Bringing Yaupon Back

Texas Yaupon Tea

The American Mahtey

Copyright 2013. Yaupon Mercantile LLC. All rights reserved.


Help spread the word by requesting yaupon tea when frequenting your favorite food establishments! Questions?  Contact us at or call 979.417.4646.

About Yaupon Holly:

Despite the popularity yaupon tea enjoyed for years, it has been overshadowed by imported beverages such as coffee, tea, and chocolate. Yaupon Holly is a native plant of the Southeastern United states. And is a native (or naturalized) plant in many Texas counties. University of Florida researchers have found that yaupon leaves have the anti-oxidation potential of blueberries and are practically free of tannin, which reduces bitterness considerably.  A study published in the May 2011 issue of The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry revealed that unlike green tea, the antioxidant capability of yaupon remained stable regardless of the type of packaging.  More recent studies at Texas A&M have been conducted with positive findings in regards to its effects on colon cancer cells. A brief history of yaupon: Native Americans once used the leaves and twig tips of this plant to make an energizing tea. Recent archaeological studies have discovered that it was traded among native Americans living hundreds of miles beyond yaupon's natural range.  It was used to 'attain ritual purity'.  In 1565 the Spanish missionaries were among the first Europeans to try the beverage and found the taste comparable to that of Asian tea. In 1615 a Spanish priest reported that every Spaniard and Indian drank it every morning and evening. For a brief time it was exported to Europe, called South-Sea tea in England and Apalachina in France.  During the Civil War, it became a popular coffee substitute in the confederacy when southern coffee supplies were cut off by blockades.  At the end of WWII after realizing that yaupon tea (also known as cassina) was still used in North carolina and Virginia, the USDA suggested that yaupon tea might be used during the coffee and tea shortage that existed. Yaupon tea was distributed  at the Charleston County Fair one year in hopes of promoting its use as well as a cassina-flavored syrup to be used in carbonated drinks.  In 1949 it was still served on the North Carolina coast and Outer Banks and in 1973 was served at a restaurant on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina. Yaupon is a cousin to the commercially available South American "yerba mate". Although it did not suffer the same demise in South America as yaupon did in North America, it shares a very similar history and has recently become quite popular in the United States.. If you would like to read related articles about yaupon tea (or suggest others) go to (there are several pages of articles).  Another great resource is the book 'Black Drink A Native American Tea' edited by Charles M. Hudson. We are committed to and passionate about reintroducing North America's very own....yaupon tea!