Boba flavors are getting more creative by the day. It can be pretty overwhelming looking at the menu in your local boba shop. However, there are so many boba tea flavors and so many possible topping combinations that you can enjoy this moreish drink.
Wave goodbye to artisanal coffee, hot chocolate, smoothies, and get ready to explore the ever-growing world of boba tea flavors.
Find out everything you need to know about how to order bubble tea and choose the boba flavors. Below are the seven most requested boba flavors and 90 other popular choices.
Check out this extensive list of bubble tea flavors and toppings to try. In addition, you'll learn how to read a bubble tea menu and how to customize your drink.
Types of Bubble Tea
This moreish drink is made of two components; tapioca pearls and a base drink. Typically, milk tea forms the base flavor of bubble tea. However, you can use a variety of ingredients to make the base.
These drinks include pure loose leaf blend, coffee, fruits, or other creative ingredients such as rose, taro, and coconut water.
There are six types of bubble tea. Namely, Milk Tea, Black Tea, Fresh Fruit Tea, Smoothies or Milkshakes, Fresh Milk and Salted Cream.
Milk tea refers to a combination of brewed tea with milk.
This broadly refers to brewed tea blends without milk. Also, within this category, you can find fresh tea. This refers to freshly brewed loose teas.
This is a fruit-based drink without any caffeine or milk. Instead, seasonal fruits or concentrates are used to make this drink.
Dairy-based or fruit-based blends.
Usually, this refers to fresh milk rather than creamer in the drink. In addition, this is typically caffeine-free.
Also, this drink is sometimes known as milk foam or cream crown. This sweet and savory foam top is made from cream cheese, sea salt, or Himalayan salt.
Now we'll dive into more boba flavors and the list is endless. You will often find that most specialist stores will offer bubble tea flavors that are unique to them.
For example, Bubbleology in the UK makes signature drinks inspired by cocktails such as pina colada and Bailey's cream. Meanwhile, The Whale Tea makes its own signature blue crystal drinks.
Here is a list of over 90 boba flavors that we found across popular franchises.
- Brown Sugar
- Earl Grey
- Hong Kong Milk Tea
- Jasmine Green
- Milk Coffee
- Oat Milk
- Roasted Oolong
- Thai Milk Tea
- Vanilla Chai
- White Almond
- Lychee Black
- Rose Tea
- Lychee Lime
- Mango Lime
- Lychee Green
- Green Tea Yakult
- Pineapple Coconut Water
- Grapefruit Tea
- Honey Aloe
- Passion Fruit
- Lychee Coconut Water
- Passion Fruit & Cucumber
- Pomegranate & Lychee
- Pure Coconut Water
- Strawberry & Mint Fizz
- White Peach
- Winter Melon
- Winter Melon Lemon
- Mango Yakult
- Grapefruit Yakult
- Lemon Yakult
- Caramel Frappe
- Red Bean Milkshake
- Strawberries & Cream
- Strawberry Milkshake
- Banoffee Pie
- Chocolate Smoothie
- Creme Brulee
- Chocolate Milk
- Oreo Crush
- Matcha Avocado
- Taro Milkshake
- Earl Grey
Bubble Tea Toppings
The most popular and well-known topping is tapioca pearls. These tiny black spheres are sometimes referred to as pearls or boba. Tapioca balls are made from tapioca starch extracted from the root of the cassava plant. Furthermore, it has a chewy texture and is the reason behind the popularity of bubble tea.
However, there are many more toppings that you can try. Here's the full list of bubble tea toppings.
- Tapioca pearls
- White tapioca pearls
- Brown sugar tapioca pearls
- Golden tapioca pearls
- Lychee tapioca pearls
- Green tea tapioca pearls
- Taro tapioca pearls
- Honey boba
- Custard pudding (egg pudding)
- Taro balls
- Sweet potato balls
- Red bean (adzuki beans)
- Mung bean
- Agar Agar pearls (Crystal boba)
- Popping Boba
- Mango Popping boba
- Strawberry Popping boba
- Green Tea Popping boba
- Honey Melon Popping boba
- Pomegranate Popping boba
- Blueberry Popping boba
- Kiwi Popping boba
- Fresh fruit
- Ice cream
- Chia Seeds
- Crushed Oreos
- Whipped Cream
- Salted Cream
- Rose petal
- Gold leaf (We’re not kidding!)
The list will only grow with vendors coming up with more creative toppings. In fact, we've already come up with ways to make rose-infused boba and blue tapioca pearls!
