There are few refreshing sips as iconic as McDonald’s sweet tea. With its perfect balance of sweetness and subtle citrus notes, this beloved beverage has become a staple of the fast food chain’s menu. For many, it’s the quintessential companion to a Big Mac and fries on a hot summer day.

While McDonald’s keeps the full recipe for their sweet tea a closely guarded secret, home cooks need not despair. With a few simple ingredients and a bit of know-how, you can easily whip up a copycat version right in your own kitchen. Here’s how to make your own McDonald’s-style sweet tea:

1. Copycat McDonald’s Sweet Tea


  • 6 cups water
  • 4 family-size black tea bags
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 lemon, sliced into rounds
  • fresh mint leaves (optional)


Bring the water to a boil in a large saucepan. Remove from heat and add the tea bags. Allow to steep for 5-7 minutes.

Remove the tea bags and stir in the sugar until fully dissolved.

Let the tea cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

When ready to serve, fill glasses with ice and pour in the chilled sweet tea. Garnish each glass with a lemon slice and a sprig of mint if desired

The key to nailing that signature McDonald’s flavor is getting the perfect balance of sweetness. The 3/4 cup of sugar may seem like a lot, but it’s what gives the tea its trademark rich, syrupy texture. Feel free to adjust the sugar to your personal taste preferences.

Once you’ve mastered the basic recipe, you can get creative with mix-ins and flavor variations. Try adding a splash of lemon or lime juice, a few sprigs of fresh mint, or even a dash of vanilla extract.

No matter how you customize it, this copycat McDonald’s sweet tea is sure to transport you to a warm summer day and satisfy that nostalgic craving. Sip, savor, and enjoy the taste of the golden arches from the comfort of your own home.

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julia jane

Julia Jane is a home cook inspired by her mother's cooking. With the desire to share my cooking experiences with everyone, she created this website

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