Invigorating herbs and spices make this tea a whole-body treat.

Cinnamon appears in many of the recipes we love to enjoy over the holidays, and there may be good medicinal reasons for that.

Because of its warming and stimulating properties, cinnamon has long been used to boost vitality, improve circulation, and clear congestion. It is a well-respected digestive aid, particularly in cases of overeating, bloating, and sluggish digestion. It’s also one of the best herbs around for stabilizing blood sugar. So more than just a pleasing holiday spice, cinnamon can help our bodies counteract the stresses and overindulgence of the season.

A delicious tea blend that originated in India, chai has as many recipes as drinkers. Here’s one of herbalist Rosemary Gladstar’s favorite chai recipes. Use it as a warming, energizing tea in the morning, or ice it for a cool afternoon pick-me-up.

Cinnamon Spice Chai


  • 1 part chopped cinnamon bark
  • ½ part coriander seed
  • ½ part chopped gingerroot
  • ¼ part coarsely ground black peppercorns
  • ¼ part cracked cardamom seeds (put in herb mill and grind quickly)
  • ⅛ part whole cloves
  • Darjeeling tea (or your own favorite black or green tea)
  • Honey (to taste)


  1. To make the chai: Combine the cinnamon, coriander, ginger, peppercorns, cardamom, and cloves and mix well. Using 1 teaspoon of the herb mixture per cup of water, simmer the spices for 15 to 25 minutes. Remove from the heat, add an appropriate amount of Darjeeling (depending on how many servings you’ve brewed), cover, and let steep 5 minutes. Strain, then sweeten to taste with honey.
  2. To use: Drink! I love this tea with frothed milk. It rivals the best latte and offers so much more in health-giving properties.

Recipe excerpted from Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide © 2012 by Rosemary Gladstar. All rights reserved.

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Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide

by Rosemary Gladstar

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