Celebrate National Iced Tea Month with this “Sweet” Summer Favorite

Recipes and DIY

Nothing says “summer” like a big glass of iced tea on a warm day. You’ve probably got the picture in your head right now: a large jug full of tea, maybe some lemon slices, sitting on the back porch and swapping stories while the day wiles away.

If you grew up around here, sipping iced tea was probably a big part of your summer. Renew the tradition with sun tea — a delicious, refreshing, and energy efficient twist on the old-fashioned favorite. No need to waste precious watts boiling water on the stove. The sun does the job better!

Here’s how to make your own, courtesy of The Pioneer Woman.


  • 1 large glass jug. One with an easy pour spout is preferable.
  • 8 tea bags per gallon of cold water. Any tea will do, whether black or green, caffeinated or herbal.
  • Liquid sweetener, if desired.
  • Garnish of choice—citrus, berries, mint, or cucumbers are popular.


  1. Fill your jug with cold water and add the appropriate number of tea bags. Cover the jug, set outside in the sun.
  2. Monitor the color of the tea. General timeframe for steeping is between 2–3 hours, but on a particularly hot day you might want to bring it inside after an hour. It’s up to you—leave it out longer for stronger tea, bring it in earlier for a lighter brew.
  3. Add a liquid sweetener if desired. Honey or agave nectar work well, or you can run hot water over granulated sugar to create a simple syrup.
  4. Add your garnishes to the jug—and to your glass, if desired.
  5. Pour, grab a seat on the porch, and enjoy!

All that’s missing is the back porch. So sit back (or should we say “sip back”?) and soak up the summer with a nice cool glass of sun tea. Just be sure to save us a glass.