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Instant Russian Tea Recipe with Tang

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Instant Russian Tea recipe with Tang is an old holiday favorite that’s the perfect inexpensive hot drink for the holidays!

A close up of a plate of food and a cup of coffee, with Russian tea

Quick tips for making Instant Russian Tea:

  • Perfect hot drink for holiday gatherings and family get togethers.
  • Can be given for teacher and neighbor gifts.
  • So simple to make by adding all the ingredients together and mixing.
  • If you don’t have the specific ingredients easy substitutions can be made.

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The slightly sweet smell of an evergreen tree.

Christmas tree lights twinkling in a dimly lit room.

Strains of beautiful music from Point of Grace A Christmas Story CD.

Sound perfect? I think so! The one day that stands out in all our family traditions is Thanksgiving Day.

Since our children were little the day began with me putting the burly turkey in the oven before anyone opened their eyes.

My precious babies (and their lucky dad!) awakened to the smell of turkey wafting through the house and the countdown to Thanksgiving Day parades.

The first year our oldest daughter got married she had a rough transition when Thanksgiving Day arrived and her newlywed home was sadly missing those traditions!

From our family meal of turkey and all the fixin’s to hunting down the perfect tree at the Christmas tree lot, this day is one to cherish for all of us.

Over the many years of celebrating we incorporated simple customs that became familiar parts of our routine.

Instant Russian Tea is a tasty part of this tradition as well. This hot beverage is one our  family always enjoys on Thanksgiving night as we decorate the Christmas tree.

Instant Russian Tea in Christmas mug

We love to drink the tea all winter but the first batch gets made just before Thanksgiving.

That first year our oldest daughter got married and was away from home she insisted we wait to all drink Russian Tea together. She didn’t want to miss a moment of our time together!

Instant Russian Tea with Tang - Marty's Musings

This hot beverage is delicious served to a group or enjoyed alone while quietly sitting by a beautifully lit Christmas tree in the evening. (Or for me, while looking at our Christmas village.)

A piece of cake and a cup of coffee, with Thanksgiving and Tea

Some readers have asked if Tang is still available. The answer is yes but if you can’t find it at your favorite store you can order it here on Amazon.

A tray of food and a cup of coffee, with Russian tea

Note of caution: Do not try and use whole cloves to save money by crushing them yourselves (and for those sharp readers, whole cloves are pictured in the ingredients. Please disregard!) Picking bits of cloves out of your tea is not fun. Not that I would know about that ~eye roll~

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions? I’d love if you’d share with me!

Watch the video here!!!

Instant Russian Tea Recipe with Tang


1 lb. jar instant orange drink (Tang)
1 pkg. unsweetened lemonade-Aid
3/4 cup unsweetened instant tea
2 cups sugar
1 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Instant Russian Tea Recipe with Tang - Marty's Musings

Instant Russian Tea

Course Beverage
Keyword Instant Russian Tea
Author Marty's Musings


  • 1 lb. jar instant orange drink Tang
  • 1 pkg. unsweetened lemonade Kool-Aid
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened instant tea
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon


  • Mix all ingredients well and store in tightly closed container.
  • Add to hot water as many teaspoons as desired to taste.



I used sweetened instant tea and cut back on the amount of sugar added to compensate. I also used 4 single instant lemonade packets instead of kool-aid.

Need some ideas for holiday entertaining? This is the best frozen punch recipe ever and one that is always requested at my Christmas parties.

A close up of a beverage on a table

Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites are just the right combination of sweet and salty!

Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites from Marty's Musings

Love these Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups Cookies because you can make the basic mix ahead of time!

A bunch of different kinds of donuts

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  3. 5 stars
    Wow this sounds so yummy! I think I have all of the ingredients to make this! I will have to try this! Thank you for sharing!

  4. I’ve made this before and shared a canister with a friend who was ill – he said it got him through the flu! A lovely addition to Throwback Thursday!

  5. Mom and I made this Russian Tea for years…we used Lipton Instant Ice Tea mix with lemon instead of the packets or koolaid…..not sure if lipton makes that instant tea with lemon anymore…as this was back in the late 60’s and 70’s

    1. Hi, Sandra. We use generic instant iced tea with lemon as well when we can find it. Not sure if Lipton makes it anymore either. I’m sure you have great memories from those years as do I!

      1. Lipton Lipton lemon iced tea (sweetened) is what my grandmother used as well and they still sell it in Minnesota year round.

  6. I made this for years. It is yummy now it is too much sugar. I need to revisit this sugar free. Thank you for showing an old favorite. We lived on a milary base in MO maybe MI when I was first introduced to this. In the late 70s or early 80s.

  7. 5 stars
    I have not made in years and one my favorite recipes my mom would make during the holidays and colder months to keep us healthy. Making it this weekend to help my family overcome feeling under the weather!

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