How do you make iced tea?

When the weather is hot, iced tea is always a great idea. Plus iced tea still retains all the health benefits of hot tea. You can make iced tea easily by following a few simple steps.

How do you make iced tea using the hot method?

Take a normal cup of tea. To make iced tea out of it, you would reduce the amount of liquid by about half. This makes a strong concentrate. For example, if you normally use 2 tablespoons of loose tea in a medium pot just use the same amount of tea and fill just over half way.

Steep the tea in the bag or strainer for required amount of time per the instructions (or you may add a little time to make the brew stronger). Sweeten at this stage if needed. Then pour over ice.

It's that easy!

Cold Brew Iced Tea

Another method is to cold brew tea. We have a separate article dedicated to this. Learn more about cold brewing.

How do you make iced tea in bulk?

What happens when you want to make larger quantities of iced tea, especially if it's for more than a single person? You can use a large pot and brew a big batch of concentrate, then transfer this to a pitcher for serving. The main disadvantage is brewing a large pot in concentrate form means you need more tea. Sometimes the strainer baskets in pots wont be able to easily steep the tea in these large quantities, because the tea expands and cant properly circulate.

Solution: Iced tea pitchers

The advantage of a dedicated iced tea pitcher is that they are designed to hold more tea leaves than standard pot. This allows the leaves to expand in order to steep properly. Since you can brew the tea in the pitcher (both hot and cold) you don't need to dirty up a separate tea pot.

Sun Tea

Sun tea is a classic way to brew iced tea in the summer months. The first recommendation would be to splash just a little boiling water onto your loose leaf to so that it is sterilized, as this will assist in the prevention of bacterial growth. Once this is done, simply follow the cold brew instructions while reducing the brewing time to 6 hours. Leave the tea either in a sunny window or outside in the full sun to brew this country classic.

Ice tea making tips

- Consider using slightly more tea than you would a hot tea. Because you are diluting the tea over ice, this ensures full strength and flavor.

- Fruit or herbal teas can be steeped as long as possible. We've found that giving them some extra time will bring out even more flavor. However they may not offer full flavor for cold brew.

- Keep your sugar content low. Sweet tea is very unhealthy, but adding just a small amount of sugar is usually all that is necessary. A splash of lemonade works very well with certain teas, especially black and fruit teas.

- Chai teas are all great iced candidates. We definitely like to make the chai strong so all the spicy goodness comes through in the iced version.

Choosing the best iced tea

Read our article on what teas we recommend! Drinking iced tea will keep you hydrated with plenty of health benefits. Brewing your own costs pennies per pitcher, and is more health than any bottled tea or mix.