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Drinking yerba mate: 7 useful tips

Drinking yerba mate: 7 useful tips

The great advantage of yerba mate is that it can be drunk in many ways. It is perfectly stimulating and has a unique taste and aroma. Its essence is released gradually, so that we can enjoy the wonderful qualities of the dried leaves even with repeated pouring. How to prepare and drink yerba mate to make the mateistic ritual as enjoyable as possible? It is worth remembering a few important rules. We’ve prepared a little guide for every mate tea fan. Enjoy the reading!


  1. What are the benefits of drinking yerba mate?
  2. How to drink yerba mate? 7 useful tips
  3. Pick up a bombilla! Time to prepare your yerba mate infusion

What are the benefits of drinking yerba mate?

Centuries ago, yerba mate was first discovered by the Guarani Indians living in South America. They believed that the miraculous plant was a gift from the gods. An infusion made from it gave them energy, which was essential during long hunts and exhausting journeys. Yerba mate became an important part of their traditions and culture, although they did not fully realise the immense wealth it contained. Today, hundreds of years later, after numerous studies, published scientific papers and exhaustive articles, we know exactly what is in yerba mate and how it works. We know that it contains almost as much caffeine as coffee, making it an excellent alternative to it. We also know that it contains the true power of vitamins, minerals and other compounds that have a wonderful effect on the functioning of the entire body. Yerba mate is nature in its pure form and it is worth including in your diet! And how do you prepare and drink mate infusion to make it even more enjoyable and effective? We have put together some useful tips for every mate drinker, regardless of their level of initiation.

How to drink yerba mate? 7 useful tips

On the internet you will find plenty of guides on how to prepare yerba mate and how to drink it. Often, it turns out that theory is one thing and practice is something completely different, and the instructions posted on the web have nothing to do with reality. There are situations that we cannot predict, that we have to experience first-hand in order to know how to resolve them in the future. As professional "experts" in the world of yerba mate, we are happy to share tips that have, on more than one occasion, saved us from throwing away our mate cup and bombilla.

1. Sip as much as you like and drink as much as you want.

Especially at the beginning of the yerba mate adventure, there are many unknowns.” How to drink”, “how much dry mate to pour”, “how much water to add and at what temperature”? Most of the manuals and instructions say to drink mate tea with a special bombilla, in a mate cup, and to pour in 1/4-3/4 of the container's capacity. So, is it a crime to make a brew in a regular mug, using a regular tea brewer and with less dried leaves? No. If it suits you – drink it the way you want and like it!

2. Moisten the leaves gradually.

Do not fill your mate gourd all the way to the rim and let the non-wet yerba mate leaves float to the surface. With subsequent additions of water, the contents of the mate cup will eventually become wet anyway. However, it is better to stagger this process. This way, the flavour will be better balanced and the drink will not lose its qualities too quickly. It can be useful to create a so-called “mound” in the mate gourd. After pouring mate into the vessel, all you have to do is tilt it at an angle so that the leaves sit on one of its sides. Some people think this is unnecessary – yes, if you intend to throw away the grounds after one pour, there is little point in making a mound. However, if you're keen to get the most out of your mate, it's worth holding off on completely wetting the dry leaves as long as possible.

3. Don't waste your yerba mate.

Yerba mate is no ordinary tea, the grounds of which usually lose their flavour and aroma after the first pour of water. Throwing away a portion of yerba mate leaves after the first pour is simply a waste and, in addition, it is often during subsequent pours that the holly fully reveals its qualities. Obviously, if you have left the wet residue in the mate cup overnight, there is a high risk of mould forming in it and it is absolutely unsuitable for repouring. However, over the course of a few hours, you can confidently pour water over one portion of the dried product several times until the flavour, aroma and valuable properties are washed away.

4. Don't move the bombilla.

Simple, yet so important! Moving the straw in the mate cup not only agitates the structure of the entire brew and causes the grounds to move around in the water, which can lead to clogging of the bombilla filter. It also makes it much easier to dampen up the floating dried leaves, which we warned against above.

5. Do not leave the end of the yerba mate at the bottom of the pack.

Nothing spoils the joy of drinking mate more than a clogged bombilla, and sometimes even the best tube, with the most accurate filter, finds it difficult to separate the brew from the very finely crushed leaves, twigs and dust that are left at the bottom of every packet of mate tea. It's a shame to throw away this leftover yerba mate, and at the same time, the very thought of making a brew from it makes you weak. Our patent is to shake the packet vigorously before pouring the dried product into the mate gourd when we see that the supply of yerba mate is slowly running out. This way, the fine residue from the bottom gets mixed in with the larger pieces of leaves and sticks and doesn't stay at the very end.

6. Plug the mouthpiece of the bombilla with your thumb.

This is a very simple trick to avoid clogging the bombilla when drinking yerba mate. Simply plug the mouthpiece of the tube with your thumb when placing it in the water-filled vessel – and let go once it is submerged. This creates a slight pressure in the bombilla, which “pushes out” the dried particles that could possibly get into the filter.

7. Drink slowly.

It's not just about savouring the taste of yerba mate – although of course that's important too. Large, heavily drawn sips can result in grounds getting into the bombilla and then into the mouth in addition to the brew.

How to drink yerba mate?

Pick up a bombilla! Time to prepare your yerba mate infusion

We hope that after reading this article, you will be equipped with practical knowledge on how to prepare and drink yerba mate, and that you will enjoy the mate ritual even more. If you have your own tricks and ideas that we haven't mentioned but you want to share them with other yerba fans – let us know!

Source of information:

  1. Wikipedia: Mate.
  2. C. I. Heck, E. G. De Mejia, Yerba Mate Tea (Ilex paraguariensis): A Comprehensive Review on Chemistry, Health Implications, and Technological Considerations, Journal of Food Science, 2007.


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