Absolutely the Best Southern Sweet Tea

Total Time
4hrs 5mins
Prep 5 mins
Cook 4 hrs

I know, I know. Everyone claims the best sweet tea around. I only say mine is best because everyone, and I do mean everyone... says so (so far, but now it's posted so that may change). Posted by request. Sometimes we will substitute two of the Lipton tea bags for two green tea bags which gives this tea another wonderful flavor. SOME TEA 'BAG' HISTORY: Tea 'bags' were originally created by manufacturers as 'samples' of their fine teas and given to the distributors to boost sales.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Hold tea bags lined up evenly by the strings and make a loop knot to hold them together. Pull off paper and staple (from paper side). Set aside.
  2. In a one gallon pitcher, add very hot water. Stir in the sugar till dissolved.
  3. Add tea bags and dunk into water a few times, then leave them in the pitcher. Cover with lid of pitcher and refrigerate.
  4. Wait until it is very cold (at least 3-4 hours). The flavor changes until it reaches the 'cold' state.
  5. Drink and enjoy. (I leave the bags set in the pitcher, but recommend taking them out after about 8 hours--- IF it lasts that long! We make 2 pitchers at a time down here in the south. :).


Most Helpful

I forgot to get some sweet tea for the southern girl coming to Thanksgiving at our house so I decided to make some. Didn't have any cheap tea and only had 1/2 gal pitcher. Dissolved 2/3 cup sugar in some boiling water, added to superhot tap water to make 1/2 gal. Threw in 3 Earl Grey tea bags and let sit out about 15 minutes, then put in fridge for about 3 hours. Can't really review how it turned out - it was sweet and tea flavored, but I'm from Michigan!

sheepdoc November 22, 2012

Speaking from experience...from the Deep South Mississippi. It is also important you STEEP the hot tea bags in water before you put in the fridge. Sugar content is right on!! Of course the secret to good sweet tea is dissolving the sugar before refrigeration.

kathead33 August 31, 2010

I love this recipe, but I've changed it up a little: 1 Gallon Hot Tap Water, 4 Decaf tea bags, 4 Regular tea bags ( I prefer Lipton) and 1 1/2 Cups of Granulated Sugar. Let set on counter top for an hour, then refrigerate for 8-10 hrs. Remove tea bags and enjoy a heavenly glass of Southern Sweet Tea. I make 2 1/2 gallons every other day and there are just three of us. Two of us really drink the tea! That's how good it is. I'm known in my circle for my super Southern Iced Tea!

Sherry D. January 04, 2014

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