Southern sweet tea

    20 min

    In the American South, everyone enjoys what they call 'sweet tea'. If you've been and tried it, you can recreate it right in your own home - perfect for hot summer days!

    1243 people made this

    Serves: 8 

    • 1 pinch bicarbonate of soda
    • 475ml boiling water
    • 6 black tea bags
    • 150g granulated sugar
    • 1.25L cool water

    Prep:5min  ›  Extra time:15min soaking  ›  Ready in:20min 

    1. Sprinkle a pinch of bicarb into a 2 litre heat-proof glass jug. Pour in boiling water and add tea bags. Cover and allow to steep for 15 minutes.
    2. Remove tea bags and discard. Stir in sugar until dissolved. Pour in cool water then chill until cold.

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    Reviews & ratings
    Average global rating:

    Reviews in English (1033)


    I would give this recipe 100 stars if I could!!! I am in love with McDonalds sweet tea. I would go every morning after I dropped the kids off at school and buy 2 large teas with no ice. I would grab a drink here and there!! I would crave it if I didn't have any left!! Well sorry Mcdonalds!! You have met your match!! I double this recipe and make a gallon of sweet joy!! I love the baking soda trick. It really does keep the tea clear and not bitter. Thank you so much for this recipe!!!  -  25 Mar 2008  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    The baking soda is the key ingredient in this recipe to make a smooth tea. It helps to cut the bitter taste that you can get from tea. It's really refreshing and for me it has the right amount of sweetness. Thx.  -  04 Apr 2008  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    As if this recipe needed ANOTHER 5 star rating, but I couldn't help myself. I agree with another reviewer that the baking soda DOES take the bitterness out of the recipe. I had stopped making iced tea for that very reason, and then I found this recipe. It's absolutely delicious. For those of you who see the baking soda in this recipe and frown in curiosity, turn that frown upside down. The baking soda makes it delicious (and is necessary in my opinion)! Now, I will say that I did not use quite as much cool water as the recipe calls for. I think I stopped at about 4 cups. But the strength of your tea is such a personal taste thing, so I would recommend that as you're adding the water, give it a good stir after the first few cups and taste it and see whatcha think. As for the sugar, I used exactly what the recipe called for (keep in mind I used less water) and it tasted perfect. Not too sweet, because I don't like sweet, sweet tea. This recipe can be tweaked to suit any taste. Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful recipe. It's absolutely delicious! Try it...once you do, you won't have it any other way!  -  30 Aug 2007  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)

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