Caeru said

New to matcha; questions about price/quality for baking purposes?

Hi, I am new to this forum.

I had some questions about matcha powder. I’m really interested in baking with matcha powder – i.e. green tea pound cake, green tea baked donuts, etc. Also, I wouldn’t mind occasionally making green tea fraps (like the ones Starbucks sells). I’ve noticed, however, that the price of matcha can really vary. Whole Foods sells 2 oz tin cans for over $30. On Amazon, I’ve seen 8-10 oz of matcha sold for $10-$15. Since I’m mainly just wanting the matcha to bake with and to make sweet fraps, is it okay if I choose the cheaper quantity? I really am just going for a green tea taste versus the superior taste of high quality matcha. Unfortunately, steeping regular green tea in milk just doesn’t produce enough flavor.

Do any of you have experience baking with matcha powder? Also, do you guys recommend buying online?

15 Replies

the cheaper quality is considered the cooking grade in Japan. for baking and cooking there it should be just fine. for things like smoothies, fraps etc where there is less/no “cooking”/heat… you might notice the difference in flavor/nuance/texture a bit, but I have used cooking grade macha in smoothies successfully.

Caeru said

Thanks! I even found a place locally that sells the cheaper kind.

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momo said

Cheaper quality matcha is perfect for culinary uses, and if the flavor of matcha specifically isn’t important, some that’s culinary grade would do just fine. I think it could handle a green tea frappuccino type drink too. I haven’t had one of those in years but I can remember it didn’t really taste like matcha does.

It’s suuuuper easy to bake with matcha, just sift it in with your flour and you’re set.

Most people on here get a lot of their matcha from Red Leaf Tea. It’s a bit nicer matcha than what you’re maybe looking for, but it’s good stuff and they also sell flavored kinds.

Have you cooked with the flavored matcha? I have been curious about the flavored ones, but many I am not interested in drinking, I was thinking of getting some for baking only.

Sil select said

Kasumi – i’ve done things with the caramel matcha in icing and the french vanilla in baking.

thanks for replying. so the flavors hold up?

Caeru said

I’ve heard the quality of matcha used by Starbucks criticized by several people. I think their matcha comes blended with sugar, and that affects the taste. The green tea fraps I’ve had taste really sweet with a barely distinguishable hint of green tea. That’s partly why I want to try making my own. I really don’t care for super sweet beverages. Just a dash of honey or some milk is fine for me if I’m in the mood for something sweet. I might consider investing in a higher grade of matcha for fraps.

As for baking, there’s a local retailer in my area that carries a brand of matcha called Rishi (?). It’s around $8 for 1.6 oz. That sounds affordable, especially since I’m not planning to bake all the time. Maybe just a few times throughout the spring. And thanks for recommending Red Leaf Tea – I will have to try them sometime!

momo said

Sil’d have a better answer than me, I used the Belgian chocolate one and it has cocoa powder as the flavoring so that wouldn’t bake out of it.

Just make sure with cheaper matchas it isn’t blended w/sugar like you said. I made the mistake of getting some that turned out to be that type. Bleh.

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Most of the responses here are already pretty thorough but just to add to the conversation…

Most higher quality Matchas you find on the market (around $30 for a 30g tin) are blended and meant for drinking straight with water. These grades are expensive and should most certainly not be used for baking or even making smoothies and lattes. You might need upwards of a tablespoon (approx 15g) or more for a single serving; this is around 15 dollars ingredient cost per recipe. You would need to add too much of a more expensive product to get any green tea flavor.

Cooking grade Matchas are perfect for what you are looking to do as they are blended specifically to be mixed with other things (milks, sugars, flours, etc). Good quality cooking grades should fall in the 18 to 20 dollars range for a 100g bag. Since at most you would need a tablespoon to make a recipe, you can get around 7 servings out of a 100g bag – about 2~3 dollars per recipe.

With Matcha using not only the best quality but the correct grade is very important!

Finally, when cooking/baking with Matcha just be careful not to use too high heat – the Matcha can burn or brown and make the flavor very unpleasant.

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Caeru said

I found this wonderful site: https://aiya-america.com/consumer/recipes

They sell different grades of matcha!

yup. I’ve been planning an order from them for a while. Aiya, Red Leaf, O-cha.com, many places sell several grades of matcha.

Caeru said

I’m excited that they have recipes for what I planned on making! :D

Lol I didn’t even realize the person above my post was representing the company, haha.

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got matcha has a few sample kits, and some flavors pumpkin spice among them

https://shop.gotmatcha.com/category_s/1817.htm

republic of tea also offers a few flavored matcha

Caeru said

Organic prices are probably too much for me right now >.>;

I think the only kinds of flavors of matcha I would care to try would be vanilla + mint, honey, or maybe cocoa. I can’t imagine pumpkin spice matcha XD

understood about hesitancy regarding flavors. Over at red leaf, there are only about 22 (of 4 pages of flavors) that really caught my eye (camomile, lavender, rose, mint, honey among those)

and of course I love plain matcha, so that makes me even more concerned.

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