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How To Whisk Matcha

by Sugimoto Tea Company
Brew Guides, Tea Guides, Drinking & Eating, Tea Varieties, Matcha

Want to know how to whisk matcha? Learn how to do it and why you actually need to do it to enjoy your matcha in this post.

Guide Contents:

  • Why Whisk Matcha?
  • What You’ll Need
  • How to Prepare Matcha With a Matcha Whisk
  • How to Make matcha Without a Matcha Whisk
    • Use a Milk Frother for Hot Matcha
    • Prepare Cold Matcha Using a Bottle
  • Tips on How to Enjoy Matcha


Why Whisk Matcha?

The secret to good, frothy matcha is whisking. Whisking promotes aeration, allowing the matcha powder and water to mix with air, giving it a thick head of foam on top.

What You’ll Need

How to Prepare Matcha With a Matcha Whisk

Step 1: Heat the Water

The first step to preparing matcha is to heat the water to 185°F.

Matcha is prepared at a higher temperature than is normal for most other Japanese green teas. A large part of the reason for this is that as you’re whisking, you are adding lots of air to your tea in order to achieve that ideal thick head of foam.

The addition of air has the effect of lowering the temperature of your tea. Therefore by starting at a slightly higher temperature, after whisking, you’ll end up with the ideal temperature.

Step 2: Add Matcha to the Chawan

Using your matcha scoop, add two scoops of Ceremonial Matcha to a sieve above your tea bowl, then sift.

Since Ceremonial Matcha is an extremely fine powder, it has a tendency to clump due to static electricity and humidity, which makes whisking difficult. Sifting the matcha before preparation prevents clumps at the bottom of the bowl. 

Step 3: Add Water to the Chawan

When the matcha powder has been sifted into your bowl and your water is ready, pour enough water to fill a little under half the bowl. Don’t overfill the bowl since you risk splashing while whisking.

Step 4: Whisk

As you whisk, start from the bottom to get all the tea in the water, and gradually work your way to whisking in an M or Z shape. This incorporates more air into the tea, which is helpful in achieving a thick foam.

When it looks like you’ve achieved a good amount of foam, finish by lightly whisking the top.

How to Prepare Matcha Without a Matcha Whisk

While using a chasen is still the best method of preparing matcha, there are also alternative tools you can use if you don’t have a matcha whisk:


Use a Milk Frother for Hot Matcha

A milk frother can create a frothy brew that resembles the matcha prepared with a matcha whisk. For this method, a tall and narrow glass is recommended. Since the electric frother works in a small circle making a vortex, a tall, narrow glass will keep the water from splashing outside the glass…

Even so, a good rule of thumb is to only fill the glass halfway to avoid spraying.


Prepare Cold Matcha Using a Bottle or Cocktail Shaker

If you prefer your matcha cold, shaking it in a bottle can be an alternative to whisking it. For this method, you can use a regular water bottle, mason jar, cocktail shaker, or a Hario Cold Brew Bottle, which has the added benefit of having a built-in silicone mesh filter.

We recommend adding ice since this will help with aerating and cooling your matcha.

For those who are new to matcha, one added benefit of enjoying cold matcha is that there’s no chance of using water that’s too hot, which makes matcha taste more bitter. Lastly, cold matcha tastes great as part of a blend like Hibiscus Matcha and Lemon Matcha.

Downsides to Preparing Matcha Without Using a Matcha Whisk

One of the biggest downsides of making matcha using an alternative tool like a milk frother or a bottle is that it won’t be aerated enough. This is why matcha prepared using these tools will be thinner and less creamy than one made with a matcha whisk. Aeration also plays a huge role in the sensory experience of flavor because since it helps you experience the aroma much better.

Overall, preparing matcha without using a matcha whisk affects the flavor, texture, and appearance of your tea.

Tips on How to Enjoy Matcha

1. Choose the Right Kind of Matcha for Your Purpose

Regardless of whether you follow the right steps to brewing matcha properly, you may be less likely to enjoy your matcha if you use the wrong type.

  • As mentioned above, if you’re drinking matcha straight, it’s best to use Ceremonial Matcha since it has a smoother, more savory flavor and sweeter aroma than Culinary-Grade matcha.
  • If you’re making a matcha beverage with other ingredients mixed in, such as in lattes or smoothies, you can use Culinary-Grade matcha. Additionally, this type of matcha also lends itself well to recipes such as matcha baked goods and dishes.

2. Eat Something Before Drinking Matcha or While You’re Drinking It

Avoid drinking matcha (or tea, in general) on an empty stomach since this can lead to a stomachache. Eat something at least an hour or two before you start drinking matcha to avoid this.

You can also eat something while you’re drinking matcha. A natural pairing to matcha is wagashi, or little sweets that are traditionally eaten alongside it.

3. Experiment With Different Ways of Enjoying Matcha

Aside from the traditional way of enjoying matcha, you can also discover different ways of enjoying it.

Matcha Beverages

Matcha Desserts

Savory Dishes Made With Matcha

Check out more green tea recipes on our blog and by downloading our free Green Tea and Beyond recipe book.

Whisking matcha powder is an essential part of the preparation process. We hope this guide has helped you learn how to whisk matcha, along with other tips on how to fully enjoy your tea.

Looking for matcha and accessories for brewing it? Check out our wide range of matcha powders and matcha accessories.

READ NEXT: What Is Sakura Sencha?

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