Arnold Palmer (Iced Tea and Lemonade)

A mix of iced tea and lemonade, an Arnold Palmer is a popular summertime drink. My Arnold Palmer drink is refined and made from scratch. Make it all summer!

Layered Arnold Palmer drink


What is an Arnold Palmer Drink?

The Arnold Palmer drink is named after the famous golfer, Arnold Palmer. It’s a drink he would order made of iced tea with lemonade.

The order he would get was three parts unsweetened iced tea to one part lemonade but it’s also made with half lemonade and half iced tea. 

My preference is half iced tea and half lemonade, and that’s the recipe I’ve created here.

Cold Brew Iced Tea

One thing that sets apart my Arnold Palmer drink from others (and what I’m sure makes it better) is that I make it with cold brew iced tea.

It’s how I make the best iced tea and it really makes a difference. The drink is mellow, smooth, and refined.

Is There Caffeine in an Arnold Palmer Drink?

Yes, there’s iced tea made with black tea in this Arnold Palmer recipe so there is caffeine in this drink.

RELATED: How to Make the Best Iced Tea (Cold Brew It!)

Arnold Palmer drink ingredients

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What I Used to Make This Arnold Palmer Drink

Arnold Palmer drink

How to Make an Arnold Palmer Drink

  1. Make cold brewed tea.
  2. Make simple syrup.
  3. Squeeze lemon and make lemonade.
  4. Combine lemonade and iced tea.

Ok, so this seems super simple and it is, but there is a BUT: the first part about the cold brewed tea? That part takes at least 8 hours. I know, I know.

Are you still with me? Whew.

Ok, let me show you how I make this!

Cold brewed tea

First step with my version of an Arnold Palmer drink is cold brewing tea.

Combine 1.5 tablespoons of loose leaf black tea into two cups of room temperature water.

I used Assam black tea but you can use any black tea you prefer. Other great options are Earl Grey,English Breakfast,and Orange Pekoe.

Leave on the counter for about 30 minutes then let it cold brew in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours.

It takes forever (well, at least 8 hours) but it’s completely worth it.

RELATED: Cold Brew Iced Tea Makers

Arnold Palmer simple syrup

The next step is the simple syrup. You can make this in advance and keep it in the refrigerator.

Simple syrup is just sugar water. Sugar and water come to a boil until the sugar is completely dissolved. It’s just a couple of minutes on the stovetop.

Why simple syrup instead of just adding sugar to the drink? It’s to make sure that the sugar gets well incorporated into the drink. No more sugar just laying at the bottom of the cup.

You can use any sweetener like honey or maple syrup you like as long as it gets fully diluted in water.

RELATED: Refreshing Matcha Lemonade

Arnold Palmer lemonade ingredients

Just one large lemon was all that it took for this recipe. If you’re using small lemons, use two.

Squeeze the lemon to get 1/3 cup of lemon juice. I like to strain out the seeds and the pulp of the lemon using a mesh strainer.

Arnold Palmer drink recipe

Make the lemonade by combining the lemon juice, simple syrup, and cold water. I like to store it in these handy tall Weck jars.

RELATED: The Best Homemade Thai Iced Tea

Arnold Palmer drink

Time to make the drinks! This recipe makes about four cups of half lemonade and half cold brewed tea.

I’m using these adorable short Weck jars to serve the drinks.

Start with filling the cup 1/3 full with lemonade. Add ice, filling to 2/3 of the way up.

How to make an Arnold Palmer drink

Add the cold brewed tea.

The drink will be layered thanks to the sweetened lemonade and the ice. The sugar is what helps to create the layered effect.

When ready to drink, make sure to stir the lemonade and the iced tea together.

RELATED: Earl Grey Iced Tea with Cream Froth

Arnold Palmer Drink Recipe Tips

  • The lemonade can be made at the same time as the cold brewed iced tea and can be stored in the refrigerator until the tea is ready.
  • I used black tea but cold brewed green tea will work just as well with the lemonade.
  • Cold brewed tea is milder and less astringent with practically no bitterness. This gives this Arnold Palmer a more refined taste than hot brewed tea.
  • To make this drink the same way Arnold Palmer ordered it, use three parts iced tea and one part lemonade.
  • To create the layered effect, make sure to add the lemonade first.

Arnold Palmer drink recipe

Arnold Palmer (Iced Tea and Lemonade)

Arnold Palmer (Iced Tea and Lemonade)

Yield: Makes 4 servings

Layered Arnold Palmer drink (half lemonade and half iced tea).


Cold Brew Iced Tea


  • 1 2/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice (juice from 1 large lemon)
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • Ice


Make Cold Brewed Tea

  1. Put room temperature water and tea in a container and let sit on the countertop for 30 minutes.
  2. Place tea in refrigerator for at least 8 hours to cold brew.

Make Lemonade

  1. Make the simple syrup by bringing to boil sugar and 1/3 cup water. Make sure sugar is completely dissolved in water. Set aside to cool.
  2. Squeeze one large lemon to get 1/3 cup lemon juice.
  3. Combine lemon juice, simple syrup, and 1 1/3 cup water to make lemonade.

Make Arnold Palmer Drink

  1. Pour lemonade in cup, 1/3 full.
  2. Add ice.
  3. Pour in cold brewed tea on top.
  4. Stir before drinking.

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