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Archives for the ‘Tea Tips’ Category

Beat The Heat: 5 Ways To Stay Hydrated With Tea This Season!

Sunshine on your mind? Keep it there, for sure, but consider adding another mantra to your day: “Must keep hydrated, must keep hydrated!” And for that, Bigelow Tea has some great tips on keeping cool (temperature-wise, of course… you’re pretty awesome already).

First, though, do you know why it’s important to stay hydrated, especially when it’s hot outside? Well, you see, our bodies are about 60% of water by weight, and proper hydration is essential for our overall health. Water helps regulate body temperature, optimizes our blood pressure, and keeps our joints lubricated, among other bodily functions. Because your body loses water through breathing, sweating, and digestion, it’s important to rehydrate by drinking plenty of liquids and eating foods that contain water, such as fruit and vegetables. As summer temperatures increase – along with lots of outdoor activities – our bodies work really hard to stay cool. And with all that water loss, that’s why it’s so darn important to hydrate. Don’t worry, though, Bigelow Tea keeps it easy for you! Here are 5 of our favorite ways to keep that water flowin’ (and that body in tip-top condition):

  1. It’s such a good hydration… it’s such a sweet sensation! Because, sometimes, it’s just more fun to eat a freeze pop. Turn this summer fave into a tool to refuel and rehydrate. Looking for a few recipes? How about Iced Tea & Lemonade Ice PopsEndless “Pop”sibilities (Popsicles)Green Tea and Coconut Popsicles or Pomegranate Pizzazz Iced Tea Popsicles? Yum!
  2. Give me iced tea…please! Chill out and rehydrate after a long day by sipping on an herbal iced tea. Here’s a great video with President and CEO Cindi Bigelow on how to make the perfect glass!
  3. Oh, wait, soup in the summer? Yes. Summer soups are totally a thing. From gazpacho to summer corn chowder, soup can be a hearty way to get those liquids in! Other favorites include Slow Cooker Ramen or Green Tea Ramen Soup, or Seared Scallops in Lemon Broth.
  4. Fruits and veggies, oh my! Thankfully, there are loads of delicious fruits and vegetables that supply an ample amount of water. And, even better? Many of them are in season, like watermelon, cantaloupe, strawberries, raspberries, oranges, spinach, cucumbers, lettuce, celery and green peppers. Eat them on the go or add them to your go-to dishes! And, hey, you can never go wrong with a recipe that includes several of them, like a Spinach Salad Spectacular with Raspberry Vinaigrette!
  5. Ice, ice, maybe? The next time you make iced tea, try freezing some in an ice cube tray. Then use the ice tea cubes in place of regular ice cubes to keep iced tea cool, fresh and flavorful! Yup, it’s that easy!

However you hydrate, share your tips with your fellow tea enthusiasts. It’s a great chance to #TeaProudly – plus, staying well and playing safe in the summer heat is super important, no matter how you do it!

How To Picnic Like A Pro—Iced Tea, Included!

Confession time! When it comes to picnics, how many of you have pinned pins on creating an Instagram-worthy spread, or pine after the perfectly curated pictures of al fresco summertime dining? Okay, okay, most of us. Now. How many of you fall short of actually planning a picnic of your own? If this is you, that’s okay! It’s a ton of work to pull off an incredible picnic, but guess what, Bigelow Tea has a few tips and tricks for you. Besides, it’s National Picnic Month, so there’s no better time than now to make it happen!

Set the scene

For starters, ya gotta get a picnic basket. Or a picnic backpack, or a wooden crate, or at the very least, a few bags to carry the food to your destination. Speaking of destination, it’s just as much fun to host a picnic in your backyard as it is the local park! Or, take advantage of a great view nearby (hey, beach lovers and mountain dwellers, here’s to you…). Then, add a picnic blanket. Tip: Keep a plastic tarp or shower liner on-hand to put underneath the blanket! 

On the menu

Nothing beats a picnic with yummy food. And you know what’s easy to make, pack and enjoy on a picnic? These awesome Bigelow recipes: Pomegranate Yogurt Dip and Fresh FruitVietnamese Tea Rolls (served chilled), Lemon Lift English Cucumber PicklesBigelow Constant Comment Cashew Chicken SaladPomegranate Quinoa Salad with Fruit and NutsGreen Tea and Mango Pasta Salad, and Turkey, Watercress and Cranberry Sandwiches. For dessert, try one of these on-the-go treats: Chewy Chocolate Mint BrowniesLondon Fog Cupcakes or Vanilla Chai Scones. Obviously, you can’t have a picnic without iced tea. Here are a few faves: Fresh Brewed Bigelow Iced TeaStrawberry Mint Sweet Tea or Bigelow Blackberry Mint Iced Tea. Make the iced tea ahead of time and chill in the fridge in mason jars. Throw the mason jars (…leave the caps on) into your picnic basket and voilà! Tip: Try freezing some tea in an ice cube tray. Then use ice tea cubes in place of regular ice cubes to keep iced tea cool, fresh and flavorful!

