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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Iced Tea For Me

Iced and hot teas have really helped me kick the diet soda habit. Without them, I don't think I'd have been able to do it. I also think getting rid of diet soda and artificial sweeteners are the one big key to my weight loss success. Does is seem stupid to post a recipe for Iced Tea? I thought it was pretty obvious how to make it, but you would be surprised how many people don't know how.

There are three ways which I make iced tea: cold brewed, sun tea or regular brewed. The advantages of the first two are that you don't have to boil water and the tea is less acidic when the water isn't hot.

Sun Tea
Cold brewed is very simple, but takes longer. Use a clear glass pitcher and completely fill it with filtered water room temp eater. I use a Brita to filter it. Place 2 tea bags in the pitcher and place it in the sun (in a window, on your deck pr porch).  Remove the bags when the tea has seeped, probably about 1 hour. Some teas are made especially for brewing this way, but I haven't ever used them. This works with any tea.

Cold Brewed
Fill your pitcher with water, add the tea bags and leave in your refrigerator over night. In the morning remove the tea bags and your tea is ready.

Hot Brewed
Boil at least two cups of water, add tea bags and let steep for 5 minutes. Some people add a little soda to remove any bitterness (I don't) at this stage. Remove the tea bags and pour into pitcher. Fill will cold water to immediately cool down. If you are serving immediately you can add ice right to the pitcher to further cool it down. I also make a version of this where I fill up a reusable water bottle and put in a tea bag if I'm going to be out for a awhile. By the time I get the kids soccer practice or the park, I have a lightly brewed tea.

Making Your Iced Tea Special
Regular black iced tea is pretty boring, so I brew up flavorful batches and mix and match the tea bags. All the flavor is great since I don't use any sweetener in it. Here are some of the combos that I like and that get compliments from visitors:

1 Bag Regular Black Tea + 1 Bag Cinnamon Tea                
1 Bag Regular Black Tea + 1 Bag Ginger Peach Tea
1 Bag Mint Tea + 1 Bag Green Tea
1 Bag Green Tea + 1 Bag of any fruity tea

I always use just two bags for a whole pitcher. It is nice and light, not too strong but you can certainly add another bag or more. Iced Teas don't keep very long and if you notice it getting cloudy, dump it out and make a new pitcher.



  1. Hi Amber! I really enjoy your blog and I am truly inspired by you! I actually started the BFC on Saturday (3 days ago!) and am down 4.4 lbs. I don't have a large amount to lose, 15 lbs, and I am thrilled so far! Your blog has a wealth of information and if I have a question, I usually find the answer! Thank you!

  2. I use a Keurig coffee machine - one cup at a time. My machine has an iced beverage setting, but of course, the tea starts out hot. Just have to add ice and it's ready in a few minutes. I love my peppermint tea, or the Cranberry Twist.

  3. Oh, what I wouldn't do for access to a tea pitcher at work. We have a one-cup machine, but hot tea just doesn't interest me on a hot day. Maybe I just need to take your advice on the cold-brewed and make two cups as soon as I get to work in the mornings so I have them ready in the refrigerator when I need them later.

    I love the flavor combination idea, too. Thanks!

  4. I have a favorite tea I get from a restaurant in Auburn, CA. It's decaf, orange cinnamon spice. It's delicious hot or iced. I make it in the iced tea makers from Mr. Coffee.
    It's been awhile since my last tasting, so recently after making my first pitcher, I was shocked as to how sweet it was. I'm really hoping it's from the orange or the cinn. and not added sugar. The label doesn't list sugar but I'm hesitant about drinking it. Any suggestion as to finding out some info.?
    The tea is blended special for the restaurant, so it's label only tells how to make it, not where it's from.
    Now I'm thirsy, got to go get me some tea!