What comes to mind when you think of matcha? A traditional cup of matcha green tea? Or maybe a creamy matcha latte is more your thing? Both are delicious choices. But have you ever considered the addition of matcha to your healthy matcha green tea snacks and desserts?
The rich flavor of Japanese matcha pairs brilliantly with a variety of foods with sweet notes, such as chocolate, vanilla, lemon, and ginger, making matcha a fun ingredient to add when making all kinds of matcha snacks. Matcha’s deep green color also adds a wonderful natural splash of green to desserts, puddings, frostings, and ice cream.
What is Matcha Powder?
In a nutshell, high grade matcha tea is made by grinding the best quality Japanese green tea leaves into a fine green powder.
Matcha has long been a part of the Japanese tea ceremony but has only recently gained popularity in other parts of the world. Today, it’s not uncommon to see matcha appearing in recipes like iced matcha lattes, overnight oats, chia puddings, smoothies, cheesecakes, truffles, cupcakes, and even salad dressings.
Why Add Matcha Green Tea to Snacks?
Matcha is an extremely nutritious food, full of beneficial antioxidants, L-theanine (an amino acid), vitamins, and minerals. As such, it has numerous health benefits. For example, several studies have shown that matcha may boost metabolism, combat inflammation, increase focus and attention, help you relax and relieve stress, strengthen the immune system, maintain balanced blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease1.
So my question really should be, why wouldn’t you include matcha in your snacks and desserts?
Grades of Matcha
The best quality matcha tea you can buy is ceremonial grade matcha. This is because it has been ground from the youngest tea leaves and all the stems and veins are removed to create the smoothest flavor and texture. The main purpose of ceremonial matcha is to drink. Traditionally speaking, ceremonial matcha powder is not recommended for baking, cooking, or garnishing. This is because the other ingredients in the recipe may overpower matcha’s mild and delicate flavor.
However, suppose you’re looking for a natural green food coloring. In that case, ceremonial grade matcha may be a better choice than culinary grade matcha, which is stronger and has a more bitter taste.
Quality culinary grade matcha is regarded as the best choice for baked goods, smoothies, and drinks containing dairy because it has a more powerful green tea flavor that can stand up well to other ingredients. It also maintains its vibrant green color during baking.
You will see that culinary grade matcha comes in five categories. There’s a premium grade, café grade, classic grade, ingredient grade, and kitchen grade matcha, and the traditional use for each grade is shown in the table below2.
Matcha Grades & their Uses
|Matcha Grade||Common Uses|
|Ceremonial||Matcha green tea|
|Premium||Lattes, smoothies, blended drinks|
|Café||Smoothies, lattes, coffees, blended drinks, cooking, baking|
|Classic||Smoothies, lattes, coffee, blended drinks, cooking, baking|
|Ingredient||Dairy recipes (ice cream, buttercream), sauces, desserts|
|Kitchen||Large scale food production (supermarket bakes)|
Despite the traditional purpose of matcha grades, many people still prefer to use ceremonial grade matcha for everyday use. By that, I mean ceremonial matcha is often the recommended ingredient of choice in blended drinks, and baking recipes you’ll find online. This is most likely because many suppliers pass off poor-quality matcha as culinary-grade matcha3. This just emphasizes how important it is to buy your matcha from a reputable brand.
In the end, though, the best matcha is always going to be the one you enjoy the most. So, use what you love!
38 Healthy Matcha Green Tea Snacks & Desserts
Without further ado, let’s get those taste buds tingling with 38 of the best healthy matcha green tea snacks and treats.