Watermelon Sweet Tea in a glass garnished with mint.

Watermelon Sweet Tea

Say cheers to summer with Watermelon Sweet Tea! Perfect for your next barbecue, this recipe is from Ed Mitchell’s Barbeque by Ed and Ryan Mitchell.

Watermelon Sweet Tea in a glass garnished with mint.
Watermelon Sweet Tea

Watermelon Sweet Tea – Cool off at your next barbecue with a cold glass of watermelon sweet tea! This recipe is a refreshing way to enjoy summer and is from Ed Mitchell’s Barbeque by Ed and Ryan Mitchell.

A glass of Watermelon Sweet Tea with a pitcher in the background.

When it comes to barbecue, I’ve got a bucket list. It’s a short list but involves traveling throughout the country to taste regional bests. And on the top of that list is a visit to North Carolina to experience firsthand how Ed Mitchell and his son Ryan are preserving and continuing the legacy of whole-hog barbecue.

Their story is incredible and touching, and I was happy to welcome Ed and Ryan Mitchell to the podcast to discuss their newly released cookbook. Ed Mitchell’s Barbeque (affiliate link) celebrates the history and tradition of whole-hog barbecue in North Carolina, and pays homage to the family and neighbors that make their community so special. The cookbook is a treasure; while I may not be heading to North Carolina in the near future, I love that I can cook their recipes in my own kitchen and backyard.

Thought it may take a while to source a whole hog, I can tackle their other barbeque recipes, from, as they say it, “rooter to tooter.” And to go with the barbecue, I just had to whip up their recipe for Watermelon Sweet Tea. It’s the perfect drink to go with a summer barbecue and to toast a meal with the people we love.

The cookbook Ed Mitchell's Barbeque on a wooden table.

How to Make Watermelon Sweet Tea

Ever good barbecue needs a refreshing drink to wash down all the savory goodness! If you’re enjoying a Southern-style barbeque, or even if you’re not, there’s nothing better than sweet tea. I love how Ed and Ryan Mitchell harness the natural sugars in watermelon to add sweetness to a classic sweet tea!

Slices of watermelon on a tray.

  1. Make a simple syrup and brew the tea

    This recipe simplifies the process by brewing the tea directly into a simple syrup. Start by bringing the water and sugar to a boil, then drop the tea bags into the simple syrup and let it steep for 15 minutes.Sweet Tea brewed in a pan.

  2. Juice the watermelon

    Add the watermelon cubes and lime juice to a blender, working in batches if necessary, and blend until smooth. Chunks of watermelon in a blender.

  3. Serve the watermelon sweet tea

    Pass the watermelon juice through a sieve and pour it into a large pitcher. Add the sweet tea and stir. Pour into ice-filled glasses, garnish with mint, and enjoy!Watermelon Sweet Tea in a pitcher.

Ed and Ryan Mitchell recommend using Luzianne, a classic choice for Southern sweet teas. It is available at many stores nationwide, such as Walmart. You can also purchase Luzianne on Amazon (affiliate link). You can also substitute with a full-bodied tea, such as Earl Grey.

Want to prep the tea in advance? Make the simple syrup and brew the tea (step 1), and allow it to cool completely. Chill in the refrigerator overnight. This will help save time when you’re ready to make the beverage! 

Watermelon Sweet Tea in a glass garnished with fresh mint.

Listen to the Podcast with Ed and Ryan Mitchell

For more pasta and Italian-inspired recipes, check out my interview with Ed and Ryan Mitchell in Episode 71 of the Kitchen Confidante Podcast!

Watermelon Sweet Tea in a glass pitcher.

More Summer Drink Recipes

Cantaloupe Juice
Arnold Palmer Iced Tea with Boba (Bubble Tea)
Red, White, and Blue Berry Coconut Slushies
Papaya Slushy
Summer Sangria with Rum

Watermelon Sweet Tea with slices of fresh watermelon.

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of Ed Mitchell’s Barbeque to review for the Kitchen Confidante Podcast Episode 71 with Ed and Ryan Mitchell. All opinions are, of course, my own. The post may have affiliate links; see my Disclosure page to learn more.

Watermelon Sweet Tea

Watermelon Sweet Tea – Cool off at your next barbecue with an icy glass of watermelon sweet tea! This recipe is a refreshing way to enjoy summer and is from Ed Mitchell's Barbeque by Ed and Ryan Mitchell.
Course Beverages
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Steeping Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 331kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 quarts filtered water
  • 6 tea bags Luzianne preferred
  • 12 cups seeded watermelon chunks
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Fresh mint leaves optional

Instructions

  • In a large saucepan, combine the sugar and water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil until the sugar has completely dissolved and the liquid is clear. Remove from the heat, add the tea bags to the sugar water, cover, and steep for 15 minutes.
  • Working in batches, puree the watermelon chunks and lime juice in a blender or food processor. Strain and transfer to a gallon-sized pitcher. Remove the tea bags and add the tea to the pitcher. Do not add ice. Stir and pour into ice-filled glasses. Garnish each glass with 2 fresh mint leaves, if desired, and serve.

Notes

Excerpted from Ed Mitchell’s Barbeque © 2023 by Ed Mitchell and Ryan Mitchell. Reproduced by permission of Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Notes from Liren
Ed and Ryan Mitchell recommend using Luzianne, a classic choice for Southern sweet teas. It is available at many stores nationwide, such as Walmart. You can also purchase Luzianne on Amazon (affiliate link). You can also substitute with a full-bodied tea, such as Earl Grey.
Prep the tea in advance: Make the simple syrup and brew the tea (step 1) and allow to cool completely. Chill in the refrigerator overnight. This will help save time when you’re ready to make the beverage! 
Notes from Ryan Mitchell, Ed Mitchell’s son
“In Raleigh, we started to add watermelon puree to our sweet tea as a natural sugar.
Sweet tea is a staple beverage in the South and a part of our barbeque tradition. It is our
most refreshing drink. Also, it is affordable and easy to make. Buying cases of soda can
get expensive. But with a few tea bags and some sugar, everyone gets a cup.”

Nutrition

Calories: 331kcal | Carbohydrates: 85g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Sodium: 29mg | Potassium: 520mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 78g | Vitamin A: 2598IU | Vitamin C: 39mg | Calcium: 48mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see! Tag @kitchconfidante on Instagram and hashtag it #kitchenconfidante

Comments

Recipe Rating




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

Kitchen Confidante®
33