Spiked Iced Tea Rum Cocktail Recipe

A close up of a glass of cold tea

Sharing is caring!

Warm weather calls for iced tea, and cocktails on the patio. So I have combined them both in this Spiked Iced Tea Cocktail. Please enjoy alcohol responsibly.

A glass on a table, with Iced tea


Iced Tea or Sweet Tea: What’s the Difference?

You’ve probably noticed cold glasses of tea being called iced tea and also sweet tea. They are basically the same thing with one difference, sugar. Sweet tea is a staple in the southern USA, where tea is brewed and heavily sweetened, cooled and served over ice. 

Although iced tea is also often sweet, it can be lightly or completely unsweetened. Iced tea in the south is unsweetened.

2 glasses of spiked iced tea with lemon slices

Brewed Tea vs Powdered Mix

Here in the North, when we have iced tea, it is often a commercial product from a can or bottle or a powdered mix stirred into water. However, real brewed or steeped tea is far superior to any commercial product and it’s really easy to make, and also inexpensive and delicious, too. In fact, if you aren’t adding sugar, you don’t even need to boil the water. And if you are adding sugar, you get to control how much.

A close up of a glass of cold tea

The Many Types of Tea

Did you know that all tea comes from the same plant? The differences between white, green, and black teas all have to do with what part of the plant it’s from, when it’s harvested, where the tea is grown, and how long it’s dried, among other factors. Within each one of those three tea varieties are many sub-varieties and blends that give different teas their distinct characteristics. If you would like to learn more about tea, I found this fascinating read: Different Types of Tea Explained

.One glass of spiked iced tea with lemon slice

What Type of Tea To Use

I used black tea for this spiked iced tea, specifically orange pekoe. Black tea stands up well to the rum in this cocktail. I brewed the tea to be quite strong and with the rum, lemon, and brown sugar, it’s delicious, and the tea flavour is not overpowered, but instead, complimented perfectly by the rum and lemon.

A glass of tea on a table

What Sweetener to Use

Although you can simply use refined white sugar, brown sugar, especially dark brown sugar, is especially nice in this spiked tea. The hint of molasses is perfect with the rum. You can also try demerara sugar or coconut sugar for the same effect.

Two glasses on a table, with Iced tea

What Type of Rum To Use

There are four different types of rum. Here are the basics:

  • White rum is not aged for very long and is the mildest in flavour. It’s the rum of choice for mojitos, like this Red Currant Mojito and in pina coladas.
  • Amber rum is aged for longer and has more of a caramel flavour. It’s the rum that I used in this tea cocktail recipe, and also the one you’ll find in a Mai Tai, or a Cuba Libre (rum & coke).
  • Dark rum has been aged the longest and has a deep, smoky flavour. Dark rum has the strongest flavour, and it’s often sipped on its own. Besides cocktaisl like the Dark & Stormy, dark rum is wonderful in recipes, like these Spiced Rum Grilled Peaches 
  • Spiced rum is a dark rum with added spice.

I recommend the amber variety in this cocktail recipe. It complements the tea perfectly without overpowering it. 

two glasses of spiked liced tea with ice cubes and lemon slices

Can You Keep This Drink In The Fridge?

This recipe makes eight 16-ounce drinks, so it is a big batch and perfect for entertaining. Ideally, you should use it within a day. After that, the sugar in the mixture will start fermenting, and the taste will probably be off. If you won’t be able to use it all in one day, instead, try cutting the recipe in half.

More Cocktails

Summer is the perfect time for cocktails on the deck, porch or patio. Here are a few more delicious sippers for you to try: 

A glass on a table, with Iced tea

Spiked Iced Tea Cocktail

Spiked Iced Tea is a delicious and refreshing summer sipper.
4.91 from 11 votes
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Servings 8
Calories 199 kcal


  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 8 black tea bags
  • 2 cups amber rum
  • 2 lemons sliced


  • Put 4 cups of water and the sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
  • Stir to dissolve the sugar. When the mixture comes to a boil, remove from heat
  • Add the teabags and allow to steep about 2 hours
  • Pour the tea into a one-gallon pitcher
  • Add rum and lemon slices, top up with cold water to fill and stir
  • Put in the fridge to chill for several hours or overnight
  • Serve over ice in glasses


This drink is not overly sweet. Add more (or less) sugar depending on your preference
Steep the tea for a shorter or longer time for a weaker or stronger tea.
Add ice to glasses, and not to the pitcher, to avoid watering the drink down.
Tip: Brew extra tea to freeze in ice cube trays. Use in place of ice and your drink won't be watered down.


Serving: 1gCalories: 199kcalCarbohydrates: 16gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 5mgPotassium: 56mgFiber: 1gSugar: 14gVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 18mgIron: 1mg
Keyword brown sugar, iced tea, rum, rum cocktail, tea
Tried this recipe? What changes did you make?Let us know how it was!
























20 thoughts on “Spiked Iced Tea Rum Cocktail Recipe

  1. What a refreshing (and possibly dangerous lol) patio sipper! I love iced tea and could see myself having a little hot weather day drinking session with these real soon. Yum!

  2. I love this recipe! I’m always looking for batch cocktails to make when entertaining (although currently on pause with hosting!), and this is perfect. Can’t wait to make it for my friends when we can sadly gather again.

  3. I worked at a fly-in fishing camp in Kenora, ON one summer when I was a teenager. Since most of the guests were American, I was introduced to what I was told was REAL iced tea. At first I was horrified that it had no sugar, but by the end of the summer, I was used to it (and I snuck in a little sugar haha). I love that you can control the sugar in this drink, but also that it’s spiked because SPIKED is truly my fave kind of iced tea!

  4. Ooh, now I need to find myself some amber rum! This will be perfect for sipping while enjoying food on the patio.

  5. This iced tea spiked with rum looks fantastic! What a nice drink for the summer to sip in good company!

  6. IN the summertime I am addicted to iced tea! This looks like a great adult drink for my next BBQ!

  7. This spiked iced tea is delicious and refreshing! I love the flavor of ice tea and the kick of rum. Perfect for the summertime!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.