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How to Break Apart a Puer Cake

How to Break Apart your New Puer Cakes with Ease

Puer cakes, bing, beeng, or discs. Whatever name you choose, drinking Puer tea pressed into cake form requires a bit of preparation. Puer tea has traditionally been pressed into many forms which aided in its shipment and storage. In order to get Puer tea into your cup, you must break it apart into smaller pieces that fit neatly in a teapot. This tutorial will demonstrate how to easily break apart your Puer tea cake.

What you will need:

1 Puer tea cake

1 Tool (Either a tea needle or tea knife, preferably a knife that is not sharp in order to avoid injury)

1 Wrapper or piece of paper to catch stray fragments for later drinking

Step 1: Gather supplies and unwrap your new cake

We recommend using a tea tool that is easy to handle and only sharp at its point. Some teas cakes are pressed very tightly. Should you slip when separating the cake, you can avoid a trip to the hospital if you are using a safe tool. Better to use a butter knife than a pairing knife.

cake and tea needle

Grab your cake and tool of choice

The cake is unwrapped and ready to go

The cake is unwrapped and ready to go

Step 2: Start breaking apart the cake

Insert the tool into the cake, starting from the center of the outer ridge and pushing in towards the dimple in the middle of the cake. Be sure to work away from the direction of your hand in case of slippage! Each time you insert the tool, gently jiggle it up and down like you are working a lever. Continue to work your way around the cake until you have made holes from every angle, like you are working your way around the hours of a clock.

break apart Puerh

Insert your tool from the outside inward towards the center

How to break puerh tea

Working your way around the cake, like a clock

Jiggle up and down as your go

Jiggle up and down as your go

Step 3: Slowly pry apart the cake

As you work your way around the cake, it should become more and more pliable, with a gap widening in the center. When the gap becomes large enough, you can slide your hand in and pry the Puer tea cake apart.

The cake is starting separate into two large pieces

The cake is starting to separate into two large pieces

Pry apart puerh

When your hand fits comfortably inside, you can pry the cake apart

Puer tea cake how to

Gently lift the two halves of the tea cake apart

Step 4: Break the cake into smaller pieces

Once the Puer cake is broken into two halves, it is easy to pull it apart or break it into smaller pieces for consumption. If you plan of drinking a cake in the near future, we recommend that you break apart the whole cake and place it into a tin. It serves a dual purpose of letting the tea breathe a bit before drinking, as well as making it much easier to grab for a session.

two halves of Puer

Now that the cake is in two pieces, you can easily break apart smaller chunks


Cakes with looser compression will fall apart very easily after this step

Now you are ready to drink your tea! Get ready for gongfu style brewing or this much easier brewing method with everyday household items. However you choose to brew your tea, take your time and enjoy!