Essential items to pack

Don’t forget the cutlery and napkins. Bring a few extra knives and serving spoons, too. And a good picnicker always brings a trash bag. Tip: Bring along some games (cards are easy to pack and play!) and don’t forget the sunscreen and bug spray!

So there you have it – all the makings to create the perfect picnic. Go ahead, get outside and enjoy! While you’re at it, be sure to tag #TeaProudly with your picnic experience! (PICS OR IT DIDN’T HAPPEN!)

Bold Stripes, Bright Stars, Iced Tea In Mason Jars (And All The Fab Recipes For July 4th!)

July 4th is right around the corner, and if you’re a red, white and blue lovin’ individual, you know that this is a weekend filled with flags, fireworks, BBQs and a whole lot of patriotism! And while you may be juggling all sorts of holiday events and festivities, there’s no reason why you can’t do it with a glass of Bigelow iced tea in hand! Actually, how about you just plan out your whole menu now? Because – no lie – you’re gonna be the talk of the town after you serve these ah-mazing dishes. Whether you’re having a fancy-schmancy cocktail party or a backyard cookout, these dishes will rock your world. From beverages that will keep you cool until the last firework goes off, to a sauce who is boss, these recipes are in it to win it. Enjoy! Don’t forget to tag your masterpieces with #TeaProudly on social media – go on, brag a little…

Constant Comment Soda Twist

Ingredients

Instructions

Place tea bags into a heat-stable container. Pour one quart boiling water over tea bags and allow to steep 7-10 minutes. Squeeze and remove tea bags. Allow tea to cool, then chill. To serve, combine equal parts of iced tea with lemon-lime seltzer water in ice-filled glasses. Stir gently; garnish with lemon or lime, as desired.

Green Tea Baby Back Ribs and Jicama Green Apple Salad

Ingredients

  • 26 pork backribs, 2 racks, 13 bones
  • 1 sweet onion, julienned
  • 4 celery ribs, julienned
  • 2 carrot, julienned
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
  • 12  Bigelow Green Tea, remove string
  • 1 jicama, julienned
  • 2 green apple, julienned
  • 2 celery, julienned
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 4 scallion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar, steeped with 1 bag Green Tea with Lemon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

Combine ribs with onion, celery, carrot, salt, pepper and eight tea bags. Bring to a simmer and cook till fork tender. While ribs are simmering, steep Bigelow Green tea with lemon with cold vinegar, about 1 hour. Cut all jicama, apple, celery and carrot into julienne. Slice scallion on a long bias. Toss all together. Combine vinegar and oil together. Toss vegetables and fruit with salt and vinaigrette mixture and chill. When ribs are ready let cool in poaching liquid. Remove ribs from poaching liquid and return liquid to heat and bring to a boil and reduce to two cups volume. Add two cups sugar and four tea bags and let steep five minutes and squeeze out tea bags. Dip ribs into glaze and heat in oven. Brush with additional glaze until ribs are hot and sugar has caramelized. Finish under broiler and drizzle glaze over ribs when on plate. Serve glazed ribs over jicama salad.

Earl Grey Braised Beef Brisket with Earl Grey Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients

Beef brisket:

  • 4 pounds beef brisket, whole, not trimmed
  • 1 pound sweet onion, julienned
  • 1 pound carrot, julienned
  • 1/2 pound celery, chopped
  • 8 Bigelow Earl Grey Tea bags
  • 4 cups water, or enough to cover brisket
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

Barbecue sauce:

  • 4 ounces vegetable oil
  • 1 pound sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 ounce peeled garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 pound celery, chopped
  • 16 ounces tomatoes, canned
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white vinegar, or cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 8 Bigelow Earl Grey Tea bags

Instructions

Combine onion, celery, carrot tea bags with water and bring to a simmer. Add brisket and let cook till fork tender, may be up to 8 hours. While brisket is cooking make barbecue sauce. In medium sauce pan heat oil and add onion and garlic and sweat. Add celery and sweat and then add tomatoes, sugar vinegar, salt and tea bags. Let simmer till all vegetables are very soft and remove tea bags. Puree till smooth and chill till ready to use. When brisket is tender remove from heat and allow to cool in braising liquid. When cool remove from liquid and heat on grill. When hot add barbecue sauce and finish heating in oven to prevent burning sauce. Slice about 1/4 inch and serve.

