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How to Make Yerba Mate in a French Press

The traditional method of brewing and enjoying yerba mate includes a gourd and a bombilla. But you don’t necessarily need them to make this energizing and healthy herbal tea.

I often prepare my yerba mate by simply using a French press. Read on and find out how to do it!

Why Make Yerba Mate in a French Press

Here are a few good reasons to prepare your mate tea in a French press:

  • If you don’t have a bombilla and a gourd this is a great way to brew mate tea.
  • You can easily make up to 4 cups of yerba mate and serve it to your friends.
  • It’s also a very convenient way to prepare just one cup.
  • Easy to adjust the strength of your tea.

It’s also possible to make yerba mate with any type of tea infuser, but in my opinion, a French press is one of the most convenient ways of brewing it.

How to Make Yerba Mate in a French Press

All you need for making yerba mate tea in a French press is some loose leaf yerba mate and clean drinking water.

And of course, you also need a French press coffee maker.

Don’t have one yet?

Here is my recommendation:

Cafe Du Chateau French Press

This high-quality French press is made with durable borosilicate glass and 304 stainless steel.

Cafe Du Chateau French Press

I often like to also add other ingredients to my yerba mate. This time I mixed in some dried peppermint leaves and ginger root.

I used Canarias brand loose leaf yerba mate but there are dozens of great mate brands to choose from. If you are planning on buying some, check out my recommendations for the best yerba mate brands.

yerba mate peppermint and ginger
Here are the ingredients I used for making three cups of yerba mate

Here is how to make yerba mate in a French press:

  1. Add some loose leaf yerba mate in a french press. You can use 1 to 2 tablespoons per one cup of water depending on how strong you want it.
  2. Add a splash of cool water and let it sit for a minute. This will help with preventing the mate tea from becoming bitter.
  3. Now you can put some additional ingredients in the French press if you like. I often use ginger and mint.
  4. Pour the hot water (65-80 °C or 150-175 °F) in and let the tea steep for a few minutes.
  5. Press the plunger down.
  6. Pour into cups and serve!
yerba mate tea brewed with French press
My dose of yerba mate this morning

Now, you might be wondering how to get the water temperature right.

One option is to buy an electric kettle with a temperature control function. You can also just boil some water and then wait for a few minutes for it to cool down a bit.

Cold Brew French Press Yerba Mate

You can also use cold water to brew yerba mate in a French press.

Here is how to do it:

  1. Add cold or lukewarm water to the French press.
  2. Add about tablespoons of loose leaf yerba mate tea per each cup of water.
  3. Place in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.
  4. Press the plunger down and pour it into a glass with ice!

You can try adding a dash of fresh lemon juice to make it even more refreshing.

In South America, they have a traditional way of making cold brew yerba mate and it’s called terere.

Tips for Making Yerba Mate in French Press

Here are a few additional tips for French press yerba mate:

  • Try adding different herbs when making your yerba mate to find your favorite blend. You can also add some green tea for some additional caffeine and healthy antioxidants.
  • Add honey or sugar if you like your tea sweet.
  • When you want a strong energy boost you can use more loose leaf yerba mate per one cup of water.

If you like your yerba mate sweet but healthy, add a dash of manuka honey. It’s a superfood known for its antibacterial properties and many health benefits.

I recommend that you check out this guide with the best manuka honey products to make yerba mate tea that is super good for your health.

And of course, using a French press for tea is not limited to just yerba mate. You can make anything from green and black tea to various herbal teas with it.

Please post a comment below and tell me about your experience of making yerba mate with a French press.

Enjoy Your Mate Tea!


2 thoughts on “How to Make Yerba Mate in a French Press”

    • Hi Shelena,

      If you only steep the yerba mate for one or two minutes, you can add more hot water and brew it again within a few hours.

      Otherwise, you should discard the used yerba mate because after it gets wet it starts to get spoiled. If you leave the used mate inside the French press for a couple of days you can definitely smell that it’s not good anymore.

      I usually put the used mate in compost.


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