Loose Leaf Tea Infusers: How to Use and How They work

Eric Niewinski

Loose Leaf Tea Infusers: How to Use and How They work

So you’ve started drinking tea and you love it.

There are all sorts of flavors and options, but you keep just using tea bags that you get from the grocery store.

You’ve heard about loose leaf tea but you aren’t sure what it is or how to brew it well.

Don’t worry. Loose leaf tea is a great form of tea that you will love, and you don’t need to be intimidated by it.

Some people brew their loose leaf tea without an infuser, just putting the tea leaves directly into the water.

But this method mee wans that sometimes when you are drinking a cup of tea, you could get a mouthful of leaves. So what’s the solution? Welcome to the world of loose leaf tea infuser!

What is a loose leaf tea infuser?

Simply put, a loose leaf tea infuser is any device that holds the tea leaves in the water, without letting them just float around in the water.

Many loose leaf tea infusers are metal mesh balls, or some other shape made out of metal mesh.

The mesh holds in the tea leaves while allowing the water to soak in and extract the flavor.

But these types of infusers aren’t the only out there, the metal balls are traditional but there are lots of modern, fun loose leaf tea infusers.

In can find them in sorts of shapes and styles, I have seen some that look like little whales in your tea cup or plants the grow up out of your cup.

So while you can go for the more traditional type, you have tons of fun options to explore.

How do they work? 

Loose leaf tea infusers are simple, and effective in the way that they work. You place your loose tea into the diffuser and then pour your hot water over it.

The boiling or hot water (depending on the tea) soaks into the leaves and pulls out all those delicious tea flavors that you love.

Once the tea has brewed in the water for as long as you prefer, remove the infuser.

You can use the same tea leaves in the infuser to brew several cups of tea. But when you are finished, empty the used tea leaves into the trash can or your compost bin.

Best Uses

To get the best use and lifetime out of your tea infuser.

Make sure you wash it as per the instructions that it comes with.

This lets you get the best flavor out the loose leaf tea everytime you brew it. Caring for your tea infuser means you get better tea and a better life out of the infuser.

Additionally, make sure when you are brewing tea, you brew different types of tea for the recommended times and with the water at the correct temperature.

For example, black teas usually need the hotest water and can be brewed for five minutes or even more.

But green teas need cooler water (under boiling temperature) and it also should be brewed for three to five minutes but not much longer.

Considering the types of tea that you are brewing, and acting accordingly, means that you will get your best cup of tea possible.

Different types

As I have already mentioned, the mesh tea ball strainers are some of the most popular but there are tons of options.

There are basket strainers, a different shape than the tea ball strainers. You can also find infusers made of all sorts of materials such stainless steel, bamboo and silicon.

All of this are perfectly good options, bamboo has been used for centuries in Asia to make tea infusers.

Silicon is a newer infuser material, but it still works great. Just make sure the silicon infuser you pick is free from harmful chemicals and BPA.

But besides infusers made of different materials, there are many different options when it comes to shapes.

Tea balls and baskets are some of the most popular. But you do have a lot of options, tea pinchers have a spring loaded handle on one end and the tea ball on the other.

You can brew the tea directly in the water and use a fine metal strainer after you brew the tea. There are also lots of travel infuser options that work great too!

Tips and tricks

Make sure to only use as much tea as you need, just about a teaspoon usually or more. This way you can still get a strong, delicious cup of tea without wasting any of your valuable tea leaves.

Another tip that I’ve already mentioned is to make sure that your infuser is adequately in between its uses.

But for a better use, make sure your tea cup is also clean and dry. Because when you place the dry leaves in the cup, you want to make sure the first water they encounter is the hot water that will extract the best flavor.

Next, depending on the type of tea, don’t be afraid to some sweetener or extra flavor to your infuser or tea.

When I’m brewing black tea, I like to include a mint leaf in my infuser for extra flavor. But you could add any herb or flavor that you like to add an extra kick to your own tea.

Finally, enjoy your tea! There are so many different flavors and types of tea, you will never get bored.

From black teas to herbal teas, and so many other inbetween, no matter what types of flavor experiences you like there is a tea for you!


So there you have it, an introduction to the world of loose leaf tea infusers. There are tons of options, lots of benefits and they are a great way to get the full flavor out of your tea.

They aren’t intimidating or complicated, they have been used by tea drinkers for centuries because of that. So find your new favorite loose leaf infuser and start your tea journey!