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Best Green Tea

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Paging all my fellow tea lovers…

Best Green Tea

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know by now that green tea is pretty darn good for you…

…so good for you that some doctors consider it the healthiest thing you possibly can drink.

But why? What does it do for your body? And what kind is best for you? The possibilities can truly be overwhelming.

Which may be why tea has become the second most consumed drink in the world (source). So we’re here to set the record straight. Because, of all the varieties of tea, none are as good for you as green tea.

Use this table of contents to skip to whichever section you’re looking for:

What Is Green Tea? 

Green tea comes from the same plants as the two other most common kinds of tea (black and oolong), the difference between the three is how they’re processed.

Black and oolong tea leaves are fermented…

…Where as green tea is an unfermented tea in which the leaves are harvested and processed (lightly steamed) as soon as they’re picked so that they don’t have a chance to oxidize. This gives green tea a much fresher and lighter flavor than black tea.

It’s also the reason for green tea’s distinct taste and high concentration of antioxidants.

But if you’re new to drinking green tea, it can be hard to know where to start—there are so many different types of green tea that it’s got its own section in the tea aisle of most grocery stores.

If you ask ten different green tea lovers which is the best Japanese green tea, you’d likely get ten different answers. Some people prefer a very light, refreshing taste while others like a stronger, full-bodied flavor. Depending on where green tea is grown and how early it’s picked, it can fall anywhere in between the two.

So, the answer to the question, “Which is the best green tea for me?” depends entirely on what you’re looking for.

We’ve divided our list of the best green teas into five main categories based on their own unique traits and benefits, so you can decide which is the best fit for you.

It would be almost impossible to try every single variety of green tea there is, so I’ll tell you a little bit about each category and hopefully help you narrow down your choices as you search for your perfect green tea.

Use this comparison chart for the cliff notes:

 

Best Green Teas – Comparison Table

Image Product Name Type Flavor Price
Matcha Green Tea Powder Organic Matcha Traditional Amazon
Zhena’s Gypsy Tea, Organic, Green Tea, Coconut Chai Tea Bag Coconut Chai Amazon
Tazo Zen Green Tea Tea Bag Lemongrass and Spearmint Amazon
Mighty Leaf Green Tea, Tropical Tea Bags Sweet Tropical Amazon
Prince of Peace Organic Green Tea Tea Bags Traditional Amazon
Traditional Medicinals Organic Green Tea Ginger Tea Tea Bags Ginger Amazon
Harney & Sons Citron Green Tea Tea Bags Citron Amazon
Twinings Jasmine Green Tea Tea Bags Jasmine Amazon
The Republic Of Tea Kiwi Pear Green Tea Tea Bags Kiwi and Pear Amazon
Numi Organic Gunpowder Green Tea Gunpowder Tea Bags Traditional Amazon
Choice Organic Japanese Green Tea Tea Bags Traditional Amazon
Yogi Blueberry Slim Life Green Tea Tea Bags Blueberry and Hibiscus Amazon
Tea Forté Skin Smart Loose Tea Canister-Cherry Marzipan Loose Leaf Cherry and Marzipan Amazon
Tealyra Imperial Jasmine Dragon Pearls Green Tea Loose Leaf Loose Leaf Jasmine Amazon
Jade Citrus Mint Green Tea Loose Leaf Citrus and Mint Amazon
Organic Lychee Loose Leaf Green Tea Loose Leaf Lychee and Mango Amazon
Organic Pinhead Loose Leaf Gunpowder Green Tea Gunpowder Loose Leaf Traditional Amazon
Tiesta Tea Slenderizer, Fruity Pebbles, Strawberry Pineapple Green Tea Loose Leaf Blackberry, Papaya, Rose, Raspberry, Strawberry and Pineapple Amazon
Davidson’s Green Tea with Lemon Ginseng Loose Leaf Lemon and Ginseng Amazon
Davidson’s Green Tea, Moroccan Green with Mint Loose Leaf Mint Amazon
Tealyra Premium Genmaicha Green Tea Loose Leaf with Rice Traditional Amazon
Sweet Leaf Iced Tea, Mint and Honey Green Tea Bottled Mint and Honey Amazon
Ito En Tea Oi Ocha Green Tea, Unsweetened Bottled Traditional Amazon

Health Benefits of Green Tea

Because the leaves are immediately dried or steamed, all the “good stuff” gets locked in.

