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stripey

How come I can't stir sugar into iced tea / iced coffee?

Question

When I try to make iced tea, i stir and stir and stir and the sugar never dissolves! but with hot tea it's like instant. whatup?

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4 answers to this question

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well, this question has NOTHING to do with computers, but I'll take a crack at it:

When you are adding sugar to tea / coffee / anything, you are attempting to create a SOLUTION. So, what's at issue here is the SOLUBILITY of the sugar. The solubility of sugar increases with higher temperatures.

Why?

I'm not really sure.

But remember: heat is energy. So, when you look at a substance under a microscope, you see these little molecules. When a substance is cold, these molecules are relatively still. But when they are hot, they start jiggling around like crazy, cuz they are full of energy.

So, the goal of stirring sugar into coffee is to get your sugar molecules in between the water molecules. Kind of like trying to sift flour. If you just plunk the flour into a sifter, then some of it will go thru, but not all of it. You have to shake the sifter to get the rest thru.

So, I guess what I'm trying to say is, that when your water is hot, it's like it's being stirred on a microscopic level. Which is why it mixes in better.

Also, this is why it's almost IMPOSSIBLE to mix sugar into ICE COLD tea. That's why to sweeten iced drinks, you should use a simple syrup (this is what they do at Starbucks).

To make simple syrup, add one cup of sugar to one cup of water (or any amount, just maintain the 1 to 1 ratio) and bring to a boil. Wait for the sugar to dissolve and then let it cool. Stick it in a bottle, something like a clear ketchup bottle and stick it in the fridge.

...

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Got any tech questions?

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lol, boil the kettle, put a spot of hot water in a glass with the sugar, walla, now go do the rest alone :)

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What if I'm using Splenda? Do I need to make syrup?

 

No. Splenda and other artificial sweeteners will dissolve into room temperature / cold water just fine. No need to make a syrup.

But they give my wife headaches. And will probably give you cancer in the long run.

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