Southern Style Sweet Tea

sweet teaI don’t know why you can’t find sweet tea in every state, but if you haven’t had real Southern Style Sweet Tea, you have to try it! In California if you ask for a sweet tea you will get an iced tea and a few packs of Splenda. NOT the same. So, for all of you who don’t have the privilege of sweet tea in your home state, here is a recipe you can make at home!

People make sweet tea different ways, but here is how we do it in our home:

Sweet Tea

(makes about 1 gal and a half)

  • large 2 gal. pot
  • 3 cups sugar
  • Tea Bags: Lipton Iced Tea Brew is good; any kind of Black Tea in bags will work. (What we are using right now is Orange Pekoe & Pekoe Cut Black Tea).

Fill pot not quite full with water and bring to boil. Add 6-8 tea bags (we use 6), turn burner off and let the tea seep. I leave it about 10 min. Remove the tea bags, and while the tea is still hot add 2 1/2-3 cups of sugar. Stir till dissolved. Let sit until cool; then pour into pitchers and refrigerate until cold.

We usually get a gallon and a half out of one big pot.


About Kendra 1035 Articles
A city girl learning to homestead on an acre of land in the country. Wife and homeschooling mother of four. Enjoying life, and everything that has to do with self sufficient living.


  1. I usually make a strong syrup of water and sugar, and pour it into the fresh brewed tea, adding more water as necessary after it’s mixed to fill the jug. This way the sugar is already ‘melted’ into the liquid, and doesn’t continually have to be stirred up from the bottom. AND DO I LOVE SWEET SOUTHERN TEA!

  2. I make my recipe to suit a one gallon pitcher, so I make it a little different. I boil about 2 cups of water in a small pot, add the tea bags (usually 3 family sized – always decaf) before the boil, then remove it as soon as the boil is rolling. I dump that into my pitcher to melt the 3 cups of sugar. (yes, my hubby likes it sweet, I like it sweeter). Once the sugar is melted, I add enough water to make it 3/4 full. Finish filling with ice, and voila! Instantly cold iced tea.

    I do admit, this ain’t how momma made it. She likes hers darker, with less sugar. Because of all the sugar, I’ve nearly stopped making it in an effort to reduce my addiction. But I still give in occasionally. 🙂

    And anything less than 2 cups per gallon is just sweetened unsweet tea. hehe.

  3. Oh my!!! Mcdonalds sweet tea is good (I’m a Indiana girl), but WOW is it sweet!! I have to do half sweet/half unsweetened to drink it!! I wonder how much sugar they put in it?? When I make it at home my favorite amount of sugar is 1/2-2/3 cup sugar in 1/2 gallon. That would be 1 1/2-2 cups in a gallon and a half. I bet 3 cups is SWEET!!! Enjoy your sweet tea today… I think I will go make some!!

  4. Im from the south and want to say “THANKS ALOT!” sweet tea is the only tea i can get a taste for, I see so much about herbal teas, and I cant stand the taste, I guess I have spoiled my taste buds on my idea of what tea should taste like. where Im from its just the thing, sweet tea. Is there any other kind? I love the new look on your website.

  5. Thank you for sharing that recipe. I’m origianally from Florida, and people here in Indiana really don’t know sweet tea!

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