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When it comes to making a cup of tea, some people grab a tea bag or a spoon of instant powder, which tea lovers will strongly disapprove of. Since tea is meant to be enjoyed, brewing an absolutely awesome cup of tea is something that only a tea infuser will be able to do. If you’re nitpicking, you may also note that not all tea infusers are up to the task. So, how to find the best tea infuser – one that delivers an unforgettable taste?
While there are a number of tea infusers available on the market today, we made sure to hand-pick only the cream of the crop and give you honest reviews about each product.
Keep reading to find out why these four tea infusers earned “the best” spot in our list and how they can match your specific tea brewing needs.
Don’t forget to also check out our essential buying guide at the end of the article, where we share the most important tips you need to know when shopping for the best tea infuser.
The Best Tea Infuser
Best Overall: Fred & Friends MR. TEA Silicone Tea Infuser
We chose the Fred & Friends MR.TEA silicone tea infuser as our best overall pick, as the product is cute and fun, very easy to use and maintain, and steeps evenly. It’s a good choice for most people because it can definitely deliver an incredibly delicious cup of tea.
Fred & Friends is a very reputable and popular brand that creates innovative and fun tea infuser’s designs. You can choose from Mr. Tea, Manatea, sloth, whale, and so much more. It’s practically impossible to be moody or sad drinking tea when a cute sloth is hanging from your mug. Grown-ups enjoy the adorable designs, too, but kids are especially enthusiastic about them. Therefore if you have kids, this is the right tea infuser for you.
Aside from its pleasing appearance, the Fred & Friends MR. TEA infuser grips strongly to the side of a mug and always stays cool in hot water. You will never burn your fingers, nor have problems with the insider falling inside the mug.
It is important to note that the Fred & Friends MR. TEA infuser steeps evenly, so you can enjoy a consistent flavor from the first sip to the very last one.
Finally, the unit is dishwasher and microwave safe. It can’t get any more convenient than that! Once you’re done drinking your tea, simply open the infuser, throw away the used leaves, and place it in the dishwasher. That’s it.
When it comes to the concerns, we’ve noticed that sometimes leaves can get stuck inside the infuser. This can be a little annoying, as you’ll have to go out of your way to thoroughly clean the infuser.
Another disadvantage is that the product is not suitable for larger quantities of tea. It’s a single-serving type of infuser, designed to fit in one mug. People who need a larger tea infuser can check out our next recommendation – the Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA teapot.
Silly design, fair-price, and great taste are just some of the characteristics that made us choose Fred & Friends MR. TEA infuser as our best overall choice. The unit is great for everyone, small or big, and we guarantee it will make your cup of tea even more enjoyable.
Best Quality: Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA Teapot
Tea masters need something bigger and more serious than the previously discussed single-serving tea infuser, which is were the Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA Teapot truly shines. It’s a lot larger and features a bottom-dispensing mechanism, making tea drinking even more practical. The unit is a high-quality tea infuser meant to handle the needs of a tea party.
While most infusers are designed for single-serving, this teapot can hold up to 16 ounces of liquid, which is great news for people that drink a lot of tea. You also have the option to choose the 28-ounce version, which is available on the same purchase link. If your whole family are passionate tea drinkers, then this will come quite handy.
Another handy feature is its bottom-dispencing mechanism, as you only need to place it above your cup in order to fill it.
The Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA teapot is made from strong, BPA-free plastic, which makes the device completely safe.
As a great representative of its type, the teapot is spacious, which allows the leaves to fully extend and release flavor. This not only means that your tea will steep evenly, but the flavor will be richer and more delicious.
Another important consideration is that the unit is very easy to maintain. The lid and the filter come off and you can simply toss them in the dishwasher.
If you have oversized mugs with a very wide opening, you might have trouble placing the teapot above your mug. It’s designed to fit an up to 3.5″ opening in diameter, so keep this on your mind.
After a while, some customers have mentioned that the device starts to leak.
The Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA teapot is a high-quality tea infuser with a modern design for greater convenience. It’s the perfect choice for people that are passionate tea drinkers, large families, or tea part gatherings. If 16 ounces is not enough, you can even get the 28-ounce version, which will ensure you have enough tea for the whole day.
Best Spoon And Ball: OXO BREW Twisting Tea Ball
Going back to basics, we introduce the OXO BREW twisting tea ball type tea infuser. It’s the most widely known and used single-serving tea infuser, which makes most people feel comfortable. The unit is a high-quality, stainless steel version that features a unique twisting mechanism and a long handle for an even more pleasant experience.
The OXO Good Grips twisting tea ball infuser is made of strong, high-quality stainless steel, which makes the unit very durable and safe for use.
To stand out from the competition, the OXO BREW model features a twisting mechanism that is used to lock the ball. This makes the filling very easy and it leaves space for the leaves once the ball is closed – you can’t overfill it.
The product is very simple and easy to use, however, that didn’t stop the designers to think about every little detail. The OXO BREW has a very long handle that works for all types of mugs and glasses. Regardless of the height, you’ll be able to comfortably stir your tea. Plus, you have a plastic non-slip cover on top of the handle that allows for a better grip and stays cool even when more than half of the infuser is in hot water.