Orange & Spice Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients

Instructions

Pour boiling water over tea bags. Let steep for 5 minutes. Remove bags, squeezing them for excess tea. Add brown sugar until dissolved. Set aside. In a skillet, add tea, ketchup, mustard and onions. Mix well and simmer until onions are soft, about 10 minutes. This sauce can be used with steak, chicken and pork. It also can be used for baking beans.

What Is Your Fave Summer Beverage…Iced Tea Right?!

I scream, you scream, we all scream for iced tea!  June is Iced Tea Month, so there’s no better time to sit back, relax and enjoy a quintessential refreshing tall glass of the iced stuff.

So, do you know just how popular iced tea actually is?  Believe it or not, around 80 percent of the tea Americans drink is iced, according to the Tea Association of the USA.

Maybe it’s because iced tea is super versatile? Want proof? Check out president and CEO Cindi Bigelow’s fun ideas for pairing different teas. This video will inspire you to create your own custom iced tea creation that’s one of a kind- just like you!

Iced tea is also amazing in cocktails, just more proof of how much you can do with it.

How about treating yourself to a Long Island Iced Tea Lemonade after a long week?

BTW, iced tea has its own little list of secret tips to make it just right! You’ll want to be just as particular about prep time as if you were making a hot mug. For example, if you’re making a glass, give two teabags a couple of minutes to steep, but for a quart you’ll want to steep somewhere between 6 to 10 minutes. But always feel free to play around to find your favorite brew- that’s part of the fun!

Don’t forget there are also plenty of tasty iced tea options that are all ready for you if you prefer to stick with a tried and true, yet still amazingly delicious flavor. Either way, iced tea is a no brainer way to get refreshed this month and all summer long…well all year actually!

What’s your fave iced tea flavor or drink that features iced tea? Share with us (don’t forget to tag #TeaProudly!).

Now, This Is How You Do Summer!

How excited are you that the first day of summer has finally arrived? Hey, even if you still have to go to work and all that, there’s something totally cool about June 21st. Everyone knows it’s the longest day of the year which gives the #TeaProudly community a totally awesome excuse to celebrate summer fun in ways that you never even imagined…yes Bigelow Tea is part of the scene!

For this year’s summer solstice, think out of the (tea!) box and make some really cool recipes that are great for any type of summer picnic or party, or just for chillin out!

For example, these Endless “Pop”sibilities popsicles are totally unique! They are the most amazing treat for getting refreshed and revived on a hot summer day- can’t you just see yourself lounging in a hammock in the backyard catching all the drips before they hit your shorts?

Endless “Pop”sibilities (Popsicles)

Ingredients

3 Bigelow Pomegranate Pizzazz Herbal Tea Bags
Bigelow I Love Lemon Tea Bags
2 cups boiling water
2-3 tablespoons agave nectar

Instructions

Steep all 6 tea bags in water for 3 minutes. Remove bags. Stir in agave nectar syrup; let cool. Pour into 6 molds; freeze 6 hours or overnight. Run molds under hot water for a few seconds to loosen; unmold and enjoy.

Also mega delicious- Green Tea and Coconut Popsicles. So unbelievably simple to make, yet so tasty and such a good way to cool off. (Maybe a fun summer project to do with the kids?)

Green Tea and Coconut Popsicles

Ingredients

1 cup brewed green tea
1 cup coconut water
1 tbsp honey (raw and local is best)

Instructions

Combine all ingredients in a bowl.  Pour popsicle mix into a clean, empty ice tray.  Place a layer of plastic wrap on top, and pull tight.  Insert a toothpick into the center of each tray, and place in the freezer until frozen solid.
When ready to enjoy, just remove the plastic wrap, and you have 12 individual popsicles!

Finally, this crazy good dessert is basically a great impression in a pan. Make Triple Berry Skillet Tea Cobbler your go-to after dinner treat to bring to barbecues all summer long. It’s like eating up the taste of summer in every bite. Are you salivating yet? Yum!!

Triple Berry Skillet Tea Cobbler

Ingredients

1 cup blueberries
1/2 cup raspberries
1/2 cup chopped strawberries
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
Dash of cinnamon
1 cup of flour
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1/2 cup Bigelow “I Love Lemon” herbal tea (1/2 cup of boiling water and 1 tea bag)
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp butter

Instructions

Use a 6 1/2 inch skillet.
Preheat the oven to 350.
Place a tea bag in a cup with 1/2 cup of boiling hot water and steep for 5-6 minutes. Let it cool to room temperature.
In a small bowl, mix berries, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together egg and sugar vigorously for about a minute. Whisk in salt, sour cream and vanilla, until all well combined. Whisk in cooled tea.
Whisk in flour until all incorporated. Preheat seasoned skillet over medium heat and melt butter in it. Swish butter all over the skillet. Take off heat. Pour in most of the batter in the skillet and add berries over the top. Drizzle in remaining dough over the top. Place skillet in the oven and bake for 33-37 minutes.

