How to Make 8 Foods Instantly Better With Tea

You probably don’t need us to tell you all the benefits of sipping tea. But what you might not realize is that adding the drink to some of your favorite recipes and foods can make them taste so, so much better.

If the only thing you’re doing with your tea is drinking it, we’re here to tell you that you’re seriously missing out. Turns out the drink is versatile. Like, really versatile. (We’re talking brine-your-chicken-in-it, mix-your-butter-with-it, turn-it-into-dessert versatile.) Check out these eight very unexpected—and very delicious—ways to up your food game by simply adding some Iced Tea.

Oatmeal + Tea = Breakfast with a Twist

Whether you’re whipping it up from scratch or going the instant oats route, replace half of the water with unsweetened black or green tea. The oats will cook up just the same, but you get the added bonus of some extra flavor.

Chicken + Tea = The Juiciest Bird

Allow the chicken or turkey to sit in a bath of sweet tea in the refrigerator for several hours to infuse moisture and flavor into the meat. Just be warned: Anyone who tastes the final product—which will have a subtly sweet and unique flavor—to immediately ask you for the recipe. We give you permission to say it was a very complicated process and involved too many ingredients to count.

Tea + Freezer = Your New Favorite Dessert

Grab your favorite flavor, pour it into a pops maker, freeze and enjoy a guilt-free, fat-free dessert.

Butter + Tea = Better Butter

Add a tbsp. of lemon tea to a stick of melted butter. Put the mixture in the fridge to harden. Serve on grilled fish or with warm bread while discussing how you’ll never go back to regular old butter again.

Meat + Tea = A Tender Steak

Use tea’s tenderizing tannins to your advantage: Add black tea to your marinade before throwing the meat in a pan or on the grill. The result: steaks that are juicy, never tough.

Tea + Freezer (Part 2) = Not-So-Basic Ice Cubes

Step 1: Pour your favorite tea into ice cube trays and let freeze.
Step 2: Throw them in a glass and add tea (bonus points for mixing flavors).
Step 3: Smugly congratulate self on never having to drink water-down-thanks-to-melty-ice-cubes drinks again.

Rice + Tea = A Stellar Side

Use green tea in place of water when cooking rice and grains. Just like with the oatmeal, the rice kernels soak up the delicate flavor perfectly.

Chocolate + Tea = Next Level Fondue

Melt pieces of bittersweet dark chocolate with a dash of black or green tea and then dip pieces of fruit into your homemade fondue.

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