Learn how to make some simple, soothing, instant friendship tea. What is friendship tea? Basic homemade friendship tea, also known as Russian tea, spiced tea, or Tang tea, is a hot beverage made with Tang, lemonade, instant tea, some cinnamon and ground cloves. It makes a delicious, homemade Mason jar holiday gift. In addition to the ingredients for basic friendship tea, you will also find frugal and sugar free friendship tea recipes. Any one of these friendship tea recipes would be ideal to serve at a kids tea party. Friendship tea is also a perfect hot, cozy drink to relax with on a cold rainy day with a cozy mystery book in your hand. What is in a soothing cup of spiced tea? Read on for the easy friendship tea recipes!
My Friendship Tea Backstory
From the time my sister and I were quite young, our dear Canadian grandmother allowed us to choose a fine china cup and saucer with which to enjoy afternoon tea. What a brave grandmother! We were very careful, and the teacups remained undamaged. Our favorite tea to sip was a wonderful concoction we called Russian tea, but is also known, as noted above, as friendship tea. We always had the special tea on hand in our house when I was growing up.
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Fast Forward to Drinking Friendship Tea as an Adult
Now that I have a home and family of my own, the friendship tea tradition has continued. These days, in my houseful of guys, the tea is served in mugs rather than fine china teacups. It’s most requested when someone is feeling under the weather. As a school librarian, I’m constantly surrounded by sniffles, sneezes, coughs, and wheezes. I don’t even like to think about where those books might have been. Despite the constant hand-washing, some type of bug occasionally manages to invade our household. When that happens, I turn to friendship tea. What is friendship tea made of? Here are the ingredients for friendship tea:
Basic Friendship Tea Ingredients
1/2 cup unsweetened instant Lipton tea
1 cup Countrytime lemonade mix
2 cups Tang orange drink mix
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4-1/2 cup sugar (optional)
Place all ingredients in a 2 quart Mason jar or other container with lid and shake or roll around to combine. To serve, mix 2 teaspoons of Friendship Tea with 1 cup of boiling water. For a larger mug, use 3 teaspoons, or to taste.
Easy Friendship Tea Recipes
- 1 2-quart Mason jar
- ½ cup unsweetened instant Lipton tea mix
- 1 cup Countrytime lemonade mix
- 2 cups Tang orange drink mix
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼-½ cup sugar (optional)
- Place all ingredients in a 2 quart Mason jar or other container with lid and shake or roll around to combine.
- To serve, mix 2 teaspoons of Friendship Tea with 1 cup of boiling water. For a larger mug, use 3 teaspoons, or to taste.
Frugal Friendship Tea Recipe
To save money, you can substitute the Countrytime lemonade mix (which can be a bit spendy) with a 3 1/4 ounce envelope of powdered lemonade mix (like KoolAid) and 1 cup of sugar. You can also purchase generic powdered orange drink mix in the bulk food section of a store like Winco. The cinnamon and ground cloves can also be purchased in the bulk food section. If you can find a generic instant tea mix, that’s even better.
Reduced Sugar and Sugar-Free Friendship Tea Recipes
If you wish to reduce the sugar, you may substitute the sugar and lemonade mix with 1 cup of powdered sugar-free lemonade mix. If you want to make a completely sugar-free friendship tea recipe, you can purchase Tang Zero Sugar packets. Use enough packets to equal one cup.
One More Special Ingredient in this Friendship Tea Recipe
When I think of drinking a cup of friendship tea, I get a warm feeling inside. I think that’s because my earliest memories of drinking it are filled with thoughts of love for my grandmother. Love makes everything taste better! No wonder I feel so soothed and relaxed when I drink this special spiced tea. It really does help me feel better right away, both mentally and physically.
Make Friendship Tea Recipes Even Easier
If you are a regular consumer of tea, you probably already have an electric tea kettle. If you have never owned one, but drink a lot of hot beverages, you might consider adding this handy device to your kitchen collection. After only a few minutes, a nice pot of boiling water is ready for you to use. Mine is similar to this one:
What to Serve with Friendship Tea
Friendship tea makes an ideal addition to any breakfast or tea party menu. It can be served alongside breakfast main dishes, such as make ahead breakfast casserole or easy breakfast skillet. For an afternoon teatime treat, serve friendship tea with decadent orange chocolate scones, buttery cinnamon shortbread cookies, or white chocolate raspberry scones. The options are many!
More Tea Inspiration
Thinking of working one of these friendship tea recipes into your tea party recipe collection? It’s always nice to have a plan when it comes to meals or parties. If you’re looking for a way to get more organized with your meal planning efforts, I’ve got something for you. Free, editable meal planners! The templates can be used over and over, as often as you need them. You can make as many duplicates as you like, and you’ll be able to save old meal plans for future reference. I hope it simplifies things for you.
You might also be interested in reading about some of my other easy recipes, like Easy Wassail. If you would like even more recipe ideas, consider following my Easy Recipes board on Pinterest. Wishing you good health and many opportunities to relax and enjoy a cozy cup of friendship tea.
Lisa Mitchell is a wife, mom, and school librarian who likes to create and share recipes, often using fresh ingredients from her family’s small Pacific Northwest farm. For more delicious, easy recipes, click on over to the Food page.