So, which sweet treat are you going to try first this summer? Tell us what’s sounding totally delish to you and tag #TeaProudly

Four Tips For Making the Most Refreshing Iced Tea Ever…Thirsty Yet?

Hooray, it’s iced tea weather and Iced Tea Month! And that means it’s time for your usual steaming mug of goodness to chill— literally. Bigelow Tea has everything you need for some cool sipping all summer long. Whether you love fruity flavors like Pomegranate Pizzazz®, Red Raspberry™ or Perfect Peach®, or crave the delicious combo of tea and lemonade, get ready to be refreshed.

BTW- you may be a pro at making a hot cup of tea on a cold day, but creating iced tea perfection has its own set of in-the-know tips. Check these out:

Get experimental. 

Try pairing different teabags together to give your iced tea a tasty twist that’s all your own. Bigelow Tea has over 130 flavors to choose from, including a bunch of specialty iced teas to get you started. Remember, it’s certainly not against the rules if you choose to ice your favorite hot tea, yum!

Grab a spoon. 

In this awesome video, third generation president and CEO Cindi Bigelow recommended putting a spoon in your glass before pouring in the hot water. The spoon will capture incoming heat and prevent your glass from breaking- who knew!

Keep an eye on the clock.

If you’re making just a glass for yourself, give two teabags a couple of minutes to steep, but for a quart (like if you’re pouring for a party) make sure to steep between 6 to 10 minutes. Feel free to play around with time lengths to find your perfect brew.

Sweeten the deal. 

Besides sugar, think out of the box and try agave or honey. Spruce your iced tea up further with a slice of lemon or a sprig of mint.

What is your favorite Bigelow Tea to enjoy iced? We want to know! Tag #TeaProudly.

5 Reasons To Eat A Cupcake Right Now. (BTW: They Go Best With Tea!) 

Calling all cupcake-lovers! Looking for a few good reasons to eat a cupcake right now? Look no further:

  1. They go fabulously with a cup of your favorite Bigelow Tea.
  2. They’re amazing.
  3. They’re delicious.
  4. They’re SO MUCH FUN.
  5. They’re versatile.

BONUS: They’re the perfect on-the-go snack. Just grab one and hit the road! (Napkins not required, but suggested… just in case the icing goes a bit rogue.)

Okay, okay, time out… There are more reasons than that—but, first, how about a history lesson? Did you know that cupcakes were mentioned as far back as 1796 when a recipe notation of “a light cake to bake in small cups” was written in American Cookery by Amelia Simmons? However, the earliest documentation of the term “cupcake” appeared in a cookbook in 1828. Yum! Someone was definitely on to something, because today, cupcakes are trendy with a capital “T.” While a standard cupcake recipe uses the same basic ingredients (butter, sugar, eggs and flour—easy enough!), these days you can find unique cupcakeries and bakeries across the globe. There are countless flavors, designs and ingredients to choose from. And guess what?! You can make your own using Bigelow Tea! Here are several recipes to try. Tag #TeaProudly with your creations—you’ll likely make everyone drool.

London Fog Cupcakes 

What could be better than a vanilla bean cupcake with Earl Grey buttercream frosting!

Recipes and photo submitted by Just a Little Bite

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup & 2 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 earl grey tea bag
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp Earl Grey tea

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, combine the milk, egg whites, vanilla, and the scraped insides of the vanilla bean.
In a larger bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.
On low speed, add the butter and oil and mix until you have a crumb texture. On medium speed, add the milk mixture and mix for two minutes until light and fluffy. Scoop the mixture in to a muffin tin and fill each cup 3/4 of the way.
Bake for 12-15 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
While the cupcakes are baking, melt the butter in a small sauce pan. Add the Earl Grey tea bag and steep over low heat for five minutes.
Put the butter in the fridge for 20 minutes. When the butter has solidified, take it back out and mix it together on medium speed with the powdered sugar, and vanilla. Add the Earl Grey tea a little bit at a time until you have the consistency you like.
When the cupcakes are cool, frost them!

