Hot Spiced Tea (from Tang)

I love when recipes stand the test of time! This recipe has been around for ages and is also known as Russian Tea or Friendship Tea. I found it in an old steno pad that my mother used to handwrite her favorite recipes back when I was a kid. And it’s so simple to make! The main difference between Tang’s original recipe and the Americanized version of Russian Tea is that Russian Tea has lemon added to it. Although the original Tang recipe shared below didn’t call for powdered lemon drink mix, it did say you could use lemon-flavored instant tea.

The taste is pretty mild, even kid friendly. The flavors just meld together…. not too orangey and not too spicey. I could drink this all winter. So much so that I will make it up next time using sugar free Tang and stevia.

I made this small batch the other day and we thoroughly enjoyed it while decorating the Christmas tree and putting out a few other decorations. Amazing that such a simple recipe could taste so special! This would make a wonderful neighbor or teacher gift. I’m sure the kids would have a lot of fun mixing it up. Pour the mix into a pretty jar and tie a ribbon around the top. Handwrite the directions for making a cup pf tea on the back of the gift tag. How is easy is that! Maybe add a container of cookies, either store-bought or homemade.

Hot Spiced Tea (from Tang)


  • 1 -1/3 cup Tang
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup instant tea (with or without lemon flavor))
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon clove
  • Optional Garnish: thin strips of washed orange peel, lemon slice, cinnamon stick


  1. Measure all of the ingredients into a half gallon container with a lid or a gallon zip lock bag.
  2. Seal the container and shake/mix well. Let the powder settle a few minutes before opening the container or bag.
  3. Slowly pour the mix into jars and put the lids on tightly
  4. To make a cup of tea, add 1 heaping teaspoon of the tea mix to a cup of boiling water. Use 1/2 cup to boiling water to make a quart of tea. Serve with strips of orange peel or cinnamon stick (or both).

7 thoughts on “Hot Spiced Tea (from Tang)

      1. This is my Great Aunt Opal’s recipe! With all the spiced tea recipes out there, this is the first time I’ve seen the exact same recipe and I’ve had it for nearly 50 years. I’ve made a few changes myself. I like to use decaf tea so I can drink it at night and I add some ginger. In addition to just liking it, my family swears by it when they have a sore throat. I’m so glad to find someone else who enjoys it!

        Liked by 1 person

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