Bubble Tea & Granola: An Unexpected, Yet Perfect Combination

By Kate Springer

Glasses of multicolored bubble tea lined up on a white table with colorful straws, ice cubes and black tapioca pearls
Bubble tea is a colorful and refreshing drink.

Why try bubble tea with granola?

It’s official: we’re getting on the bubble tea (also called boba) wagon.  Our customers range from individuals, co-ops and hotels to schools, hospitals and businesses, but a new group has emerged recently: shop owners who make and sell bubble tea. There’s been a rise in popularity not only of consuming bubble tea, but also putting granola on it as a topping.

So, why does bubble tea pair well with granola? The crunchiness of local Vermont True North Granola, alongside the sweetness of the tea and the chewiness of the pearls, makes for an unexpected, yet perfect combination. Granola is different than what most people are used to putting on their bubble tea, but it works.

What’s bubble tea?

Cup of bubble tea and cup of fruit tea
Cups of bubble tea (left) and fruit tea (right)

Before we dive into what’s caused bubble tea’s increased popularity, let’s back up. What exactly is bubble tea? It’s both a dessert and a refreshing cold beverage, the right pick-me-up for busy days.

You’ve probably seen a picture of it somewhere, likely showing a plastic cup with a colorful straw poked through holding tea accompanied by black tapioca balls. If not, bubble tea, in its most basic form, contains tea, toppings and sometimes sugar. The toppings, also called pearls, can range from the aforementioned tapioca balls, to fruit jelly, popping boba, custard, and other enticing additions, such as granola. Bubble tea can be made with or without milk (flavored or unflavored), the former of which is known as milk tea. For those who prefer fruity flavors, there’s also fruit tea, which can be made with fresh fruit or syrups and accompanied by juice-filled pearls.

Why is bubble tea so popular? What is its history?

Plastic cup of bubble tea with tapioca pearls and a plastic straw next to a cookie on a napkin at a café
Bubble tea served with a cookie in a café

Bubble tea was invented in Taiwan in the 1980s.  Two rival teahouse chains, Hanlin Tea Room in Tainan and Chun Shui Tang in Taichung, claim they first made the drink.  To this day, bubble tea remains a staple in Taiwanese market stalls and shops. In the ’90s, the drink expanded across East Asia, plus made its way to the U.S. when large groups of Taiwanese people immigrated to the country, and café and coffee shop culture boomed. After a lull in the early 2000s, it came back on the scene when bubble tea shops started selling colorful drinks to the masses.  People took to the idea of trying something new, and multi-city bubble tea chains emerged. It’s now found across the country and the world, and has become a go-to drink for many people.

Google Trends shows how interest and online searches for “bubble tea” and “boba tea” have steadily increased every year since 2004.  In addition, with more bubble tea shops opening, and restaurants featuring it on their menus, the rise of bubble tea shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

How can I try bubble tea with granola?

The easiest way to try bubble tea with granola is to go somewhere that sells bubble tea and bring a bit of your favorite granola (our snack pack-sized bags offers easy portability) to sprinkle on top. If you like the combination, suggest that they start carrying our products as a topping option to make enjoying your newfound favorite drink even easier. Or, you can try making your own bubble tea. There are plenty of recipes and tutorials online to learn how to do so.  Once you’re done, add some granola and voila!

We’re excited and honored to add bubble tea makers and sellers to the diversity of our customer base, as well as be on the cusp of the emerging trend of serving bubble tea topped with granola. Whether you’re obsessed with bubble tea, or are just becoming aware of it, we encourage you to give this refreshing drink a try. Happy bubble tea drinking!