Countless research has proven that “green tea has a higher content of catechins than both oolong and fermented teas (red and black teas)”. This is because “the fermentation process during tea manufacturing reduces the levels of catechins significantly” (source).

Catechins are antioxidants also found in other foods such as cocoa, peaches, and vinegar.

These antioxidants have tons of potential health benefits including boosting the immune system, reducing the risk of osteoperosis, and increasing endurance and energy.

Green tea can also improve oral health, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, and increase your body’s natural defenses against ultraviolet rays from the sun (source).

If your foray into the world of green tea is mostly about the health benefits, matcha is the way to go. Matcha is the healthiest green tea out there.

A 2003 study found that “the concentration of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) available from drinking matcha is 137 times greater than the amount of EGCG available from China Green Tips green tea, and at least three times higher than the largest literature value for other green teas” (source).

EGCG is a catechin used in many health supplements. It “has gained significant attention among scientists and has been one of the leading plant-derived molecules studied for its potential health benefits” (source).

Although further research is needed, studies have shown that EGCG has the potential to reduce the risk of colon cancer (source), prostate cancer (source), and lung cancer (source) in humans.

And as if that wasn’t enough, you can boost the health benefits of green tea even more with a squeeze of lemon juice!

A study by Purdue University researchers found that adding citrus juice to green tea “caused a roughly four-fold boost in the recovered levels of catechins” remaining in the intestines after digestion.

The study found that other types of citrus juice also boost catechin recovery. Lemon juice is the most effective with the next most effective being orange juice, lime juice, and grapefruit juice.

And while adding just a squeeze of lemon juice helps, the effects are even greater when the juice is mixed with green tea at levels of 20 to 50 percent (source).

50 percent lemon juice would probably taste pretty terrible, but mixing green tea with 50 percent orange juice or grapefruit juice would give you the highest boost in catechins—and would be pretty tasty, too!

 

Green Tea for Weight Loss

It sounds too good to be true, but drinking green tea on a regular basis may be able to help you lose weight and burn fat.

A 2005 study conducted by the American Journal of Physiology found that green tea extract (GTE) can help boost your endurance and metabolism, so you can go harder in the gym and burn more calories while you do it…

“These results indicate that GTE are beneficial for improving endurance capacity and support the hypothesis that the stimulation of fatty acid use is a promising strategy for improving endurance capacity.” (source).

There really isn’t a best green tea brand for weight loss, but do keep in mind that those special “weight loss” or “detox” teas are not the miracle products they claim to be.

Some may (emphasis on the may) help you drop a few pounds by adding laxatives, so the effects are usually temporary (and not very pleasant).

When it comes down to it, the best green tea for weight loss is the one you’ll drink and enjoy on a regular basis.

That being said, loosing weight really boils down to a healthy diet and lifestyle, and as amazing as this research sounds/as true as we all want it to be, there isn’t a drink that will magically help you shed weight.

Healthiest Green Tea

Most health enthusiasts would agree that matcha is the healthiest green tea.

Matcha is a finely ground powder that utilizes the entire green tea leaf, so it’s got the most health benefits and the strongest flavor. It’s a little pricey, but quite potent—it only takes about a teaspoon of the powder to make a cup of tea.

It’s great on its own, but matcha also makes a fantastic latte when mixed with steamed milk, and it’s a delicious addition to smoothies and just about any baked good you can imagine.

1. Matcha Green Tea Powder Organic

by Zen Spirit

Size: 1.06 oz
Type: Matcha Green Tea (Powdered)
Notes: USDA Certified Organic, Vegan
Cost: $ on Amazon

As stated above, matcha green tea allows you to take advantage of the entire tea leaf, making it more potent in both flavor and nutrients than steeped tea leaves.

If you aren’t in the mood for a cup of tea but want to benefit from its antioxidants, add matcha to your next smoothie, cake, cookie, iced tea, even use it as a meat tenderizer!


Best Loose Leaf Green Tea

If you’re looking for the best tasting green tea, of course it’s a matter of preference, but there are some things to keep in mind. Loose leaf teas will always be fresher tasting and more flavorful when brewed.

