Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan.
Once boiling, remove from the heat and add the tea bags. Steep for 5 minutes.
Remove the tea bags from the water, squeezing any excess tea out with a pair of tongs.
Transfer the tea into a large pitcher with 4 additional cups of water and baking soda.
Using the same saucepan, add the remaining 2 cups of water, strawberries, and sugar, and bring to a low simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove the strawberries from the heat and allow the syrup to cool.
Strain the strawberries through a fine mesh sieve into a small cup or pitcher, pressing the juice out of the berries.
Add the syrup to the large pitcher with tea and stir.
Pour and serve over ice.
Storage:Store your strawberry sweet tea covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.Tips:
This is SWEET tea, however, you can reduce the sugar by half and taste a fruitier flavor. Add lemon juice for some zest.
For the most intense strawberry flavor, this recipe tastes best with very ripe strawberries. While you can enjoy it all year round, strawberry sweet tea is best in the summer when strawberries are in season and at their juiciest.
Start with cold water. Tannins are released when you boil warm or room temperature water and can make your tea cloudy.
Don’t skip the steeping. The steep time extracts the best flavor from the tea bags. But don’t steep too long, or you’ll end up with bitter tea.
Add ice to each glass, not the pitcher. Adding ice to the pitcher can water down the tea before you serve it, so put the ice in each individual glass instead.