Our Favorite Instant Teas for the Backcountry

Boil water, drop a packet in, and start your day off with a piping hot cup of tea


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If tea is your morning drink of choice on the trail, you’re familiar with the waste tea bags can produce—and packing out the soggy tea bags is never fun. Instant tea has traditionally been a poor alternative for the real thing, but recently a few companies have begun making instant flavors that rival your local shop’s. The following instant teas taste delicious and frequently make their way into our backpacks.

Cusa Tea Premium Breakfast Instant Tea ($10)

(Cusa Tea)

An instant classic (pun intended), this breakfast tea contains no sugar, additives, fillers, or preservatives, and you can’t over-steep it. Simply boil water, dump the tea granules into your mug, pour the hot water in, and watch them dissolve in three seconds. Cusa Tea also makes several other flavors, namely green, lemon black, mango green, oolong, and a particularly delicious chai.

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Tea Drops Instant Organic Rose Earl Grey Tea ($10)

(Tea Drops)

These fun-shaped morsels are made from finely ground organic tea, raw sugar, and spices that quickly dissolve in hot water. Tea Drops focuses on reducing waste—all its packaging is recyclable and the cardboard tea boxes are 100 percent biodegradable and compostable.

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Copper Cow Coffee Thai Iced Tea ($14)

(Copper Cow Coffee)

This kit contains everything you need to make five servings of caffeinated green tea with sweetened condensed milk. Simply dissolve the tea drop in two ounces of hot water, stir in one packet of milk, and then add an additional two ounces of cold water and ice and you’re set to enjoy a nice glass of Thai iced tea. 

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Jaipur Avenue Masala Chai Tea Mix ($8)


Made from dry partially skimmed milk, cane sugar, black tea extract, and a spice blend extract, this portable mix gives you a full-bodied chai tea in minutes. Simply add hot water and go on with your adventure. 

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Alpine Start Dirty Chai Instant Coffee ($9)

(Alpine Start)

This instant mix is made from coffee and tea so you can have the best of both worlds. Made from evaporated cane juice, organic soy milk powder, instant dark fine tea, spices, and arabica instant coffee, this drink will make you think you just picked up a dirty chai from your favorite neighborhood coffee shop.

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