Perfect Sweet Tea Recipe

The Perfect Sweet Tea Recipe - there is a secret ingredient!


Our family loves sweet tea, especially at a party or BBQ. One of my favorite things to do is sit in the backyard and watch the kids play while I sip on an icy glass of sweet tea. I thought it was about time I shared my Perfect Sweet Tea Recipe.


This sweet tea is the perfect balance of flavors, and a pinch of baking soda gives it an ultra smooth finish. Baking soda is the secret ingredient that makes this sweet tea recipe so good!

3 from 2 votes
Perfect Sweet Tea Recipe
Prep Time
15 mins
Total Time
15 mins
The perfect recipe for ultra smooth sweet tea.
Course: Drink
Author: Melissa @ No. 2 Pencil
  • 10 regular sized Lipton tea bags
  • Fresh filtered water
  • 1 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  1. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil, remove from heat and add tea bags.
  2. Let tea steep for about 10 minutes.
  3. Remove tea bags and add sugar to hot water.
  4. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved.
  5. Add baking soda and stir again.
  6. Pour tea and sugar mixture into large pitcher.
  7. Add 12 cups of ice water and stir until cooled.
  8. Serve over ice.
  9. Makes one gallon of sweet tea.


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  1. brittany says:

    What does the baking soda do??

  2. This looks so refreshing! Great for a warm day like today! Pinned!

  3. Ah..the perfect summertime drink Melissa! Thanks for sharing!

  4. This looks delicious! I would love for you to join the Pinworthy Projects link party!

  5. I’ve never tried sweet tea but I will have to give this a whirl! 😉

    • Oh my goodness, nothing screams “I’m not from the South” like saying that you’ve never tried sweet tea!!! haha. Hope you fall in love with it and you’ll soon be saying “ya’ll” to everyone.

  6. I love summer drinks! This is a great take on sweet tea. I also tried this summer drink recipe I saw on Pinterest and loved it, too.

  7. Mary Ann says:

    If you want perfect ice tea don’t ever use Lipton. It’s bitter and has a bad after taste. Always use Luzianne.

  8. whittney says:

    What about the family sized tea bags, how many would I use?

  9. Does it matter what kind of Lipton tea I use?

  10. As soon as I saw “secret ingredient” I had to check out the recipe. My family has been putting a pinch of baking soda in tea forever. It really does help make the tea smooth. We always simmered the tea in stead of letting it just sit but I’m gonna give your way a try just to see if there is a difference. Thanks for the recipe!!

  11. You can skip the baking soda by using Luzianne brand tea, It stays clear.

  12. This is the PERFECT sweet tea recipe. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  13. Shannon Parker says:

    Have to agree… Luzianne is the way to go! It is definitely the best! 🙂

  14. How many tea bags for the gallon sized bags?

  15. I love tea can’t wait to try this, I’ve only known one person who could make the best tea I’ve ever drank. I’m from Texas City Tx it’s good to read you lived here also.

  16. Beth Nelligan says:

    Just wondering why the baking soda? any benefits from that?

  17. Okay, sounds good, but do I have to use filtered water?


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