How To

How to Make Mate Tea, According to an Argentinian

Ask any South American and they'll tell you they've been drinking mate tea since probably before they were one. In places such as Argentina, people drink more mate tea than they do coffee or any other caffeinated drinks. It's even healthier than coffee!

Growing up in an Argentinian family in the United States, mate tea was not a frequent drink because it was an hour drive into the city to buy a packet from a small Argentinian-centered super market. But now with Amazon, my family and I can buy Argentinian brands of mate with more ease than before. 

I had a call around 11 pm from a friend of mine asking me to help him with his watery, lackluster mate. With the rising number of people outside of South America interested in drinking mate tea, he's not my first friend who's asked me how to make mate tea. To help him and other friends out, here is the very simple recipe to making this traditional South American tea.

South American Mate

  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 5 mins
  • Total Time: 10 mins
  • Servings: 1
  • Yerba mate tea
  • Hot water

Delfina Barbiero

Step 1

Heat water in a kettle to a simmer, not a boil. If you want sweet mate, you can drop in two spoonfuls of sugar to the water after it's heated.

Delfina Barbiero

Step 2

Fill the gourd 2/3 full with the mate. Your gourde can be made out of wood, or leather, or other organic materials.

Delfina Barbiero

Step 3

Tilt the gourd and slide the bombilla straw side up to the bottom of the gourd. It's important that the bombilla touches the bottom without any yerba around it, so it won't get clogged. When you straighten the gourd, push the bombilla to the center and make sure it is still touching the bottom.

Delfina Barbiero

Step 4

Once your water is heated, pour it as close as possible to the bombilla until the yerba is moist.

Delfina Barbiero