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Old 07-18-2007, 10:33 AM   #1
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Can I make iced tea with a machine?

I've been trying to not drink so much cola and instead drink tea which I like more and has less suger and more caffiene. Iced tea comes in 2-liters at the store, but it has too much sugar, 8/11 as much as cola does. I like a little sugar but not like that. Can I make iced tea with a a coffee maker? I know I can boil a pot of water, but that takes a long time and half the time I forget it and ruin the pot. So, I want to make it with a coffee machine or any other type of machine that's not very expensive. Can I do that?

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Old 07-18-2007, 10:39 AM   #2
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Iced Tea Makers are available at Amazon.com. I am sure you could also find one at Target, Wally World, Martha-Mart, Linens 'N' Stuff or Bed, Bath, and All That Other Junk.
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Old 07-18-2007, 10:44 AM   #3
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Tea is properly brewed with boiling water. Coffee makers do not get water nearly that hot. You can do it but the flavor may be lacking.
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Old 07-18-2007, 10:49 AM   #4
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Typically, I make tea in a pot, but it does work in a coffee pot.

Iíve made iced tea in a coffee pot many times (first out of curiosity, and many times because I was being lazy). It comes out fine. I would make a full pot with 8 tea bags in the hopper, and then pour that into a gallon pitcher with sugar and enough water to make a full gallon. Works fine. If you want stronger tea, use a few more bags. Since the tea bags arenít going to steep in the water (as they would in a pot), coffee pot tea can be a little weaker than had you made it in a pot.

You can also get an iced tea machine which is really just a coffee pot of sorts reserved only for tea.
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Old 07-18-2007, 10:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keltin
Typically, I make tea in a pot, but it does work in a coffee pot.

Iíve made iced tea in a coffee pot many times (first out of curiosity, and many times because I was being lazy). It comes out fine. I would make a full pot with 8 tea bags in the hopper, and then pour that into a gallon pitcher with sugar and enough water to make a full gallon. Works fine. If you want stronger tea, use a few more bags. Since the tea bags arenít going to steep in the water (as they would in a pot), coffee pot tea can be a little weaker than had you made it in a pot.

You can also get an iced tea machine which is really just a coffee pot of sorts reserved only for tea.

I suppose you could put the teabags directly into the pot and let the water run into it then leave it to steep while being heated by the coffee maker.
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
I suppose you could put the teabags directly into the pot and let the water run into it then leave it to steep while being heated by the coffee maker.
What I did once (back when I used the coffee pot for tea) was to pull the bags out of the hopper and drop them into the pot and let it sit there and steep for a while. Turned out much better.
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:19 AM   #7
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When I make ice tea I boil 1/2 the amount of water I need and place all the teabags in it and let it steep. After that, I remove the tea bags and add the other half water, cold. It takes less time to cool that way and works just fine as far as I am concerned.

I also use an electric type kettle to boil quicker.

For sweetener, I often use stevia, a natural stevia with a very low glycemic index. Sometimes I combine the stevia with raw cane sugar.
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:43 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riker1384
... I want to make it with a coffee machine or any other type of machine that's not very expensive. Can I do that?
Iced tea machines are designed to make tea quickly. As a result, the tea I made in the one I had always came out cloudy.

Since I drink more coffee than I do tea, the tea made with my coffee maker always had a slight coffee taste.

I now boil water in a kettle and pour boiling water over a family size teabag in a Pyrex carafe. The tea bag is then removed after a certain amount of time. After that cools, water is added to dilute the tea to the right strength.

I prefer unsweetened tea. "Milo's" brand tea is available at the grocery stores around here and is quite popular with people who prefer sweetened tea. My understanding is that they sweeten with brown sugar.

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Old 07-18-2007, 11:54 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomW
I prefer unsweetened tea. "Milo's" brand tea is available at the grocery stores around here and is quite popular with people who prefer sweetened tea. My understanding is that they sweeten with brown sugar.
Tom
I LOVE Miloís! Iíve gotten lazy about iced tea lately, and Miloís sweetened tea is just right for me.

I still do make tea on occasion (like when I run out of Miloís and donít feel like going to the store), and my preferred method is to put 8 bags (Lipton) in a large pot, add 2 quarts water and bring to a boil, cover with lid and remove from heat. After a few minutes of steeping, I pour it into a gallon pitcher with sugar and add enough water to make a gallon. Works every time.
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Old 07-18-2007, 12:12 PM   #10
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I make my own mint ice tea. Peppermint(washed) from the front yard about enough stems that bent up it loosely fills an 8 cup measure. Put it in a 6 qt stock pot add 2 qts cold water and 6 tea bags. As it begins to heat and the water darkens I use a french rolling pin as a giant bar muddler to further crush the mint. When it just gets to a rolling boil it is done. I put 1/3 cup sugar in two 1/2 gallon pitchers and strain the tea. 1 qt to each pitcher. Pile in the ice to make to the top. Stir, taste maybe add some lemon or just a sprig of mint to the glass. When the mint is lush I'll skip the sugar.

