Monthly Archives: March 2018

Ayurvedic Yogi Tea

At Soul Of Yoga, we always finish our Saturday kundalini yoga class with homemade yogi tea, courtesy of my beautiful friend and teacher Sarah Sang.  Today, I want to share her recipe which has been adapted from Yogi Bhajan’s recipe

Who is Yogi Bhajan?

He was an inspirational teacher of holistic living who came from India to the West in 1969. Yogi Bhajan shared with his students his wisdom and knowledge of healthy living and the beneficial properties of herbs while serving a comforting and aromatic Ayurvedic spiced tea they affectionately named “Yogi Tea”.

Eventually, this blossomed into the Yogi Tea Company in 1984 which now offers over 60 unique blends that aid to help with stamina, relaxation, circulation and endurance. You’ve probably seen these products in the major grocery stores. Their packages include instructions for short meditations and words of wisdom.

Benefits of Yogi Tea

This tea is a remedy and preventive measure for colds, flu and sinus problems. The black peppercorns are a blood purifier. The cardamon is for the digestive system, particularly for the colon. The cloves are for the nervous system. The cinnamon is for the bones. The ginger  adds flavor and aids in strengthening the nervous system while energizing the entire person. And finally the black tea which acts as a catalyst for the other ingredients.

Making Your Own Yogi Tea

While buying it already packaged is convenient, there is nothing like preparing a fresh batch of yogi tea from scratch. The species will leave a beautiful aroma in your kitchen. I can guarantee it! Hope you enjoy this recipe.


Ayurvedic Yogi Tea
Serves 6
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
  1. 6 cups of water
  2. 3 large cinnamon sticks
  3. 6 green Cardamom pods
  4. 6 cloves
  5. 20 black peppercorns
  6. 1 thumb length of ginger, thinly sliced
  7. 4 dried Jujube (optional)
  8. 1 pinch of black tea ( you can use 1 tea bag)
  1. non-dairy milk and sweeterner
  1. Bring water to boil and all all spices ( except for black tea)
  2. Turn down the heat, let it simmer for 20 mins.
  3. Add black tea and simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Strain it into a warmed teapot or directly into teacups.
  5. Add milk and sweetener of choice ( optional)
  1. Tip - Make the tea early in the morning and let it sit for at least another 40 minutes after turning off the heat. The tea turns sweeter with a stronger earthy aroma as all the ingredients continue to release their flavor and healing nutrients.
  2. Enjoy it throughout the day or store in the refrigerator in glass bottles. I always warm up my tea in a pot (not microwave)
Sunshine & Kale


Yogi Tea – Chai Tea – Masala Chai – A funny anecdote

While I was visiting Hyderabad a few years back, I was asked if I wanted tea. I replied “YES, please!”. Then I was asked “Well, what kind of tea?”.  “Chai, please”. The server smiled “Yes, tea. What kind of tea?”. It took me a few minutes to realize that the Indian word for tea is simply “chai”. Saying “I want a chai tea” is like saying “I want a tea tea”. What we know in the United States as chai or yogi tea is actually called “masala chai” in India

Also, I just want to point out that this Ayurvedic recipe has been around for centuries, especially in the northern state of Punjabi. But it was  introduced in the US relatively recently, if you think about it.  Of course, you don’t need to be a yogi to enjoy a delicious cup of yogi tea.

Thank you Sarah for sharing this recipe with us.

Namaste. Sat Nam!

Hari Singh Bird’s Website
Yogi Tea Website

If you live in San Diego and you want to experience kundalini yoga, come to Sarah Sang’s free Sadhana at the Soul Of Yoga. It’s the second Sunday of every Month!

Ayurvedic Vegan Kitchari

Kitchari ( pronounced kich-uh-ree) is a staple of Indian cuisine and Ayurvedic medicine. It is considered a cleansing and detoxifying food. It’s traditionally prepared with yellow mung dal, basmati rice, seasonal vegetables, ghee or oil and spices. 

According to Ayurveda, we are all composed of three doshas: vata (air and ether), pitta( fire and water) and kapha ( earth and water). Kitchari balances the three doshas.

It really is the perfect one-pot meal. It’s easy-to-digest and provides a complete protein ( the 10 essential amino acids our bodies cannot make and we must get from our food). 

To learn more about your dosha type, you can take a test at The Chopra Center 

To make the perfect kitchari consider the following guidelines published by Kripalu School of Ayurveda:

For Vata:

  • Use twice the amount of  oil.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne pepper while cooking.
  • Add about ½ inch of chopped, fresh ginger to the oil when cooking the spices.
  • Use quinoa instead of rice to increase the protein content.
  • Use double the amount of rice.
  • Best veggies for a vata variation are carrots, zucchini, peas, sweet potatoes, and asparagus.

For Pitta:

  • Use half the amount of mustard seeds and black pepper, or omit mustard seeds altogether.
  • Best veggies for a pitta variation are leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, zucchini, and carrots.


  • Use leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, zucchini, and carrots.
  • Add about ½ inch of chopped, fresh ginger to the oil when cooking the spices.

This is my favorite recipe for balancing vata-pitta during the winter time. I hope you enjoy it!

Ayurvedic Vegan Kitchari
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  1. 1 cup yellow mung dal beans
  2. 1/2 cup basmati rice
  3. 2 Tbsp sesame oil
  4. 1 tsp mustard seeds
  5. 1 tsp fennel seeds
  6. 1 tsp cumin seeds
  7. 4-6 curry leaves (optional)
  8. 1 tsp ground cumin
  9. 1 tsp ground coriander
  10. 1 tsp ground turmeric
  11. 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  12. 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
  13. 4 cups of seasonal vegetables: 2 cups of green veggies ( spinach, kale, celery) + 2 cups of orange veggies ( carrots, sweet potato, squash)
  14. 2 cloves
  15. 2 cardamon pods
  16. salt and pepper to taste
  17. Handful of fresh cilantro leaves (optional)
  1. Soak the mung dal beans in water for 4-8 hours (this helps with digestion). Rinse and strain until the water runs clear, about five times.
  2. Heat the sesame oil in a large pot over medium to high heat.
  3. Add all the seeds and toast until the mustard seeds pop.
  4. Add the grounded spices and a asafoetida.
  5. Stir in the mung dal and rice.
  6. Add 6 cups of water, cloves, cardamon pods and vegetables
  7. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.
  8. Cook at least for one hour, until the beans and rice are soft and the kitchari has a porridge-like consistency.
  9. Serve warm with fresh cilantro on top, if desired.
Sunshine & Kale