6 Tips To Perfect Ice Tea For A Refreshing Summer Brew
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As the summer heat beckons, there's nothing quite as refreshing and satisfying as a tall glass of perfectly brewed iced tea. It is a refreshing beverage that is made by brewing tea and serving it chilled over ice. Iced tea can be made from various types of tea, such as black tea, green tea, or herbal blends, depending on personal preference.

Whether you prefer it sweetened or unsweetened, iced tea is a classic and refreshing beverage that quenches your thirst and offers a delightful way to cool down. It can be enjoyed in various flavours with fruits and herbs like lemon, oranges, peaches, berries, basil, and more. Ice tea can even be combined with other beverages like lemonade or soda.

From selecting the right tea to the brewing process and garnish, we have gathered six valuable tips that will guide you in achieving the perfect brew and creating a masterpiece of flavour, aroma, and balance.

Choose High-Quality Tea

Selecting high-quality, purpose-blended tea is essential for preparing the perfect glass of iced tea. While any tea can be used, black tea is preferred for iced tea because it offers a deep and robust flavour profile that can withstand the chilling process. The heat activates the chemicals responsible for aroma and flavour, and cold beverages require a more complex development of flavour to maintain taste without the aid of heat. When selecting black tea for iced tea, the choice depends on personal preference.

Assam tea blends provide an earthy flavour, while Earl Grey blends offer a lighter, fruitier taste with hints of citrusy bergamot oil. Oolong tea, with its nutty flavour, is also an option worth exploring. Other tea varieties, like white tea or herbal blends, can be used for iced tea, requiring a higher leaf-to-water ratio for a flavorful cup.

Specially crafted blends for iced tea guarantee a harmonious balance of flavours and a refreshing result. These blends are meticulously curated to withstand cold brewing and deliver a robust taste even when diluted with ice. Premium tea leaves are sourced and expertly mixed with complementary ingredients, such as fruits or herbs, enhancing the overall flavour profile. 

Use Quality Spring Or Filtered Water

Using high-quality filtered or spring water is crucial to creating the perfect iced tea. The water serves as the foundation of the tea infusion, directly influencing the taste, aroma, and overall enjoyment of the final brew. With iced tea, where flavours are diluted by ice, the significance of exceptional water is even more pronounced.

Filtered or spring water ensures the purity of flavour by eliminating additives like chlorine and mineral traces found in tap water. This purification process allows the true character of the tea to shine, resulting in a cleaner, crisper, and more authentic taste experience that showcases the tea's delicate nuances and subtleties.

Don't Steep Tea In Boiling Hot Water

Steeping iced tea in boiling hot water is not advised as it can negatively affect taste, colour, and overall quality. Boiling water extracts excessive tannins, resulting in a bitter and overpowering flavour. Delicate flavours and aromas can also evaporate due to the heat, diminishing the nuanced taste experience. Moreover, boiling water can alter the colour of the final tea, particularly the vibrant and light hues of green and white teas. To preserve the essence of the tea leaves, it is recommended to steep them at temperatures between 93-100 degrees Celsius.

Don't Steep For Too Long

Steeping tea for an excessive duration when making iced tea can result in an overpowering bitter taste, diminishing the desired flavours and nuances. Steeping extracts compounds, including tannins, which contribute to the tea's flavour. Prolonged steeping increases tannin concentration, leading to an undesirable bitter or astringent taste.

Optimal steeping times vary by tea type. Green and white teas typically require shorter steeping times, around 1 to 3 minutes, to preserve delicate flavours. Black teas benefit from longer steeping, around 3 to 5 minutes, to enhance their full-bodied taste. Adhering to the recommended steeping times ensures a balanced and enjoyable iced tea experience.

Add The Sweeteners When The Tea Is Warm

Adding sweeteners to warm tea enhances the taste of iced tea by allowing them to dissolve easily and evenly. Sugar or honey blends more thoroughly in warm liquids than in cold ones. This ensures a consistent level of sweetness throughout the beverage, avoiding clumps or undissolved sweetener settling at the bottom. Sweetening warm tea also provides the flexibility to adjust sweetness to personal preference. By gauging the taste while the tea is warm, you can fine-tune the level of sweetness to create a final iced tea that perfectly suits your palate.

Bring The Tea To Room Temperature Before Refrigeration

When preparing iced tea, it is advisable to let the beverage cool to room temperature before refrigerating it. This step is important for preserving the quality and taste of the tea. Cooling the tea to room temperature allows it to gradually release excess heat and reach a more stable state. Rapidly refrigerating hot tea can cause condensation to form on the container, which may result in a diluted and less flavourful brew. Allowing the tea to cool naturally ensures that the flavours remain intact and the taste is not compromised.

Lemon Iced Tea Recipe

Here is a recipe for iced tea for you to try:


 4 cups of water

 4 tea bags (black, green, or herbal, depending on your preference)

 Sweetener (sugar, honey, or any preferred sweetener)

 Lemon slices (optional)

 Ice cubes


 Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan or kettle.

 Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the tea bags to the hot water. Let the tea steep for about 3 to 5 minutes, or according to the instructions on the tea packaging.

 Once the tea has steeped, remove the tea bags and discard them.

 Add the sweetener to the hot tea, stirring until it is completely dissolved. Start with a small amount and adjust according to your taste preferences.

 If desired, squeeze fresh lemon juice into the tea and stir.

 Allow the tea to cool to room temperature.

 Once cooled, transfer the tea to a pitcher and refrigerate for at least 1 to 2 hours to chill.

 When ready to serve, fill the glasses with ice cubes and pour the chilled tea over the ice.

 Garnish with lemon slices, if desired.

 Stir and enjoy your refreshing glass of homemade iced tea!