Just in time for the Kentucky Derby, a mint julep iced tea recipe

Pure Leaf Lemon  Mint JulepSince I’m moving Georgia at the end of the month, I better practice making real Southern cocktails like mint juleps. Since the Kentucky Derby is tomorrow, I can’t think of a better time to try Gail Simmons', the host of Bravo's Top Chef, recipe for Lemon Ginger “Tulep” using Pure Leaf Iced Tea.  You can make this a cocktail or a mocktail – either way should be delightful!

To health up this mint julep recipe, use sugar free ginger flavored coffee syrup instead of the Ginger Simple Syrup. If you can’t find sugar free ginger, a good substitute would be a sugar free lime, peach or lemon syrup like those made by Torani. You can further reduce calories by using unsweetened Pure Leaf Iced Tea, then adding  a dropperful or two of lemon flavored SweetLeaf Liquid Stevia and maybe some apricot or orange flavored liquid stevia, too!

Finally, forget the candied ginger garnish. I love that stuff and can eat it by the handful - so not good for you! I’d rather indulge in the bourbon than the ginger, you know?

You can find more cocktail and mocktail recipes using Pure Leaf Ice Tea on Facebook.

Lemon Ginger “Tulep”

Makes one serving


  • 3 tablespoons ginger simple syrup (recipe below)
  • 6 to 8 fresh mint leaves, plus a sprig for garnish
  • Ice
  • 1.5 ounces of Kentucky Bourbon (optional)
  • 1 cup Lemon Pure Leaf Iced Tea
  • Cold club soda
  • Candied ginger, for garnish


  1. In an old fashioned glass, muddle ginger simple syrup with mint leaves. (Muddle means “to crush.” You can use a pestle or the back of a spoon.)
  2. Add ice.
  3. If using bourbon, add it to the glass. Then pour in the Lemon Pure Leaf Iced Tea.
  4. Stir well.
  5. Top with a splash of club soda and garnish with a slice of candied ginger and a sprig of mint.

Ginger Simple Syrup

Makes 1 1/2 cups


  • 1/2 cup fresh ginger, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water


  1. In a saucepan, combine the ginger, sugar, and water and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and then set aside to cool.
  3. Strain the syrup and refrigerate in an airtight container for up to one week.

Disclosure: I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Lipton Pure Leaf. I received product samples and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

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