How to Properly Make Southern Sweet Tea

If you ask me, there is nothing better on a hot, steamy day than homemade southern sweet tea to quench your thirst and cool things off! From barbeques to baby showers and everything in between, southern sweet tea has been a kitchen staple for centuries. 

Now, when it comes to properly preparing the perfect southern sweet tea, you may discover that every southern belle has her own particular indulgence or secret ingredient when it comes to her sweet tea recipe, but the following recipe is also sure to do southern sweet tea justice…

First and foremost, there are three rules to follow when making the perfect southern sweet tea: 1. Make it strong; 2. Make it sweet and 3. Make enough!

So, for the strong (and tasty) portion of the program, I would like to suggest Red Rose tea. Luzianne and Lipton are delicious choices as well. Start with three family sized tea bags or nine regular sized tea bags with tags removed. Place them into a gallon-sized, temperature-proof, glass pitcher. Carefully and slowly, so that you don’t break your tea bags, pour in your gallon of boiling water.

For the sweet, add two (yep, I said two) cups of sugar and slowly stir until your sugar is dissolved. No one wants unsweetened tea at the top and a pile of sugar at the bottom; so this needs to happen while your water is hot so that your sugar fully dissolves. You can also substitute simple syrup for sugar if you want to be extra safe. 

At this point, you can also add just a dash of baking soda to cut any acidity and to keep your tea tasting fresh longer. I like to steep my tea on the counter until it cools and turns a rich brown color before refrigerating. Then, if you want things to be extra special, serve your tea with a side dish of fresh berries, sliced lemons and mint leaves so that your guests can add whichever suits their tastes. 

And, as always, simply visit Houseware Warehouse at for any of your southern sweet tea serving needs or for anything else you could possibly need in your kitchen!

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