Can you reheat tea?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “can you reheat tea” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not you can reheat tea. Moreover, we are going to discuss tips to properly store tea and different ways to spot old tea.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

Can you reheat tea?

You can reheat tea as long as it was refrigerated properly or hasn’t been out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hours (in case of milk tea) or 8 hours (in case of tea without milk and sugar).

The difference that reheating will make is the change in the flavor and freshness of the brewed tea. Reheating the tea can result in the loss of volatile compounds present in the tea and can also result in fading of that soothing tea aroma. 

Tannins are polyphenols that contribute to the color and flavor of the tea. When we leave brewed tea in the saucepan for an extended amount of time or reheat it later, the leaves release excess tannins, making the tea bitter. It may be unappealing to those who do not enjoy strong-flavored teas. But as long as you are okay with it, you can devour a cup of reheated tea.

It is worth mentioning that tea without milk and sugar lasts for about 8 hours when allowed to sit out at room temperature. Not only the flavors of the tea will be faded to a great extent after this time but there will be chances of bacterial contamination as well. Therefore it is not recommended to reheat such tea as reheating won’t be able to kill the bacteria. 

On the other hand, milk tea lasts for about 2 hours when left out of the fridge at room temperature and you should not reheat the milk tea that has been left out for more than 2 hours as reheating won’t be able to kill the bacteria.

You should discard the milk tea that has been left out in the open for more than 2 hours as bacterial growth takes place at a faster pace between the temperature of 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, therefore there are greater chances of the tea being already contaminated with bacteria when left out for more than 2 hours.

How to reheat tea?

It is completely up to you whether you want to reheat tea in a microwave, on the stovetop, in an electric kettle, or teapot.

Health implications of consuming reheated tea

Consuming the reheated tea won’t affect your health but surely it will have lost its characteristic scent and flavor and will have a really strong bitter taste that won’t provide a good flavor for your taste buds. 

Tips to properly store tea

You can keep your tea fresh in the fridge by considering the following quick tips

  1. In case you are thinking of storing tea in the refrigerator, you should not add sugar to the brewed tea as sugar will initiate the fermentation process of the tea and will provide a good medium for the bacteria to grow. It is better if you add the sugar at the time you want to take tea.
  1. Tea loses its characteristic taste and aroma when it comes in contact with the air owing to the oxidation reaction. Therefore to seal the freshness of tea for quite a long we recommend you store it in air-tight containers.
  1. An important thing to consider is to always use an airtight container or bottle to store the tea so that it will not pick up the smell of other foods placed in your fridge as no one will ever want to consume melon scented brewed tea, right?
  1. If you want to make your tea last longer in the fridge then it is advised to store it in the fridge as soon as you brew it to preserve its flavor and aroma.

You can read how to make a chai tea latte here.

Ways to spot old tea

There are a couple of indicators that point out bad tea. You should consider the texture, smell, and taste of the tea to give a final verdict on whether or not it has gone bad.


Moreover, the color of fresh-brewed black tea is bright amber so if you notice dull and grey color hues then it means that your tea is past its prime age. 


In the case of milk tea, if the milk tea is curdled or has lumps present in it, then it is an indication of bad tea and you should get rid of it.


If you smell something foul while taking a sniff test then it is an indication that the tea has gone bad and the best thing to do is to discard it.


If the tea has passed the visual and smell test, then you can go ahead and taste it. If you notice a sour or slightly bitter taste after taking a little sip of milk tea then it is an indication that the tea has gone bad. 

Moreover, the brewed tea that has spoiled will have a dull taste and its flavor will be weak.

Other FAQs about Tea that you may be interested in.

How long does it take for tea tree oil to work on acne?

Can Green Tea Expire?

Are Green Tea Leaves Edible?


In this brief guide, we answered the question “can you reheat tea” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not you can reheat tea. Moreover, we discussed tips to properly store tea and different ways to spot old tea.


Was this helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!