Constant Comment® Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • Tea Concentrate:
  • 13 bags Bigelow Constant Comment Tea*
  • 1 ¼ cups boiling water
  • Cupcakes:
  • 1 ¾ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 (11-ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained, discard liquid
  • ½ cup tea concentrate
  • 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • Frosting:
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, slightly soft
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons tea concentrate
  • 3 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar

Instructions

Place tea bags in a 2-cup glass measure. Add 1 ¼ cups water. Steep tea for 10 minutes. Squeeze all liquid from tea bags into cup. Discard tea bags. (About 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons tea concentrate.) Heat oven to 350 F. Spray 2 (12-cup) muffin tins with baking spray; alternatively use paper liners set aside. In large mixing bowl add sugar, vegetable oil and eggs. Mix at high speed, scraping bowl often, until thick and creamy (1 to 2 minutes). Add mandarin oranges, ½ cup tea concentrate, vanilla, and orange zest. Continue mixing, scraping bowl often, until well mixed (1 minute). In medium bowl stir together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add flour mixture to tea mixture. Continue mixing, at low speed, until well mixed (1 to 2 minutes). Add carrots; mix well. Place batter in muffin cups filling about ½ to ¾ full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven; cool. Meanwhile, in medium mixing bowl place cream cheese and butter. Mix at high speed, scraping bowl often, until light and creamy (1 minute). Add 2 tablespoons tea extract. Mix well. Add confectioners’ sugar; continue mixing, scraping bowl often, until soft and creamy (1 to 2 minutes). Frost top of each cupcake with frosting. Garnish with orange zest.

Vanilla Chai Tea-Infused Cupcakes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks)
  • 1 cup water
  • Bigelow Vanilla Chai Tea Bags
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1.5 tsp baking soda

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Add butter and water to a large saucepan along with six tea bags.  Allow to melt. Once melted, strain butter/water mixture and remove tea bags.  Remove from the heat and add sugar until dissolved.  Add sour cream, eggs, and vanilla extract.  Pour into cupcake lined pan and cooked for 15 minutes or until done.  Top with homemade whipped cream topping* (see below*).

*These cupcakes pair perfectly with fresh whipped cream topping. Mix 1.5 cups of heavy whipping in a chilled bowl until it starts to slightly stiffen. Slowly add 2.5 tablespoons of granulated sugar and a splash of vanilla extract. Continue mixing until soft peaks start to show. Frost cupcakes, top with sprinkles, berries, or cutesy flags or candles and ENJOY!

Green Tea Cupcakes with Sugar Topping

Ingredients

  • 2 Bags of Bigelow Green Tea
  • Cake Mix from a Box – White
  • Green Frosting
  • Green Sugar

Instructions

Preheat Oven To 350.
Heat water and brew tea ( use 2 bags) – measure 12 oz of the tea and place in a mixing bowl.
Optional – add a few drops of food coloring ( green).
Slowly add the cake box mix – slowly mix together ( you do not need to add anything else – meaning NO EGGS OR OIL).
Place batter in the cupcake liners.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Let the cupcakes cool and decorate. Enjoy.

Lavender Honey Earl Grey Cupcakes

(pictured at top)

Ingredients

Cupcake Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 4 Bigelow Earl Grey teabags
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp dried lavender
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lavender paste or extract (optional)
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • Honey and dried lavender to garnish (optional)

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups heavy cream

Instructions

Warm 2/3 cup whole milk in the microwave, then let 4 Bigelow Earl Grey teabags steep in the milk for about 10 minutes. The milk will eventually resemble a caramel color. When the tea is done steeping, carefully squeeze the teabags to wring out milk. Before disposing of the teabags, snip off the Earl Grey tags if you wish to use them to decorate your finished cupcakes. Allow the milk to cool to room temperature.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, dried lavender, and salt. Set aside.
In a separate mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar, honey, vanilla, and lavender paste using an electric mixer on medium-high speed for 30 seconds. Add eggs one at a time, beating until well incorporated. Finally, mix in the Earl Grey-infused milk.
Add flour mixture in small batches, beating on low speed until the batter is just combined.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners, and spoon batter into each cup until three-fourths full. Bake for 20-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool cupcakes completely.
To make frosting, beat cream cheese, honey, and vanilla extract with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. In half-cup batches, slowly add the heavy cream, beating until each addition forms stiff peaks. This frosting recipe makes a pretty big batch. I don’t mind because it’s my favorite frosting recipe (so light, and not overly sweet) and I like to pile my cupcakes high with frosting. But if you have leftovers, know that it refrigerates well.
Pipe frosting onto cupcakes however you wish. I like to use a star tip to create a “nest” on top of the cupcake. Just before serving, I garnish with dried lavender and carefully pour a dollop of honey into the center of the nest. If you saved your Bigelow Earl Grey tags, tape them to toothpicks and use them to decorate a few of your cupcakes.

This Is Why You Should Double Your Delicious With Iced Bigelow Tea Flavor Combinations

Life needs more iced tea especially during June (Iced Tea Month!!). And what would be better than TWO of your favorite Bigelow Tea flavors COMBINED in a glass over ice??? Yes, it’s totally a real thing, and Bigelow Tea has several combos that will absolutely. blow. your. mind. But before you even think about different flavor combinations, how much do you know about the history of iced tea?

