Dad’s Tea & Fruit Punch

When I was a kid, my Dad used to make this tea & fruit punch for the holidays. Because it was non-alcoholic, I was allowed to drink as much of it as I wanted to (within reason). It's a delicious punch that you can sweeten to taste.

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I can’t remember the last time I was at a gathering and there was a non-alcoholic punch offered to those who don’t want to (or aren’t old enough to) drink alcohol.  Actually… yes I can. It was when I was a kid at Christmas and my Dad would make this tea and fruit punch. I don’t know why people don’t make fun punches very often anymore. These days, you see bottles of soda or iced tea left out as a non-alcoholic option for party-goers, but a punch like my Dad’s tea and fruit punch is so much more inviting and lets the guests know that some special thought has been given to them as well.

Ingredients for a punch on a blue mottled background - orange juice, tea, ginger ale, grapefruit, mandarins, limes, pineapple juice.

The ingredients for Dad’s tea punch are not hard to find. The only thing you need to do ahead of time is brew some black tea. You can do this a day beforehand or several hours before and let it cool or, if you’re in a hurry, brew very strong tea and then dilute it with ice cubes. This will cool it down much more quickly. Then, you have some slicing and juicing left to do, but the rest of the recipe is just pour and stir.

Punch in a punch bowl with slices of fruit and a ladle.

Once you’ve mixed everything together, you’ll notice that the punch is not a pretty color (at all!), but you can really dress this punch up and make it beautiful with slices of different citrus fruit. If you’re making it at Christmastime, mandarins should be readily available in the grocery store and they make such a nice garnish, contrasting in size to the orange slices. Because grapefruit are so large, cut the slices in half so that they fit with the other slices of fruit.

A ladle pouring tea and fruit punch into a glass tea cup.

Add the ginger ale at the very end so that there is a little sparkle to the punch. If you add it too soon, all the bubbles will disappear. I loved this punch as a kid, but I love it still as an adult too. It’s entirely drinkable and you can have as much of it as you like… unless, of course, you think adding a little orange vodka might be nice! 😉


Dad’s Tea & Fruit Punch

  • Prep Time: 10 m
  • Total Time: 10 m
  • Servings:


  • 4 cups medium strength brewed tea
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 12 ounces pineapple juice (1½ cups)
  • juice of 6 limes
  • 2 cups of grapefruit juice or orange juice
  • 24 ounces ginger ale
  • slices of limes, grapefruit and oranges (for garnish)
  • Maraschino cherries for garnish (optional)


  1. Chill the tea until cold.
  2. Make a simple syrup by combining the water and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil until the sugar has dissolved completely. Set aside to cool.
  3. In a large punch bowl, combine the tea, pineapple juice, lime juice and grapefruit or orange juice. Stir well and taste. If you want to sweeten the mixture, add some of the simple syrup to your liking. (Store leftover simple syrup in a jar in the refrigerator for another occasion.) Chill the punch well – for at least 1 hour.
  4. Before serving, pour in the ginger ale. Garnish with slices of limes, grapefruit, oranges and maraschino cherries, if desired. Serve over ice.
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