Tea Basket: Sticky Rice Pu'er Tea Cakes


These are from the Menghai Tea Factory, the oldest tea factory in Yunnan and one of the most respected producers of Pu'er tea in the world.  These Pu'er tea cakes are naturally sticky rice flavored using a plant indigenous to the Southern Yunnan rainforests near Laos called Semnostachya Menglaensis. This is a local plant to Menghai Tea Factory, which is located in Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, one of the most species-rich forest ecosystems in China (bordering Laos and Myanmar, and only about 80 miles away from Thailand). There are no actual carbs or rice in this tea.

These Pu'er tea cakes, known as "tuocha" in Chinese, are a delicious and delightful way to drink pu’er tea throughout the day—each tea cake can be rebrewed repeatedly. Packaged in giftable and reusable traditional hand-woven tea baskets. Mini tea basket contains 200 grams (approximately (33-35 tea cakes), and large tea basket contains 400 grams (approximately 69-71 tea cakes). These tea cakes are from 2012, aged for 10 years.

Pu’er, also spelled Pu-erh, is an aged fermented tea from China’s Yunnan province. Not only does the fermentation process lend pu’er its distinct flavor, it also boosts its medicinal properties—pu’er tea is high in antioxidants, and studies show it can fight oxidative stress, promote weight loss, and regulate blood sugar. Pu’er tea also possesses anti-cancer properties. It has a lower caffeine level, less than coffee and green tea, which make it a great choice for drinking late into the day.

It’s also a highly-coveted tea with an obsessed fanbase. As one writer said, “Pu-erh, which is processed in a special way to encourage microbial fermentation after the leaves are dried, ages more dynamically than any tea out there. It does not have fans. It has junkies who buy kilos of the stuff at a time to bliss out on days-long brewing sessions, only dropping out of their highs long enough to argue over the best pu-erh blends, growing regions, and storage methods. There are grasping amateurs who buy, gift, and drink the tea to gain social status among Chinese elite.”

Pu’er has been called China’s best-kept secret for weight loss. Animal and test-tube studies show that it can help synthesize fewer new fats while burning more stored body fat. In one animal study, pu’er was also the only variety of tea capable of raising the level of good cholesterol and lowering the level of bad cholesterol.


  1. Remove paper wrapping
  2. Place your tea cake into a cup, then pour boiling water directly over the tea. Allow the tea to steep for 2-3 minutes
  3. Enjoy your tea

Note: You can repeat the above steps and brew each tea cake several times.