Looking for the best cast iron teapot? Well you are in the right place! I looked far and high for the best one out there, and tried NOT to break the bank at the same time.
Cast iron teapots, known as tetsubin in Japanese, originated in Japan sometime between the 17th and 18th century where they became an integral part of the Japanese tea ceremony.
They have since become popular worldwide. They are traditionally heated using a charcoal fire, but can also be heated on a stovetop.
I use a stove, of course, and find that my glass stove top works just fine. I have also used it on a gas stove, too. I used the smallest burner on the gas stove. If you have mostly big gas burners then you should be really careful when you touch the handle.
Cast iron teapots are very beautiful. Many of these teapots are decorated with interesting and unique patterns and designs. The symbols on the pots often have meanings, such as a dragonfly to symbolize strength and courage.
When cast iron teapots are heated, some of the iron is released into the water.
Obviously, this makes the tea a richer source of iron, but it also adds a flavor to the tea which many tea connoisseurs say enhances the natural flavor of the beverage. (At least, that’s what the folks at Teavana told me – I don’t know if I believe any of that because they also implied that the cast iron teapot cured cancer. Seriously! Maybe there is some study that backs up the claim, but they never cited their sources.)
That’s just a bit of the “magic” around cast iron that people seem to latch on to. I mention that story in jest – but I really love my cast iron teapot and it’s fun to have a little informal tea ceremony anytime of day.
Because of its thermal mass, the cast iron teapot helps keep the water warm longer than a ceramic or stainless steel teapot as well.
You can even use one of these at the office too!
How to use a cast iron teapot at the office
You might think that you can’t use a cast iron teapot in the office or at work. But you can! And here is how…
- Preheat your tea pot with hot tap water, or out of the hot water spigot of the coffee machine. Let the hot water sit in there for a couple minutes.
- Heat up hot water as needed for you specific tea.
- 175ºF for Green & White
- 195 – 205ºF for Black & Oolong
- Pour out the preheating water.
- Measure out the right amount of loose leaf tea and add it to the stainless steeping basket. Place it in the pot.
- Pour in the hot tea water.
- Steep for a few minutes based on the tea & your preferences.
- 2 – 4 minutes for Green & White
- 3 – 5 minutes for Black
- 5 – 7 min for Oolong
Benefits of cast iron teapots
It’s no secret that modern advancements and new technology aren’t always what they’re cracked up to be. With unintended health consequences of modern materials, many people are returning to tried and true products.
Additionally, some of the iron from a heated tetsubin gets into your tea. So cast iron teapots enhance the health benefits of your tea by enriching it with this crucial mineral. Giving your body the proper levels of iron level prevents anemia, improves mental performance, and reduces fatigue. So raise a glass to your health. A glass of tea, that is.
Cast iron teapots are made to last. If properly maintained, they can be used for generations. They can become treasured family heirlooms that you can actually put to use. They are also used as a part of the Japanese tea ceremony.
Tetsubins come in a plethora of designs, ranging from the simple and elegant to the ornate. High quality cast iron teapots are constructed by craftsmen, meaning no two are exactly alike. They can be displayed prominently in your home as an expression of your personality and taste. Tetsubins not only lend a touch of class to your tea time, but they also make a great conversation piece!
Let’s take a look at our top five cast iron teapots.
Iwachu Japanese Iron Teapot/Tetsubin, Gold and Black Maple
This quality tetsubin is made by Iwachu, an industry leader in cast iron teapots for over 100 years. See On Amazon. This beautiful teapot is decorated with a gorgeous made leaf design.
The black and gold color gives it a classic, vintage feel. This teapot has a 22 ounce capacity making it the perfect size for one or two people.
The Iwachu is the best of the lot and it comes at a premium price. It is more sturdy though and you can see it’s quality immediately – even on the photos on this page.
Cast Iron Teapot – Purple Hanabi
This eye catching tetsubin by MIYA has a lot of personality. See On Amazon. This is more economic than the last one, if price is a concern for you.
The exterior is festooned with depictions of the famous Hanabi fireworks, for which this teapot is named. This teapot has an enamel coated interior, making it easy to clean.
This teapot can hold up to 34 oz. of water, or around four cups of tea. This model comes with a stainless steel tea infuser for steeping your favorite loose leaf teas.
Japanese Tetsubin Cast Iron 40 oz Black Hobnail Teapot
The Black Hobnail teapot by M.V. Trading Co. is an elegant and simple tetsubin with a 40 oz capacity. See on Amazon. The large capacity makes this teapot perfect for larger gatherings, such as a tea ceremony. Like the Purple Hanabi, the inside of this teapot is coated with enamel.
Primula Pci7440 Black Cast Iron Teapot 40 Oz With Stainless Infuser
Another large teapot, the Primula by Peerless is crafted from quality materials and built to last. See on Amazon. It features a pebbled exterior design, making it a beautiful addition to your kitchen. This teapot is able to bring water to boil in just five minutes.
Old Dutch Cast Iron Positivity Teapot, 26-Ounce
This cast iron teapot by Old Dutch has a flatter design than the others in this list. See on Amazon.
This increases the efficiency of the teapot by exposing a larger surface area of water to heat from your heat source. The design is also aesthetically beautiful. It tended to boil over more than the taller models so keep that in mind…
This teapot is decorated with the design of bamboo stalks and is available in dusk and moss green. It comes with a tea infuser, as well.
Tetsubins are wonderful, traditional teapots that make a great addition to any home. With proper care, they will easily last a lifetime. Not only do they boost the nutritional value and flavor of your favorite teas, but they add class and tradition to the age old ritual of drinking tea. Selecting the best tetsubin for you depends on how much tea you will need to make and your own personal tastes.
For more great information on cast iron, see our article on how to restore antique cast iron cookware.