Whether you are intolerant to caffeine, pregnant or just believe that decaf tea is better for you, finding the best decaf tea is certainly not easy. That’s because many brands are not open about the decaffeination method used and you may unknowingly buy something which is not so good for you after all. For this reason, we decided to put together this post, sharing with you details of some of the best decaf tea brands you can find.
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Why all decaf teas are not created equal
There are two ways that tea is decaffeinated: either naturally or chemically.
Chemical decaffeination uses chemical solvents which may still remain in tea after the process, although in very small amounts and in safe limits. However, safe or not safe, why consume something extra with your tea that is not needed? Besides, the chemical residue left in the tea affects its taste so it won’t taste very pleasant and nothing like natural tea.
Natural decaffeination using CO2 or water processing is a much better way of decaffeinating the tea. CO2 decaffeination is commonly used by organic tea brands and is approved by The Soil Association. The taste of the tea won’t be negatively affected and when drinking this type of tea you can rest assured it’s totally safe and doesn’t contain any unpleasant chemicals.
It is worth noting that after the decaffeination process, the tea will still contain a little bit of caffeine. On average, decaffeinated black tea will contain anything from 2mg to 6mg of caffeine while decaf green tea will have around 2mg to 4mg.
The best decaf teas you can buy
The decaf teas listed here have been decaffeinated using only natural methods (usually CO2).
If you can, try and buy organic decaf tea to avoid pesticides and choose loose leaf tea for better quality. Buying organic is especially important if you are pregnant so that you can avoid any unnecessary toxins.
There is not so much choice out there when it comes to good quality decaf tea, but here are some of the best decaf teas located by us:
Birchall Great Rift Decaf – Best Decaf Black Tea Overall
Birchall Tea is a long-established company who became involved in the tea trade in 1872. Today, this family business is going strong with the company becoming one of the largest exporters in the world of black teas from East Africa.
The brand has won several awards for their black teas, green teas and infusions and continues to win awards every year.
Their Great Rift Decaf tea has won the Great Taste award this year and in 2017 which is why it had to be on our list of best-decaffeinated teas.To create Birchall Great Rift Decaf breakfast tea, Birchall Tea source the finest selection of estate-grown teas from across East Africa and the Great Rift Valley. All the tea leaves are carefully hand-picked before being decaffeinated. This maintains the tea’s quality and gives the tea a strong refreshing taste with a golden colour.
You can buy Great Rift Decaf tea either in the form of everyday tea bags, prism tea bags or in a loose-leaf form. In any case, you will be purchasing a premium tea grown at high altitudes which is far superior to the tea grown at low altitudes. This tea grows in cooler climates where there are less pests and plant diseases and for this reason, no pesticides are used.
People are generally very happy with the flavour and quality of this decaf tea; just check out the reviews on Amazon.
Taylors of Harrogate Decaffeinated Breakfast Tea – Best Decaf Tea Bags
Taylors of Harrogate are another tea brand with a long tradition, having been established in 1886.
All the teas they buy come from independently certified farms and co-operatives (Rainforest Alliance, UTZ, or Fairtrade) based in the Rift Valley in Kenya. They never settle for low quality and will taste test rigorously to make sure the final product is of the best quality possible.
They are a member of the Ethical Tea Partnership who work to ensure good living and working conditions for tea farmers.
Taylors of Harrogate Decaffeinated Breakfast Tea is a refreshing black tea with tea bags individually wrapped to maintain the freshness.
Taylors of Harrogate Decaffeinated Breakfast Tea is certainly one of the best tasting decaf teas based on customer reviews. See its reviews on Amazon here >
Brew Tea Co Decaffeinated Loose Leaf Tea – Best decaffeinated loose leaf tea
Loose leaf tea has always been known to be of better quality than tea bags so if you don’t mind using a tea strainer to brew a higher quality tea, then the CO2 Decaffeinated Loose Leaf Tea from Brew Tea Company could be perfect for you.
