What Is A Dirty Chai Latte?

Chai is one of the oldest, most popular tea drinks, with roots in Ayurvedic medicine practices, per Teatulia, dating back over 5,000 years. Not only can chai have wonderful nourishing properties that are sought after as much today as they were millennia ago, but it's also a wonderfully delicious drink consisting of black tea, sugar, milk, and of course, lots of spices. The most popular chai spices are cardamom, cloves, ginger, cinnamon, black pepper, star anise, nutmeg, and vanilla, but there are even more varieties than that.

For as delicious and cozy as chai is to drink, the caffeine content tends to be pretty low. Chai tends to only have 20 to 100 milligrams of caffeine per cup, with coffee averaging out at 120 milligrams of caffeine per cup, according to Prana Chai. While this may be plenty for you, if you want a chai with a little bit more of a caffeinated kick, look no further than the dirty chai latte.

How to order a dirty chai latte

You can find a hot or cold chai latte at almost any cafe or coffee shop, from small local shops to larger chain businesses. In fact, it's rumored to have been at a coffee shop that the dirty chai was invented. According to The Cup of Life, it's believed that the drink was created accidentally in the 1990s when a barista accidentally added a shot of espresso to someone's chai latte.

Dirty chai lattes are a great way to enjoy the rich, spiced flavors of a regular chai with a swift kick of caffeine. There are 64 milligrams of caffeine on average in one shot of espresso, on top of the caffeine already present in the drink's black tea, making it a great energy-boosting drink without a strong coffee flavor (via Super Coffee). If your local cafe doesn't have it listed on the menu, simply ask them to add a shot of espresso to your chai, whether hot or iced. At Starbucks, you could either add one or two espresso shots to your chai latte, or, for a less authentic but cheaper version, you could get a caffe latte with added chai syrup, which will have the caffeine content of a double shot dirty chai, as recommended by Sweet Steep