
--saying from the Great Depression era

I don't know about you, but with all the doom and gloom descending upon the economy these days, I'm giving extra thoughts to ways I can tighten the spending belt and save my pennies. I'm thrifty by my nature, so it's always a fun challenge for me to find ways to save money.

Are you using your loose tea to help you save money?

I think of high-quality loose tea as an affordable luxury. One ounce of loose tea will make approximately 8 - 12 cups of tea. That's assuming the teaspoon per cup ratio (give or take) and also assuming single consumption. You can extend this tea further by re-using it!

Not many people realize that you can re-steep loose teas. Yes! This is one of their joys. In addition, since caffeine is highly water soluble, the second pot you brew will have significantly less caffeine (around 60%). Here's what I do: 1 - Make a pot of fresh leaves in the morning. 2 - Stick the used leaves (in my cotton tea sock) in a mug and put them in the fridge or set them on the counter. 3 - Reuse those same leaves in the afternoon/evening (with less caffeine).

Think about the magnification principle here. Now, you can get between 16 and 24 cups of tea from your one ounce. That's pretty cost efficient! Many of my Serendipity Teas prices hover around $2.50/oz. At 16 cups/ounce, that's 15.6 cents per cup. Try finding that at Starbucks!

Some green and oolong teas stand up to multiple steepings. You may want to slightly increase the steep time and/or temp for the second or third steep. (This is where a tea tasting notebook comes in handy - keep notes about how you like that second steep - at what temp/time?)

So, drink your tea wisely and reuse those leaves! And when you're done, use them as compost.

How are you saving your pennies these days, tea-wise or other?

Photos from


Jennifer said...

I used coupons at Mighty Leaf tea. I also learned about When you are shopping online, you can enter your retailer's web site at retail-me-not and see if there are electronic coupon codes offered. I used it for the first time last weekend and to my delight discovered a coupon and saved 5%. You enter the code during the checkout process on your retailer's site. Save away!

Lady Katherine said...

Thanks for the great tips, when reusing your loose leaf tea.

Alice said...

My problem is that I can't just drink one cup of tea. If the leaves are still viable, I'm still drinking. :)

Steph said...

*chuckle* Well, Alice - there are worse things to be attached to!

Thanks, Jen, for the great tip!

Sofie's Blog said...

I happened upon your blog and have enjoyed it. Would you be so kind as to recommend a tea that I might enjoy? I'm a long-time serious coffee drinker and have to stop for pregnancy. I'd like to have a cup of tea in the morning with no caff or at least less than coffee (100+ mgs) a little would probably be helpful. I know a lot about selecting good coffee but little to none about selecting good tea.