What is chai?

Simply put, chai is made of tea, spices, milk and sugar.

In India, where its people speak many languages, the universal word for tea is chai. Masala is an Indian word for a spice blend, usually involving spice mixtures ground into a paste or powder for use in Indian cooking. When put together, Masala chai, is a phrase used to describe an Indian tea made with spices to which sugar and milk are added. A chai latte is an American phrase that combines the Indian word chai with the Italian word for milk, latte.



How did Tipu’s Chai begin?

Our story began in 1997 when Bipin Patel first served his grandmother Kashi’s chai in his popular Missoula, Montana restaurant. The chai was in such demand that in 2007 Bipin sold the restaurant to focus his efforts on sharing his grandmother’s recipe, and Tipu’s Chai was born.



What kinds of chai do you offer?

We offer two kinds of regional Indian chai: Masala and Kashmiri.

Our Masala chai is based on our founder’s grandmother, Kashi Patel’s, recipe. Kashi was born and raised in Gujarat, a state in northwestern India. The masala blend is bold, sweet and spicy.

Our Kashmiri chai is influenced by the chai made in Kashmir, located in northern India. The Kashmiri blend is made with green tea, cardamom, ginger, soft hints of almond and a touch of saffron.



What kind of spices do you use?


Allspice*, Black Pepper*, Cardamom*, Cinnamon* (cassia type), Cloves*, Ginger*, Nutmeg*, Peppermint*. 


Almond Powder (dextrose and oil of bitter almond), Cardamom*, Ginger*, Saffron.




Does your chai have sugar in it?

Unsweetened Masala Chai, Slow Brew Masala Chai and Decaf Slow Brew Masala chai do not have added sugar. We add an appropriate amount of organic cane sugar to our other products to best match Grandmother Kashi’s recipe.



What kind of sugar do you use?

We use an organic cane sugar sourced from the Native Green Cane Project, a project with the mission to create and maintain a sustainable, integrated system for growing, harvesting and milling sugar. Click here to learn more about the Native Green Cane Project and sweeten the experience.



Does your chai contain a dairy product? Are they vegan?

All our products are vegan, and we leave it up to you to add your own milk product of choice. Our sugar is also vegan as we use a single crystallization sugar that is never bleached.



What does “delivered dry” mean?

When you open a package of Tipu’s Chai, you will see a blend of tea, ground spices, (and sometimes) sugar – no liquid. Delivering a dry blend allows us to provide ultimate freshness without preservatives, is more sustainable than shipping liquids, and offers easy storage.



What is the sediment at the bottom of my cup?

The organic spices in our chai are ground, meaning you get unfiltered flavor with real spices you can see at the bottom of every cup. What do you do with them? We’ve heard of three methods: Swirl, Settle and Savor.



Swirlers keep their chai moving. It takes a bit of finesse to make a gentle swirl to lift the spices up and set them in motion. Of course, a spoon may also be used.


Settlers love the flavor of chai but do not want to drink the spices. Settlers just relax with a cup of chai for a few moments until the spices have settled to the bottom, then sip away. When they get to the bottom of the cup, they leave that last sip of spices at the bottom.


Savorers love the strong flavor the real spices bring to chai. Some are occasional swirlers and some settlers, but what they share in common is at the bottom of the cup. When savorers see the spices have settled, they toss it back with gusto. Many tell us, “This last sip is the best part!”

Whether you are a Swirler, Settler, Savorer or a combination, the real spices are what make the chai.  You do you!



What is your shelf life?

Most of our products have a shelf life of 18 months. The Slow Brew Masala and Decaf Slow Brew Masala blends have a 24-month shelf life.  You will always find a “Best By” date on every package.



Can I make a large batch of concentrate and keep it in the refrigerator?

Yes, absolutely. Once our dry blend is mixed with water, a liquid concentrate is created. This concentrate can be kept in a refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.



Are your products organic?

Our Masala Chai, Decaf Masala Chai, Kashmiri Chai (Certified Made with Organic Ingredients by CCOF) and Slow Brew Masala, Decaf Slow Brew Masala (USDA) are all certified organic.


Are your products Kosher?

Yes, our products are Kosher certified by Chabad Lubavitch of Montana. 

Do you offer gluten-free chai?

All of our products are gluten-free. Woohoo!


Do any of your chai products contain allergens?

All are allergen free.



Do you use preservatives?

Nope, never.



How much caffeine is in chai?

Based on an 8oz serving, our products range between 90mg – 100 mg.



Do you ship to Canada?

Yes! We ship Canadian orders via the US Postal Service.



I’m a café owner – how can I get Tipu’s Chai in my café?

Great question! Simply contact us. We'd love to visit with you.



I would love for my local café to serve your chai. How could I introduce it?

We love your enthusiasm! If you would like for us to introduce ourselves to your favorite café, send us an email with their contact information and we will be in touch.



The bag in my at-home chai box is different – can you tell me more about this?

We are delighted to announce that we have switched to more sustainable corn-based bags for our at-home chai boxes! These bags are Certified Compostable by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) for commercial composting. Note that the tin ties are not compostable, so those will need to be removed before the bags can be composted. We are excited to introduce this more eco-friendly packaging option and will continue to seek ways to enhance the sustainability of our packaging.


Have you been left with questions unanswered?
Contact us at info@tipuschai.com