Yuja Tea, Why You Must Sip It All Through Winter?
Image Credit: Healthy yuja tea, Freepik

If the colder months make you crave more for tea, try Yuja-cha, also known as yuja tea. This traditional Korean tea is brewed by combining hot water and yuja-cheong or yuja marmalade. Exquisite recipe, right? It is prevalent in Korea, especially during the fall season. As winter approaches, markets swell with this tea as a treatment for common colds. Yuja-cha is sometimes used to refer to the jarred yuja marmalade employed to brew the tea. The drink's name is sometimes translated as "citron tea" or "honey citron tea" in English.

According to the recipe, Yuja is cured in a sweet, thick, pulpy syrup. Caffeine is not present in Yuja-cha. Yuja tea is derived from the yuja fruit, called Yuzu outside Korea. Yuja does not have a lot of juice, but it can be cooked at high temperatures without losing its acidity. The zest and juice have a strong aroma. 

USP of Yuja Cha

As mentioned earlier, it is purely natural and caffeine free. Due to the use of Yuzu fruit, enriched in vitamin C, this tea becomes a natural immunity booster and a cure for the common cold. Yuja tea has a bittersweet flavour. Since it contains a preservative, it can be stored on a shelf or counter.

Though the health advantages have not been scientifically verified, it is reported to have more vitamin C, nearly thrice the amount than fresh lemon juice. Yuja tea contains vitamin C, which is said to help fight infections and other diseases/illnesses.

Preparing Yuja Cha, Image Source: Freepik

A genius born from catastrophe

A typhoon led to the genesis of this tea. We aren't joking. The history of this cha takes us back many centuries ago when a man was shipping yuja trees from China to Korea. But to his bad luck, his ship was stormed by a disastrous cyclone. Naturally, the trees couldn't survive the blow. However, as destiny might have wanted it, a few seeds got inside his clothes. We don't know whether it was for his good or not, but the seeds made their smart move as he travelled towards the Korean land and had their epic fall at Korea, pretty involuntarily and grew into yuja trees. It didn't take much time for the Koreans to identify the value of the leave. They started to crush them to treat the common cold. Because of the bitter taste of the leaves, they began to soak them in sugar and honey, which evolved into yuja tea. King Sejong, who was responsible for the development of the Korean Hangul script, was its most ardent supporter.

A glass of hot yuja tea, Image Source: Shutterstock


This simple tea can be made at home. The traditional recipe calls for Yuzu or yuja fruit, but one can use any citrus fruit like lemon or grapefruit. 


  • Yuja fruits (citrus fruit of your choice)
  • Organic honey 
  • Brown sugar


  • Give the fruits a thorough wash and clean and pat them dry
  • Next, thinly slice the yuja and remove the seeds
  • Mix the yuja slices, honey, and sugar in a bowl and stir them thoroughly.
  • Store this fruit mix in a clean jar and place it in a cool, dark place until the syrup is ready. It usually takes about six months.
  • When ready, dissolve 1-2 tablespoons of Yuja tea in boiling water, turn off the flame, pour into a glass or cup and drink it warm.

Yuja tea syrup is often used in cocktails, toast spreads, and ice cream.