You’ll need some refreshing drinks to sip on those blistering hot days ahead — and iced tea is a classic that always hits the spot. But if you’re looking to take iced tea to the next level, you should try using it to make a mocktail. Check out three reasons why tea is a great addition to a mocktail, along with three easy (and thirst-quenching!) recipes to test out.
Why Tea Is the Perfect Addition to a Mocktail
You probably know mocktails are cocktails with all the flavor but none of the alcohol. And you definitely won’t be missing out on flavor by using tea as the base for your drink. Here are three reasons that tea makes for an especially tasty mocktail.
- Tea is a healthy drink. To whip up a healthier mocktail, tea is your best bet because it’s packed with antioxidants. These antioxidants can do wonders for your health, as research suggests they can help lower Alzheimer’s risk, protect heart health, and fight diabetes. (Tip: Steeping tea bags in cold water instead of hot water boosts the amount of antioxidants within the drink!)
- Tea can actually replicate the taste of alcohol. We’re often told to avoid steeping tea bags longer than five minutes so as to avoid any bitter taste. But for a mocktail, that bitterness from oversteeped tea helps mirror the same flavor that’s found in alcohol. “To make oversteeped tea, use twice as many tea bags as you would normally use and simmer the tea for 10 minutes,” cocktail guru Kevin Liu writes in SeriousEats.com.
- Tea adds flavor without any hangovers! Another perk of a no-booze drink is that you won’t have to deal with a bothersome hangover the next morning. So, you can enjoy another glass of the mocktail and even serve it to younger guests if you’re making them for a crowd at a summer gathering.
Looking for the best tea-infused mocktails? Here are 3 yummy recipes courtesy of a tea company called Good Earth, who use their unique tea blends to add a flavorful twist to each drink.
Zingy Iced Tea
Ingredients (Makes 2 servings):
- 2 ginger, turmeric, and lemon tea bags (Buy from Walmart, $9.95)
- 1 teaspoon honey
- Soda water
- In a measuring cup, steep both tea bags in 1 cup of hot or cold water for 3 to 5 minutes, or go for a full 10 minutes to get overstepped effect.
- Remove tea bags and stir in honey.
- Split tea between two glasses — fill each the rest of the way with soda water.
- Garnish with ice.
Elderflower and Pear Mocktail
Ingredients (Makes 2 servings):
- 1 ½ cups steeped elderflower and pear tea (Buy tea bags from Amazon, $7.99), cooled
- 2 large ripe pears, one puréed and one sliced
- Elderflower cordial
- Club soda
- Place generous spoonful of puréed pear into 2 glasses (8 ounces each) along with splash of elderflower cordial. Stir.
- Fill glasses 3/4 of the way with elderflower and pear tea.
- Top each glass with club soda, add a few cubes of ice, and one slice of pear.
Spiced Cherry Mocktail
Ingredients (Makes 4 servings):
- 7 spiced cherry tea bags (Buy from Walmart, $7.95)
- 4 cups hot or cold water
- Cloudy apple juice
- Fresh cherries
- Mint leaves
- Brew tea bags in large measuring cup or pitcher in water for 3 to 5 minutes, or 10 minutes to steep further. Leave to cool if tea was brewed in hot water.
- Divide tea between 4 large glasses. Top each glass rest of way with cloudy apple juice.
- Serve with crushed ice, 2 or 3 fresh cherries per glass, and couple sprigs of fresh mint leaves.
These recipes just go to show what a versatile drink tea is, delicious in all of its different forms! Give these summer mocktails a try if you’re searching for a refreshing way to beat the heat.
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