Richard Blechynden has often been attributed with making the first iced tea at the World’s Fair in St. Louis in 1904. As sales for his hot tea dropped and summer temperatures rose, he purportedly poured tea over ice to entice fairgoers. Some dedicated research tells another story, though, with iced tea’s roots reaching as far back as 1879, when Marion Cabell Tyree created a recipe for green tea over ice, which was published in a community cookbook called Housekeeping in Old Virginia. Later, in 1884, another recipe for iced black tea surfaced from the Boston Cooking School. These days, while iced tea is still extremely popular during summer, the classic drink is enjoyed year ‘round.

Looking for the perfect combos? No worries – these are a few faves!

Before you go off to treat yourself, have you double-checked your iced tea-making skills? A glass of fresh iced tea is surprisingly pretty easy – and quick – to make. President and CEO Cindi Bigelow has the scoop in this video. All you’ve gotta do are 6 little steps.

  1. Boil. Boil some water as you would for any cup of tea.
  2. Add a spoon (you heard us). As the water prepares, have a glass ready. And be sure to place a metal spoon into the glass, which helps absorb the heat from the hot water.
  3. Go crazy. Choose your favorite Bigelow flavors, unwrap each individual pouch (made to preserve freshness!) and place 1-2 bags into the glass.
  4. Pour and steep. Pour the water over the bags – leave some room for ice – and let them steep for a bit longer than the box recommends for hot tea. Don’t squeeze the tea bags!
  5. Add ice. Be generous!
  6. ENJOY. It’s like a little vacation in the middle of your day.

See? Super quick. And delicious. Now, you go try and tag your masterpiece with #TeaProudly. Go on, give it a whirl – you’ve got this. And you’ll have the perfect treat to chill with when you’re done!

A President, A Monk, A Heist And A Duchess… And Other Times Tea Appeared In History

Okay, so maybe history wasn’t everyone’s favorite subject in school, but when it comes to tea—and its thousands of years of history—there are definitely some interesting stories to tell. So, grab a mug of your favorite Bigelow Tea flavor and enjoy these fun tales of tea from centuries past!

  1. The story behind afternoon tea: Many tea drinkers may think of afternoon teatime as a British tradition (even though the post-lunch, pre-dinner cup and nibble has roots across numerous cultures). Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford is the woman to thank for the traditional English teatime as we know it. In 1840, Anna started partaking in the light meal to help stave off afternoon hunger pangs in between lunch and the typically late dinner hour of the time. Hey, whatever is necessary to avoid getting “hangry,” right?
  2. How about some ice for that hot tea? Richard Blechynden has often been attributed with making the first iced tea at the World’s Fair in St. Louis in 1904. As sales for his hot tea dropped while summer temperatures rose, he purportedly poured tea over ice to entice fairgoers. Some dedicated research tells another story, though, with iced tea’s roots reaching as far back as 1879, when Marion Cabell Tyree created a recipe for green tea over ice, which was published in a community cookbook called Housekeeping in Old Virginia. Later, in 1884, another recipe for iced black tea surfaced from the Boston Cooking School.
  3. The oldest book on tea! Long ago—in 1211 to be exact—a famous Buddhist priest by the name of Eisai wrote what is known to be the oldest book on tea in Japan: Kissa Yojoki (“How to Stay Healthy by Drinking Tea”). Kind of cool to know that even in the 1200s, tea was a part of a trend of healthy living…
  4. When tea wasn’t considered patriotic: Letters between John and Abigail Adams mention tea. One from July 1774 describes a hostess only serving coffee since tea (during the American Revolution) was considered unpatriotic. Fortunately, Americans came back around to this delightful beverage—and not just for throwing it into harbors.
  5. Tea in tombs: Experts now have what they believe is physical evidence of tea’s existence in two tombs that are 2,100 years old. Leaf buds found in these tombs resemble the finest tea. To prove their hunch, researchers compared the chemistry of the buds to modern tea samples. The presence of caffeine was helpful, but not conclusive, evidence. A few other plants also contain caffeine. Finding theanine was “the clincher.” The investigation also supported the belief that tea has long been highly prized and sought after, as one of the tombs –in western China – belonged to an emperor. Sounds like the humble cup of tea has some pretty lofty ancestors!
  6. Even a heist! According to Smithsonian magazine, in 1848, the British East India Company sent Robert Fortune on a trip to an area of China that was forbidden to foreigners. Disguised as a Chinese merchant, his mission was to steal the secrets of tea horticulture and manufacturing. (No need for thievery these days, we put our best blends right in the teabag for you to enjoy.)

