Chinese Tea Eggs or Cha Ye Dang as some may call it, is a flavorful hard boiled egg that is favored by people all over Asia. It’s extremely flavorful and is a simple and easy snack to make. In this recipe, we’ll show you how to make this popular snack in the most traditional way possible.
Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋 is my most favorite snack to eat of all time.
It was a popular snack that my grandma would use to make for me. Whenever I were to visit Taiwan, I would always find her making them.
I ate so much that she even started calling me “Egg Boy”. Mainly because I ate like 3 to 4 of these eggs each sitting.
In fact, one of my most favorite memories I have of my Grandma is watching her in the kitchen making these flavorful eggs for the entire family to eat. She would carefully boil the eggs and ask me if I wanted to crack the eggs with her. It was one of the most fun things I have ever done when I was little.
Now that I have grown up, I don’t really eat these as often as I simply don’t have much time to make it. But when I do, I would literally make up to a hundred eggs for my entire family to eat during the week.
And in this recipe post, I want to share with you all exactly how I make these eggs.
I want you all to know just how tasty and flavorful these eggs really are, and I hope you would fall in love with them just as I have.
What Is Chinese Tea Eggs?
Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋 is simply a hard boiled egg that is then marinated for hours and hours until it produces a flavorful egg that is also extremely beautiful to see.
You can find these eggs as a popular snack being served all over Asia.
For instance, in China, tea eggs are a household treat. They are also sold in stores, restaurants, and from street vendors. It is deemed a popular street food that usually costs about 2 yuan.
Or in Taiwan, tea eggs are commonly found in many of the convenience stores. In fact, the convenience store 7-11 commonly sells an average of 40 million tea eggs each and every year.
The method to making tea eggs is pretty simple to do. Basically you just boil the egg till it is hard boiled. Then marinate it in some liquid that consists of soy sauce, 5-spice powder and other seasonings. This helps to produce a really flavorful egg.
The tea eggs are typically cracked with a spoon before it is left to marinade which helps produce a very colorful pattern on the egg once peeled.
Can You Use Any Kind Of Tea Leaves?
To be honest, yes you actually can.
In fact, I often use whatever tea leaves I can find in my pantry in order to make these from time to time.
Sometimes I use Green Tea Leaves, sometimes I use Oolong and more.
But my most preferred method as well as being the most traditional method is to use Black Tea Leaves. You’ll notice that when you use Black Tea Leaves to make these eggs, you’ll produce a flavor that is much stronger and deeper than if you were to use any other kind of tea leaves.
So if you can, I highly recommend you to use Black Tea Leaves to make these Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋.
Ingredients To Make Chinese Tea Eggs
The ingredients you’ll need to make Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋 are all very easy to find.
In fact, most of them if not all can be found at your local Asian supermarket.
The ingredients you’ll need to make Chinese Tea Eggs are as followed:
- Large Eggs – 1 Dozen
- Water – 8 Cups
- Dark Soy Sauce – 1/2 Cup
- Loose Black Tea Leaves – 1/2 Cup
- Five-Spice Powder – 2 Teaspoons
- Star Anise – 1 Piece
How To Make Chinese Tea Eggs
Making Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋 is pretty simple.
The only thing you’ll need is time as it will definitely take a few hours for it to finish making.
The process to make Chinese Tea Eggs is as followed:
Grab your eggs and place them inside a large pot and fill it with water just enough to cover the eggs.
Bring the pot of water to a boil over high heat and let it boil for about 5 minutes.
Once your eggs are finished cooking, drain the water from the pot. Let the eggs cool down so that they can be handled more easily.
Once the eggs are cool to the touch, grab a spoon and start smacking the eggs gently so that you can produce some cracks all around the egg.
After you have cracked all the eggs, place them back inside the drained pot.
Add your 8 cups of water into the pot., soy sauce, tea leaves, five-spice powder and the star anise into the pot.
Then add the soy sauce into the pot.
Then add the black tea leaves into the pot.
After that, add in your five-spice powder into the pot.
Lastly, add in your star anise into the pot.
Bring the pot to a boil, and then reduce the heat to a low simmer. Cover the pot with a lid and let it simmer for at least 2 hours or until there is a marbled staining underneath the shells.
Do note that the longer you cook it for, the deeper the color will be.
Once time is up, turn off the heat. Using a slotted spoon, take out the eggs and put them into a bowl or a dish.
How To Store/Keep For Future Use
Storing the Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋 for future eating is a relatively simple thing to do.
Basically take your eggs and put them in an air-tight container or just cover the bowl with some plastic wrap and put it in the fridge. The eggs should be able to keep well for 5 days.
I wouldn’t suggest freezing these eggs as I have never tried to freeze them before. So I do not know what would happen if you were to freeze them.
As for the leftover liquid you have left from marinating the eggs, you can simply keep it again to re-use and make more tea eggs. Just store it in the fridge for a few days or until you are ready to make more eggs.
Chinese Tea Eggs Recipe (Cha Ye Dan 茶葉蛋)
- 12 Large Eggs
- 8 Cup Water
- 1/2 Cup Dark Soy Sauce
- 1/4 Cup Black Tea Leaves
- 2 Teaspoon Five-Spice Powder
- 1 Star Anise
- Place your eggs into a large pot and fill it with water just enough to where the water is covering the eggs.Bring the water to a boil over high heat and let it boil for about 5 minutes.
- Once the eggs finish cooking, drain the water and wait till the eggs have cooled down so you can handle them.Once the eggs have cooled down, grab a spoon and use the backside of the spoon to smack the eggs lightly to create cracks all over the egg.After all the eggs have been cracked, place them back into the drained pot.
- Add in your 8 cups of water, soy sauce, tea leaves, five-spice powder, and star anise. Bring the pot to a boil and then reduce the heat to a low simmer.Cover the pot with a lid and let it simmer for about 2 hours or longer.You want it to cook until it has formed a marbled staining underneath the shells. The longer you let the eggs cook, the deeper and stronger the flavor will be.
- After time is up, turn off the heat and serve the eggs immediately.
Did you try making my Chinese Tea Eggs / Cha Ye Dan / 茶葉蛋? If so, how were they? I would love to hear all about it down in the comment section below or you can connect with my on Pinterest, Facebook or Instagram.