Iced tea has come a long way from its invention in the early 1900s St. Louis world fair. Being an American invention of tea preparation, it’s no surprise that it’s the most popular way of drinking tea in the US.
With the coming of new technology also comes new (and more convenient) ways of making iced tea. Different kinds of iced tea makers can be found in stores today, so it’s the perfect time to get one of these staples of the American kitchen.
Why do I need an iced tea maker?
Well, if you like drinking iced tea, but you’re also tired of the process that comes with it, you’ll definitely benefit from getting yourself an iced tea maker. It’s much more convenient than going on the traditional route of boiling water and cooling the tea down.
The appliance also comes in handy when you have some guests over for a garden party as you can leave the maker to brew the tea while you do other things.
How does an iced tea maker work?
It really depends on the type of iced tea maker. Some are purely mechanical while others are electric. But they all follow, more or less, a similar process.
Every iced tea maker has some sort of part where you can put bagged or loose tea leaves to brew and a dripper through which the brewed tea will pass ending up in a pitcher filled with ice.
How long does it take for an iced tea maker to brew tea?
The brewing time depends on the kind of tea leaves you use and how strong you prefer your tea to be. If you want weak tea, it will only take about three minutes or so to brew the leaves.
As a general rule, we recommend that you leave the tea bags or leaves to steep for about four minutes in the iced tea maker.
Will the tea from this device taste the same as cafe teas?
Yes, as long as you use the same kind or brand of tea that you’re favorite cafe does. Besides, making your iced tea at home would save you a lot of money and give you more opportunities to experiment with different flavors.
Buying an iced tea maker would definitely pay for itself many times over and give you more control over what goes in your drink.
Can I use an iced tea maker to make other drinks like coffee?
Yes, you can actually use your iced tea maker to make cold brew coffee. Some are even designed and marketed to attract both tea and coffee drinkers.
If you’re aware of the advantages of cold brewed coffee and trying to decide between an iced tea maker or coffee maker, getting a multifunctional iced tea maker is a great compromise.
Can I wash an iced tea maker in a dishwasher?
Most manufacturers of electric iced tea makers recommend that users handwash their products instead of using a dishwasher in order to prolong the integrity of the parts.
Don’t worry though; it’s pretty easy to wash the iced tea maker’s pitchers, brew baskets and lids by cleaning them with a mild detergent and warm water after using it.
Top 5 Iced Tea Makers
Feeling overwhelmed with the many choices of iced tea makers you can pick from? We got you covered. Here are five of the best iced tea makers we can recommend to you.
5 Chefman Cold Brew Tea Maker
Get your daily caffeine dose from both tea and coffee with this Chefman dual purpose iced tea maker.
It has a one liter capacity from high-quality borosilicate glass which is dishwasher safe as well. The Chefman is a manual iced tea maker that uses the same coffee cold brewing process to make iced tea resulting in a less acidic and better-tasting drink.
It also has an airtight feature which would allow you two keep your brew fresh and safe for up to two weeks in your fridge making it the perfect companion for avid tea and coffee drinkers who need their caffeine fix at different times of the day.
Surely, iced tea making has never been this convenient and easy.
4 Airtight Cold Brew Iced Coffee Maker (& Iced Tea Maker)
If you feel limited by the Chefman’s capacity, you may find this next dual purpose iced tea maker from Airtight more accommodating of your needs.
It’s a step up from the previous product when it comes to capacity as it has a 1.5-liter glass carafe. Another great thing about it is that its carafe is marked with measurement guides to help you make just the right amount of iced tea at a time.
Using this iced tea maker is easy. Want some iced tea stat? Brew your tea and cool it at the same time even without ice by placing this iced tea maker in the fridge as it brews. Wait about 20 minutes, and you’ll have instant iced tea without putting in much effort.
You can also use both bagged and loose tea leaves with this iced tea maker as it is equipped with a superfine mesh stainless steel filter which is also rust-resistant.
3 Takeya Flash Chill Iced Tea Maker
Making iced tea has never been this fast and simple. The Takeya Flash Chill Iced Tea Maker is equipped with Takeya’s flash chill technology which promises to chill freshly brewed tea in just 30 seconds all without losing freshness and nutrients.
This manual iced tea maker has a BPA-Free Tritan pitcher that also has an airtight and spill-proof lid which makes it ideal for bringing along during picnics or garden parties. The 2-Quart pitcher also allows for making big batches of iced tea at a time.
Another great thing about this Takeya product is that it’s dishwasher safe.
2 Mr. Coffee 3-Quart Iced Tea and Coffee Maker
If you find that the previous models of manual iced tea makers still require too much time and effort, you’ll definitely like the Mr. Coffee 3-Quart Iced Tea and Coffee Maker.
Make big batches of iced tea without putting in more effort by just setting up this automatic iced tea maker. Enjoy cafe quality iced tea and brewed coffee with this multifunctional appliance.
With Mr. Coffee’s auto-shutoff cycle, you can make iced tea by just adding all your ingredients together and letting the iced tea maker do its job. Your iced tea will be ready in as fast as just 10 minutes.
1 Mr. Coffee TM1 2-Quart Iced Tea Maker
Here’s another Mr.Coffee iced tea maker on our recommendation list. Being from the same manufacturer, this one has almost the same features as the previous one except that this one comes with a smaller pitcher for those who only need to make a few glasses of iced tea at a time.
It has a removable brewing basket which can take in both loose or bagged tea leaves. Another great feature that this Mr. Coffee product has is its programmed cleaning cycle. It can also be programmed to make either single or double servings depending on the user’s needs.
A Buyer’s Guide to Choosing the Best Iced Tea Maker
New to iced tea brewing? Here are some important factors to consider when shopping for one. Keep these in mind during your next trip to the mall or Amazon, and you’ll surely be able to narrow down your choices and pick the one that’s most suitable for your needs.
Things to Consider
Size or capacity: This would largely depend on you and your household’s iced tea consumption. If you live alone and only drink iced tea occasionally, you may prefer an iced tea maker that makes tea one glass serving at a time. But for avid iced tea drinkers there are makers who have higher capacities from three quarts and even more.
Type: Iced tea makers may either be manual or electric. Manual iced tea makers are usually French Press types which require physical effort from the user. These may make ice tea brewing easier but not as convenient as electric iced tea makers do. With electric types, you can leave your tea to brew and cool while the machine does all the work.
Extra features: Some models of iced tea makers offer more features than others. If you’re after the convenience of electric iced tea makers, be sure to get one with useful features like ‘Keep Warm’ and ‘Auto-off’ functions which would make your tea brewing hassle-free.
Programmability: Some models also offer plenty of programming options. With these options, you can set your machine to start brewing tea during specific times of the day in a similar way that some coffee makers can be programmed to brew coffee in the mornings automatically. In relation with this, you should look for an iced tea maker that has a large enough LCD display where you can see the clock and timer.