It’s almost Derby day! Make this simple and delicious twist on the classic Mint Julep to celebrate the Kentucky Derby or just to enjoy spending some time on your porch swing this summer. Mint Julep Sweet Tea is a light and easy recipe that you can make for a crowd.
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How to Make Sweet Tea Mint Juleps
I throw a Kentucky Derby party every year, and I also love entertaining during the summer in our backyard. This Sweet Tea Mint Julep is perfect for both occasions! It is as simple as making a pitcher of sweet tea, muddle in some mint, and adding some of the best Kentucky bourbon you have. You can mix it all in the same pitcher, and pour over ice for a refreshing summer drink.
The one thing that I like about this take on the Mint Julep is that it isn’t quite as strong as the original. It still has a nice bourbon and mint flavor, but it is MUCH easier to drink with the addition of a pitcher of sweet tea. You can definitely sip on these throughout the afternoon.
Mint Julep Sweet Tea Recipe
Using fresh mint to make this summer bourbon drink recipe is important. The sweet tea is packed full of it and really gives the julep it’s fresh flavor. Every summer, I buy a starter plant (or two!) at the local nursery and plant it in a container on my back porch. It lasts all summer because mint LOVES to grow and spread.
Sweet Tea Mint Juleps
Perfect for summer parties and of course, the Kentucky Derby!
Mint Sugar Syrup
- 1 cup water
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 10-12 fresh mint leaves
- 3 quarts water
- 4 pitcher-size cold brew tea bags (I like Luzianne)
- 1 cup Kentucky Bourbon
- mint leaves, for garnish
- lemon slices, for garnish
Bring 1 cup of water, sugar, and mint leaves to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat. Simmer until sugar is dissolved. You can leave the mint leaves in, or strain them out.
In a separate large pot, boil the 3 quarts of water. Add the tea bags and let steep for 5-10 minutes. Remove tea bags.
Pour tea into a large pitcher. Add sugar mixture and stir. Add Bourbon and mix.
Pour tea into cups over ice and garnish with mint and lemon slices. Enjoy!
Tips for Making Sweet Tea Mint Juleps
- As mentioned above, using fresh mint is key to the perfect recipe!
- Choose good quality tea. I like cold brew tea bags by Luzianne – because that’s what Paula Deen says you should use. HA!!
- You can use whatever Bourbon you have on your bar cart, but I really like using Woodford Reserve (the official bourbon of the Kentucky Derby) or Bulleit. They’re both great!
- For added Derby day fun, use traditional Mint Julep Cups. They’re a great way to enjoy Mint Julep Sweet Tea, my Mint Julep Lemonade, or original Mint Juleps.
More Mint Julep Recipes and Kentucky Derby Party Ideas:
- Mint Julep Lemonade
- Mint Julep Jello Shots
- Kentucky Derby Berries & Cream with Bourbon
- Personalized Kentucky Derby Invitation
- Kentucky Derby Party Ideas