Refreshing Hibiscus Tea Recipe and its Health Benefits

Three glasses with hibiscus tea and mint sprig garnish. Mason jar with hibiscus flowers in the background.

 

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This hibiscus tea recipe is better than Starbucks with its refreshing yet sweet taste. Hibiscus tea has some amazing health benefits too, which is a nice bonus! Hibiscus tea can be consumed either as iced tea or hot to make it an all year round delicious herbal tea.

 

However, hibiscus tea (like all other things) also have a few side effects, so I’ll work through it all in this article. At the bottom I’ll share my kick-ass refreshing hibiscus tea recipe with a secret ingredient!

 

A round glass with hibiscus tea and ice cubes.

 

Hibiscus Tea Health Benefits

 

I’ll get more into detail in a few of the health benefits, but because there are so many, I’m giving a list of other amazing benefits as well.

 

It is high in minerals

 

Hibiscus tea is very popular all over the world and many places it’s consumed as a medicinal tea. It is naturally low in calories and is caffeine-free. According to USDA Food Database it does contain many minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous and potassium. Of course, the nutrition will also depend upon the other ingredients in the recipe.

 

Because hibiscus tea in itself is really tart, you often add sugar. This will naturally add to the carbohydrates and calories, but it’s still high in these minerals, making it a healthier drink than many others. Just keep the sugar in mind.

 

Pouring hibiscus tea into one of three glasses. Dried hibiscus in a mason jar in the background.

 

Hibiscus tea can aid weight loss

 

Hibiscus tea aids weight loss because of 4 main components in the hibiscus: organic acids, anthocyanins, polysaccharides, and flavonoids. These work together to balance your metabolism and make weight loss more manageable.

 

Hibiscus tea lowers inflammation and inflammation is said to be associated with weight gain. This is mainly because it hinders your body to process the glucose properly – which can result in weight gain and diabetes.

 

Because this herbal tea is a natural anti-depressant and can reduce stress levels, makes it also a great weight loss helper.

 

Hibiscus tea in three glasses and a mug. Flatlay.

 

Lowers cholesterol

 

Another major health benefit of this herbal tea is how it can lower your cholesterol. A study from 2009 shows that hibiscus tea consumption reduces cholesterol, triglycerides, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in patients with type II diabetes. A lot of fancy words, but it basically just means that it lowers your cholesterol which increases your heart health!

 

Prevents AND Treats High Blood Pressure

 

This is also because of the anti-inflammatory reasons I stated in the weight loss paragraph. For it to lower blood pressure you would need to drink two cups a day. In a 2008 research study, the volunteers who drank hibiscus tea had a 7.2 point drop in their systolic blood pressure, compared to a 1.3 point drop in those who drank placebo. (And am I the only one impressed by what placebo can do to your body?)

 

Pouring hibiscus tea into a glass with ice.

 

Amazing health benefits

 

  • Lowers high blood pressure
  • Aids weight loss
  • Natural antidepressant
  • May help prevent kidney stones
  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Protects the liver
  • May protect against certain cancers
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Restoring hormone balance (and also relieves menstrual cramps)
  • Improves digestion
  • The tea with the most antiviral properties (fights the flu)
  • The antioxidants relieves pain and may help to get a good night’s sleep
  • Can boost hair growth and hair color

 

I’m sure the list could go on, but you get the picture. I’m not getting into detail on every point in this list, but I’m linking to other great sources to get deep into the health benefits of hibiscus tea.

 

Big mug of hibiscus tea and a wooden spoon.

 

Hibiscus Tea Side Effects

 

By reading the health benefits you’re probably thinking you need to drink 2 liters of this amazing health drink every day. It may be super healthy, but it also has some side effects. Particularly concerning pregnant women and some types of medicine.

 

  • Lowers blood pressure: Some already have low blood pressure, and so drinking a tea that does exactly that may result in too low blood pressure.
  • Pregnant women: it is not a drink for pregnant women because they often have lower blood pressure (read above). Hibiscus may also stimulate menstruation and blood flow.
  • May interfere with some medicine: as with almost everything here in life, some medicine just doesn’t go with certain foods. In particular diabetes medicine, because hibiscus decrease blood sugar levels, the diabetes medicine may need to be adjusted (of course by a healthcare provider).

 

Two glasses with hibiscus tea and mint sprigs. Flatlay.

 

Don’t get put off by the side effects

 

It is not only a super refreshing and delicious drink, but it is really healthy too despite its side effects. If you’re not pregnant or on specific medicines, this is such a good herbal tea that happens to have amazing health benefits.

 

Where to Get the Hibiscus

 

I usually buy dried hibiscus flowers on sites such as iHerb.com (not sponsored). You can find it in most health or superfood stores. The kind of hibiscus flower you are after is called Hibiscus Sabdariffa, but it’s also usually only that you will find anyway. Other names for the flower are roselle, rosella or flor de Jamaica.

