How to Brew Loose Leaf Iced Tea

February 25th, 2015 by

If you are a loose leaf tea fan, you probably know how to brew your favorite teas. If you don’t, we tried to make it simple on our Tattle Tea site by providing some general guidelines as well as specific brewing instructions for each tea, including amount of tea, ideal water temperature and steep time.

However, that’s per cup, hot. How does that translate to iced, especially if you’re used to throwing a bunch of teabags in a pitcher? Hot water brewing is an easy place to start. This method creates a concentrate that you can then pour over ice and can serve immediately.

Here’s our recipe for a half gallon of iced Orange Pekoe black tea.

What you’ll need:  

Large T-Sacs (we use two of the #4 size)

Two half gallon-sized containers (one should be suitable for hot liquids)

Measuring cup

Orange Pekoe loose leaf tea

1 quart water for boiling

Lots of ice

Directions

1. Fill two large T-Sacs with ½ cup of dry Orange Pekoe loose leaf black tea.

2. Boil a quart of water. We use the Ibis electric kettle.

3. Place the T-Sacs in a heat safe half gallon pitcher and add a quart of near boiling water.

4. Let it steep for 3 ½ minutes.

5. While your tea is steeping, take your second pitcher and fill it to the brim with ice.

6. When your time is up, remove the tea bags and pour your tea into the pitcher of ice slowly.

7. Once most of the ice has melted, add more ice until the pitcher is full again.

8. Pour, drink, enjoy.

Want to brew a smaller batch, or try another type of tea? The brewing instructions on our site and our packaging are for 8oz of hot tea. First, calculate how much tea you would need to brew your desired batch size normally, then double the quantity of tea. You will be pouring the hot tea over ice and adding more ice before serving, so to get the amount of hot liquid right, take your desired quantity and divide it by four. The math gets confusing to some, so just trust us on that.

One very important thing to remember: the steep time and water temperature is the same as for regular hot tea, regardless of strength desired or quantity of tea and water used. The best way to adjust the strength without getting a bitter cup is to adjust the ratio of tea to water, not the steep time.

If you want to try our whole leaf tea bags, English Breakfast tastes great iced. Use 13 bags for a half gallon, and the same steeping instructions.

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