The REAL Long Island Iced Tea


There are a few impostors out there that claim to be Long Island Iced Teas. In actuality, there is only one correct way to make a LIIT... and this is it!

Prep Time:
10 mins
Total Time:
10 mins
1 drink

One thing must be cleared up about the Long Island Iced Tea straight away: It is living a lie. For starters, it's not entirely clear that it's actually from Long Island. That's debatable. But, folks, it is most assuredly not tea. You will not find a drop of tea in this cocktail. But don't hold that against it. Read on to learn how to make this 5-star recipe for Long Island Iced Tea.

What's In a Long Island Iced Tea?

Some people have asked, does the Long Island iced tea have alcohol in it? Boy does it ever!

The Long Island iced tea is the liquor-cabinet equivalent of what the kids once called a "suicide soda" (a big ol' splash of every drink from the soda fountain into one enormous ice-filled cup). On the face of it, the Long Island Iced tea doesn't seem tenable: Vodka, rum, gin, tequila, triple sec — all mingling in the same cocktail glass, tempered only by a dash of sweet and sour mix and a splash of cola. Sounds like trouble. And obviously it can be.

But it's undisputable, this cocktail proves itself an unlikely success, and a prime example of when the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Tossing all of these strong spirits together somehow softens the edges off of each individual spirit. It's a marvel of science, frankly. Somehow this cocktail, seemingly of odds and ends from the liquor cabinet, manages the impossible: it actually tastes good. Very good. So be careful out there, folks.

How to Make Long Island Iced Tea

You'll find the full recipe with all the ingredients and measurements, below, but making a Long Island Iced Tea couldn't be easier. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all the various alcohols plus the sweet and sour mix. Hold aside the cola for now. Cover the cocktail shaker and give it a good shake to let all the spirits mix and chill. The Long Island Iced Tea is typically served in a Collins glass or a hurricane glass over a lot of fresh ice with a big splash of cola poured over the top, which creates that tea-like color. Add a slice of fresh lemon for garnish (and to give it that innocent iced tea look) and enjoy responsibly.

Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

"This IS the Original and Famous LIIT recipe! You got it so right!" says rwladywolf. "The only thing I do differently is put it all in the Tom Collins glass and then roll it into a shaker and back in the Tom Collins glass and then garnish with lemon!"

"This was plenty strong, and tasted WAY better than what you pick up in a normal bar," says LazyFoodieGirl. "I know it's not 'authentic' but the first time I made this, we actually didn't have cola on hand, so I subbed with ginger ale, and it was pretty dang good that way too!"

"This is so delicious," raves chicaD. "It somehow seems to cancel out the alcohol taste, and there-in is the rub! You could easily drink these in the same quantities as you would regular iced tea. Don't."

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Editorial contributions by Carl Hanson


  • ½ fluid ounce vodka

  • ½ fluid ounce rum

  • ½ fluid ounce gin

  • ½ fluid ounce tequila

  • ½ fluid ounce triple sec (orange-flavored liqueur)

  • 1 fluid ounce sweet and sour mix

  • 1 fluid ounce cola, or to taste

  • 1 lemon slice


  1. Gather all ingredients.

    All ingredients gathered for a long island iced tea.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  2. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour vodka, rum, gin, tequila, triple sec, and sour mix over ice; cover and shake.

    Cocktail shaker filled with vodka, rum, gin, tequila, triple sec and sour mix over ice.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  3. Pour cocktail into a Collins or hurricane glass; top with splash of cola for color. Garnish with a lemon slice.

    Long island iced tea poured into a hurricane glass.

    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

  4. Garnish with lemon slices and mint leaves!

    two tall glasses of long island ice teas garnished with mint and fresh lemon


Nutrition Facts (per serving)

262 Calories
0g Fat
23g Carbs
0g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 1
Calories 262
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g 0%
Sodium 3mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 23g 8%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 21g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 10mg 52%
Calcium 9mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 23mg 0%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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