The 10 Best Tea Infusers for Serious to Occasional Sippers
When making a cup of tea, the first decision you make is choosing between bagged or loose-leaf tea. While the bagged variety might be popular, thanks to its ease of use and simple disposal, this method creates extra waste and doesn't allow as much flavor as using an infuser filled with loose leaves.
If you're a tea enthusiast, it's worth having an infuser at home to create that perfect soothing cup at the beginning (or end) of the day. Read on to learn our favorite options for tea infusers and why thousands of shoppers pick these over dozens of others:
Best Tea Infusers at a Glance:
- Best Loose Leaf Tea Infuser: Teavana PerfecTea Tea Maker
- Best Tea Infuser Bottle: Zojirushi Stainless Steel Travel Mug with Tea Leaf Filter
- Best Tea Infuser Mug: BTaT Lidded Tea Infuser Mug
- Best Tea Ball Infuser: YEOSEN Tea Infuser Ball
- Best Cute Tea Infuser: Fred MANATEA Silicone Tea Infuser
- Best Tea Infuser Cup: Tea Forte Ceramic Tea Infuser Cup
- Best Long Handled Tea Infuser: Numola Long-Handle Stainless Steel Tea Strainers
- Best Glass Tea Infuser: Teabloom Glass Tea Infuser
- Best Electric Tea Kettle with Infuser: Breville Compact Stainless Steel Smart Tea Infuser
- Best Teapot with Tea Infuser: Primula Teapot Set
How to Use a Tea Infuser
Tea infusers are designed for steeping loose leaf teas. Depending on which variety of tea you buy, you'll put anywhere from half a teaspoon to a rounded teaspoon of tea into your infuser, then either seal it up and place it in your mug or dip the basket down into the mug. Top it off with hot water, give it a few minutes to steep, and you'll be rewarded with a fresh tasting tea.
To clean a tea infuser, scrape the moist leaves out of the infuser (give it a few shakes), then run cool water through it. You can use a dishcloth and soap and water to rinse off any residual tea. For dried-on or clumped leaves, you can use a small brush, like a toothbrush, to scrape loose the tea. Dry and store the infuser until you need it again.
What to Consider When Buying a Tea Infuser
Tea infusers are made from a variety of materials. The most popular is stainless steel, followed by silicone or plastic, then glass. Stainless steel won't present the risk of adding an off taste to your tea, but their fine mesh often needs to be washed immediately after use. Otherwise they may become difficult to clean.
Silicone's nonstick texture makes it a breeze for cleanup, but more sensitive palates may find that some silicone products leave a plasticky aftertaste. Glass infusers are an elegant option, but they're more fragile than the other two varieties, meaning you'll have to be a bit more cautious when using and washing them.
Size is important when it comes to your tea infuser. The more room the tea leaves have to spread out and move in the hot water, the more flavorful your drink will be. If you usually use small tea cups, then something petite like a ball infuser will get the job done. But if you're starting your morning with a 16-ounce mug, a bigger tea infuser with a basket will be able to flavor that large amount of liquid. Also, if you're looking to make more than one serving at a time, opt for a tea infuser kettle or teapot to make filling multiple cups a breeze.
Portability depends on how you like to drink your tea. Are you enjoying it cozied up in an armchair? Or are you preparing your caffeine fix to rush out the door to work? Some built-in infusers, available in travel cups and mugs, are better for those on-the-go. While classic options, like drop in tea infusers or infuser tea pots, are better suited for use at home.
The Best Tea Infusers of 2021
Best Loose Leaf Tea Infuser: Teavana PerfecTea Tea Maker
Keep your tea routine sleek and simple with the Teavana PerfecTea Tea Maker. The container is filled with hot water and tea leaves, then placed on top of your favorite mug to strain. For an extra soothing experience, choose a clear mug so you can watch the infuser do its magic.
Buy it: $50; amazon.com
Best Tea Infuser Bottle: Zojirushi Stainless Steel Travel Mug with Tea Leaf Filter
Zojirushi, the brand famous for their vacuum flasks, rice cookers, and beverage dispensers, has branched out for tea lovers with their handy Travel Mug featuring a tea filter. You can easily brew your tea right into the bottle, then rest assured it will stay hot for hours afterwards.
Buy it: $33; target.com
Best Tea Infuser Mug: BTaT Lidded Tea Infuser Mug
Available in six bold colors, the Brew to a Tea Lidded Mug is sure to become part of your daily routine. The finely perforated metal basket ensures that your tea is full of flavor with no debris like leaves or herbs. And the handy lid locks in heat, but also doubles as a tray for the tea basket after brewing.
Buy it: $15; amazon.com
Best Tea Ball Infuser: YEOSEN Tea Infuser Ball
Tea ball infusers are perfect for moving the tea around and getting a full flavor for every cup. This variety from Yeosen features an extra-long chain and sturdy stainless steel for durability. One reviewer raves, "It is easy to use, easy to clean, and I love the little tray to set it on when I remove it from my cup!"
Buy it: $11; amazon.com
Best Cute Tea Infuser: Fred MANATEA Silicone Tea Infuser
You're guaranteed to start your day with a smile by using this MANATEA Tea Infuser from Fred. Made from BPA-free silicone, it's easy to clean, fits almost any size of mug, and is dishwasher-safe.
Buy it: $10; amazon.com
Best Tea Infuser Cup: Tea Forte Ceramic Tea Infuser Cup
If you prefer a cup over a mug, then this ceramic option from Tea Forte is sure to fit your needs. Decorated with delicate cherry blossoms, the 12-ounce cup is just the right size for a morning pick-me-up or soothing evening beverage.
Buy it: $20; amazon.com
Best Long Handled Tea Infuser: Numola Long-Handle Stainless Steel Tea Strainers
Long handled tea infusers are ideal for deeper mugs and make it easier to stir for extra flavorful tea. This version from Numola doubles as a tea scoop, so you don't have to dirty two utensils, and comes in a double pack, meaning you can steep a cup for yourself and a friend.
Buy it: $11; amazon.com
Best Glass Tea Infuser: Teabloom Glass Tea Infuser
Glass tea steepers aren't that common, but if you're worried about using metal or silicone varieties, they're a great alternative. Teabloom's Glass Tea Infuser can fit a variety of mug sizes and features extra-fine slits which keep leaves from escaping. One happy reviewer says, "It's very easy to use, durable, a great size, and I love that the tea leaves are able to move freely while steeping."
Buy it: $10; amazon.com
Best Electric Tea Kettle with Infuser: Breville Compact Stainless Steel Smart Tea Infuser
For the avid tea drinker, Breville's Stainless Steel Smart Tea Infuser is a must have. With special temperature-specific settings for green, white, oolong, herbal, and black teas, it guarantees the perfect cup every time. And with a whopping 34-ounce capacity, you'll be able to serve a crowd in no time.
Buy it: $150; bedbathandbeyond.com
Best Teapot with Tea Infuser: Primula Teapot Set
If you like a side of style with your tea, then reach for the Primula Teapot Set. This sleek black model allows you to see the steeping process and features high-grade mesh infuser for proper flavor distribution.
Buy it: $15; target.com