Just like the rest of the recommendations, the OXO model is dishwasher safe.
On the downside, we should mention that the device can only be used for a single-serving cup and the ball is small, which is typical of tea ball type tea infusers.
For people that enjoy the classics, the OXO BREW twisting tea ball tea infuser is a great pick. It looks and feels like a spoon, that releases flavor and makes delicious tea. Steeping is even, cleaning is effortless, and filling is easier than ever.
Best For Travel: Contigo 2034154 Stainless Steel Travel Mug
Contigo 2034154 is one of the highest-quality travel mugs that also features a tea infuser attachment, making it incredibly attractive for everyone that likes to enjoy a hot (or cold) cup of tea on the go.
The Contigo 2034154 is made of stainless steel, or in other words, is built to last. Plus, the strong construction makes it so much more reliable in holding the temperature of the liquid constant. In fact, this unit can hold hot liquids up to 5 hours and cold up to 12 hours.
The plastic parts are BPA-free, so you’ll know that your health won’t suffer from harmful chemicals.
The unit uses an exclusive auto seal technology, so it can prevent spills. Without troubling your mind, you can place it in a bag full of books, documents, or other precious stuff, as the unit doesn’t leak and doesn’t spill.
Best of all, it can hold up to 16 ounces, which is more than three regular teacups. You can fill it before going out and have tea for the whole day.
With these features, we’ll say that this travel mug is great on its own, but with the tea infuser attachment, it becomes the perfect tool for tea lovers.
For those who appreciate good design, the Contigo stainless steel travel mug has 24 colors for you to choose from. You can match it with your bag, backpack, or simply pick your favorite color.
Since its primary purpose is to fit the needs of travelers, the tea infuser attachment is small, which can prevent the full flavor of the tea from developing.
Additionally, the unit is quite pricey compared to our other recommendations, considering you need to pay for the infuser attachment separately from its basic price.
The Contigo stainless steel travel mug is the best solution for people that like to drink freshly brewed tea while traveling. The unit has a strong construction, with auto seal and vacuum functionalities that hold the temperature of the drink constant for many hours.
Our best overall choice is Fred & Friends MR. TEA silicone infuser, which is unique, fun, efficient, and very convenient. The unit is easy to use and clean, as it’s dishwasher and microwave-safe. We believe that it can be the perfect gift for your tea-loving friend, a way to make kids drink tea more, and a mood-booster on a hard day.
While most people go for the adorable Fred & Friends’ design, serious tea enthusiasts will want something larger and more professional, which is why we chose the Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA teapot as our highest-quality pick. This teapot features the amazing concept of dispensing tea from the bottom, by placing it above your mug. It’s large, very convenient, and still easy to maintain and clean. It’s the unit that most hard-core tea drinkers will approve of.
Another single-serving choice is the classic OXO Good Grips twisting tea ball model. The unit is an improved version of the typical ball-type tea infuser, as it features a long handle which makes it look and feel like a spoon. This tea infuser is very simple, durable, and one of the easiest products to use.
Finally, we chose the Contigo Travel Mug as our best travel mug. While there are many travel mugs available on the market today, the Contigo model stands out with its tea infuser attachment, durable construction, large space, and no-spill auto spill functionality. Whenever you’re on the road, the Contigo 2034154 won’t disappoint you.
Everything You Need To Know About Tea Infusers
Knowing a little more about tea infusers will help you figure what will work for you best. For example, do you know what are the advantages of using a tea infuser instead of regular tea bags; what are the advantages and disadvantages of different types of tea infusers; and how to prepare the perfect brew? Keep reading to find out the answers.
Why Use A Tea Infuser?
There’s nothing wrong with using tea bags for drinking tea. They’re perfectly safe and just as healthy as loose tea leaves. However, as many passionate tea lovers will tell you, the flavor is very different.
Although more convenient, tea bags are tightly packed, and the tea leaves are chopped or even minced, so they can fit in the packaging. Unfortunately, this affects the taste, as there’s no space for tea leaves to expand and release the flavor. As a result, tea from tea bags can taste bland or bitter. Using a high-quality tea infuser can change your opinion on tea, as the flavor is much more intense, making the drink more delicious.
Another reason for choosing a tea infuser are the health benefits. Like we mentioned, sometimes tea leaves need to be crushed, chopped, or smashed to fit in the tea bags, which can destroy some of the nutritional properties of certain teas. There’s a much better chance to get your daily dose of antioxidants and potent polyphenols from loose tea leaves.
Types Of Tea Infusers
Some tea experts believe that the best way to enjoy the health benefits and flavor is to brew the tea leaves in a large pot and then use a strainer to remove them before consuming. However, seeing how many options you have today, you can easily get the same tea quality from a variety of different types of tea infusers.
Tea Infuser Baskets/ Brewing Baskets
Experts and passionate tea lovers will probably opt for brewing baskets as their preferred choice. The reason for this is that brewing baskets are very spacious and they allow the leaves to flow freely in the water. Of course, there are a variety of sizes you can choose from, but baskets are not meant for making one cup of tea. This type is a great choice for families or couples who want to brew the perfect tea at home.