Whether it was the subject of scandal, a sought-after noble treat or a target of old world corporate espionage, tea has a storied history that could give the likes of James Bond a run for his money. So the next time you’re confronted by a historical fact and feel your eyes threatening to glaze over, just think about how tea was probably livening things up behind the scenes. Do you have a favorite tea-related story to tell from your own history? Tag #TeaProudly on social media and share it with us!

6 Bigelow Tea Dishes To Kick Off Your Memorial Day

Memorial Day holds quite a bit of important history, and serves as a significant national symbol of gratitude to all those who have fought and died as members of the armed services. At Bigelow Tea, there has been a long-standing history of supporting the troops, and each year, this day is one to remember and appreciate the soldiers who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our great country.

While Memorial Day may conjure images of picnics and long weekends, how much do you know about this patriotic holiday? In 1868May 30 was initially declared Decoration Day, “which was designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers and otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion.” In 1971, Congress moved Memorial Day from May 30 to the last Monday in May.

On Memorial Day, Bigelow Tea feels extra proud to pay tribute to U.S. servicemen and women, including an official sponsorship of the USO. This is a continuation of the Tea for the Troops program, which third generation president and CEO Cindi Bigelow says is “our way of saying thank you to the men and women fighting for our country.” Since the program started in 2009, almost 4 million bags of Bigelow tea have been sent to bases in Korea, Iraq, Germany and Afghanistan.

Whether you’re hosting a Memorial Day bash or spending the weekend with loved ones, Bigelow Tea has the refreshments covered. With one of these six tea-inspired recipes, you’ll surely wow everyone at the table. Tag #TeaProudly to share how you’re spending the day!

Earl Grey Braised Beef Brisket with Earl Grey Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients

Beef brisket:

  • 4 pounds beef brisket, whole, not trimmed
  • 1 pound sweet onion, julienned
  • 1 pound carrot, julienned
  • 1/2 pound celery, chopped
  • Bigelow Earl Grey Tea bags
  • 4 cups water, or enough to cover brisket
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

Barbecue sauce:

  • 4 ounces vegetable oil
  • 1 pound sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 ounce peeled garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 pound celery, chopped
  • 16 ounces tomatoes, canned
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white vinegar, or cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 8 Bigelow Earl Grey Tea bags

Instructions

Combine onion, celery, carrot tea bags with water and bring to a simmer. Add brisket and let cook till fork tender, may be up to 8 hours. While brisket is cooking make barbecue sauce. In medium sauce pan heat oil and add onion and garlic and sweat. Add celery and sweat and then add tomatoes, sugar vinegar, salt and tea bags. Let simmer till all vegetables are very soft and remove tea bags. Puree till smooth and chill till ready to use. When brisket is tender remove from heat and allow to cool in braising liquid. When cool remove from liquid and heat on grill. When hot add barbecue sauce and finish heating in oven to prevent burning sauce. Slice about 1/4 inch and serve.

Green Tea Baby Back Ribs and Jicama Green Apple Salad

Ingredients

  • 26 pork backribs, 2 racks, 13 bones
  • 1 sweet onion, julienned
  • 4 celery ribs, julienned
  • 2 carrot, julienned
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
  • 12  Bigelow Green Tea, remove string
  • 1 jicama, julienned
  • 2 green apple, julienned
  • 2 celery, julienned
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 4 scallion, sliced
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar, steeped with 1 bag Green Tea with Lemon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

Combine ribs with onion, celery, carrot, salt, pepper and eight tea bags. Bring to a simmer and cook till fork tender. While ribs are simmering, steep Bigelow Green tea with lemon with cold vinegar, about 1 hour. Cut all jicama, apple, celery and carrot into julienne. Slice scallion on a long bias. Toss all together. Combine vinegar and oil together. Toss vegetables and fruit with salt and vinaigrette mixture and chill. When ribs are ready let cool in poaching liquid. Remove ribs from poaching liquid and return liquid to heat and bring to a boil and reduce to two cups volume. Add two cups sugar and four tea bags and let steep five minutes and squeeze out tea bags. Dip ribs into glaze and heat in oven. Brush with additional glaze until ribs are hot and sugar has caramelized. Finish under broiler and drizzle glaze over ribs when on plate. Serve glazed ribs over jicama salad.

Orange & Spice Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (125mL) hot water
  • 10 Bigelow® Orange & Spice Herbal Tea Bags
  • ¼ cup (60mL) brown sugar
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • ¼ cup (60mL) ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons (30mL) mustard

Instructions

Pour boiling water over tea bags. Let steep for 5 minutes. Remove bags, squeezing them for excess tea. Add brown sugar until dissolved. Set aside. In a skillet, add tea, ketchup, mustard and onions. Mix well and simmer until onions are soft, about 10 minutes. This sauce can be used with steak, chicken and pork. It also can be used for baking beans.