That’s because the tea in tea bags is usually the dust and broken pieces that don’t make the cut for loose leaf tea.

Tea bags also tend to produce more bitter tea because of the tannins that are released when the leaves are broken.

Whole tea leaves are higher in the essential oils that make tea smell and taste good, and the more they’re broken up, the more of those oils evaporate. That’s why tea in tea bags has less flavor than loose leaf tea.

The constriction of tea bags also has an effect on the flavor of the tea. Tea bags don’t give the leaves as much contact with the water as loose leaf tea, so less of the flavor is extracted from bagged tea.

It takes a little more time and some extra utensils, but your taste buds will thank you for opting for loose leaf tea over tea bags.

As far as utensils go… you can use a super simple mesh tea ball, but seriously, how adorable are these Fred & Friend’s Tea Infusers?!

Unless you go to a specialty tea shop, the best loose leaf green teas are often found online. You will find much more variety and usually, the tea will be fresher because it won’t have been sitting on a grocery store shelf for weeks or months before you buy it.

2. Tea Forté Skin Smart Loose Tea Canister-Cherry Marzipan

by Tea Forté

Size: 3.5 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Cherry Marzipan
Notes: “Moderate caffeine level”, Certified Fair Trade and Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This delicious tea utilizes the combination of cherry and almond flavor, creating an awesome taste and wonderful smell.

This tea is part of Tea Forté’s skin-smart collection – a collection of teas blended to help support the detoxifying effect of plant-based polyphenol antioxidants. According to Tea Forté, these are a valuable tool in skin recovery because they fight against visible signs of aging.


 

3. Tealyra Imperial Jasmine Dragon Pearls Green Tea Loose Leaf

by Tealyra

Size: 4 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Jasmine
Notes: Gunpowder Green Tea, “Medium caffeine level”, Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This tea utilizes night blooming jasmine flowers, that are layered between two green tea leaves and rolled into small pearls. Upon infusing the pearls in warm water, they unfurl to release flavor and nutrients.

If you aren’t familiar with the flavor of jasmine, it has a delicious floral taste that’s both delicate and bold.


 

4. Jade Citrus Mint Green Tea

by Teavana

Size: 2 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Lemongrass, Lemon Verbena and Spearmint
Notes: 1-15 mg of caffeine/serving
Cost: $ on Amazon

This tea is made using chun mee green teas leaves, which are traditionally regarded as being more acidic and less sweet than other green teas leaves. However, the addition of spearmint, lemon verbena and lemongrass make this tea light and flavorful.


5. Organic Lychee Loose Leaf Green Tea

by Positively Tea LLC.

Size: 16 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Lychee and Mango
Notes: Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This tea has a unique blend of organic green tea, marigold petals and safflowers with natural lychee and mango flavoring. It’s claimed to help reduce toxins from the body, and aid in digestive health.


 

6. Tiesta Tea Slenderizer, Fruity Pebbles, Strawberry Pineapple Green Tea

by Tiesta Tea

Size: 16 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea & Oolong Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Blackberry, Papaya, Rose, Raspberry, Strawberry and Pineapple
Notes: 2008 World Tea Champion
Cost: $ on Amazon

A unique blend of fruity flavors, this tea has a rare combination that’s sure to excite!

Try this tea iced, with the addition of fresh herbs for a perfect summertime beverage.


 

7. Davidson’s Green Tea with Lemon Ginseng

by Davidson’s Tea

Size: 16 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Lemon and Ginseng
Notes: USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This unique combo of ultra healthy ingredients also happens to be a delicious tea to sip on!

Ginseng has been used around the world as one of the most popular herbal medicines (source), making it the perfect addition to your already healthy cup of green tea!


 

8. Davidson’s Green Tea, Moroccan Green with Mint

by Davidson’s Tea

Size: 16 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Mint
Notes: USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This combination of green tea and spearmint leaves is a light and refreshing way to get a cup full of antioxidants.

Enjoy it iced or warm, extra delicious with a spoonful of honey 🙂


 

9. Tealyra Premium Genmaicha Green Tea

by Tealux

Size: 3.5 oz
Type: Loose Leaf Green Tea with Rice
Added Spices/Flavor: Traditional
Notes: Organically grown
Cost: $ on Amazon

Genmaicha green tea is a traditional Japanese tea that’s often served in restaurants. It combines green tea leaves with popped rice kernels and corn, which some find tastes similar to that of popcorn!


