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Do you put milk in Earl Grey tea?


Do you put milk in Earl Grey tea?

Posted by Pumphreys Coffee ,4th Oct 2022
Do you put milk in Earl Grey tea?

Earl Grey tea is mostly enjoyed without milk due to the ingredients within it that don’t react well with the dairy addition. However, this doesn’t mean that those who like milky tea have to avoid Earl Grey.

As a team of tea lovers who understand the various, subtle notes of Earl Grey, we can show you the best way to add milk to this brew to ensure the flavours and texture of the tea is supported by the milk and not hindered by it.

How to drink Earl Grey tea with milk

When it comes to making Earl Grey tea with milk, you can’t do it in the same way that you would with a normal cup of black tea. This is because Earl Grey tea is flavoured with bergamot oil, and if you’re not careful, the oil will cause the milk to curdle. There are two possible solutions to prevent this problem from occurring:

  • Brew a weaker cup of the tea- this will mean the amount of bergamot oil in the cup is significantly reduced.
  • Steep the tea in a separate cup- pour the milk into the cup that you intend to drink out of and then slowly add the tea you have brewed from a different cup. This approach will allow the milk to heat up slowly which will prevent curdling.

Recipes for Earl Grey tea with milk

There are a number of different ways you can enjoy Earl Grey tea with milk. Below we have added some recipes for you to try out for yourself.

Earl Grey tea with milk and sugar


  • Water
  • 1 Earl Grey teabag or 1 tsp. of loose leaf Earl Grey tea
  • Milk to taste
  • Sugar to taste


  1. Heat the water- pour water into the kettle and heat until just before it starts to boil
  2. Brew the tea- in a separate cup add the tea bag or tea leaves, pour in most of the water and let the tea steep for 3-5 minutes, if using tea leaves strain the leaves out
  3. Heat the cup- add the last bit of water from your kettle into a different cup, tilt the cup so the water will warm the full interior
  4. Add the milk and tea- pour the milk into the newly warmed cup and slowly add the Earl Grey tea
  5. Sweeten to taste- add sugar if desired and stir well

London Fog


  • ¾ cup of water
  • 2 tsp. of loose leaf Earl Grey tea
  • ¾ of your chosen type of milk
  • 1 tsp. of vanilla extract


  1. Heat the water- take of the heat just before the kettle boils
  2. Brew the tea- add your loose leaf tea to a cup, then pour in the water and leave to steep for 5 minutes, strain the tea leaves
  3. Heat the milk- warm the milk on the hob or in the microwave, it should be hot but not boil
  4. Froth the milk- use either an electric whisk or add the milk to a jar and shake with the lid tightly screwed on to froth
  5. Finish the drink- add sugar and the vanilla extract to the tea and stir well before pouring the frothed milk on top of the tea

earl grey tea

What do you put in Earl Grey tea?

There is often a strong debate surrounding this topic as there are so many possibilities when it comes to enjoying Earl Grey tea. In some cases, it can be cultural traditions that influence what people put in their tea. In England for example, it’s quite common to add a splash of lemon to a cup of Earl Grey.

Final thoughts

To answer the title of this article, yes and no. You can put milk in Earl Grey tea, if you do so in the right way to avoid the milk curdling. Alternatively, this type of tea is just as delicious and flavourful without milk, so it will depend on your personal taste and preference whether you should put milk in your tea.