CSA Cooking Show: Māmaki Thai Tea

Enjoy our version of a Thai Tea that is the perfect balance of sweet, creamy, and māmaki! This is an ‘ono Hawaiian spin on a favorite Thai drink and a special combination which was inspired by our Thai-food-loving team at Mālama Kaua‘i who are also native plant lovers.

Māmaki is endemic to all of the major Hawaiian islands except Kaho‘olawe and Ni‘ihau and if wauke is unavailable is traditionally used as an alternative source for kapa (barkcloth) fiber. It is also popularly used in la‘au lapa‘au (plant medicine) and is commonly sold as a tea. The māmaki is a beautiful tall shrub or small tree with red veins on it’s leaves that are a clue to its detoxifying properties. It is a powerhouse plant that reduces high blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, combats fatigue, and promotes a healthy immune system. 

In the summer months, this tea is a great substitute for iced coffee in the morning. We mixed our tea with a local coconut milk but you can use your personal fave to achieve that yummy creaminess Thai Tea is known for. As the rainy season approaches, this drink pairs perfectly with our #1 Local Veggie Pho with Brisket recipe as it uses the same spices.

Māmaki Thai Tea


  • 4 cups Water
  • ½ cup Māmaki leaves
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • ¼ tsp. Cardamon
  • 2 Star anise
  • 4 Cloves, whole
  • 2 Tbsp. Honey
  • 1 C. Milk (we used Milky Kaua‘i brand in Coconut flavor) *You can substitute with evaporated milk, half and half, oat, coconut, or almond milk.


  1. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a pot.
  2. Add in your māmaki leaves along with the cinnamon, cardamon, star anise, cloves, and honey.
  3. Turn off the heat and let it steep for 30 minutes-1 hour. (The longer you steep, the stronger your tea.)
  4. Chill in your fridge for 15 minutes or overnight.
  5. Use a strainer to remove leaves and spices.
  6. Add ice to your glass with about 1 cup of tea mixture and pour over ¼ cup of your milk. Enjoy!

Watch how it’s made HERE on our YouTube channel.

We would LOVE to see if you try out our recipes! Snap a few pics and share it by tagging us on social media @malama_kauai or email to stormy@malamakauai.org