Rooibos Tea Ultimate Guide


Rooibos Tea, also known as African Tea, is a healthy herbal tea that has recently exploded in popularity.  This is an infusion made with the needle-shaped leaves of the African shrub Aspalathus linearis.  It has been consumed in South Africa for hundreds of years.  News of Rooibos health benefits has helped this tea spread around the world.  It is also known for its mild and pleasant taste, especially when compared to other bitter herbal teas.

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Although it is primarily used as a health beverage, the rooibos plant is also used in the cosmetic industry.  There are two primary types of rooibos tea, and both are derived from the same plant, Aspalathus linearis.  Traditional Rooibos tea has a red appearance and has been consumed for hundreds of years.  Green Rooibos Tea is a younger unfermented version that has a lighter and fruitier taste.  Green rooibos tea also has a higher antioxidant content.

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Traditional Rooibos Tea

Traditionally Rooibos tea is fermented after harvesting, which results in the herbal tea’s unique color and flavor profile.  The fermentation process destroys a majority of the antioxidants and it also reduces the anti-allergic effects.  This traditional preparation is also known as Red Rooibos Tea.

Green Rooibos Tea



Many people say that the Aspalathus linearis plant resembles a broom.  It is actually a shrub-like bush with needle-shaped leaves.  It primarily grows in one area, the coastal mountains located in South Africa.  The plants produce tiny yellow flowers in the Spring.  Many tea connoisseurs prefer tea derived from plants grown at higher altitudes.


When the Dutch began to settle South Africa in the 1700’s, they began to perfect the brewing of rooibos tea as a cheaper alternative to black tea.  Black tea was extremely expensive to import.  In 1999, Green Rooibos was created.  Green Rooibos is a less oxidized herbal tea comparable to the traditional Red Rooibos.  In the early 2000’s rooibos began its expansion worldwide as powdered rooibos was invented for use in cooking.

List of Benefits & Uses

Rooibos Tea has several herbal tea benefits that have been shown to significantly impact overall health & well being in a positive way.  I have included a list of the benefits below.  I suggest reading my Detailed List of Rooibos Tea Benefits for more information.


There very few documented side effects for consuming either form of Rooibos Tea.

Rooibos contains a number of antioxidants. While usually associated with positive actions, some concern exists over whether or not antioxidant-rich supplements interfere with the actions of chemotherapy drugs. Talk to your doctor before using rooibos tea if undergoing treatment for cancer. She might suggest timing your intake of rooibos based on your treatment schedule.

There is one reported case of liver damage from consuming large amounts of rooibos tea.  This case has not been studied extensively because it is the lone report.  Rooibos tea is widely regarded as one of the safest teas to consume.

As with any of these herbal teas, speak with your healthcare professional prior to consumption.  You need to verify that the tea doesn’t interact with any of the prescriptions you are taking.  Avoid all forms of herbal tea if you are pregnant or trying to become pregnant.

Rooibos Tea Taste

Both forms of Rooibos Tea are known for their refreshing taste.  Many herbal teas have a bitter taste, but Rooibos tea is an exception.  Many people describe the taste as nutty and flavorful.  You can always add a natural sweetener if you would like to enhance the flavor.

Rooibos Loose Tea Recipe

Basic Rooibos Tea Brewing Instruction

Before we get started, procure the appropriate amount of loose herbal tea and set it to the side.  I suggest using 1 teaspoon of loose Rooibos Tea Leaves for every 1 Cup (8 oz.) of water. The following recipe makes two servings.

Ingredients (2 Servings)

  1. 2 Teaspoons of Loose Rooibos Tea (See my post for Best Rooibos Tea Brands)
  2. 2 Cups of Filtered Water
  3. Optional: Sugar or Honey to taste


  1. Place 2 Cups of Filtered Water into your pot or tea kettle and bring to a boil.
  2. Place 2 Teaspoons of Loose Rooibos Tea into your pot or tea kettle and mix with the boiling water.  Be careful not to burn yourself!
  3. Reduce heat and allow tea leaves to simmer for 3-5 minutes.  If you prefer stronger tea, steep it for closer to 5 minutes
  4. Pour the tea mixture through a strainer into your desired tea cups.
  5. Add honey or sugar (optional) and stir while allowing the tea to cool.  It usually takes around 5 minutes for tea to cool enough to be ready to consume.
  6. Enjoy, your tea is now ready to consume.  I suggest viewing my post titled Rooibos Tea Recipes.  It contains several more free recipes and goes into greater detail!

Rooibos Tea: Buy the Best

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Great Aroma; Consistent Taste!


To conclude, Rooibos appears to be safe and free of side effects. The antioxidant content in Rooibos may help protect against free radical damage that can lead to premature ageing, cancer, heart disease and stroke. Green Rooibos, the unfermented version of Rooibos tea, has a higher percentage of polyphenols than traditional fermented Rooibos and generally displays higher antioxidant potential than regular Rooibos Tea. The use of an extract manufactured from unfermented raw material is to be regarded as very important new development for the development of skin and healthcare products.

Rooibos Tea: Comments

Do you have experiences or additional information pertaining to Rooibos Tea?  Feel free to share with the community by posting your ideas in the Comments section below! is an herbal tea community that truly values transparency and disclosures. We want to be very clear about one thing. In addition to being herbal tea enthusiasts, we do participate in the Amazon Affiliate program. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

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