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my iced tea is cloudy

What's your recipe? What brand do you love? Black, green, or ???

AND, How do you keep it from becoming cloudy?

I like to have iced tea (black) in the fridge, especially during summer time. I usually by Lipton or Luzianne family size. Boil 4 c water steep 4 bags for 15 min. Allow to cool before adding 4 c water. I've read and tried adding 1/8 t baking soda. Sometimes it's cloudy and sometimes it's not. The cloudiness doesn't seem to affect the taste, but it's just not pleasant. Any advise would be appreciated.

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  1. Try making sun tea.

    3 to 6 tea bags in a two quart jar. fill with water, put a lid on, and let it sit in the sun a few hours.

    2 Replies
    1. re: hannaone

      My lovely stepmom used to make sun tea. Are the bags you use regular or family size? Do you use a specific brand?

      1. re: pagesinthesun

        Standard size tea bags.
        I started with Lipton, but now use Korean herbal or green tea blends.

    2. Someone, perhaps Alton Brown, offered a recipe that I've used for years-- never actually let the water boil. This was reinforced in tea-making by nearly a decade in Beijing.
      Since I used to have a microwave with a temperature probe, I could get 188F degrees perfectly and consistently.
      Heat to 188F 2 quarts of water that starts cold/cool.
      Add tea bags/ball as soon as it checks to 185 twice after stirring.
      Let steep as usual.
      All tea, no clouds.

      1. I believe refrigerating it makes it cloudy; I just leave mine in a glass pitcher on the counter and when I want some, put ice cubes in a glass and pour the tea in. It stays just fine on the counter for 2-3 days, easy.

        1 Reply
        1. You're steeping it longer than I do. My iced tea usually isn't cloudy.

          I use 4 bags of Trader Joe's English Breakfast per half-gallon of nearly, but not quite boiling water. which I steep for five minutes. I don't add water after removing the tea bags. I put all 8 cups in at once.

          I keep mine in the fridge.

          1. Iced tea junkies all summer long, we are big fans of a no boil, steep on our counter approach that is clean tasting and never cloudy. Half gallon glass containers, Brita filtered water, six Lipton tea bags (for us as we often add ice when serving).

            Load it up at 7 am, ready for removing tea bags (don't squeeze them) at 5 pm and popping it into the fridge. We rotate two and sometimes three containers so one is always cold and ready for drinking while one is always prepping. Three containers during weekends. Former sun tea addicts without the extra trips outside.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ThanksVille

              I'm liking this method. Today is my second day in a row to start a pitcher. The first one is already gone! It's easy and best of all NOT cloudy!!

              Do you use regular size tea bags or the family size? I'm going to keep my eye out and try the Red Rose brand, too, Candy.

              Thanks, ThanksV

            2. Great suggestions, all. I will have to experiment to see which works for me, my space, time, etc.

              Isn't it funny how something as simple as a glass of ice tea can be a bit complicated (to me)?

              If anyone else has something to add, don't hesitate. I'm checking back and will also let y'all know what works for me. Come on summer!

              1. You are using the wrong kind of tea. If you can find it, Red Rose brand is blended for iced tea and never gets cloudy. It also has a better flavor for iced tea.

                1. I use Luzianne as it is blended for iced tea. I sometimes add a bag of cinnamon or ginger tea (or some ginger peelings).

                  We got a Mr. Coffee 2 qt iced tea maker as a gift years ago. It makes great tea quickly with no effort. I can use bags or loose tea. The latter is much better. ( A friend who used to work for a tea company in the UK told me that tea bags were invented as a way of selling the "sweepings" -- stems and leaf pieces left over after packaging loose tea. I don't know, but loose tea always seems to taste better to me.)

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: travelerjjm

                    I can't think of a product that disappointed me more than Luzianne tea. I made it according to the package directions, which I no longer remember, and when it was done it tasted like nothing. As if I had just made ice water. Only it was brown.

                    It was clear, though.

                    Can anyone explain the appeal? I really wanted to like it, but nothing.

                  2. I brew iced tea several times a week.

                    I heat water in a whistling tea kettle.

                    While that's heating, I put two family size decaf tea bags, one family size green tea bag, and then a combination of four or five regular sized tea bags of various things like Oolong, Jasmine, Black Currant, Raspberry, etc. (BUT, the two decaf and one green are always my "base".)

                    I pour the hot water over the bags in an old drip coffee carafe and sometimes let it steep overnight or all day.

                    I pour the concentrated tea in a pitcher and into the fridge it goes.

                    I dilute it about four or five to one in a mason jar full of ice, pour in a tablespoon of turbinado sugar, screw on the lid shake to dissolve.

                    I go through gallons of the stuff.

                    1. I have not tried it but heard that adding boiling water to the cloudy tea makes to dissapear.

                      1. If you want true Southern ice tea or sweet tea, you gotta go with Luzianne or Lipton. I'm a Luzianne man personally and I always put the bag in cold water in the pot and then crank it on high till right before it begins to boil and then cut the stovetop off. Let it steep for 30 mins then dump, put sugar in the pitcher, then fill it up with water and a handful of ice to cool it down.

                        Mine is never cloudy, although sweet tea is simple so I wouldn't fret over it. As long as it tastes great a little cloudy won't hurt it. Can't stress over the small things! But a pretty and clear pitcher of tea is a beauty when you're having company over to eat outside on the patio or deck on a hot summer evening.