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Green Rooibos vs. Red Rooibos: What's the Difference?

Green Rooibos vs. Red Rooibos: What's the Difference?

Tea enthusiasts around the world are constantly seeking new flavours and varieties to elevate their tea-drinking experience. Among the fascinating options available, rooibos tea stands out with its unique characteristics and health benefits. Within the rooibos family, two variants have gained significant popularity: red rooibos and green rooibos. In this blog post, we will delve into the intriguing world of rooibos tea, exploring the differences between red and green rooibos and helping you discover which one suits your palate.

red rooibos loose leaf tea in bowls

Origins and Processing

Red Rooibos: Red rooibos, also known as African red bush tea, originates from the rugged Cederberg Mountains in South Africa. The leaves and stems of the Aspalathus linearis plant undergo a fermentation process, resulting in its distinctive reddish-brown colour, sweet and nutty flavour, and full-bodied taste.

Green Rooibos: Green rooibos, on the other hand, undergoes minimal processing, preserving its natural green colour and delicate flavour. It is derived from the same plant as red rooibos, but the leaves and stems are quickly steamed or heated to prevent oxidation. The resulting brew offers a smoother taste with a fresh and grassy undertone.

Flavour Profiles

Red Rooibos: The infusion of red rooibos carries an enchanting blend of earthy, nutty, and slightly sweet notes. It exhibits a robust flavour that pairs well with various additions like honey, milk, or lemon. The taste is often described as naturally sweet, making it a delightful choice for those seeking a caffeine-free alternative with a touch of indulgence.

Green Rooibos: Green rooibos boasts a lighter and milder flavour profile compared to its red counterpart. It features delicate herbal notes with hints of grassiness and a subtle sweetness. This variety shines when enjoyed on its own or with more delicate flavour pairings. The crispness of green rooibos makes it a popular choice for iced teas and herbal blends.


Health Benefits

Both red and green rooibos offer an array of health benefits due to their rich antioxidant content, absence of caffeine, and low tannin levels. These advantages include:

a) Antioxidant Powerhouse: Rooibos tea is loaded with antioxidants such as aspalathin and nothofagin, which can help combat oxidative stress, reduce inflammation, and support overall well-being.

b) Promotes Digestive Health: The absence of caffeine and low tannin levels in rooibos tea make it a gentle option for individuals with sensitive stomachs. It is known to soothe digestive discomfort and aid in maintaining a healthy digestive system.

c) Hydration and Calming Effects: Rooibos tea is a hydrating beverage that can be enjoyed throughout the day. Its relaxing properties, along with its lack of caffeine, make it an ideal choice for unwinding and promoting a restful sleep.

In the realm of herbal teas, red rooibos and green rooibos hold their unique allure. Red rooibos captivates with its robust flavour profile and natural sweetness, while green rooibos enchants with its lighter and fresher character. Ultimately, the choice between these two variants comes down to personal preference and the flavours that resonate with you.

Shop our rooibos tea varieties here 

rooibos tea types in pouch packaging with made drinks

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