English Breakfast tea vs Earl Grey Tea

Discover the Difference: English Tea vs Earl Grey Tea

Decide which tea blend is the best in between English Breakfast tea vs Earl Grey tea for you after reading this article. All important facts regarding the similarities and differences between the two blends are fully elaborated to assist you in choosing a blend that better suits you.

The quintessential flavor of Earl Grey Tea is derived from oil extracts of the peel of the Bergamot fruit that is like a small orange. The presence of Bergamot provides it a unique flavor, unlike other teas that are noticeable right from the time of opening the tea box. Although Earl Grey became popular by Britishers but was not invented by them. Instead, it was first prepared by a Chinese mandarin for the first time for Charles Grey, the British Prime Minister (from 1830 to 1834). He then used in it ‘Bergamot’- a plant that produces citrus fruit which tastes similar to grapefruit.

Around 1843, the English Breakfast blend came into existence, and surprisingly enough it isn’t credited to an Englishman or woman. One account suggests that the blend was developed in New York (USA) by an apothecary who had migrated from a small village in England. Others attribute the blend to a Scottish tea merchant who marketed it as a Breakfast Tea. Queen Victoria happened to stumble upon this concoction, and given her instantly to this tea. The English Breakfast tea is a blend of the best black teas from India, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Malawi, and China. The English breakfast tea is an English breakfast spread that’s got a bit of everything from India to Malawi to China. 

These teas provide the perfect way to make a hearty breakfast spread that enhances your mood and cheers up your day.

English Breakfast Tea

English Breakfast tea benefits

Drinking a blend of black teas for breakfast is a longstanding British and Irish custom. The term breakfast tea has been applied by vendors since at least the late 18th century. Despite strong evidence for a Scottish origin, the blend became popular as an "English" breakfast tea. The current naming practice is claimed to have originated not in England but America, as far back as Colonial times. In an 1884 publication, it was noted that "Bohea teas” were known to trade in this country as "English Breakfast tea". After water, this tea is the most consumed drink worldwide. English breakfast tea is made from a blend of pure black teas. Black tea has less caffeine than coffee, so many people drink it to stay healthier. You can find it inside most grocery stores around the world. It accommodates the addition of milk as perfectly as bread does butter, making it an appropriate indulgence. The warm toast-like quality of this tea makes it just the perfect breakfast accompaniment. 

English Breakfast blend possesses a robust flavor that is bold and smooth but can also be transformed to sweet and sublime with the addition of milk and sugar. The versatility of English Breakfast Tea allows it to pair beautifully with everything from a rich, savory quiche to a light fruit and cream parfait, or enjoy it as a mid-morning energy perk. The full-bodied blend is full of malt and stonefruit that balance the tannic tones of the tea, which are balanced by the malt. 

Benefits of English Breakfast Tea

English breakfast tea contains antioxidants that prevent damage in your cells that can lead to diseases such as heart stroke, diabetes, cancer, and others. One serving of this brewed tea contains zero amount of calories, fat, cholesterol, carbohydrates, and protein. Drinking Breakfast Tea protects your gut health. Gut health matters a lot in improving your overall health.  A person with good gut health also has stronger mental and physical health. Black teas which are the major constituents used to prepare these English Breakfast Teas contain an amino acid called L-theanine, which improves focus and alertness. Theaflavin and thearubigins cause glucose (sugar) decline and insulin increase, which leads to lower cholesterol. English tea drinkers can also benefit from a lower risk of cancer as polyphenols found in the beverage reduce the spread of cancer cells, regulate cancer cell growth, and decrease the development of new cancer cells.

Earl Grey Tea


Earl Grey Tea has been used as a flavoring agent in many confectioneries like cakes, chocolates, savory sauces, and others. But the most popular way of taking it is as a tea, be it hot or cold to get its ultimate flavors directly onto the taste buds. It has a lot of variations that are gaining fame worldwide so it’s worth mentioning it here. Some of them are Rooibos Earl Grey tea, Russian Earl Grey. tea, French Earl. tea and London Fog.

