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Korean Roasted Barley Tea

Hands-on time 11 mins
Total time 41 mins

Serves 6 (serving size: 1/2 cup)

This is a common Korean beverage called bori cha, often served hot at the table or as a surprisingly refreshing cool drink. I think of it as a happy by-product of something I’m already making—because it’s the cooking liquid most people discard. In Korean markets, you’ll find packages of pre-toasted, browned barley, but it’s easy to just toast it yourself.


  • 1 cup uncooked hulled barley
  • 8 cups water

Nutrition Information

  • calories 8
  • fat 0.1 g
  • satfat 0 g
  • monofat 0 g
  • polyfat 0 g
  • protein 0 g
  • carbohydrate 2 g
  • fiber 0 g
  • sugars 0 g
  • Est. Added Sugars 0 g
  • cholesterol 0 mg
  • iron 0 mg
  • sodium 0 mg
  • calcium 1 mg

How to Make It

  1. Heat a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add barley to pan; cook 10 minutes or until evenly toasty-brown and fragrant, stirring frequently. Add 8 cups water to pan. Increase heat to high, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes, uncovered. Strain through a cheesecloth-lined sieve into a heatproof pitcher. The barley likely won’t be done at this point, but you can return it to the pan, cover with fresh water, and continue cooking for another 15 minutes or so or until tender; then it’s ready to use in recipes. Serve hot, or allow to cool to room temperature and chill.

Cook's Notes

Executive Editor at Cooking Light, Ann Pittman, explores whole grain's all-around awesomeness in her new book, Everyday Whole Grains: 175 Recipes from Amaranth to Wild Rice. This complete guide to healthy, hearty, and incredibly versatile whole grains includes something for everyone and offers innovative new techniques to ensure the most flavorful results. From simple, delicious sides to satisfying mains and sublime desserts, this James Beard Award-winning author educates, inspires and does not disappoint. Discover a whole new way of looking at whole grains, how they are prepared, and how they can be incorporated into a healthy diet at every meal.

Also appeared in: Oxmoor House, March, 2016, Everyday Whole Grains: 175 Recipes from Amaranth to Wild Rice;