Sweet Southern Ice Tea

Sweet ice tea is a mainstay in the South.  There are numerous recipes for sweet tea, but the good ones all have one thing in common – the use of simple syrup as the sweetener, as opposed to granulated sugar.  Granulated sugar does not dissolve well in cold water and if you sweeten the tea with it you can sometimes get a “grainy” feel to the tea and the sugar settling down in the bottom of the glass.  Any brand of tea can be used, but my personal favorite is Luzianne.  



Simple Syrup

1 cup water

2 cups granulated sugar


Bring water to a boil and then stir in the sugar.  Cook until the sugar dissolves completely and then remove from heat.  Allow to cool to room temperature.


3 family-sized tea bags

Pinch of baking soda


Bring 3-4 cups of water to a boil.  Add a pinch of baking soda to the water and add 3 family sized tea bags.  Remove from heat, cover and let steep for at least 20 minutes.  Pour into a gallon pitcher and add cold water.  Add simple syrup to taste.  Refrigerate. 


In case you’re wondering….. a small bit of baking soda reduces the bitterness in the tea.