Grapefruit Tea-licious: Grapefruit and Earl Grey Iced Tea Recipe

You can’t get more English than a cup of Earl Grey tea.  Flavored with the oil from a bergamot orange, this black tea has a distinctive citrus and floral aroma with a subtle hint of smokiness.  It also makes one killer grapefruit and Earl Grey iced tea. 

Although not a classic ‘mocktail’, this isn’t your everyday iced tea either.  The sweet pink grapefruit and lemon amplify the natural citrus flavors of the Earl Grey to create a refreshing and sophisticated afternoon sipper.

No shaking is involved in the making of this drink, but I like to use the base of a cocktail shaker to mix the ingredients together with a cocktail spoon.  You can use an ordinary glass and spoon for this step, if you prefer.

Also – don’t skimp on the quality of the tea.  Buy the posh tea bags (or loose leaf tea) to impart the best flavor into the final mocktail. I love the Tea Pigs, but there are lots of quality brands out there.


  • 5 oz. (150 ml) water, boiled
  • 1  Earl Grey tea bag
  • 2 oz. (60 ml) grapefruit juice (approximately half a grapefruit)
  • ½ oz. (15 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice (approximately half a lemon)
  • ¼ oz. (7.5 ml) honey
  • 1 oz. (30 ml) soda water or sparkling water
  • Slice of grapefruit to garnish (optional)


  • Kettle
  • Heat resistant measuring jug
  • Citrus juicer
  • Knife
  • Cocktail shaker
  • Cocktail spoon
  • Highball glass


  1. Pour the boiling water over the Earl Grey tea bag and steep for 3-5 minutes. 
  2. Remove the tea bag and leave the tea to return to room temperature.
  3. Combine the tea, grapefruit juice, lemon juice and honey in the bottom of a cocktail shaker.
  4. Use a cocktail spoon to mix (no ice or shaking necessary).
  5. Poor into a highball glass filled with ice.
  6. Top with soda water, and garnish with a slice of grapefruit.

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Grapefruit and Earl Grey Iced Tea FAQ

What is Earl Grey tea?
Earl Grey tea is a popular black tea blend.  It is flavored with bergamot oil which imparts a characteristic citrus and floral aroma.  

How long should I steep the Earl Grey tea in this recipe?
You should steep the tea for 3-5 minutes.  Try not to exceed the five minute mark because the tea’s flavor and tannins will overpower the drink if you over-brew it.

Can I use loose leaf tea instead of a tea bag?
Yes, you can use loose leaf tea instead of a tea bag.  If you don’t have a tea infuser, add half a teaspoon of loose leaf tea to the boiling water and strain through a fine-mesh sieve after steeping for 3-5 minutes.

How long does it take for the tea to cool to room temperature?
Allow at least 10-15 minutes for the tea to return to room temperature.  To expedite this process, pour the tea into a large bowl to allow the air to cool it down faster.

Can I use bottled grapefruit juice instead of fresh grapefruit juice?
Yes, you can use bottled or fresh grapefruit juice.  Using fresh grapefruit juice will bring a more vibrant taste to the iced tea.  If you decide to use bottled grapefruit juice, choose a brand that is 100% pure grapefruit juice without any added sugars or additives. This will ensure that the flavor is as close to fresh as possible. 

Is the honey necessary in this recipe or can I leave it out?
The honey adds a little sweetness to balance the acidity and astringency of the iced tea, but it is not necessary.  If you want to sweeten the drink but don’t want to use honey, you can use alternative sweeteners too.  These can include agave syrup, simple syrup (1:1 sugar to water ratio), or maple syrup.

What type of glass should I use for this iced tea?
A highball, Collins glass, or mason jar are traditional iced tea glasses. However, you can serve it how you like.

Can I make this recipe ahead of time and store it in the fridge?
Yes, you can mix the tea, grapefruit juice, lemon juice and honey ahead of time and store in the fridge for up to 3 days.  Don’t add the soda water until you are ready to serve because it will lose its fizz.

Did you make this?  Tag me @mightymocktail or use the hashtag #mightymocktail!

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