If you're looking for the best sweet tea recipe, you've found it. This Luzianne Sweet Tea Recipe is our beverage of choice - and I think any tea drinker will agree. Treat your taste buds and whip up a half gallon or gallon jug of this classic Southern sweet tea recipe. In this blog post, we'll show you how simple it is to make good tea easily right at home.
There's nothing quite like a cold glass of homemade sweet tea. The best part about making this iced sweet tea is that you just need a few simple ingredients to get started. I've made this for family gatherings or just a delicious sipper to enjoy on a hot day. The best part about making this amazing sweet tea is that it's ready to enjoy whenever you want.
I also know that the first time you make it, you're going to be hooked. You might as well keep the tea pitcher handy and have all the following ingredients in your cabinet at all times because this easy Southern sweet tea recipe is about to become a staple in your house.
Be sure to check out my Lavender Lemonade Cocktail for a fun and flavorful drink for the 21+ crowd. It's always a good idea to have multiple drink recipes on hand.
Family-sized tea bags - Having the larger-sized tea bags is normally more economical than using regular black tea bags. Either way, using enough tea to the amount of water will make sure that more of that tea flavor stands out.
Baking soda - This is a common ingredient used in Southern tea, and be sure to read below to find out why.
Water - For this simple tea recipe, you'll be using cold water and boiling water.
Sugar - Regular sugar is a simple way to add sweetness.
How to make this Luzianne Sweet Tea Recipe
Step One: Add the Luzianne iced tea bags and the baking soda into a glass measuring cup. Alternatively, you can use any heat safe container suitable for liquids.
Step Two: Pour the boiling water over the top. Make sure the bags are fully submerged.
Step Three: Let the tea bags seep for 15 minutes.
Step Four: Take the tea bags out of the hot water, and pour in the sugar. Do not squeeze out the bags. This would release extra tannic acid.
Step Five: Stir the hot tea until all the added sugar is dissolved.
Step Six: Add the tea mixture and the cold water to a large glass pitcher. You can serve immediately or chill.
Step Seven: Serve this good sweet tea over ice cubes. Garnish each glass as desired with lemon slices or fresh mint leaves.
Use artificial sweeteners - If you're a Southern girl or boy, then you know that the deep South uses real sugar, but that doesn't mean that you can't add equal parts of your favorite artificial sweetener. It may change the taste a bit, but you can make it sweet in your own way.
Add lemon wedges - No matter if you're making a cup or a gallon of sweet tea, adding lemon is a great flavor to pair. You can put lemon slices right into the gallon pitcher to serve or even squeeze in a little bit of fresh lemon juice for extra flavor.
Make unsweetened tea - If you don't want to make sweet iced tea, leave out the sugar. A lot of folks love to make a gallon of tea that is sweetened and unsweetened.
Drink warm tea - Even though I think that drinking it cold is the best way, you can serve this slightly warm as well. It doesn't have to be ice cold to enjoy.
Use other types of tea bags - I prefer using Luzianne tea bags because of the flavor, but you can use your personal preference of family size tea bags to create this recipe.
Fruit - Add raspberries, peach slices, orange slices, or even apple slices to the tea.
How much sugar in sweet tea?
The cups of sugar added will vary, depending on the sweetness level that you want. For this recipe, the amount of sugar listed on the recipe card is 1.5 - 2 cups of sugar. This may seem like a lot of sugar. But we wanted to stick to a traditional sweet tea which is pretty sweet. You can use more of less depending on how sweet you want to make the sweet tea concentrate.
If you want to enjoy more of that tea flavor, use less sugar. If you are new to sweet tea start by adding ¼ -½ cup of sugar per half gallon of brewed tea and adjust according to your desired level of sweetness.
How much caffeine in sweet tea?
While the size of the cup does matter, typically, in an 8 fluid-ounce cup, there are about 8 mg of caffeine.
Why do Southerners put baking soda in sweet tea?
This is a little secret ingredient that is used to make the perfect iced tea. Adding the baking soda takes away any worry of there being a bitter taste and also takes away any type of cloudiness in the water, too.
Keep in mind that this ingredient isn't a MUST to add, but it is one that creates a better look and also doesn't alter the flavoring in any way.
Can I use any type of tea for making sweet tea?
While black tea is traditionally used for sweet tea, you can experiment with different types of tea like green tea or herbal teas to create unique flavors.
Can I use honey or alternative sweeteners instead of sugar?
Yes, you can definitely substitute sugar with honey, agave syrup, stevia, or other alternative sweeteners to make your sweet tea healthier or suit dietary restrictions. You can even sweeten it with fruit juice or apple juice concentrate.
Can I make sweet iced tea ahead of time and store it in the fridge?
Absolutely! Sweet iced tea can be prepared in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Is it possible to make unsweetened iced tea using this recipe?
Of course! Simply omit the sugar or any other sweetener from the recipe and follow all the other steps accordingly to enjoy refreshing unsweetened iced tea.
- 3 Luzianne family sized tea bags or 6 regular black tea bags
- pinch baking soda
- 2 cups boiling water
- 1.5-2 cups sugar ***
- 6 cups cold water
- Place the tea bags and the baking soda in a large glass measuring cup.
- Pour the boiling water over the tea bags.
- Let the tea steep for 15 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags and add the sugar.
- Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Add the tea and cold water to a large pitcher.
- Serve over ice cubes.
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