The quick answer is “yes”, but the more considered answer is “it depends”. Let me explain.


First of all, like with any food or drink that has been heated, you need to think about bacteria.

If you leave the loose tea out for more than a few hours, bacteria will start to multiply and then the tea could cause illness if consumed at this point.

Bacteria love warmth, moisture and food, so your tea leaves are a lovely breeding ground for them.

If you want to reuse tea leaves, then experts recommend not leaving the tea out in the air for more than an hour. Whilst it’s tempting to reduce waste and save money, if you’ve left the tea out for more than an hour, it’s really not worth the effort of reusing it.  


Secondly, it depends on how you like your tea to taste. I’m talking here about the flavour of the tea. If you intend to reuse your tea, be aware that the potency of the flavour will be considerably less than the original/first cup you had. Therefore, you need to be prepared to drink a considerably milder flavour come the second time.

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In the end, tea is always about personal taste. So by all means, try reusing your tea leaves, but remember the one-hour rule and enjoy the subtle different flavour of the second cup.

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