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Understand the difference between an infusion and a decoction.

Updated: Mar 17, 2022

The average tea drinker is used to the process of making tea with a tea bag. This is the same basic process that herbalists call an infusion. An infusion is typically done with a tea that is made up of flowers, leaves or fruit. For a medicinal infusion, pour hot water over the tea, cover it and allow it to steep for at least 10-15 minutes.

The tea that the average tea drinker is not as familiar with is a decoction. A decoction is done with a tea that is made up of nuts, bark, or roots. It’s not as easy to get taste or benefit out of these tougher materials. For that reason a medicinal decoction is typically covered with cold water in a covered pot and brought to a simmer on the stove. After at least 10-15 minutes the decoction is strained and is ready to drink.

The truth is that even with a good quality tea, unless you are making it properly you won’t get the best cup possible. Follow these tips to be sure to get your money’s worth!

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