Cold Brewed Iced Tea

As things heat up in the summer months and we begin craving iced beverages, one of the easiest ways to brew tea and herbs is to cold brew overnight in the fridge. Recently we tried this method with three offerings from The Tao of Tea — Hibiscus Ginger, Golden Tips Assam, and Moroccan Mint. The results from an overnight steeping in cool water were full flavored, fresh and delicious — truly steeped to perfection. Below is a guide to cold brewing.

Step 1


All you need is a container for brewing, your desired tea, some water and a strainer. We used a half gallon jug of cool filtered water and half an ounce of tea/herb in our brew (in other words, 1 ounce of tea per gallon). You can play with the ratio, but we’ve found this to be a great starting place.

We chose Hibiscus Ginger because its tart-sweet flavor is ideal as an iced beverage. This is well-known throughout countries like Mexico, Honduras, Egypt and Cambodia. Few things are as refreshing as iced hibiscus.

Similarly, Moroccan Mint (gunpowder green tea and peppermint) has a long tradition of being served iced in Morocco, Algeria, Libya and other countries across the Middle East and beyond.

For those looking for a classic black iced tea, Golden Tips Assam is a favorite at The Tao of Tea because of its smooth, sweet flavor. Other full bodied black teas like Malty Assam and Gyan’s Favorite make great iced tea as well.

Step 2

Leave in the fridge overnight.


Step 3

Use a strainer to serve your tea. If you are not serving all of it in one day and are concerned about it over-brewing, you may consider transferring the the iced tea into another container. Over-brewing is less of a concern when steeping tea leaves in cold water, however, because cold water does not extract as many tannins from the tea leaves as hot water does. Therefore the brew will not become bitter or astringent.

Pour your tea over ice, add a garnish like a sprig of mint, lemon or freshly grated ginger. Enjoy!

Some Other Iced Tea Ideas:
Rose Petal Black
Flower Blend (Rose Petals, Hibiscus, and Lavender)
Malty Assam
Gyan’s Favorite (we’ve enjoyed blending in a little Red Raspberry Leaf)

7 thoughts on “Cold Brewed Iced Tea

  1. Rose Petal Black Tea makes a delicious “cold brew” iced tea!

    Sweeten (very mildly) with approx 2-3 Tbsp. of light amber REAL maple syrup per 1/2 gallon of cold brewed or heat brewed iced tea, to enhance and bring forth the subtle flavors.
    The tea will not be especially sweet, however all of the flavors will be more apparent.
    i.e. Just as a touch of salt brings out savory flavors. A touch of sweetness brings out the subtle sweet & savory flavors in teas & coffees. Enjoy!

    1. Hi Kathleen, Thanks for your question. It depends on the tea and how small/compact/dense it. The golden tips assam, which is fairly fluffy, was about 20 teaspoons (almost half a cup!) to get one ounce. But something finer and more dense will take far fewer teaspoons.
      That’s where we’d really recommend playing with the ratios. Cold brewing tends to require a little more leaf than hot brewing does, but even so, if it seems excessive to add 1/2 cup of tea, then trust your judgement and try it with less. Then report back and let us know!

  2. Hibiscus Ginger mixed 50-50 with Rose Hips makes a very refreshing cold brewed tea. Since vitamin C degrades quickly under heat, cold brewing is a great way to preserve the natural high level of vitamin C in rose hips. I let everything infuse in spring water for 24 hours for full flavor extraction and sweeten very minimally with stevia for a delicious zero-calorie drink. The flavor is crisp and clean, almost sparkly — without carbonation.

    1. Hi Kerry, You can brew overnight in the fridge and the cold brew will come out nicely. Countertop brewing overnight should also be fine, but past that, we definitely recommend refrigeration. For best flavor, drink within a week (wouldn’t go past 2 weeks). Thanks!

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