Tibetan butter tea

Love it or hate it, it’s getting cold out there. Love it or hate it, it’s time for a cup of Po Cha, or Tibetan Butter Tea. In the highlands of Tibet this is a staple drink, served three to four times a day to warm the bones and provide enough sustenance (caffeine, fat) to last the day and save you from horribly chapped lips. Traditionally made with yak butter, this savoury version of your afternoon brew is easily replicated with goat’s milk, even if you don’t own a churn. It’s possible to make butter tea with your regular cow’s butter and cream, but switching to whole fat goat’s milk instead will give you an earthy taste more similar to yak than cow. All you need is a very strong black tea, preferably of the smoky kind. Tibetans use tea from the Pemagul area and cook their brew down till very, very strong. Yak butter and salt are added and the mixture is churned for several minutes to reach a creamy consistency. For a homemade version the tea can be replaced with other strong, smoky black teas like Lapsang Souchong. Add butter, salt and goat’s milk and blend together. Really, try it. It’s delicious.


• 4 cups of water

• smoky black tea, like Lapsang Souchong

• 1/4 tsp salt

• 2 tbs butter (unsalted,
cow’s milk)

• 1/3 cup goat’s milk


1. Boil the water and simmer with the tea bags until very strong, for at least ten minutes.

2. Pour into the blender, add milk, butter, and salt and blend together for about
3 minutes.

3. Serve hot.