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Sweet Tea

Alabama Sweet Tea Recipe

Sweet tea is one of the most popular refreshments in the South. In Alabama, friendly folks will offer you a glass on almost every occasion. Whether you’re at a public gathering or a private lunch at someone’s home, there’s bound to be sweet tea close by. Follow the recipe below to make a pitcher for you and your family.


Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 8-10 glasses

What You Will Need

  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ½ gallon water, room temperature
  • 6 tea bags black tea*
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 1 tray ice cubes
  • 1 large lemon, sliced
  • Fresh mint


  1. Pour the sugar and half gallon of water into a pot. Stir together.
  2. Warm the water over medium-high heat.
  3. When the water starts to boil, remove it from the heat and add the tea bags. Let the tea steep for about 10 minutes.
  4. Carefully remove the tea bags from the water and place the pot back on the stove. Warm again over medium-high heat.
  5. When the water reaches a boil for the second time, remove it from the heat and carefully pour the tea into a large heat-proof pitcher.
  6. Add the cold water to the pitcher and stir.
  7. Add the ice to the pitcher and serve cold.
  8. Garnish your glass with a ring of freshly sliced lemon and a sprig of mint.


*Classic sweet tea is made with black tea, but feel free to substitute a caffeine-free herbal tea.