Making sun tea is kind of like cheating. In the best way. It sounds fancy and tastes delicious, but requires less effort than you'd think. Our Summer Goddess Sun Tea recipe is from this week's resident natural beauty expert, Jessa Blades. It's a bright, floral variation on the iced tea you're probably already drinking. Sweetened with a brown sugar and chamomile syrup and packed with vitamin C-rich hibiscus and rose petals, this version is as tasty as it is nutritional. It's also showstoppingly pretty.
Photographs by Erin Boyle.
Above: Dried hibiscus and rose petals make a ruby-colored sun tea.
Above: Jessa blends equal parts dried rose and hibiscus flowers to make her Summer Goddess tea.
Above: Leave your tea in a sunny window or a fire escape for an hour or two to steep.
Above: Organic brown sugar is a healthier alternative to refined white sugar, which is typically used in simple syrups.
Above: Chamomile flowers steep in the simple syrup.
Above: Strain syrup into a clean container and keep refrigerated.
Summer Goddess Sun Tea
- Equal parts dried rose and hibiscus flowers, blended
- 1-3 teaspoons of flowers per 8 oz of water
Brew sun tea by leaving a jar of water and flower petals in a sunny window for an hour or two. The hibiscus imparts its flavor quickly, so the tea doesn't take long to brew. A caveat: there's some risk of bacteria growth when making sun tea. If you think you'll leave your tea out for more than a couple of hours, consider brewing it overnight in the refrigerator instead, or making it the old-fashioned way with boiling water. If you use boiling water, pour it over dried flowers, cover, and let sit for 10 minutes before straining.
If you'd rather not blend your own tea, Jessa sells the pre-blended Summer Goddess Tea through her website.
Brown Sugar Chamomile Syrup
- 1 cup organic brown sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup dried chamomile flowers
In a medium saucepan combine sugar and water. Bring to a boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and add chamomile flowers and cover with a lid. Jessa likes to add one cup of flowers for a strong chamomile flavor. If you prefer a more subtle flavor, add just a half cup of flowers. Allow to cool and then strain into a clean container and enjoy. Syrup can be refrigerated for up to one month.
Sweeten your sun tea to taste and enjoy (preferably from your spot in a Nap-Worthy Hammock).
To learn more from Jessa, see How to Get That Summer Glow: Natural Beauty Advice from Jessa Blades.