A Guide to Liquid Sweeteners

How to Sweeten Iced Tea and Coffee

100% Pure Raw Tupelo Honey 16oz by Winter Park Honey
Since most honey is liquid, it is an easy way to sweeten iced coffees and teas. Tupelo honey's smooth, mellow flavor makes it ideal for sweetening iced teas. Photo from Amazon

Iced coffee and iced tea can be difficult to sweeten with regular sugar. However, there are several easy (and tasty!) ways you can sweeten chilled or iced coffee or tea at home with liquid sweeteners. Each of the sweeteners listed below blends with iced drinks quickly and easily.


Different types of honey suit different types of coffee and tea. In general, tupelo honey works well with tea and bolder honey (such as wildflower honey) works well with spicy or full-flavored coffees.

Check out this honey guide to find local honey with flavor profiles that will suit your favorite coffee or tea.

Agave Nectar

Agave nectar is available at most health food stores and in the natural foods section of some mainstream grocery stores. It has a flavor that is between honey and molasses. It's best with bolder teas (such as Assam or Ceylon black teas) and is great with many coffees.


Molasses has a deep, dark flavor that is suited to rich, spicy coffees, like Brazilians, Konas and Colombians. It takes very molasses little to sweeten your coffee. Molasses is usually located in the baking section of grocery stores.​

Fruit Juice

Fruit juice can be a flavorful sweetener for iced coffee or tea. Traditionally, iced tea is blended with lemon juice in the Southern United States. Other combinations (such as a blended mango-coffee smoothie or a squeeze of raspberry juice in an Ethiopian coffee) are also possible.

Simple Syrup​

Simple syrup is sugar that has been boiled in water until it becomes a thick syrup. Unlike table sugar, it's easy to blend with iced beverages. Homemade simple syrups can be flavored easily. Just add fruit, spices, herbs or other ingredients to the mixture as it boils and then strain them out afterward.

(An example of flavored simple syrup for coffee/tea is this brown sugar-ginger simple syrup.)