Mango Boba (Bubble) Tea

Oh, delicious bubble tea. I could subsist on those sweet, chewy tapioca pearls. This is a problem because the only place that serves it on my side of town has recently decided to use old boba in their tea. Fresh boba is chewy, soft and lightly sweet. Expired boba is rock-hard and nearly unchewable. Clearly, I had to take matters into my own hands (either that or drive 30 minutes across town for good boba tea- and that's not likely when you're a weekday hermit like I am).

Had I known all the benefits of making this tea myself, I'd have been doing it all along - it's too easy! You can find the boba I used for this recipe here. Rainbow boba. Rain-boba? Anyway, isn't it pretty? I use the quick-cooking boba. It's so convenient!

The tapioca pearls don't have much flavor on their own, that's why they need to stand for a little while in simple syrup. I've been using a teaspoon of vanilla extract in the simple syrup, and this gives the boba a delicious flavor.

When you're ready to make the tea, place as much boba as you like in the bottom of a glass (this is where I think more is more, but decide for yourself). Add crushed ice on top.

Pour brewed black tea in about halfway up the glass. Here I'm using 16 ounce glasses.

Finish the glass with mango nectar and 2 tablespoons of cream.

Recently I've been adding a scoop of fruit sorbet on top when I have it in the freezer. It adds a sweet note and makes the tea even more frosty and dessert-like!

I keep a supply of bubble tea straws. They're extra wide so the boba can be sipped, but if you're not into the straws the tea may be served with spoons.

Mango Boba “Bubble” Tea
Author: Heather Baird
Yields two large servings, about 16 oz. tumbler-sized each

Make the simple syrup and brewed tea 1 day ahead of time, that way they’ll be well-chilled so there’s less waiting around for delicious bubble tea!

Simple syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

Cook the boba
10 cups water
1 cup dried boba tapioca pearls, quick cooking (5 minute type)

Make the bubble tea
Crushed ice
1 1/2 cups brewed black tea
1 1/2 cups mango nectar (I like Jumex)
1/4 cup light cream (half and half)

Make the simple syrup: Combine the water and sugar in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Heat in the microwave for 2 minutes at 100% power. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. If granules remain, heat at full power in 1 minute intervals thereafter until the sugar is melted. Add vanilla extract if using. Transfer the bowl to the refrigerator to cool. If you don’t have a microwave, the simple syrup can be made in a saucepan on the stove top.

Cook the Boba: Bring the water to a boil in a large pot over high heat. Add the boba and cook for 7 minutes, stirring gently until the pearls float to the surface of the water. Cover the pot with a lid and cook for 3 more minutes. Remove the pot from the heat source and let it stand for 5 minutes. Drain the boba with a colander, and rinse them in cool water for 20 seconds. Remove the simple syrup from the refrigerator and transfer the boba to the simple syrup. Let stand until completely cool, about 1 hour.

Make bubble tea: Put as little or as much boba as you like in the bottoms of two 16-ounce glasses. Add a handful of crushed ice to each glass. Pour tea over the crushed ice until it reaches halfway up the glass (you may have a little leftover tea – it depends on how much ice you use). Top with mango nectar and two tablespoons each light cream. Serve immediately with bubble tea straws or with spoons.

Heather’s notes:
I cook the boba slightly longer than the package directions. This keeps them softer longer.
Boba pearls are best fresh. Leftover boba should be tossed at the end of the day.
Use some of the simple syrup to sweeten the tea to taste.
Use sweetened condensed milk or a non-dairy milk such as almond or rice milk in place of the light cream.
The cream may be omitted completely, if you prefer.
Any fruit nectar may be used in place of the mango nectar.
Use your favorite tea in place of black tea. I’ve used peach rooibos and hibiscus tea – no rules!
Finish the glass with a scoop of mango sorbet -my fave!

link Mango Boba (Bubble) Tea By Published: Boba Tea and Bubble Tea Recipe


  1. I love boba tea! How fun are these rainbow tapioca pearls?! Looks great, and lots of fun :-)

  2. This is lovely, Heather! Those colors <3

  3. Ekkkk! Thanks for posting this! I've had a bag of boba in my cupboard for ages now I can make these delicious looking drinks!

    Rachel x


  4. In case I haven't mentioned it lately or enough, everything you make is just a little bit extra special. There is always an element of surprise and a new twist (like those gelatin sprinkles!!). You totally rock and you are so inspiring...and fun. ; )

  5. I have never had bubble tea..pretty!
    Wanted to tell you I tried the gelatin cutouts:)Perfect!

    1. OH, yay! I'm so glad they worked for you. Thanks for the feedback!

      xo -h

  6. Colourful tapioca! YES!!! This drink looks amazing!

  7. Cool!! I need to try that out for sure!! Thanks

  8. This looks wonderful! Have you ever tried making it ahead? I would love to keep a pitcher in the fridge to enjoy all week... Would the tapioca get mushy?

    1. Hi Sarah,

      The quick-cooking boba is meant to be enjoyed the same day it is made. There is another type of boba that takes longer to cook and can be made ahead. See the link below - it leads to a helpful article from The Kitchn:


      In my experience, the boba get hard at the center over the course of 1 day, instead of mushy. Hope this helps!


  9. What a great recipe! I love boba tea and so glad you showed us a recipe. It looks easier than I thought, I never knew there was a 5 minute boba pearl!

  10. This is perfect, i am expecting my boba shipment today or tomorrow! I have never tried them before, but saw a beautiful post and ordered it immediately. I was actully looking at colorful boba and really considering them before i read that they are colored by food colors...yak! Don't want to eat that :-) But will definately try you recipe!

  11. Bubble tea is one of those treats that I love to indulge in on a warm day. The boba are filled with so much flavor, this drink really does taste best when left to soak. In addition to mango, I find that papaya juice is also great in bubble tea.

  12. Bubble Tea is always an amazing drink experience. I love the colorful boba. WOW!

  13. Love the colored boba! It makes the drinks fun and delicious.

  14. I hope you get a chance to see my question and are able to answer it. My daughter adores mango bubble tea since she had it in Germany,can't find it here where we live. So I'm throwing her a tea party themed baby shower and thought it would make for a more fun & festive tea.
    My question is, can this be made in a large batch such as for a punch bowl and if so can you suggest how much I would need to make? Thanks for your time.

    1. Hi Lisa,

      Yes, I believe you could make this as 'boba punch'. The amount depends on the size of your punch bowl and how many guests you'll be serving. Whatever the capacity of your punch bowl, fill it 3/4 full with a 1:1 ratio of tea and juice. You could do this part a day ahead of time and refrigerate. Prepare an entire bag (2.2 lb) of boba the same day you plan to serve the punch. Mix the tea and juices in the punch bowl (add simple syrup to taste) and add as much boba to the punch bowl as it will hold without overflowing. I'd serve cream on the side in a small pitcher.

  15. Love bubble tea- It's my favourite.

  16. What a colorful boba tea drink! I absolutely love boba, I even created a website with all boba related news and drawings! I am definitely going to use your recipe next time when I make rainbow bobas!



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