Long Island Iced Tea Cocktail Recipe

Jump to Recipe ⬇️

Long Island Iced Tea Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Long Island Iced Tea is believed to have been created in the 1970s by a bartender named Robert 'Rosebud' Butt at the Oak Beach Inn on Long Island, New York. The cocktail quickly gained popularity for its potent mix of spirits and its deceptive resemblance to a non-alcoholic iced tea. It is a favorite among party-goers and those who enjoy a strong, flavorful drink.

How Long Island Iced Tea Tastes?

The Long Island Iced Tea is a complex blend of flavors, combining the sweetness of cola and sour mix with the boldness of multiple spirits. It is a strong, yet surprisingly smooth cocktail with a slightly bitter aftertaste.

Interesting facts about Long Island Iced Tea

  • Despite its name, the Long Island Iced Tea contains no actual tea.
  • The cocktail is known for its high alcohol content, as it combines five different spirits.
  • Some variations of the Long Island Iced Tea replace the cola with other mixers, such as lemon-lime soda or cranberry juice.


A few good options for Long Island Iced Tea are:

  • Grey Goose
  • Belvedere
  • Khor
  • Smirnoff

Learn everything on which Vodka to choose

A few good options for Long Island Iced Tea are:

  • Brockmans
  • Silent Pool Gin
  • Hendrick's Gin

Learn everything on which Gin to choose


Often the canvas to our boozy masterpiece, vodka provides a neutral base that allows the other flavors to shine. Too much vodka and you might feel like you're in Russia during winter – too little and why bother calling it a cocktail?

Alex Green


The botanicals in gin are the whisper of complexity that remind you, this isn't your standard iced tea. Skipping out on gin would be like not inviting that one quirky friend to the party – the vibe just wouldn't be the same.

Emma Rose

White Rum

White rum brings a subtle sweetness that keeps the party in your glass going. Rum-less? Well, let's not even talk about such sad possibilities.

Mary Mitkina


Because every good story starts with someone saying, 'Let's add tequila,' its inclusion creates a warm, slightly earthy feeling. Too much, and you could be dancing on the table; too little, and you might as well nap.

Alex Green

Triple Sec

This orange-flavored liqueur is there to kiss your taste buds and remind you that life has zest. No Triple Sec, no zesty kiss – and that's just a missed opportunity, folks.

Emma Rose

Sour Mix

Sour mix is the tang-tastic addition that cuts through the booziness with a lip-puckering zing. It's the triple axel in our cocktail ice-skating routine – don't try this long island without it.

Mary Mitkina


Just a splash, to add color and a hint of sweetness. It's the 'I woke up like this' of the drink, making it look effortlessly perfect.

Alex Green

Lemon Wedge

The pop of citrus garnish is your cocktail's fashion statement. Like the perfect accessory, it completes the look – and flavor!

Emma Rose

Ice Cubes

Without ice, you've got room temperature chaos. Ice is the bouncer that keeps this party cool.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Long Island Iced Tea Drink

  1. Fill a Collins glass with ice cubes.
  2. Add the vodka, gin, white rum, tequila, and triple sec to the glass.
  3. Pour in the sour mix and top with a splash of cola.
  4. Stir the cocktail gently to combine the ingredients.
  5. Garnish with a lemon wedge on the rim of the glass.

Pro Tips

  • Use fresh lemon juice in your sour mix for a more authentic flavor.
  • Chill your spirits before mixing to keep the cocktail cold without diluting it too much.
  • Stir gently to combine the ingredients without making the cocktail too fizzy.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Barbecue Ribs: The smoky flavor pairs nicely with the boldness of the cocktail.
  • Tacos or Nachos: The spice complements the zesty citrus notes.
  • Fried Appetizers: Onion rings, mozzarella sticks, or chicken tenders are casual eats that match the drink's fun vibe.
  • Lemon Desserts: Lemon bars or tarts can bring out the citrus notes in the cocktail.
  • Burgers: A classic American burger can stand up to the strong flavors of a Long Island Iced Tea.

Drink Pairings

  • Water: Sometimes simplicity is key; hydrating with water between cocktails can keep you refreshed.
  • Light Beer: A palate cleanser that won't overpower the flavors of the cocktail.

🍹 Discover the Top 50 All-Time Recipes! 🍹

Enter your email, and we'll send the exclusive list straight to your inbox.

We respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously

What you could change in Long Island Iced Tea

  • Vodka: You can substitute vodka with another clear spirit like white rum.
  • Cola: Try replacing cola with lemon-lime soda or cranberry juice for a different flavor profile.
  • Triple Sec: If you don't have triple sec, you can use another orange liqueur like Cointreau or Grand Marnier.

Explore all drinks starting with L here

And of course - twists🍹

Twist #1: Tropical Island Tea

  • Swap sour mix with pineapple juice
  • Add a dash of coconut cream
  • Garnish with a pineapple slice and a maraschino cherry

The tropical twist will make you feel like you're sipping on sunshine and sandy beaches. The pineapple's tang blends with coconut's creaminess for a vacation vibe.

Twist #2: Blue Long Island

  • Replace cola with blue curacao
  • Use a clear sour mix
  • Garnish with a twist of orange peel

This electric blue variation is a showstopper, sure to turn heads and lift spirits. It's got a curacao kick that'll have you singing the blues, in the best way possible.

Twist #3: Peach Long Island Tea

  • Replace triple sec with peach schnapps
  • Garnish with a peach slice
  • Add a splash of cranberry juice for a color twist

Get ready for a peachy keen twist that's as sweet as a summer fling. The peach schnapps and cranberry juice add a fruity punch that'll have your taste buds swinging from the trees!

In case you forgot basics how to make Long Island Iced Tea

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

Find the cocktail you'd love!

If you want to drink something else - you can use our AI-augmented search to find the best cocktail for you!
Completely free!

Frequently Asked Questions on Long Island Iced Tea

What is the origin of the name 'Long Island Iced Tea'?

The cocktail was invented on Long Island, New York so it is named after its birthplace. The 'Iced Tea' part of the name comes from its resemblance to a glass of iced tea.

What types of glassware can I use if I don't have a Collins glass?

Any tall, slim glass would work as a substitute, such as a highball glass. This is to ensure the correct ratio of ingredients to ice.

Are there any non-alcoholic versions of the Long Island Iced Tea?

Yes, a non-alcoholic or 'virgin' version of this cocktail can be made by substituting non-alcoholic versions of the spirits and adding more cola or sour mix.

Is the Long Island Iced Tea popular worldwide?

Yes, the Long Island Iced Tea is a very popular cocktail worldwide, particularly in the United States, often found on menus in restaurants and bars.

What are some popular variations of the Long Island Iced Tea?

There are many variations of the Long Island Iced Tea with different mixers or spirits such as the Miami Iced Tea with peach schnapps and cranberry juice, or the Mexican Iced Tea with tequila and lime juice.

More similar recipes to Long Island Iced Tea!

Explore new cocktails you'd love!

Please rate this recipe