I have but don't use a Mr. Ice Tea machine because it can't handle the mint. It is set up like a Mr. Coffee but uses its own 1/2 gallon ice tea pitcher instead of a coffee pot.
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Old 07-18-2007, 01:37 PM   #11
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A pitcher of iced tea takes 10 minutes to make.

Fill pitcher 3/4 with HOT tap water, pour into a sauce pan with 8 or so tea bags, boil for 4-5 minutes or until it looks like tea. Squeeze the bags with tongs and discard. Cut 2 lemons into wedges, pour the tea back into the pitcher, add the lemons and fill with ice.....10 minutes tops.

You'll want the tea in the pot to be a little strong. The ice will dilute it some and cool it off.
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Old 07-18-2007, 02:49 PM   #12
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We have the Ice Tea Pot by Mr. Coffee. It makes great tea - we use it every single day, year round.
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Old 07-18-2007, 03:12 PM   #13
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Since others are giving recommendations for their favorite brand of tea I'll add mine. I like Luzianne brand tea. I use 4 family size tea bags to make 1 gallon of iced tea.

Just boil a tea kettle full of water. Pour boiling water into tea pitcher. Add the tea bags to water. Place a lid on the pitcher and allow the tea to steep for 30 -45 minutes. Remove the tea bags and squeeze them out. Fill the pitcher with cold water.
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Old 07-19-2007, 07:27 PM   #14
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I just get out my 1/2 gal. pitcher and add room temp water with 5 teabags and wait about a half hour til the color is reasonably dark. drink over ice.

I never learned to like sweet tea. Years ago I lived in Briton. People would look and see me drinking unsweeted black tea and I could see they wondered "what kind of nut case is this guy".
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Old 07-19-2007, 07:41 PM   #15
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I have the Mr. Coffee Ice Tea Maker too & really like it. Have had it for many years now & it still works fast & great with all types of tea. I particularly enjoy making different flavored teas using herbs from the garden (lavender, lemon verbena, mint, etc.).

While I've never used my coffeemaker for tea, I suppose it would work, but can't help but think the oils from using it for coffee all the time would somehow leave their mark in the tea.
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Old 07-19-2007, 09:39 PM   #16
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My brother and his wife have a Mr. Coffee coffee maker. They use it all the time to make tea. They put the tea bags into the glass "pot" and add water to the reservoir and brew the tea that way. They've been doing that for more years than I can count. All they have to do is to use a good coffee pot cleaner in the glass pot portion occasionally to remove any tea/coffee stains or tastes.
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Old 07-21-2007, 08:49 AM   #17
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Thanks, I'm looking at some of the machines. It says you can use loose tea. That's supposed to be better than tea bags, right? I've only ever used bags. Also, I assume if I leave out the ice that I could also use these things to brew hot tea?

There's one question that's hopefully addressed in the owner's manuals. If you put ice in the machine, and then leave the pitcher in the fridge, then the ice melts and dilutes it. Now, the ice could help cool it down faster, but you'd have to account for it and make the tea stronger.

As far as hot tap water goes, I've read that you're not supposed to drink it, it's not necessarily as clean as cold tap water.
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Old 07-21-2007, 10:12 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riker1384
As far as hot tap water goes, I've read that you're not supposed to drink it, it's not necessarily as clean as cold tap water.
The problem with ingesting hot tap water is it is being stored in a fibreglas lined tank, which has been in place for who knows how many years, with that number of years accumulation of gunk that comes through your pipes lying inside it.
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Old 07-21-2007, 10:22 AM   #19
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We use tea bags in our Ice Tea machine. What you do is make a concentrated mix and when it is done brewing you add cold water to fill the pitcher.
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Old 07-21-2007, 10:25 AM   #20
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Riker1384 - here's how it works with my Mr. Coffee Ice Tea Maker:

First, the pitcher is large & plastic, so is not meant to be used with hot liquids.

Second, it's true that you can use either teabags (with the paper tags removed) or loose tea leaves. If you use loose tea, then you need to use a paper coffee filter in the brew basket. Using loose tea & a paper filter also allows you to add lemon slices, sweeteners, herbs, etc., right in with the tea for instant flavoring (lavender, lemon, & mint are my favorites).

The ice doesn't go into the machine itself. You fill the machine with plain water, fill the plastic pitcher up to a certain line with ice, the machine heats the water & sends it thru the brew basket - just like with a regular drip coffee machine - & the ice already in the pitcher dilutes & cools it. There are also variations you can use as to tea strength by substituting some or all of the pitcher ice with plain cold water right off the bat.

When the brewing cycle is done (about 15 minutes or so), you remove the brew basket & replace it with the pitcher top & stick said pitcher in the fridge.
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