 

How to Make This Hibiscus Tea Recipe

 

About the sugar

 

To get full potential out of the health benefits, adding sugar won’t help. It will still be hibiscus with all it’s amazing health benefits, but it will also obviously contain sugar which isn’t good for your body, although it will taste terrific. Honey is a golden middle ground here. It will still be sweet and sugary, but also contains some nutrients.

 

Ingredients to make hibiscus tea.

 

I didn’t originally make this hibiscus tea as a health drink. All I wanted was a refreshing iced tea using my glorious dried hibiscus flowers. I taste tested and realized that hibiscus certainly is super tart. I’m not the hugest fan of tart and un-sweet drinks, so I added sugar. Now, the drink is amazingly delicious with just the right balance between sweet and tart.

 

The hibiscus tea recipe

 

So keeping in mind that, you add as much sugar as you see fit. It is completely optional and can be omitted altogether. And you may also use honey instead of white sugar. 2/3 cup sugar equals 1/2 cup honey. If you use honey, you can add it to the hibiscus tea after it has steeped for 20 minutes and cooled a little.

 

How to make hibiscus tea.

 

To make the hibiscus syrup, we will add 2 cups water, dried hibiscus flowers, orange juice + zest (avoiding the white rind) and sugar to a medium saucepan. Bring it up to a boil and let it simmer for 15-20 minutes. Stirring occasionally. Let it cool to room temperature before running it through a sieve. Add juice of half a lime and the remaining 4 cups of water.

 

Pouring hibiscus syrup into a sieve and mug.

 

This drink can be served both hot and cold

 

I usually drink this hibiscus tea as an iced tea, but it can also be consumed hot.

 

  • Hibiscus Iced Tea: After adding the lime juice and water, let it cool in the fridge. Or if you’re impatient, add a few ice cubes to a glass and pour yourself a glass of delicious hibiscus tea.
  • Hibiscus Hot Tea: Run it through a sieve when it’s still rather hot, add the lime juice, hot water, and enjoy right away.

 

Three glasses with hibiscus tea on a white marble table.

 

I do hope you’ll try to incorporate hibiscus into your diet and enjoy this refreshing herbal tea. It is a perfect pairing with a baked grapefruit, scrambled eggs or chocolate coconut overnight oats as a wholesome and healthy breakfast.

 

Other refreshing drinks

 

Blue cup with hot orange drink, half an orange slice and three chili slices, hand holding cup. Blue background and oranges and orange peel blurred out in the background. Wine glass, stemless with pink vodka lemonade. Backlighting.

Clear mug with pale yellow drink and lemon verbena garnish. Cookies in the background. Closeup of green smoothie on a wooden board. Lemon wedge. Mango Pineapple Smoothie

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Comment below or tag me @thegingerwithspice on Instagram. And don’t forget to Pin it for later!

 

In order to keep the blog up and running this post may contain affiliate links, it will be at no extra cost to you, please read the disclosure for more information.

Two glasses with hibiscus tea and mint sprigs. Flatlay.
Print Recipe
5 from 9 votes

Refreshing Hibiscus Tea and its Health Benefits

This hibiscus tea recipe is better than Starbucks with its refreshing yet sweet taste. And hibiscus tea has some amazing health benefits too!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Caribbean, Mexican, Other
Keyword: hibiscus tea, iced tea, tea
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 79kcal
Author: Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice

Ingredients

  • 6 cups water divided
  • 1/2 cup dried hibiscus flowers or 2 cups fresh, cleaned
  • 1/2-2/3 cup sugar or 1/3-1/2 cup honey. Can be reduced or omitted*
  • 1 orange zest + juice, not white rind
  • 1/2 lime juice

Instructions

  • Make the hibiscus syrup: add 2 cups water, dried hibiscus flowers, orange juice + zest (avoiding the white rind) and sugar to a medium saucepan. Bring it up to a boil and let it simmer for 15-20 minutes. Stirring occasionally. Let it cool to room temperature.
  • Sieve the flowers: Once cooled, pour the hibiscus syrup through a sieve. Add juice of half a lime juice. Mix with the remaining 4 cups of water.
  • Serve it cold: After adding the lime juice and more water, let it cool in the fridge. Or if you’re impatient, add a few ice cubes to a glass and pour yourself a glass of delicious hibiscus tea.
  • Serve it hot: Run it through a sieve when it’s still rather hot. Add lime juice and hot water and serve right away.

Notes

* To get full potential out of the health benefits, adding sugar won’t help. It will still be hibiscus with all it’s amazing health benefits, but it will also obviously contain sugar which isn’t good for your body, although it will taste terrific. Honey is a golden middle ground here. It will still be sweet and sugary, but also contains some nutrients. If you use honey, you can add it to the hibiscus tea after it has steeped for 20 minutes and cooled a little.
 
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 cup
Servings Per Container 6

Amount Per Serving
Calories 79 Calories from Fat 0.9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0.1g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Trans Fat g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 7mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 20.9g 7%
Dietary Fiber 0.9g 4%
Sugars 19.6g
Protein 0.3g 1%

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
 
Nutrition information is an estimate and is provided for informational purposes only. If you have any specific dietary concerns, please consult with your healthcare practitioner.
 


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