pic_sweettea_Lemonmint_2014Aunt Classie is so infamous for her sweet tea that she makes 5-gallons at a time for large events and family gatherings. Her 5-gallon tumbler always come back empty.

Aunt Classie’s sweet tea is brewed and sweetened to perfection. You’ll always find a pitcher of cold sweet tea in her refrigerator. Whenever I visit her in Tennessee, I immediately go to the refrigerator to get the ice tea pitcher and to the cabinet (they still say cupboard) to get a pint-sized mason jar to drink it from.

If there aren’t any ice cubes in the pitcher then you really don’t need to add any because the tea won’t last more than five minutes. It’s really quenches your thirst especially on a very hot and humid day.

On my last visit to see Aunt Classie, I observed her make her infamous sweet tea and took notes. I paid close attention to her technique. It was interesting watching her because she seemed to be in a zone and enjoyed making the tea. She is honored that everyone enjoys her sweet tea.

Fresh-brewed iced sweet tea is very soul satisfying when the temperature and humidity is in the 90’s.

The initial recipe was for a 5-gallon batch but I tested the recipe multiple times adjusting and adapting it for a one gallon batch.


1 gallon filtered water
Tea Bags (6-8 regular) or (2-3 family size)
1-2 cups sugar
1 lemon sliced or wedges
Mint sprigs (optional)


1. Using a 4-quart saucepan, bring 4 cups filtered water to a rolling boil over medium heat.

2. Remove the saucepan from the stove and add regular or family sized tea bags. Steep for 15-20 minutes.

3. Remove tea bags then add sugar to the tea and stir until the sugar dissolves.

4. Let sit until the tea mixture reaches room temperature.

5. Add remaining 12-cups water to the tea mixture and serve or refrigerate.

6. When serving, fill a glass with ice and pour tea. Add lemon slices or wedges and mint sprigs, if desired.

(Stock photo)