Hojicha 101

A Guide to Japanese Hojicha Green Tea

What is Japanese Hojicha Tea?

Some people may think that hojicha, with its rich caramel color and brown leaves, isn’t green tea. But, this roasted Japanese green tea is still a green tea despite its appearance.

Hojicha in Japanese (焙じ茶) literally means “roasted tea,” so any number of base tea leaves can be used. Typically, hojicha is made from bancha, kukicha, or a combination of both.

Hojicha made from kukicha is fragrant with a toasty flavor. On the other hand, hojicha made entirely from bancha tends to be more astringent and bitter, unless earlier-harvest leaves are used, which are sweeter.


How is Hojicha Produced?

Like all Japanese green teas, hojicha is first steamed to stop oxidation. What gives hojicha its uniqueness, the earthy brown color and toasty aromas, is the high temperature it undergoes during the final roasting process.

Aside from appearance, the roasting process that hojicha goes through also affects its nutrient content and flavor. During roasting, the tannins, flavonoids, and caffeine in the leaves are broken down. This makes hojicha milder-tasting then other Japanese green teas and also lowers its caffeine content.

The roasting process breaks down compounds like caffeine and catechins, but it can’t do so for fiber. This is why hojicha (or any roasted tea contains a lot of fiber.) You can make the most of this benefit by consuming any floating bits when you make your hojicha tea.


Sugimoto Tea Company Hojicha Teas

  • Hojicha -- Our version of Hojicha uses Kukicha rather than the commonly-used Bancha. Since it’s made from roasted stems, our hojicha has a natural sweetness that drinkers of all ages will love.
  • Organic Hojicha -- Our organic hojicha tea certified according to USDA standards
  • ENRICH Series Hojicha -- Premium Hojicha, made from roasted tea stems, which give it a natural sweetness and an attractive caramel hue. Packaged in a resealable foil pouch, hojicha can be freshly sipped any time of day by fans of this comforting brew.

How to Brew Hojicha

Want to enjoy a cup of Sugimoto Hojicha tea? Here’s a brewing guide for each of our Hojicha teas:

Tea Type

Amount of Tea

Amount of Water

Water Temperature

Steeping Time

Hojicha

1 Tbsp. (3g)

12 oz.

200° F or higher

1-2 min.

Organic Hojicha

1 Tbsp. (3g)

12 oz.

200° F or higher

2-3 min.

ENRICH Series Hojicha

1 Tbsp. (3g)

12 oz.

200° F or higher

1-2 min.

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