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What's Up Magazine

Snack of the Week

Feb 11, 2015 04:00PM ● By Cate Reynolds
Chinese Tea Eggs

Rhea’s Rundown

Chinese tea eggs are beautiful and easy to make. They are a traditional Chinese New Year item that you’ll definitely want to give a try. I found everything I needed at Whole Foods, except for the star anise and Chinese tea. You can find star anise available for bulk purchase at the Sun and Earth Natural Foods store, and I ordered the Chinese tea online. You’ll want to have the dark soy sauce on hand if you don’t already, which is used to help darken the eggshell pattern.

Ingredients – Makes 6
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 liter water
  • 2 tea bags (such as black tea)
  • 1 ½ tablespoon Tieguanyin (or any other Chinese tea), or to taste
  • ¼ dried mandarin peel
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 star anise
  • 3 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt


1. To prepare boiled eggs: cover the eggs in a pot with water, about 2.5 centimeters/1 inch high. Turn on the stove heat to high and bring it to boil with lid on. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 minute. (Don’t use high heat because you don’t want your eggs to crack in rigorously boiling water at an early stage.) Remove from the heat with lid on. Use the residue heat to cook the egg for 10 minutes.

2. Drain out the eggs. Immediately soak in cold water until cold to touch. Gently tap the eggs shells with the back of a teaspoon and crack the shells. Use a needle to poke several times around each egg in order to help marinade penetrate inside.

3. While waiting for the boiled eggs to cool down, put the remaining ingredients and water in a pot and cook over medium-high heat.

4. Carefully place the cracked eggs in the pot and bring it to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes. Remove the tea bags. Cover and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat with lid on. Let the eggs soak in the tea mixture for about 3 hours, or until the eggs take up enough flavor. Before serving, gently reheat eggs with tea mixture.

Ho, Christine. “Chinese Tea Eggs.” 3 February 2015. Web. 27 August 2013.

Rhea Torreon
Instagram: whatsupfoodie