This tea comes from Ceylon and contains only rolled tea leaves and no dust whatsoever. This results in a smoother, richer brew.
The tea is decaffeinated using a CO2 method and is 100% natural. It doesn’t contain any artificial ingredients or anything else that may impair its flavour.
The packaging contains no plastic; even the inner bag and the tea is certified by Rainforest Alliance. This means that the company ensures they only work with farmers who follow sustainable farming practices and those that have safe working conditions, efficiently controlling water pollution and waste.
Choice Organic Decaffeinated Earl Grey – Best Decaf Earl Grey Tea
This decaf tea from Choice Organic Teas originates from India and is great for those who don’t like plain black teas and prefer something with flavour. The main ingredients of this blend are organic black tea and organic Italian bergamot oil.
If you are looking for the best decaf Earl Grey tea, this one should be high on your list. This is a 100% natural decaf tea that is certified organic by the USDA with the tea also being Fair Trade Certified.
To get the flavour to your desired preferences, try and brew this tea for different lengths of time to find the perfect sweet spot. Some people prefer to brew it for less time than the recommended 4-5 minutes while others like to brew it for a little bit longer. The flavour is rich and aromatic and you can enjoy this tea at any time of the day, even in the evening when you want to relax in front of the TV.
You will find 16 tea bags in a box which are unbleached and fully biodegradable.
The Tea Makers of London Decaffeinated Ceylon Black Tea
The Tea Makers of London specialize in premium loose leaf teas which are sourced from some of the best tea estates in the world.
Their Decaffeinated Ceylon Black Tea is carefully decaffeinated by expert Sri Lankan tea farmers, using a gentle, natural CO2 decaffeination process. During the process, the majority of caffeine is removed but the high-quality flavour remains.
The flavour of this grade of black tea (Broken Orange Pekoe – BOP) is mild with a hint of sweetness. The tea requires 3-5 minutes steeping time and will result in an amber colour with a malty aroma.
Some people have reported this tea to only have a mild flavour while others found it too strong and didn’t particularly like it. It’s definitely not everybody’s choice but it’s worth giving it a try and see whether you like it.
Bigelow Decaffeinated Organic Green Tea – Best Decaf Green Tea
If you are looking to buy decaf green tea, Bigelow Decaffeinated Organic Green Tea is no doubt one of the best decaf green teas you will find. It carries the USDA Organic and QAI seals which makes it much better quality than non-organic teas. This means that this tea is grown without pesticides and harmful chemicals that may adversely affect your health.
I had to contact the company to find out where this green tea comes from and they told me it’s sourced from several different gardens from the Zhijiang Province of China.
The company uses the CO2 decaffeination method and after the process, the tea still offers a delicious flavour comparable to regular green tea.
The Bigelow Tea Company has been producing the finest teas possible for more than 70 years and has a reputation for being the number one specialty tea company in the United States. They only use hand-picked green teas of superior quality that have been sourced from high elevation gardens. They keep the tea fresh by wrapping individual bags in protective packets.
Clipper Organic Decaf Everyday Tea
One of the most affordable decaf teas, this product from Clipper, has many fans and it’s all for the right reasons.
Clipper Decaf black tea is certified organic by The Soil Association and the tea bags used are non-bleached and plastic-free.Tea bags are not individually packed but nevertheless, the tea has plenty of flavours. People find this tea quite strong, you just need to make sure you brew it for just long enough.
Some people say it’s hard to tell the difference between this and normal tea. Get this tea from Amazon here >
Clipper Organic Fairtrade Decaf Green
Clipper also offer organic decaf green tea for those who prefer green rather than black tea. Just like Clipper decaf black tea, their decaf green tea is decaffeinated using the carbon dioxide method. People love its taste which comes with no bitterness.
This decaf green tea from Clipper also comes in a form of tea bags which are non-bleached, biodegradable and plastic-free. It’s one of the cheapest decaf green teas you can buy. Get it from Amazon here >
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