Tea Marinated Grilled Tofu

Ingredients

  • 8 – 6 inch wooden skewers
  • 1 – 14 oz. package extra firm tofu
  • Bigelow® Green Tea with Pomegranate Tea Bags
  • 3 Bigelow® Earl Grey Tea Bags
  • 2 cups hot water
  • ½ teaspoon salt, plus additional for sprinkling
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into 1 inch rounds
  • 8 Baby Bella mushrooms, cleaned (about 8 oz.)
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil (for brushing)
  • Non-stick grill spray

Instructions

Tofu is a great vegetarian, low-calorie alternative for your grill, and marinating it in tea gives it great flavor and color. A touch of honey adds sweetness and helps to create a beautiful grill marks as it caramelizes. First, set wooden skewers in water and allow to soak for approximately 30 minutes. Next, sandwich the block of tofu between two plates lined with a few layers of paper towels. Place something heavy on top plate (like a can) so tofu can drain for 10-15 minutes. In large bowl, combine hot water and tea bags and steep for 5-7 minutes. Squeeze out tea bags into bowl, remove, and add salt and honey to tea. Stir until honey is dissolved. Cut tofu into 1 inch cubes, and add to bowl. Set aside to marinate for 15 minutes. Thread 2-3 cubes of tofu and 2-3 pieces of vegetables onto each soaked skewer, being careful not to pack the skewers too tightly. Brush each skewer with canola oil and season with a pinch of salt. Spray a gas grill with non-stick grill spray and preheat to medium-high. Place skewers on grill, and cook for approximately 2-3 minutes per side, until grill marks appear and tofu begins to form a nicely colored crust. Note: be very gentle when turning skewers (use a grill spatula), as the tofu is delicate. Remove from grill and serve hot.

 

Red, White and Blueberry Grilled Chicken Salad with Black Tea Raspberry Dressing

(Pictured at top)

Ingredients

Dressing Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup brewed Bigelow English Teatime Black Tea {I brew more and then use some for the dressing and some for the marinade}
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups raspberries
  • 2 tablespoons blueberries

Marinade Ingredients:

  • 1 cup brewed Bigelow English Teatime Tea
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Salad Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 cups spinach and Arugula lettuce leaves {these are easy to find already mixed together in the pre-made salad containers}
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted in 1 teaspoon of butter
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles

Instructions

For the dressing:

Add tea, olive oil, red wine vinegar, honey, lemon juice, and kosher salt to a food processor or blender. Give it one spin to start mixing ingredients. Add raspberries and blueberries and process on high until it’s completely mixed and the fruit is pureed all the way. Refrigerate overnight.

For the marinade and chicken:

Combine remainder of brewed tea {about a cup}, olive oil, and honey in a large dish with a secure lid. Shake and mix well. Uncover and add chicken. Cover and flip container to ensure that chicken is coated in marinade. Refrigerate overnight.

To assemble salad:

Toast walnuts in butter and allow to cool. Remove chicken from marinade and discard marinade. Grill chicken until done. Allow to cool for ten minutes before thinly slicing into strips.

Lay out your salad and top with raspberries, blueberries, walnuts, blue cheese and chicken strips. Drizzle with salad dressing.

Grilled Vegetarian Mushroom Quesadillas

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup (60mL) butter
  • Bigelow I Love Lemon Herbal Tea Bags
  • ¾ cup (180mL) boiling water
  • 3 teaspoons (10mL) chili powder
  • 2 gloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound (500g) fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1 teaspoon (5mL) salt
  • 1 – 8 ounce (250g) pkg. Tempeh, crumbled
  • 2 cups (500mL) light Monterey Jack Cheese, grated
  • Canola oil
  • 12 – 6 inch (15cm) flour tortillas
  • Lemon wedges as a garnish 

Instructions

To prepare filling: Place tea bags into measuring cup and pour boiling water over bags. Let stand for 5 minutes. Remove bags and reserve tea. Melt butter in large skillet over medium high heat. Add tea, chili powder and garlic. Saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add mushrooms, onion and salt. Saute until mushrooms are brown and tender. Add the crumbled tempeh and saute 2 minutes more or until heated through. Remove from heat, cool for 10minutes. To assemble quesadillas. Preheat grill to 350 F (180 C). Lightly brush 6 tortillas on one side with oil. Place the tortillas oil-side down on large non-stick rimless baking sheet (Use a cookie sheet with sides by turning it upside down). Divide the filling mixture equally among the 6 tortillas. Top each filled tortilla with cheese. Brush tops with oil. Gently slide the quesadillas onto the grill. Grill for about 3minutes on each side, until heated through and golden brown. Remove from grill and let stand for 2 minutes before cutting into wedges. Serve with salsa, sour cream or guacamole and lemon wedges if desired.