What Does Crystal Boba Taste Like?

Crystal Boba

Crystal boba tastes mildly citrusy thanks to the tropical Asian Konjac plant. Also called agar boba, it is an increasingly popular and natural additive in fruit and bubble teas. Luckily, unlike real agar, this boba doesn’t contain animal parts or gelatin, making it a sustainable and cruelty-free food source. 

Crystal boba tea is a delicious treat that you can make for yourself your loved ones, and even for a party. Like ice jelly, crystal boba will take on the flavor of its drink and add some pleasant chewing to the dessert.

Read on as we explore the origin behind your boba tea, what its made of, and where you can get your own crystal jelly boba tea:

What is Boba Tea?

Boba tea is a popular name for bubble tea around the world. It traces its history back to Taiwan in the 1980s, before the Taiwanese immigrants started making indigenous beverages in California. Years later, boba tea is a popular drink in cafes, diners, and corner shops.

Boba tea is as diverse as it is flavor, having over six different variations and hundreds of boba flavors. The tapioca balls sink to the bottom of the cup, giving it its signature look of black tapioca pearls.

What Is Crystal Boba?

Crystal boba is a unique type of boba pearl used in teas and drinks. Unlike regular boba, we derive crystal boba from the root of the konjac plant but it is also white or translucent before cooking. Boba tea, on the hand, is made from tapioca pearls, similar to the kind you’ll see in tapioca pudding.

A great way to differentiate regular boba and crystal boba is their texture. Regular boba is chewing and spongy creating an interesting addition to otherwise regular teas; Crystal boba is soft and jelly-like.

Tapioca boba has a stronger flavor than its Konjac cousin. Its deep caramel flavor leaves a good impression on the drink and can even become a problem if improperly controlled. White crystal boba is more subtle blending in and even taking on the host drink’s taste.

Crystal Jelly Boba
Image Source – Canva.com

Where Can You Buy Crystal Boba?

You can purchase boba pearls from online shops and culinary stores. More often than not boba pearls come in flavored syrups instead of packed dry. You must, however, ensure that the manufacturer ships to your area.

Many people report that store-bought or ordered boba pearls aren’t as good as homemade ones, so you might want to consider whipping up a batch at home. Fortunately, it’s a pretty straightforward process, and you won’t have any hassle finding the ingredients.

Is Crystal Boba Healthy?

Frankly, there is currently no such thing as healthy boba. This is especially true because all boba pearls are fundamentally little balls of caramel or syrup. However, none of these ingredients is dangerous in itself, given that you consume them moderately.

Are Boba Pearls Allergy-Friendly?

Boba can potentially cause an allergic reaction if you have a root vegetable or latex allergy. Plus, boba ingredients don’t follow a uniform rule and contain nothing at all. Your best bet will be to inquire about your drink before consuming it.

Can I Make Boba From Fruit Juice?

You can make delicious boba from fruit juice as long as you carefully strain the puree to sieve out the fruit residue and avoid a mushy texture.

You can make fruit boba from homemade blended fruit juice or store-bought fruit juice. If you decide to make your juice, I recommend a 1:1 combination of fruit and water. After sieving the mix, you should have one cup of your preferred juice. 

This ratio pretty much applies to any fruit and you can sweeten it to your taste. Play around with the flavor and you should consider trying lychee boba. I hear the lychee crystal bubbles are addictive!

Can I Make Boba Without A Mold

You can certainly make homemade boba pearls, even without a silicone mold. The trick is to make sure the pieces can fit through a straw. 

If you don’t have a silicone mold at home, then you can set your boba on a plate. Once the mixture is firm, peel off the thin jelly film and cube the boba into small pieces. 

Brown Sugar Crystal Boba
Image Source – Canva.com

How To Make Crystal Boba At Home 

As far as variety goes boba contains a unique blend of ingredients each time. Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make boba at home:

Powdered Sugar

Brown sugar crystal boba is the traditional black pearls we know and love. White sugar is an essential ingredient to preserve the crystal boba color. Traditional boba recipes call for brown sugar, but it will take the “crystal” from the “crystal boba.”

Coconut Water

In crystal boba recipes, coconut water is an easy dupe for konjac gum because the latter is hardly available.

Vegetable Oil

We add vegetable oil to our boba recipes to keep the mixture from getting too sticky. You can also use ice to cool your liquid boba and speed up the setting process.

Agar Powder

Agar powder is the vegan alternative to gelatin in boba recipes. While gelatinizing agents have the same purpose, gelatin is jiggly and not as firm as agar.

How To Store Crystal Boba

If refrigerated, boba pearls can last for up to seven days. However, as with all jelly sweets, you should consume them soon before the flavor starts to dip. 

To preserve the original flavor, you can soak your leftover bobs in a simple water-sugar mixture. Mix ¾ cups of water with two tablespoons of sugar and store your leftover boba pearls at room temperature and consume within 24 hrs. 

Uncovered boba pearls will turn rock-hard in the fridge, and considering how easy boba is to make, you should only make as much as you need.

Bonus Recipe: Blue and Purple Crystal Boba 

Split the mixture into two batches and add 2-3 tablespoons of butterfly pea and ube powder in each section. Ube (oo-bay) is a native South Asian yam whose powder adds a deep, rich purple to drinks and sweets. It could be the perfect pump of color for your next batch.

That’s The Tea On Crystal Boba!

Crystal boba is a variety of bubble tea with a soft citrusy undertone. It is perfect for tea and milkshakes and boba tea is great for parties and get-togethers.

Crystal boba, like all boba varieties, gets a lot of heat for being “unhealthy” but like ice jelly they’re pretty harmless when consumed moderately. Plus they’re really delicious!

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