How to make Tea Eggs (茶叶蛋)?

Updated: Apr 22, 2021

Eggs with tea? What taste will they produce? Here is the authentic recipe you can easily cook at home!

Chinese tea eggs (茶叶蛋)
Chinese tea eggs (茶叶蛋)

In Yunnan, there is a rich environment for tea growth and production, and it exists as a key aspect of the local culture. Tea is not only used for drinking, but also as a key ingredient in many local dishes in Yunnan.

Puerh tea (Pu'er)

Tea leaves can be used in dishes in certain combinations. Adding properties and flavours from the tea. Even particular teas such as Pu’er can be used for cooking. As the ingredient, Pu’er tea is known for its mellow taste, which is said can help eliminate the greasy feeling of food, and pairs well with meaty dishes.

Yunnan black tea (Dianhong)

Yunnan black tea (Dianhong) is a tasty fermented tea. When applied to food, generally only the tea infusion is used. Dianhong is considered suitable for dishes with heavy flavours and can help remove fishy odours and grease, replacing them with natural flavours. Dishes that are traditionally cooked with black tea include steamed fish, roasted pork, chicken, beef, eggs, and so on.

Next, we will introduce how to make tea eggs, the famous Chinese snack, with the Yunnan style.

tea eggs made with Yunnan black tea (Dianhong)
tea eggs made with Yunnan black tea (Dianhong)

Yunnan black tea eggs recipe


6 eggs

2 Star anise

1 stick whole cinnamon

20 whole black peppercorns

2 bay leaves

15g Dianhong

5 tablespoons salt

2 tablespoons dark soy sauce

2 tablespoons sugar


1. Wash and clean the eggs in their shells and put them in a pot. Pour in cold water until the eggs are partly, but not fully covered. Bring the water to a boil over medium heat.

2. Cooking the eggs until they're just hard-boiled.

3. Drain the water and rinse the eggs with cold water or place them into ice or cold water for a few minutes.

4. When ready to handle, crack the eggs.

5. In a new large saucepan add 600ml water, add the star anise, cinnamon, peppercorns, and bay leaves.

6. Add 2 tablespoons of dark soy sauce and 2 tablespoons of white sugar.

7. Add five tablespoons of salt.

8. Bring to a boil on medium heat, turn the eggs, and then simmer for 15 minutes.

9. Flip the eggs, continue to simmer for another 15 minutes.

10. Turn off the heat, and leave it to soak for at least one hour before eating. The longer the egg soaks, the more flavour it will absorb.