Does Brewed Tea Go Bad? - Elm Tea Leaf Company
Does Brewed Tea Go Bad. Pouring tea into a teacup.

Tea has become a staple beverage in our lives. From morning coffee to afternoon tea, tea is everywhere. It has been growing in popularity, yet now come questions about whether tea goes stale. Yes, brewed tea does go bad.

The only way to tell if it has gone bad is to smell it. If it smells sour or moldy, then it probably has. Although, there are ways you can keep your tea fresh and avoid the stench of old tea.

In this article, we will be revealing when your tea goes bad and how you can avoid this from happening. 

How Do I Know When My Tea Is Going Bad?

A lot of people may drink old tea, yet as your tea gets older it begins to lose its color and flavor. However, typically it never really goes to a stage where it is harmful to drink.

The best way to know for sure if your tea has gone bad is by smelling it. If it smells like rotten eggs or mold, then it’s definitely time to throw it out.

Also, over time mold may begin to grow on the surface, this is another sign that your tea has gone off and needs to be thrown away. 

How Long Does Brewed Tea Last For?

Brewed Tea should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. You can use a glass jar or even a Tupperware container, but make sure you close the lid tightly. This keeps out smells and prevents any moisture from getting into the container. 

Your brewed tea will last around 2 to 5 days in the fridge before the flavor begins to change and become more flat. Yet, brewed tea can only last for around 8 hours before bacteria will begin to grow. 

Keep Your Tea Fresh

Does Brewed Tea Go Bad A clear Teapot with flowering tea inside.

If you want to keep your tea fresh, then you need to keep it away from heat sources such as microwaves and ovens.

You also don’t want to expose your tea to direct sunlight because this can cause the leaves to dry out. If you have brewed your tea, you should know that it will start going bad after two weeks.

After that time, your tea will begin to lose its flavor and aroma. This means that your tea will no longer taste as good as it did before. You may also notice that your tea has lost some of its color. This could mean that your tea is starting to oxidize.

Oxidation occurs when oxygen interacts with tea leaves and causes them to turn brown. If you have brewed too much tea at once, that could cause your tea to go bad faster than normal.

Another reason why your tea may go bad quicker is that you stored it incorrectly. You should store your tea in an airtight container with a lid on top. This helps prevent moisture from getting into the container and causing your tea to go bad. 

Hot water will make your tea warm-up which causes it to expand and release more oxygen. That means your tea will start going bad sooner. You should also try to drink your tea within 2-3 weeks after brewing. If you wait longer than that, you run the risk of having bacteria grow in.

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Making Your Brewed Tea Last Longer

Does Brewed Tea Go Bad. A lady looking into her refrigerator.

Your brewed tea could last up to two weeks as long as you keep it in the fridge. However, you may wonder how that is possible, thus we have together a few tips.

These tips will help your brewed tea last much longer and make it to those two weeks. After you have brewed your tea, don’t add any sugar. You should only add sugar when you plan to drink the tea.

This is because the sugar will encourage bacteria to grow, thus the less sugar in the tea, the less opportunity you are giving the bacteria to grow.

Alongside that, use good quality tea leaves, as good quality leaves will produce a better quality tea. Also, the better tea leaves will hold onto their flavor and color for much longer as well. 

If you plan to brew a large amount of tea to store and drink over time, then you should brew a very strong pot of tea. This way the flavor changes won’t be as noticeable as you’ll already start with a very strong pot of tea.

If you want iced tea, then you will be adding ice cubes, yet ice cubes will also dilute the flavor. As we have mentioned above, store your brewed tea in an airtight container.

This will reduce the amount of oxygen the brewed tea receives and then reduces the chances of bacteria growing. The less exposure your brewed tea has to oxygen, the longer it will last. Your brewed tea could be stored in a tight jar or bottle.

Don’t let it get exposed to air because this will cause oxidation, which will make your tea turn bitter.

Final Thoughts

You may think it is a good idea to brew a large batch of tea, but really brewed tea can go bad really quickly. If left at room temperature, your brewed tea could start to go bad within 8 hours, yet in the fridge, it may last a week. 

There are ways to increase the lifespan of your brewed tea, yet the longer you leave your brewed tea, the flavor, and strength of the tea will weaken and won’t taste as good as it did fresh.

While there are ways to prolong life, it is better to make fresh tea when you want it. That way you reduce the risk of bacteria forming which could make you ill.

Hopefully, you have found this article useful and will be able to tell when your brewed tea next goes bad.