8 Delicious Milk Tea Toppings To Try During The Great 2021 Boba Shortage

Jamie Ferrell Jamie Ferrell

8 Delicious Milk Tea Toppings To Try During The Great 2021 Boba Shortage

These toppings are recommended by San Franciscans, for San Franciscans.

A good portion of Bay Area residents have boba coursing through their veins, and the recent shipping delays of cargo ships from Asia mean that boba may become a hot commodity in the coming weeks. This popular drink, which originated in Taiwan, has experienced a massive boom in Northern California and beyond during the last decade or so.

Since boba products and tapioca balls are currently stuck in a major traffic jam in the San Francisco Bay, the vast majority of boba shops will experience major shortages in both the boba itself and the tapioca that it is created from. Many boba shops use products imported from Taiwan, and their hands are tied since even US boba manufacturers are experiencing shortages.

Now, the tapioca balls are glorious, but there are dozens of other topping options that are lesser-known and just as delicious! We asked our Instagram followers for suggestions, and they didn’t disappoint. Do your best to keep supporting your favorite boba shops during this time – you may just find a new topping you like even better!


1. Egg pudding

This is a soft, sweet egg custard that you can add to your boba order for some extra creaminess. It’s great if you want to give your drink a nice dessert touch.

2. Lychee jelly

[Image: Ziye via Shutterstock]

Lychee is a small fruit from Asia that adds a touch of sweetness to your boba without being overwhelming.


3. Aloe vera

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We know aloe vera for its soothing benefits, and when it’s added to boba in jelly form it provides a welcome, slightly healthier addition on a sunny day.


4. Cheese foam

[Image: thaweerat via Shutterstock]

Cream cheese is undeniably delicious, and you can add it in a foamy layer on top of your boba. This will add some extra richness and creaminess to your milk tea.



5. Coconut jelly

[Image: Doi Srinopakoon via Shutterstock]

Similar to lychee jelly, this delicious jelly adds subtle coconut flavor to your tea. It’s especially delicious as an addition to tropical drinks.


6. Grass jelly

Grass jelly is an underrated topping that’s often seen as a boba substitute. It’s a vegan topping made from the Mesona palustris plant or the Cyclea barbata Miers plant, and is especially delicious with brown sugar flavoring.


7. Coffee jelly

Coffee jelly is another delicious addition if you want to give your boba a boost. Boba Guys sells these delicious slanted coffee jelly drinks, where you can break up the jelly with a straw and shake to mix it together.


8. Panna cotta

Panna cotta is a sweet, Italian custard that comes in many flavors. Add it to your drink for some extra creaminess!


[Featured Image: thaweerat via Shutterstock]


Food & Drink