May 29, 2023Review Recipe
Table of Contents
Iced tea makes for the best summer drink, especially on a hot summer’s day, and luckily, it’s an easy homemade refreshment that can be made from scratch with only a few simple steps. You can make our iced tea recipe with hot brewed or cold brew tea. You can also add flavors, or keep it simple – either way, it’s sure to be good!
Iced Tea Ingredients
- 8½ cups of water, divided into 8 cups and ½ cup (8 cups for hot brewed tea)
- 8 family-size tea bags, tea tags only removed (Orange & Black Pekoe blend)
- 1 cup of sugar (if Southern tea is desired, add an extra ½ cup)
- Lemon slices for garnish
If you want to reduce the amount of sugar, adding baking soda to the unsweetened tea removes any bitterness without needing lots of extra sugar.
Substitutions And Additions
TEA: You could use just about any type of tea you like for this iced tea recipe. If you have a favorite loose-leaf tea, you can use that instead. However, bagged teas tend to be a bit easier than loose tea as well as less messy. You could also try green tea, white tea, or herbal teas in place of black tea for a different great flavor.
LEMONS: The lemons in this iced tea recipe are completely optional. The lemon juice adds a nice bit of flavor. You could use other varieties of fruit as a garnish as well. Try adding peaches, strawberries, raspberries, or oranges. You could also try mint leaves for a fun and simple flavor.
SYRUP AND OTHER SWEETENERS: You can have some fun here. If you like flavored iced tea, you can add a variety of homemade syrups. You can also simply add honey for some sweetness and flavor. As mentioned in the ingredients list, the amount of sugar you add is up to your discretion (and sweet tooth!).
How To Make This Ice Tea Recipe
For Cold Brewed Tea
STEP ONE: Pour 8 cups of cold water into a pitcher with a lid.
STEP TWO: Place tea bags inside the pitcher of water, with tea tags hanging out of the pitcher.
STEP THREE: Place the pitcher in the refrigerator overnight or for up to 12 hours.
OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS
The amount of time you steep your tea depends on how strong you like it. Let it steep longer for a stronger tea.
STEP FOUR: Remove tea bags and discard them. If the tea bags burst, strain the tea mixture through a screen sieve.
If you have a French press, you could brew your tea in the press and when it comes time to strain loose leaf tea or if your tea bags burst, you can push the plunger down to strain the tea leaves.
STEP FIVE: Heat the remaining ½ cup of water to a simmer, and remove from heat.
STEP SIX: Pour sugar into heated water, and stir to dissolve.
STEP SEVEN: Pour the sugar mixture into cold tea. Stir to incorporate the sugar mixture.
STEP EIGHT: Serve your tea by pouring it over ice cubes and serving it with lemon slices.
For Hot Brewed Tea
STEP ONE: Bring 4 cups of water to a boil.
For the best results, filtered water will make the clearest tea.
STEP TWO: Add the tea bags to the water. Remove from the heat and let them steep for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on how strong you’d like your tea to be.
STEP THREE: Carefully remove the tea bags from the hot water.
STEP FOUR: Add sugar to the hot tea mixture. Stir to completely dissolve the sugar.
STEP FIVE: Add the hot tea mixture to the remaining 4 cups of cold water.
STEP SIX: Refrigerate until cooled.
STEP SEVEN: Serve your tea by pouring it over ice and serving it with lemon slices.
How To Serve The Best Iced Tea
Serve up the perfect iced tea with any meal or snack you are enjoying. It would be fantastic to wash down a grilled meal such as grilled chicken, bacon-wrapped corn on the cob, and broccoli salad.
Finish your delicious meal off with a pan of our heaven on earth cake.
Looking for some other refreshing drinks to serve with your summer meals? This sweet peach iced tea and southern strawberry sweet tea are two of our favorite easy recipes. If you’re a fan of iced tea, we think you’ll like them!
Or try our caramel iced macchiato for a cold specialty coffee.
MORE DRINK RECIPES
Storing Homemade Iced Tea
IN THE FRIDGE: Be sure to keep any leftover iced tea in the refrigerator. Generally speaking, for the best flavor, you’ll want to drink your homemade iced tea within one day. But, it will stay good in the fridge for up to 3 to 4 days. If you have extra of your simple syrup from your cold brew tea, you can store it in the fridge, and it lasts for several weeks.
IN THE FREEZER: This iced tea is not meant to be frozen. It is best made fresh.
You can’t go wrong with a refreshing glass of iced tea on a hot day. Now, you can cross the store-bought teas off your list on your next trip to the grocery store. Making delicious iced tea at home has never been so easy. With this iced tea recipe, you will have delicious, refreshing iced tea in no time!
Frequently Asked Questions
A family-sized tea bag equals 3 regular tea bags.
The steep time depends on your personal preference. If you like a strong tea, leave it to steep longer. If you like your tea milder, you only need to steep it for a short time.
The kind of tea you use is up to you. If you don’t like black tea or want to try something different, you can use virtually any kind of tea.
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- Raspberry Iced Tea
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- 8½ cups water divided into 8 cups and ½ cup (only 8 cups for hot brewed tea)
- 8 family-size tea bags
- 1 cup sugar
- Lemon wedges, for optional garnish
- Pour 8 cups of cold water into a pitcher with a lid.
- Place tea bags inside the pitcher, with tea tags hanging out of the pitcher.
- Place the pitcher in the refrigerator overnight or up to 12 hours.
- Remove tea bags and discard. If tea bags burst, strain tea mixture through a screen sieve.
- Heat the remaining ½ cup of water to a simmer, and remove from heat.
- Pour sugar into heated water, stir to dissolve.
- Pour sugar mixture into cold tea. Stir to incorporate sugar mixture
- Serve over ice.
- Garnish with lemon wedges if desired.
- If you want to reduce the amount of sugar, adding baking soda to the unsweetened tea removes any bitterness without needing lots of extra sugar.
- The amount of time you steep your tea depends on how strong you like it. Let it steep longer for a stronger tea.
- If you have a French press, you could cold brew your tea in the press and when it comes time to strain loose leaf tea or if your tea bags burst, you can push the plunger down to strain the tea leaves.
- For the best results, filtered water will make the clearest tea.
- Bring 4 cups of water to a boil.
- Add tea bags to water. Remove from heat and steep for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on desired strength.
- Carefully remove tea bags.
- Add sugar to the hot tea mixture. Stir to completely dissolve sugar.
- Add the hot tea mixture to the remaining 4 cups of cold water.
- Refrigerate until cooled.
jay platte says
this was delicious and easy to make! my family loved it!
So refreshing and delicious!
Bernadette Morrissey says
Could I use coconut sugar instead of white sugar?
Layne Kangas says
Hey, there – we haven’t tried that substitution so I’m not sure! I don’t have much experience with coconut sugar. Please let me know if you try it.