Tibetan Butter Tea: Know Why This Tea Is Different

Indians and their love for tea cannot be expressed in words. No matter what the occasion is, tea fits right. If you are a true tea lover, you must have explored some special teas. This piece is dedicated to Tibetan Po Cha popularly known as butter tea. Long before the viral bulletproof coffee captured the hearts of people, there was butter tea fulfilling the requirements of people. This caloric, salty and energizing tea is different and special. But how was this created at the first place?  

Let us tell you that Po Cha or Butter Tea is an everyday ritual in Tibet. A long time before people started putting ghee or butter in their coffee, the people in Tibet were already adding butter to their tea. As per some experts, the region was introduced to tea somewhere around the tenth century. But the Po Cha or Tibetan tea was created more as medium of survival. All the primary ingredients I.e., black tea, butter and salt were easily available in the mountainous region and thus, creation of this tea was easy.  

Even the combination of salt and butter is considered quite beneficial when it comes to better health as per Tibetan medicine. After tea was introduced to the region, people got to know about dark tea which was actually created in the travel by accident. Since milk was staple in the region, local people decided to use it in such a way so that it could be stored for a longer time. Thus, unlike other tea brewing methods, the Tibetans started making tea using butter, tea and salt. Butter tea is high in protein, fat and calories and is a great energy booster.

Also, an efficient remedy for cold, butter tea is traditionally made of yak milk. Because of the high altitude of Himalayas, the tea making here is not same as the general and this is due to the relatively low boiling water point. Usually, dark tea is used in butter tea and requires a longer time to get boiled. After the tea gets boiled, it is put into the traditional Chandong with salt and butter and churned until it attains a milky texture.  

Wanna know how to make this Tibetan Po Cha at home? Here is the recipe. 


  • 4 cups water 
  • 2 tsp black tea 
  • ¼ tsp salt 
  • 2 tbsp butter (unsalted or salted) 
  • ½ cup milk 


  • Start by boiling water in a pan. Add tea and let it steep into the water. 
  • Add salt and after a few minutes, strain the tea. Add in the milk and turn off the flame. 
  • Now, add the tea into the traditional chandong or a container with a lid. Add butter and churn or shake well.  
  • Churn, shake or blend the tea for 4 to 5 minutes. You can churn it longer if you want and serve!