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The Best Iced Tea Recipes for Refreshing Summer Drinks

Jul 17, 2014 10:30AM ● By Erin Frisch

Iced teas are some of summer’s most refreshing beverages, but don’t limit yourself to plain black or green iced teas—there are plenty of options that combine traditional Camellia sinesis with different herbs, fruits, and syrups to enhance your summer enjoyment. Read on for an assortment of iced tea recipes you’ll want to try before Labor Day!

Iced Tea Lemonade

Mimicking the Arnold Palmer iced teas you can buy in the supermarket, this is a fresh take on the classic that combines two of summer’s favorite beverages. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a large saucepan. When it boils, remove from heat and steep two family-sized bags of black tea and 1 cup of loosely packed fresh mint leaves for 10 minutes with the pan covered. After 10 minutes, remove the tea bags and mint, and stir in ½ cup of sugar until dissolved. Add 4 cups of cold water and one 6-ounce can of thawed frozen lemonade concentrate. Refrigerate until chilled and serve over ice.

Lemon Verbena Iced Tea

Lemon Verbena adds something special to regular iced tea, but this treat takes advance planning. The syrup must be made the night before brewing the tea. Combine ½ cup of sugar and ½ cup of water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, cooking until sugar dissolves and a syrup forms. Cool syrup completely. Boil 1 cup of lemon verbena leaves for one minute, then drain and plunge leaves into an ice bath. Combine syrup and leaves together in a blender until smooth, cover, and chill overnight. Strain syrup to remove leaf pieces. Brew iced black tea according to instructions on the box of tea bags, and then add 2 tablespoons of syrup for every one cup of iced tea. Garnish with lemon wedges and serve.

Lightly Sweetened Citrus Green Tea

Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan, and add 7 green-tea bags. Boil for one minute, then remove from heat, cover, and steep for 10 minutes. Remove tea bags and stir in ½ cup of honey until dissolved. Add 4 cups of cold water, plus an orange and a lime, both sliced into wedges. Let chill for two hours and serve over ice.

Blackberry Sweet Tea

Combine 3 cups of fresh blackberries with 1¼ cups of sugar in a large bowl, and crush with a wooden spoon. Stir in 1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint leaves and a pinch of baking soda. Set aside. Boil 4 cups of water, then add 2 family-sized black-tea bags, cover, and steep for 5 minutes. Remove and discard tea bags. Pour the tea over the blackberry mixture and let stand for 1 hour at room temperature. Strain to remove solids. Add 2½ cups cold water and stir. Cover and chill for 1 hour before serving. Garnish with fresh blackberries.

HIbiscus Iced Tea

This one is really a tisane rather than a tea, as it does not use the leaves of Camellia sinensis. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add 1 cup of dried hibiscus flowers. Cover and steep for 1 hour. Strain tea to remove flowers. Discard flowers and add ⅓ cup sugar to tea, stirring until dissolved. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

What is your favorite iced tea recipe? Share it with us below in the comments.

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