An Arnold Palmer is a drink made with half tea and half lemonade. It’s a summertime favorite around my house because it is just sweet enough to be satisfying, but refreshing enough to really quench your thirst on a hot day. This Butterfly Pea Pink Tea Lemonade is a bit off a riff on an traditional Arnold Palmer, using butterfly pea tea to create a very tasty – and very pink – drink.
Butterfly pea tea is a very subtle tea with some unique color-changing abilities. When brewed, the tea is a deep blue color. When an acidic ingredient is added to it – such as lemon juice – it turns from blue to purple to pink, depending on just how much acid you’re adding. This recipe starts with sweetened, brewed tea. Don’t worry if the tea itself seems sweeter than you would usually make it, as the lemon juice is added last and it will balance out the sweetness of the tea. When it is poured in, the blue tea will immediately change color – a change which always impresses guests and never fails to put a smile on my face.
I served my tea lemonade with blue ice cubes, which I made by preparing plain tea in advance and then freezing in an ice cube tray. The drink is a beautiful color on its own, but I think it takes it over-the-top when you add in the contrast of blue ice. Your guests will definitely wonder how you made the lemonade and how you made the blue ice! Prepare the ice in advance and store it in a ziploc bag in your freezer so the cubes are ready to go, as needed.
Butterfly Pea Pink Tea Lemonade
2 butterfly pea tea teabags or approx 1 tbsp loose leaf tea
2 cups water, divided
1/2 cup sugar (or to taste)
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
In a microwave-safe bowl, bring 1/2 cup water to a boil in the microwave. Add in sugar and stir until it is dissolved. Add in teabags and allow them to steep for about 5 minutes, or until liquid is deep blue. Pour in remaining 1 1/2 cups of water and stir to combine. Pour in the lemon juice and watch the liquid change from deep blue to bright fuschia! Add additional lemon juice or sugar, to taste.
Serve over ice.