Top 7 Boba Tea Flavors
Bubble tea originated in Taiwan, but the drink grew more and more popular internationally. Now, the Taiwanese beverage has a cult following across the globe.
The demand for this drink across the globe has increased, especially in the United States. The global bubble tea market is estimated to reach $4.3 billion by 2027, growing a CAGR of 7.8% from 2020 to 2027. In addition, the market players introduce new boba flavors almost every day to maintain their foothold.
Other than the base, the taste of the beverage snack can also come from the flavoring in the form of powder, syrup, fruit juice, or puree. Also, you can add additional sugar or honey to increase the drink's sweetness.
Here are the top 7 most ordered flavors.
Classic Milk Boba Tea
This is where the legacy of bubble tea begins. Firstly, the classic milk drink is made with black tea, sugar, milk powder. Then, the essential tapioca pearls are added.
The creamy and rich flavor of this combination makes this drink the most popular bubble tea flavor among fans.
This is a perfect starter drink if you are starting to explore different boba tea flavors. Apart from this, if you have a sweet tooth, you can also add brown sugar and pamper your taste buds.
Brown Sugar Bubble Tea
This beverage is quickly taking over classic milk as a popular flavor to order. The drink is made with brown sugar, fresh milk, and tapioca balls. Finally, the cup is usually rimmed with brown sugar syrup to make a pattern. This is why the drink is also known as tiger milk tea or dirty milk tea.
Mango Boba tea
Summer is incomplete without mango and no wonder boba tea-lover added the fruit into the recipe. Mango is best to drink in slushie form and you can make a boba slush or smoothie.
When it's a hot summer day, you can enjoy your drink and drift away to your favorite beach location in a fraction of a second.
Thai Boba tea
Thai food has already gathered its audience across the globe and now has made its way to bubble tea. It has a unique sweet taste which comes from a mix of Ceylon and sweetened condensed milk.
Most local boba shop owners will add food coloring for intense brightness. This Thai boba tea is an iced drink that brings the streets of Thailand into your mouth. It is no wonder why it is one of the most popular bubble tea flavors.
One of the most popular boba tea flavors during summer is honeydew. This melon drink is a perfectly refreshing drink to cope with the summer heat. What's more, it is perfect to gain a few extra nutrients into the body. Some cafes include added sugar. But if you are diet conscious, you can ask for honeydew boba without it.
Taro bubble tea
The purple color of the taro boba tea is what makes it more popular and a favorite among fans. Made from the Asian sweet root called Taro, this purple drink offers an earthy, nutty, and vanilla boba flavor.
Chocolate Boba Tea
We chocolate-lovers like to mix it with almost every dish we could find on earth and bubble tea is not an exception. If you are a fan of liquid brownies, you must give this chocolate beverage snack a try. It gives a creamy, silky feel that makes it perfect as an after-dinner dessert.
How To Order Bubble Tea?
Most shops will require you to pick your base boba flavor or drink first. Secondly, they will ask if you would like any customizations to the ice and sugar levels.
Ice level will refer to how much ice you want in your drink. Your choices are typically no ice, regular, more ice. Meanwhile, sugar level refers to how sweet you would like your drink. Again, your choices are typically no sugar, less sugar, regular, more sugar.
Typically a non-dairy creamer is used in different bubble tea flavors as the type of milk. If you have a preference for the kind of milk used in your drink, specify when you are ordering.
Most shops will have fresh milk, sweetened condensed milk, coconut milk, and soy milk available. As plant-based milk is becoming more mainstream, you will also find oat milk and almond milk in some stores.
Once you have picked your base bubble tea flavor, customized the sugar and ice level, it is time to move on to choosing your toppings. Most people will add 1-3 additional toppings but there is often no limit.
Just remember that bubble tea shops charge an extra price for each additional bubble tea topping. So the more toppings that fill the cup, the less of the drink there will be too.
Calories and Daily Consumption
To keep it short, a classic boba drink has at least 400 calories, with around 50% of the calories coming from the tapioca pearls, which are irreplaceable. But, of course, if you add more toppings, sugar, and full-fat milk, the total calorie count will be significantly more. Therefore, sadly, boba tea is not an everyday drink. But we food-lovers can indulge them now and then.
If you're interested in finding out more about the specific calories in your favorite boba drink, we wrote a detailed article about bubble tea calories. But, some things are better left unknown. You've been warned.
If you've not tried this drink yet, watch this video by Buzzfeed.
Let us know if we've missed out on any boba flavors you love!