Southern Sweet Tea Recipe

by Sami

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I can’t believe it, but I’m actually posting a Southern Sweet Tea Recipe on my website!

Making tea is an art for many and people can talk for hours about the best way to make iced tea. Though I don’t drink it personally, my husband has perfected a sweet tea recipe and got into quite a conversation this weekend trying to convert our new friend Sue over to the sweeter side of life…

So in an effort to help our new Arizona friend, I wanted to share his Sweet Tea recipe with all of you. Chime in and let us know what you think or how you make it in your home.

Southern Sweet Tea Recipe

(makes 1 gallon)

Take 2 cups of cold water into medium saucepan.

Add 4 Family Size teabags (ideally Luzianne – adjust # accordingly for personal strength preference)

Bring to a boil. Let boil for 3 minutes, then cover and remove from heat. Allow to steep for 10 minutes.

While steeping, add 1 ½ cups of sugar to 1 gallon pitcher.

Add hot tea to pitcher and stir, allowing sugar to melt. Add cold water to saucepan (with tea bags in it still) and stir to extract more tea flavor; pour into pitcher. Repeat two times until water is clear.

Fill remainder of pitcher with cold water and stir.

Refrigerate one hour than enjoy!

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sprittibee November 13, 2010 - 2:38 pm

Ha! 😉 Dawn posted the recipe for her sweet tea, too. She’s a Georgia Peach, though – and they like it much sweeter than us Texans do. We are cheaters – I have a hot tea maker (like a coffee maker, but taller and built for a nice sized pitcher). My husband makes it, usually. He uses Lipton loose leaf tea and the machine uses coffee filters. He adds between 1/2 and 3/4 cup sugar while the tea is hot and fills the rest of the pitcher with ice (not water). He makes DELICIOUS tea. Down here we call it ‘reunion tea’ because us Southerners enjoy getting together for family reunions and going through pitchers and pitchers of sweet tea with our Pecan Pie and Potluck Meals. 😉

By the way – the best bottled tea I have found is Sweetleaf Tea and Gold Peak (I get one sweet and one unsweet and mix them together).

My favorite tea at restaurants – don’t faint when I tell you – is Luby’s sweet tea! Their motto: “Tastes like Texas, feels like home.” 😉

Sue November 9, 2010 - 12:27 pm

I just printed out the recipe and can’t wait to try it out! My grocery store was out of family sized tea bags so I’ll be trying it out later this week. I could have bought the smaller bags, but I wanted to make it JUST LIKE RICK!!!

Sami, you & Rick are too fun! Thanks for making my 1st trip to Nashville so awesome. –Notice that I said 1st 😉



Brittany R. November 9, 2010 - 10:23 am

LOVE this. Sounds like Rick has it down to a science with adding cold water until it is clear, I just squeeze the tea bags against the inside of the gallon pitcher edge to get all of the goodness out. His recipe sounds delish!

One thing my mom taught me that I will NEVER forget is making tea in the–wait for it–coffee pot! Crazy, I know.
I fill the pot up to the 6 cup mark(ish) and pour the water in the reservoir. Take desired number of tea bags and pull the strings off (if they are Luzianne tea bags, they are stapled on), taking care not to tear the bag. I do this because of the dye in the Luzianne tag–can’t have anything permeating my sweet tea except tea and sugar!

Place tea bags in the coffee filter area (you don’t need a coffee filter because the bags are their own filter!) and press go.

Add a cup(ish) of sugar to gallon pitcher. When tea is finished brewing, pour into pitcher, stirring to dissolve. Add COLD water to the lip of the pitcher. Serve in a tall glass over LOTS of ice.
Enjoy, preferably in a chair that rocks or glides.

**This method to be used ONLY in times of sheer sweet tea desperation: i.e. 5:37pm when small kids are tugging at the hem of your shirt while you attempt to create a meal for their next feeding. Especially necessary to retain your sanity if your kids tend to have a meltdown during the witching hour.**

*Method assumes that your coffee maker/filter holder is moderately clean and free of coffee stains.

sami November 9, 2010 - 10:44 am

I will definitely make sure he looks at this! He’s finally on Twitter now too, so be sure to say hi to @RickCone!
Would love to see you while Abby is in town too!

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