If you’re a tea drinker, you already know that there are many varieties to choose from when you’re making yourself a cup, from soothing caffeine-free herbal blends to bracing black tea. And then there’s green tea, which is made from the same Camellia sinensis leaves and buds as black, white and oolong tea varieties, minus the oxidation process. (Green tea leaves are quickly heated after harvesting in order to prevent oxidation.) The result is an earthy, flavonoid-rich brew.
There are so many reasons to make green tea your brew of choice: For starters, a cup of green tea has less caffeine than a cup of coffee, so you can still get your much-needed morning kick without the jitters. There are also some health benefits associated with drinking green tea, including a reduced risk of heart attack or stroke. Plus, drinking green tea (or any tea, really) is a tasty and soothing way to help you increase your daily liquid intake — and staying properly hydrated is important for good health. No matter why you choose to drink green tea, there are plenty of good quality options available online. If you’re ready to swap your current cup, we’ve rounded up our top choices below.
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1. Bigelow Green Tea
Bigelow is a trusted grocery store brand, offering a wide range of teas at low prices. Bigelow’s green tea is minimally processed and harvested from high-altitude tea leaves for a pure, balanced taste. While many tea snobs prefer the experience of brewing loose-leaf tea, the bagged teas are easy to make in minutes and can be taken on-the-go with little fuss. Each tea bag is also individually wrapped to preserve freshness.
2. Harney & Sons Japanese Sencha Green Tea
Billed as a “pleasant, approachable” green tea, Harney and Sons’ Japanese Sencha Green Tea is clean-tasting and balanced, and not overly grassy. It has light accents of citrus and toast. Plus, it’s available loose, in sachets (which offer the convenience of tea bags, but use whole, not ground, tea leaves to infuse the water) or bags. For an affordable cup, we like the bags!
3. Tealyra Imperial Jasmine Dragon Pearls Loose Leaf Green Tea
If you’re ready to up your green tea game, loose-leaf tea is an easy upgrade. Tealyra’s jasmine green tea leaves have been harvested and hand-rolled into “pearls.” Once hot water is poured over the pearls in an infuser, they unfurl and infuse the water with a complex and subtle taste. The individual pearls also reduce the amount of fannings, or dust, in your cup so there’s no gritty residue.
4. Jade Leaf Matcha Green Tea Powder
A centuries-old method of drinking green tea, matcha has recently made huge waves in the U.S. Shade-grown, the tea leaves overproduce chlorophyll, giving matcha its signature bright green color and vegetal taste. Matcha was originally ground into a fine powder for transportation and is fresh for up to 18 months after purchase. It is traditionally whisked into water, but the fine powder can also be used in smoothies, lattes, baked goods and more. Jade Leaf’s matcha is imported from Japan and is held to the same exacting standards as matcha available in that country. Just keep in mind: The flavor profile of matcha is unique, and it’s a “love it or hate it” drink.