Earl Grey tea consists of Bergamont, a type of citrus fruit. Adding loose tea leaves in large proportions or steeping tea bags for a longer duration gives a stronger flavor. It has a strike of a citrusy hint along and a mildly sweet flavor somewhat like an orange. To retain this flavor it’s advised not to add too hot water while brewing. It's a classical English brew with Bergamot and blue flower extracts. The potent taste is leaned towards floral blossomy taste.

The savory and mildly bitter flavor of Bergamont gets smoothed and becomes subtle when a creamy splash of milk is poured into it. The addition of milk and a bit of sugar into the Earl Grey tea increases the craving of your taste buds by providing it an extremely creamy sweet-sour, floral taste. 

Benefits of Earl Grey Tea

The natural aromatherapy quality of bergamot found in it is curative of stress, anxiety, and depression. Catechins, an antioxidant present in Earl Grey tea fights oral infections making your teeth and gums strong. Caffeine present in it helps to boost up your energy when taken as a pick-up morning drink. The citrus nature of Bergamont breaks calories and helps you lose weight. It helps to fight the body against free radicals decreasing the chances of diseases like cancer. The caffeine proportion in Earl Grey tea is less than coffee, similar to black tea but more than green tea. It depends on the production and brewing process. The caffeine content makes it ideal for moderate caffeine intake and better results on health. A cup of Earl Grey has about 20-58 mg caffeine which is an ideal moderate amount of caffeine intake good for health.

Points of Differences Between English Breakfast Tea vs Earl Grey Tea

  • Flavor Profile

Both are black teas, English Breakfast and Earl Grey is a pure blend of black tea. English Breakfast makes for a complex, intriguing, and strong flavor and aroma palette for English Breakfast. English Breakfast is not a flavored tea but rather a blend of a few different black tea varieties. Earl Grey has a naturally more mild and softer flavor.

  • Caffeine Proportion

English Breakfast is likely to contain more caffeine than Earl Grey. Earl Grey tea with other ingredients such as flowers will probably have less caffeine. English Breakfast and Earl Grey are usually high and moderate respectively in caffeine. But this will depend on the type of leaves in the blend. English breakfast is more likely to have more caffeine than Earl Grey tea.

  • Number of Sub-types

Earl Grey Tea has Five major variants. Lady Grey, much like the original Earl Grey uses the bergamot essential oil. Russian Earl Grey leans heavier on the citrus side of the original. Herbal Rooibos Earl Grey tea leaves, a South African plant grown in the mountainsides of the region. It is much like a decaffeinated blend of Earl Grey tea because of the replacement of the leaves, and it offers some sweet notes similar to how a cranberry tastes. French Earl Grey tea, London Fog Earl Grey tea is its other subtypes.

Whereas,  English Breakfast tea has only two main sub-types. First is Scottish Breakfast Tea which includes Assam tea is the most dominant tea in the blend. Irish Breakfast Tea is the second most hearty tea blend. Out of the three blends, including the original English Breakfast, this is the most preferable variant of English Breakfast tea. These two main types of tea vary more in their strength of aroma, and flavor.

Final Words

Despite many differences between the English Breakfast tea vs Earl Grey tea, they also have some points in common. Both have stories associated with British leaders. Earl Grey with Charles Grey and English Breakfast with Queen Victoria. Also, both are black teas. They have almost similar health benefits. The brewing methods of both teas are also the same.

Having similarities doesn’t mean that they are alike. Rather they are different types of teas. English Breakfast has a more robust flavor, while Earl Grey has a milder flavor. If you want something a bit smoother and citrusy then go for Earl Grey Tea, and want a strong, dark tea then choose English Breakfast tea. Now it’s totally up to you to decide which stays the winner according to your requirement in between English Breakfast tea vs Earl Grey tea. Once decided go for the one that better suits your preference.





Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.