 

Best Green Tea Bags

Don’t want to buy any special equipment to brew your tea? There are some high quality green tea bags out there too if you’re not quite ready for loose leaf.

Some of the best green tea bags are the pyramid-shaped tea bags that don’t compress the tea like traditional tea bags. They’re also more likely to have larger pieces and maybe even whole leaves in them.

As far as health benefits, you can often find the amount of EGCG in each brand of green tea online so you can compare them before you buy.

But the most important thing is to find a brand that you love the taste of so you’ll actually drink it. A smaller amount of EGCG on a regular basis is better than a huge dose every now and then.

10. Zhena’s Gypsy Tea, Organic, Green Tea, Coconut Chai

by Zhena’s Gypsy Tea

Size: 1.54 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Cinnamon, Ginger, and Coconut
Notes: Fair Trade, USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

For all my fellow chai tea lovers who want to capitalize on the healthful benefits of green tea, this tea is for you! It’s got a firey blend of coconut, cinnamon and ginger, that’ll help get your day started on the right foot.

Added benefit: the tea sachets are eco-friendly.


 

11. Tazo Zen Green Tea

by Tazo

Size: 1.5 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Lemongrass and Spearmint
Notes: 31-45 mg caffeine, Kosher, “Mild Tea”
Cost: $ on Amazon

This green tea has a mild and sweet taste, with an added mint and citrus flavors.

Tazo teas have their own caffeine ranking scale. They’ve scored this specific tea at a level 3, 31-45 mg of caffeine per serving. To put that into perspective, a typical 8 oz cup of coffee has 95 mg of caffeine (source), making this tea an awesome way to get your morning caffeine fix without overdoing it!


 

12. Mighty Leaf Green Tea, Tropical

by Mighty Leaf Tea

Size: 1.32 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Cornflowers, Marigold and Pineapple
Notes: “Lightly caffeinated”
Cost: $ on Amazon

Sweet tropical green tea, need I say more? Add a pinch of sugar and/or dairy free milk and you’ve got a one of a kind deliciously flavorful concoction!

The tropical flavor comes from a combination of green tea leaves, cornflowers, marigold petals and pineapple pieces. Delicious when poured over ice, even better partnered with a biscuits in cold weather (but hey, isn’t everything?)


 

13. Prince of Peace Organic Green Tea

by Prince Of Peace

Size: 6.35 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Traditional
Notes: USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This is the archetypal organic green tea – plain, simple, and absolutely delicious.

Each tea bag is individually wrapped, and no staple is used, which is a huge plus for my composting friends.


 

14. Traditional Medicinals Organic Green Tea Ginger Tea

by Traditional Medicinals

Size: .85 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Ginger
Notes: 15 mg of caffeine/serving, Non-GMO, Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Kosher
Cost: $ on Amazon

This ginger green tea has a pleasantly spicy, pungent taste with a hint of tannin.

The added ginger fills your cups with a few additional benefits such as aiding digestion and acts as a mild stimulate. This tea utilizes pharmacopoeial grade herbal supplements.

These tag bags are also compostable.


 

15. Harney & Sons Citron Green Tea

by Harney & Sons

Size: 1.4 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Marigold, Orange
Notes: 20-60 mg of caffeine, Kosher
Cost: $ on Amazon

A light, Chinese tea that’s great for those who are new to the green tea game. It’s infused with marigold petals and natural orange oil.

Added benefit of this tea? The tin is super cute and can be reused in a bunch of ways, such as a homemade candle!


 

16. Twinings Jasmine Green Tea

by Twinings

Size: 1.41 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Jasmine
Notes: Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP)
Cost: $ on Amazon

This tea is made from pure green tea leaves and has a unique aroma and taste due to the jasmine petals.


 

17. The Republic Of Tea Kiwi Pear Green Tea

by The Republic Of Tea

Size:  Steeps 250 cups
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Kiwi and Pear
Notes: Non-GMO, Certified Gluten Free
Cost: $ on Amazon

If you’re looking for a unique way to enjoy a cup of tea, look no further! This green tea has a fruity flavor due to the pear and kiwi fruit, making it an easy way to get used to the taste of green tea.

