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+ servings

Starbucks Iced Black Tea Copycat

Author: Jee Choe
A refreshing and flavorful drink, this Starbucks Iced Black tea copycat is made with just 3 ingredients in 5 minutes!
4.9 from 7 votes
Prep Time 2 mins
Steep Time 3 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Drinks
Yield1 serving (16 ounces)



  • Put tea bags and hot water into a teapot.
    Instead of using boiling hot water, use simmered water to steep tea. Simmer water on the stovetop or use an electric kettle with a temperature setting. Set the water temperature to 190°F.
  • Cover and steep for 3 minutes. Discard tea bags.
    Steeping for longer may make your tea bitter.
  • Put ice and hot tea into a cocktail shaker. Shake 10 times.
    Put ice in first, then the hot tea. If you want to add sweetener, add it into the cocktail shaker with the hot tea and ice.
  • Pour drink into a cup.
    Empty everything from the cocktail shaker into the cup.


  • English Breakfast tea is a blend of black teas and every brand makes a different mix. Starbucks uses Teavana's English Breakfast tea to make their black teas but you can use any English Breakfast tea from any brand since they all have similar tasting notes.
  • If you don't have English Breakfast tea bags, any black tea blend (Irish Breakfast, Scottish Breakfast, etc.) or Assam tea will work.
  • To use loose tea, replace the 2 tea bags with 1 heaping tablespoon of English Breakfast tea.
  • Use an electric kettle to set the correct temperature to boil water. Not all tea should be made using boiling hot water.
  • Don't oversteep! Steeping more than the recommended time will make your tea taste bitter.
  • The more vigorously you shake the iced tea, the more foam you’ll see on the surface. If you like a lot of foam, shake it 40 times.
  • Starbucks uses Teavana’s black tea concentrate to make their iced tea, but the concentrate and the tea bags aren't available for purchase. Tazo's Awake English Breakfast tea bags is very close in taste to the one at Starbucks. Tazo also sells an Unsweetened Iced Black Tea concentrate, but DO NOT get this since it tastes gross and has a weird aftertaste.
  • If possible, use filtered water for a better tasting tea. Starbucks uses triple filtered water to make their drinks.

Ways to Sweeten Iced Tea

Starbucks Iced Black Tea doesn't come sweetened and neither does this copycat recipe, but it's easy to make this drink sweet. Add simple syrup to taste, or start with 2 tablespoons of syrup into the cocktail shaker with the hot tea and ice.
Always use simple syrup for cold drinks since it's easier to mix into the iced beverage.
  • Simple syrup
    The easiest way to sweeten a cold drink is with simple syrup. Making your own simple syrup is quick and easy, using just 2 ingredients.
  • Brown sugar simple syrup
    Instead of regular simple syrup, add brown sugar simple syrup to give your drink a richer, caramel sweetness.
  • Vanilla syrup
    Use store-bought or homemade vanilla syrup to add a flavor boost to black tea.
  • Lemon syrup
    Brighten up your iced tea with homemade lemon syrup.
  • Rose syrup
    Rose flavored syrup isn't a syrup option at Starbucks, but if you love floral flavors, add rose syrup to your iced tea.
  • Honey syrup
    If you want a more traditional sweetener to go with black tea, add honey syrup. It'll mix better in iced tea than honey itself.


Calories: 1 | Carbohydrates: 1g | Sodium: 24mg | Potassium: 1mg | Calcium: 14mg
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