Tea Balls Infusers
The most popular and basic type is the tea ball infuser. This model is the opposite of the above-mentioned brewing baskets. While the baskets were designed for making large quantities of tea at once, the ball infusers are made for single-serving cups. You should only use them for one cup of tea and with a small number of tea leaves, otherwise, the small spacing won’t allow for the flavor of your tea to develop properly.
If you believe the ball type tea infuser is for you, we have the OXO Good Grips Twisting Tea Ball, as the best tea infuser in its category.
Silicone Tea Infusers
Silicone tea infusers are a variation of the ball infusers. They’re also meant for a single-serving cup of tea but differ in the material from which they’re made. While the ball infusers are made from stainless steel, the silicone tea infusers are made of silicone (BPA-free). People choose silicon tea infusers because they’re shaped artificially and in a fun way. They’re the perfect choice for you and your kids.
Our best overall recommendation, the Fred MR. TEA is a silicone type of tea infuser.
When you’re traveling, commuting to work or university, camping, or simply spending a day in the park, you’ll want a freshly brewed tea. This is the reason why people invented travel mugs with a tea infuser inside them, which can hold the liquid either hot or cold. Plus, they’re very convenient and easy to use.
For all the travelers and on-the-go tea drinkers, we recommend the Contigo stainless steel travel mug that features a tea infuser.
If you’re a fan of tea parties, then you’ll need something more serious and larger. Although brewing baskets are large, teapots take things to the next level. You can serve two to three people with a brewing basket, while you can serve up to four or five people with a teapot, depending on its size, maybe even more.
The vintage choice would be ceramic and porcelain teapots, but today you can also find teapots made of cast iron, clay, glass, and so on.
Our highest-quality pick, the Adagio Teas ingenuiTEA, is a unique and modern variation of the classic teapot.
Tips For Steeping Loose Tea Leaves Perfectly
Assuming that brewing tea means bringing water to a boil and leaving the tea leaves for 10 minutes inside is the first mistake. Typically, you’ll know that you’ve made a mistake if the flavor is a little off, or if the tea is a little bland, or bitter.
Here are some tips to help you make delicious tea:
- You need different water temperatures for different types of teas. For example, for black or dark tea, you can use almost boiling water, while for green or bright tea leaves you should leave boiled water at room temperature for five minutes before inserting the leaves. To be more precise, here are some temperature regulations, according to L’AtelierduThe:
- 75-85°C for Green Teas
- 87-95°C for Oolong Teas
- 79-90°C for White Teas
- Buy high-quality tea with whole leaves. The flavor depends on the quality of the tea leaves. If the leaves are processed in some way (chopped, crushed, minced) they’ll lose nutrients and flavor, and may even become bitter.
- Take out the leaves before drinking. If you leave the tea leaves for too long they may also make the drink too intense and bitter. Every herb is different, so research the appropriate brewing time for your favorite type of tea to get an aromatic and delicious taste.
- Sugar is not a solution for bitterness. Your tea may turn bitter for some of the above-mentioned reasons, but you shouldn’t try to fix the situation with sugar, as you’ll only make the drink less healthy. Refined sugar is the worst option. Consider changing something in your steeping process before reaching out to sweetener, or use a natural alternative like honey or agave syrup.
How To Find the Best Tea Infuser?
Tea infusers are pretty straightforward and simple, yet you still need to pay attention when trying to find the best tea infuser for your needs.
Do you need an appliance that can hold large quantities of liquid? Do you need the tea infuser to be portable? Do you need something for the road? Although tea infusers differ a lot based on their main purpose, there are still some things you need to consider, regardless of what type of unit you want to buy.
Easy to use
Tea infusers are designed for brewing loose tea leaves quickly and efficiently. Since the main reason why people use tea bags, instead of loose tea leaves, is convenience, tea infusers need to offer something similar. Complicated, hard to figure out, heavy and big tea infusers can turn a pleasant experience into an annoying one. Therefore, look for simple and easy-to-use units.
Easy to Clean
The same principle of convenience applies here, too. You’ll want a tea infuser that’s easy to clean by hand, or it’s dishwasher safe. While some stainless steel or metal tea infusers are more durable, they can also have sharp edges between the holes where tea leaves usually get stuck. To avoid the frustration of having to unstuck used tea leaves from the tea infuser, look for
appliances that are easy to clean and maintain.
Tea lovers know that making tea isn’t just placing a tea bag for 10 minutes into hot water. In fact, the temperature of the water and the steeping method can really affect the flavor of the tea, which is why you need a high-quality tea infuser that steeps tea leaves evenly. This is the reason why we made sure all of our recommendations can produce a perfect brew.
Before You Go
We hope that our reviews will help you find the best tea infuser for your specific needs. However, if you’re still undecided, you can use our essential buying guide to filter through the massive amount of products offered on the market today, and carefully select what works for your best.
Additionally, make sure to follow the links for each product to find out in-depth specifications, product descriptions, current prices, and customer reviews.
Want to see our favorite tea infusers one more time before you go? Here they are!
Amazon product information last updated on January 24, 2021. Images, prices and links from Amazon Product Advertising API.