ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Make Turkish Tea

Updated on May 9, 2011

Significance of Turkish Tea in Turkish Culture

Despite the worldwide reputation of Turkish coffee as the Turks' most popular leisure drink, once you arrive in Turkey, it will not take very long to find out that, in fact, Turkish tea (cay-CHAI) is the national drink of the country. It is available everywhere and is the most important social lubricant. It is brewed from tea leaves grown along the Blacks Sea coasts of Turkey. We drink it in the morning, during the day, before and after meals and offer it to our visitors, customers and friends.

Turkish tea is traditionally prepared in a double-decker teapot, called caydanlik (chai-DUN-lk). A caydanlik set consists of one small and one big teapot, smaller of which fits on top of the bigger one. The small teapot is used for strong tea and the big one for boiling water. You dilute tea with boiling water to your preferred strength.

Turkish people prefer to serve it in tulip-shaped glasses rather than ceramic cups. Make sure you hold the glass by the rim if you do not want to burn your fingertips. It is served either weak (acik, ah-CHK) or dark (demli/koyu, dem-LEE/koh-YOO). If you don't specify your preferred strength when you order tea, it will be served middle strength.

You do not have to specify if or how much sugar you want when you order your tea, contrary to Turkish coffee, because Turkish tea is not sugared while being made. We usually use sugar cubes and waiters leave a couple of them on your saucer, otherwise, there should be a bowl full of sugar cubes on your table.

I have never seen a Turkish person who puts milk in his/her tea and I can assure you that I have drank tea with thousands of them in my life. However, if you can't do without milk, you can often get it if you ask for it.

If you think you are serious Turkish tea drinker and want to go bananas, you can go to a tea house or tea garden where they serve the tea with samovar, which allows you to refill your glasses yourselves as much as you like and have your tea as weak or strong as you like.

How to Make Good Turkish tea

You may like Turkish tea so much or you may simply want to take something back from Turkey to share it with your friends at home or your colleagues at work, then I suggest you to buy some Turkish tea and one of caydanlik sets to make some for your friends and colleagues and serve it with some Turkish delight. The ones who expect fine flying silk carpets or elegant ceramic plates from you will be a bit disappointed but you will manage to make most of your friends happy with this gesture. Now you have only one more hurdle to overcome: You need to learn how to make good Turkish tea unless you have a friend to make it for you or take one of the Turkish caycis (chai-DJEH, tea-waiters who serve tea wherever you go in Turkey) back home with you. Here is how you make a good Turkish tea:

1. Fill in the large teapot with water and set it on the stove.

2. Add tea leaves in the small teapot and place it on top of the big one. Do not add any water in the small teapot. The idea is to heat up the tea leaves with the steam of the big one so it can help diffuse its flavour when brewed. It is recommended to use one teaspoon of tea leaves per person.

3. Once the water comes to boil, add the boiling water to the small teapot.

4. Turn down the stove to low and let the steam of the boiling water in the big teapot to keep the water of the small teapot hot while brewing for about 15 minutes. The tea is ready once all of the tea leaves have sunk to the bottom of the kettle.

5. You can now serve the tea. You pour the tea first and then dilute it with boiling water to your preferred strength. If you brewed it long enough it should not have any small tea leaves, but you can use a tea strainer. Mid strength tea should have light brown colour. It is also recommended to consume a pot of tea within 30 minutes as extended brewing time will make its taste too strong and bitter.

Your Turkish Tea Experience

Have you managed to make good Turkish Tea?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I have a question. The leave do not change when the water underneath is cooking. What am I doing wrong? I left it for quite some time

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      So nicely put together view and information about how to brew Turkish tea. Really enjoyed it. When I moved to the US I was craving for "tavsan kani" tea, especially while having breakfast. Feeling very lucky to find since I still couldn't get used to having American coffee for breakfast. Cheers!



    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)