How to Make Perfectly Sweet Iced Tea

Ahh, sweet tea – the beverage of choice for a true Southerner (Well, Bud Light and Mountain Dew too but we will save that discussion for a different day).

The funny thing about sweet tea though is that no one likes it the same way. There’s a tug of war battle between those that like it barely sweet and those that need a milkshake straw to slurp up the syrupy madness. Our family is no different. In fact, my Mother-in-law keeps two gallons of tea in the fridge at all times. There’s Dad’s almost unsweet-sweet tea, and then there is her kick start your mornin’ sugar crack (Love you, Mom!).

Everyone that visits their house has their favorite…. and is shocked when they accidentally pour the wrong one and get a big ol’ sip of “whoa baby!”

I’m sure it gets tedious trying to keep up with the tea party game: two gallons at a time, oodles of sugar and opinions galore.

Now, dear mom could make just one pitcher of tea and say…”You get what you get so don’t throw a fit”, but she would never do that because she knows what it means to have your tea just right. Me on the other hand, I don’t have time for all that crap dedication. So, I came up with a way that I wouldn’t have to please anyone! They can freakin’ sweeten it themselves….

Um, I mean… “Here darlin’, have some simple syrup for your tea. It’s perfectly sweet. Just like you.” (Whoa baby, the syrup’s getting thick in here, better roll up those pant legs!)



I know right now your probably wondering what the flip I’m talking about. What do I mean by I make them sweeten the tea themselves? Well, exactly that…

When we first learn to cook, it is beaten into our brains that you can always add more, but you can’t take it back. The same goes for sugar in your tea. Anyone can start with an unsweet tea base and add sugar (or in this case simple syrup) until they reach their perfect Goldilocks spot. But, I’d like to see someone take an overly sweet tea back down a notch.

(Ack, visions of 8th-grade science fair still haunt me – cue the nerd glasses and slide show on distillation by evaporation).

Anyway, my point is that when you are hosting a get-together, chances are you will have guests on both sides of the sweet tea spectrum. So, to keep things simple and please everyone at the same times all you need to do is brew a batch of unsweet, YES! Unsweet tea! Then spend about two minutes making a basic simple syrup. The syrup stirs into a glass of cold iced tea just like it was meant to be there the whole time.

Your guest can stir in their syrup by the spoonfuls making it perfectly sweet enough for their taste. Plus, it takes all the guess work and hassle out of trying to please everyone. Which by the way, if you’ve made it this far in life, you know pleasing everyone is an impossible task.





Secret Insider tip: If you want to serve something a little extra special try adding fresh mint, lemon peel or fruit slices to your syrup while it is heating on the stove. Allow it to cool and remove flavor additions prior to serving.