Not to mention the sweetness makes this tea perfect for dessert!


 

18. Choice Organic Japanese Green Tea

by Choice Organic

Size: 1.1 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Traditional
Notes: USDA Certified Organic, Fair Trade, Non-GMO, Certified Gluten Free
Cost: $ on Amazon

This tea is made from briefly steamed young tea leaves giving it a clean and savory aroma. It’s packaged in unbleached, natural fiber tea bags, and uses recycled materials for packaging.


 

19. Yogi Blueberry Slim Life Green Tea

by Yogi

Size: 1.12 oz
Type: Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Blueberry, Hibiscus, Ginseng, Orange, and Licorice
Notes: 35 mg of caffeine per serving, Kosher
Cost: $ on Amazon

Here’s another fruity tea to enjoy! This yogi tea is claimed to give energy to those on a diet, thanks to the energizing stimulants of green tea (duh) and garcinia cambogia fruit extract – if this applies to you let us know what you think!

The blueberry and hibiscus add a deliciously fruity flavor.


Gunpowder Green Tea

Probably the most labor-intensive tea on the list, gunpowder green tea consists of individual tea leaves rolled into tiny pellets that open up when steeped in water.

This very cool-looking tea allegedly gets its name from soldiers and sailors who thought it resembled the gunpowder they used in their weapons.

Originally, gunpowder tea was rolled by hand and required an enormous amount of work to make. Today, it’s usually rolled by a machine.

Gunpowder green tea has a very strong, full-bodied flavor compared to a lot of other green teas.

20. Numi Organic Gunpowder Green Tea

by Numi

Size: 1.27 oz
Type: Gunpowder Green Tea Bags
Added Spices/Flavor: Traditional
Notes: “Medium caffeine”, Fair Trade, Non-GMO, Kosher, USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This gunpowder green tea has a strong deep flavor with a medium level of caffeine.

The Numi Company is a reliable brand that uses hand picked leaves free from any dust or fannings. They’re Fair Labor Certified and use sustainable materials for packaging.


 

21. Organic Pinhead Loose Leaf Gunpowder Green Tea

by Positively Tea LLC.

Size: 16 oz
Type: Gunpowder Loose Leaf Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Traditional
Notes: Gun Powder Green Tea, USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

Here’s the perfect traditional, looseleaf, gunpowder green tea for your everyday needs!

This tea has a pale color and bitter flavor. It went through a minimum oxidation and remains unfermented. It’s considered an adaptable light tea that is good for mixing.


Best Bottled Green Tea

If you’re really just not interested in brewing your own tea, bottled green tea is a convenient way to get some antioxidants, and it’s super refreshing, too.

The best bottled green teas are going to be the ones with the fewest preservatives, artificial flavors and least amount of added sugar.

Too often, bottled teas are promoted as “healthy” when they’re really just sugar water. Look for a low sugar content and a short ingredient list for the healthiest bottled green teas.

22. Sweet Leaf Iced Tea, Mint and Honey Green Tea

by Sweet Leaf

Size: 16 fl. oz
Type: Bottled Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Mint and Honey
Notes: USDA Certified Organic
Cost: $ on Amazon

This is a delightful quick-fix for thirsty green tea enthusiasts. It’s infused with spearmint leaves and honey, and sweetened with organic cane sugar.


 

23. Ito En Tea Oi Ocha Green Tea, Unsweetened

by Ito En

Size: 16.9 fl. oz
Type: Bottled Green Tea
Added Spices/Flavor: Traditional
Notes: Certified Non-GMO
Cost: $ on Amazon

This is the perfect tea for busy people who don’t have time to brew a cup of green tea.

It’s made from whole tea leaves and is unsweetened so you wont have to worry about a surge in sugar. Sweeten, add lemon, whatever you’d like!


 

What’s Your Favorite Way to Drink Green Tea?

Do you have a favorite brand or type of green tea? I’d love to hear about it (and maybe try some new ones myself)! Leave me a note in the comments below and let’s talk green tea!

Green Tea Infographics

23 Best Green Teas | The Little Pine
23 Best Green Teas | The Little Pine

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