Trà Sữa Trân Châu

Trà sữa trân châu is a Taiwanese-inspired beverage in Vietnam consisting of milk tea with chewy tapioca pearls.

Lastest Updated January 5, 2024
Verified by A-Z Cuisines Team
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Fact: On average, the Vietnamese population spends a total of over 360 million USD annually to buy trà sữa, a broader term that includes trà sữa trân châu and other milk tea products.

Basic Information

Trà Sữa Trân Châu: Basic Information


/tra sua tran chow/

Alternative Name(s)


Drink Type

Cold non-alcoholic drink, drink desserts, hot non-alcoholic beverages


Origin and Region

Trà Sữa Trân Châu: Origin and Region



Continent’s Region

Southeast Asia

Country’s Region

Nationwide Origin

Associated Region

Vietnam Map
Popular Variation
Popular Variation
Popular Variation

Popular Trà Sữa Trân Châu Variations

Ingredients and Preparation

Trà Sữa Trân Châu: Ingredients and Preparation

Main Ingredients

Tea, milk, ice, and tapioca pearls

Main Preparing Method

Steeping and blending

Preparation Process

Brewed tea is combined with cooked tapioca pearls. Assemble by adding pearls to a cup, then pour in the tea and milk, and mix
A Deep Dive

Trà Sữa Trân Châu: A Deep Dive

Cultural Significance

A modern, popular drink among young people in Vietnam






Tea fragrance


Creamy with a slightly opaque appearance

Serving Style

In plastic cups with big straws

Serving Temperature





On any occasions


340 calories, according to data of MyFitnessPall for a 16-ounce serving of Bubble Tea


Vietnam, worldwide (Taiwan, Japan, China, Korea, etc.)

Popular Similar Drinks

  1. Sinh Tố
  2. Milkshake

Popular Dining Area

Boba tea shops, cafes, and street vendors in Vietnam

Trà sữa trân châu is a Vietnamese fusion version of Taiwanese bubble tea combining brewed tea with milk, tapioca balls, and various toppings. Commonly, these tapioca balls are small and chewy, often enjoyed by using a large straw to suck up these balls.

Tra Sua Tran Chau Overview

In addition to the classic milk and green tea combination, trà sữa trân châu is also available in a black milk tea variation. When shaken, the tea offers a light foam over the surface, while the tapioca pearls often sink to the bottom.

Bubble tea was introduced to Vietnam in 2000 and quickly became a favorite among the country’s youth. Nowadays, there are all sorts of trà sữa trân châu in Vietnam, even on the streets, with toppings and various elements that customize the flavors.

Trà sữa trân châu offers various adaptations to explore along with numerous types of tapioca pearls used. Also, you shouldn’t miss the techniques to whip up a perfect cup of trà sữa trân châu for serving with various toppings. 

Then, let’s uncover the positive and negative aspects of enjoying trà sữa trân châu before figuring out all the usual inquiries relating to the drink. Plus, I’ll also provide you with some drinks that share the same concept as trà sữa trân châu.

Key Points

  • Trà sữa trân châu is a Vietnamese version of Taiwanese bubble tea.
  • The tapioca balls are small and chewy, enjoyed using a large straw.
  • The drink arrived in Vietnam in 2000 and became popular among the young generation.
  • The drink has many variations with different toppings and flavors.

Trà Sữa Trân Châu Images

What Are the Variants of Trà Sữa Trân Châu?

Trà sữa trân châu comes in numerous versions in Vietnam. However, I’ll keep it simple by introducing you to 7 of the popular trà sữa trân châu versions in Vietnam:

Tra Sua Tran Chau Den

A classic bubble tea with black tapioca pearls
Typically served with a strong tea base and milk.

Tra Sua Tran Chau Duong Den

Bubble tea made with brown sugar syrup, giving a richer, caramel-like sweetness
Often made with black tapioca pearls

Tra Sua Tran Chau Trang

A variation featuring white tapioca pearls

Tra Sua Tran Chau Khoai Mon

Bubble tea flavored with taro
Has a distinctive purple color

Tra Sua Tran Chau Matcha

Incorporates matcha (green tea powder)
Provides a vibrant green color and a unique, earthy tea flavor

Hong Tra Sua Tran Chau

Made with red tea (black tea)
Complemented by milk and pearls

Tra Sua Tran Chau Hoang Kim

Made with golden hue tapioca pearls

Don’t forget, the tapioca pearls are a crucial part that defines Vietnamese boba tea. Therefore, you should know that there are many types of pearls used for making trà sữa trân châu.

What Are the Different Versions of Tapioca Pearls for Making Trà Sữa Trân Châu?

Trà sữa trân châu is only one side of the story as the many variants of tapioca pearls also provide a different take to the milk tea mix:

Tran Chau Den

Trân Châu Đen

Classic black tapioca pearls, chewy and often sweetened

Tran Chau Duong Den

Trân Châu Đường Đen

Tapioca pearls sweetened with brown sugar for a caramel-like flavor.

Tran Chau Hoang Kim

Trân Châu Hoàng Kim

Golden tapioca pearls
Has a jelly-like texture

Tran Chau Trang

Trân Châu Trắng

White tapioca pearls

Tran Chau Cafe

Trân Châu Cafe

Coffee-flavored tapioca pearls
Adding a distinct coffee taste

Tran Chau Dua

Trân Châu Dừa

Coconut-flavored tapioca pearls
The pearls have a piece of coconut meat in the middle

Tran Chau Hoa Dau Biec

Trân Châu Hoa Đậu Biếc

Tapioca pearls infused with butterfly pea flower
Known for their vibrant blue color

Tran Chau Pho Mai

Trân Châu Phô Mai

Tapioca pearls with cheese in the middle
Offering a creamy and savory twist

Tran Chau Soi

Trân Châu Sợi

Thin, noodle-like tapioca strands

Tran Chau Trai Cay

Trân Châu Trái Cây

Fruit-flavored tapioca pearls
Available in various fruit flavors

Remember, these pearls are a great way to customize your drink. For that, it’s crucial for you to know the process of producing trà sữa trân châu.

How to Make Trà Sữa Trân Châu?

To make trà sữa trân châu, mixing the milk and tea mixture is a crucial step along with making the tapioca pearls. Therefore, you should check out the 5 simple steps of whipping up a glass of trà sữa trân châu:

Step 1: Pearl Preparation

Boil water, cook tapioca pearls until they float, simmer as per instructions, then let sit, drain, and rinse.

Step 2: Tea Brewing

Brew tea (black, green, oolong, etc.) stronger than usual, cool to room temperature or chill.

Step 3: Milk Mixture

Mix milk or milk alternatives with sweetener (sugar, condensed milk, honey) to taste.

Step 4: Assembly

Add tapioca pearls to a glass, and pour cooled tea over them.

Step 5: Combining

Add sweetened milk mixture to tea, and stir to combine.

Step 6: Serving

Add ice for a chilled drink, and serve with a wide straw.

Aside from the steps of making trà sữa trân châu, A great way to add an extra layer of flavor and texture is through various toppings.

What Toppings Are Served with Trà Sữa Trân Châu?

Trà sữa trân châu is served with a variety of toppings to enhance its flavor and texture. Here are 4 popular options:

Fruit Jellies

Fruit jellies

Cut into small cubes, these jellies come in various fruit flavors like mango, lychee, and strawberry.

Grass Jelly

Grass jelly

A slightly sweet, herbal jelly that adds a refreshing element to the drink.

Cheese Foam

Cheese foam

A creamy, slightly salty topping that floats on top of the tea, adding a rich texture.



Adds a creamy texture and a caramel flavor to the drink.

To enjoy the diverse range of toppings available for trà sữa trân châu worry-free, it’s also important to consider the beverage’s benefits and drawbacks.

Pros and Cons of Drinking Trà Sữa Trân Châu

Enjoying trà sữa trân châu is often a comforting time for youngsters in Vietnam. Therefore, you should be well-informed about the good and bad features of having trà sữa trân châu:


  • Taste and Variety: Offers a wide range of flavors and textures, catering to diverse taste preferences.
  • Energy Boost: Contains caffeine (from tea), providing a mild energy boost.
  • Customizable: Can be adjusted for sweetness, type of tea, and milk, making it adaptable to individual tastes.


  • High Sugar Content: Often contains high levels of sugar, which can lead to health issues like weight gain and increased blood sugar levels.
  • Allergens and Dietary Restrictions: Some ingredients, like milk, may not be suitable for people with allergies or dietary restrictions.

Don’t just stop at knowing about the pros and cons of consuming trà sữa trân châu since there are many concerns revolving around this drink to uncover.

Trà Sữa Trân Châu FAQs

It’s best consumed fresh, but you can refrigerate the tea and milk separately from the pearls.

Yes, options like jelly, fruit pieces, and popping boba are popular.

While delicious, it’s often high in sugar and calories, so it’s best enjoyed in moderation.

Yes, when making it at home or ordering at a cafe, you can adjust the sweetness level.

Due to its high sugar content, it’s advisable for diabetics to consume it cautiously or seek sugar-free options.

Similar Beverages of Trà Sữa Trân Châu

Sinh To

Sinh tố is the Vietnamese version of smoothie, usually made from pureed fruits, fresh milk, and condensed milk.

Adam Sam

Adam Sam

Senior Food and Drink Editor


Food Writer & Recipe Developer, Recipe Tester, Bartender, Cooking-video Maker, Editor In Chief


  • University of Gastronomic Sciences – Pollenzo (Italy) (MA Food Culture, Communication & Marketing)
  • Johnson & Wales University (US) (Baking and Pastry Arts)
  • Professional Bartender at HNAAu School (Vietnam, International Joint Training Program)

Adam Sam, an experienced food writer and recipe developer, is passionate about blending diverse culinary traditions, national dishes, and innovative beverages, showcasing his proficiency in both traditional and modern recipe testing.

As the Editor-in-Chief, he elevates culinary content from street food to fine dining, focusing on Western cuisine and types of drinks at, and is professional in creating engaging cooking videos that simplify complex dishes and ingredients.

His passion for food is evident in his writing, where he uniquely merges various cultures, traditions, and contemporary trends, skillfully combining classic recipes with modern cooking methods.

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