Agua de Jamaica

Total Time

Prep: 15 min. + chilling


6 servings

Updated: Feb. 01, 2023
This agua de Jamaica is an iced tea made from hibiscus, which is tart and deep red like cranberry juice. Add rum if you like. —Adan Franco, Milwaukee, Wisconsin


  • 1 cup dried hibiscus flowers or 6 hibiscus tea bags
  • 5 cups water, divided
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons grated lime zest
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup rum, optional
  • Mint sprigs, optional


  1. Rinse flowers in cold water. In a large saucepan, combine 3 cups water, flowers (or tea bags), and lime zest. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat; let stand 15 minutes. Strain mixture, discarding flowers and zest; transfer to a large bowl. Add sugar and remaining 2 cups water, stirring until sugar is dissolved. If desired, stir in rum. Refrigerate until cold. Add mint sprigs if desired.

Agua de Jamaica Tips

Is hibiscus tea the same as agua de Jamaica?

Agua de Jamaica refers to this specific blend of ingredients with hibiscus tea. You can find different versions of hibiscus tea around the globe. In Italy, it is called carcadè and made with sugar and lemon juice. In Thailand, you will find it labeled as roselle, often sweetened with fruit juices. We tested this recipe with Tazo passion tea, one of our favorite iced tea bags.

Is agua de Jamaica good for you?

Agua de Jamaica is loaded with antioxidants because of the tea and ginger. Hibiscus has been found to help lower blood pressure, while ginger can help with gut health. But if you’re worried about your blood pressure or blood sugar, you may want to monitor the amount of tea you drink. (Learn more about the health benefits of ginger.)

What is the best time to drink hibiscus tea?

Like other refreshing ice tea recipes, agua de Jamaica is the perfect beverage to go with lunch or a day at the beach. Unlike chamomile or some other teas, it won’t make you feel sleepy. Add the optional rum for cocktail hour with friends!

Research contributed by Maggie Knoebel, Taste of Home Culinary Assistant
Editor’s Note: This recipe was tested with Tazo passion tea bags.

Nutrition Facts

3/4 cup: 67 calories, 0 fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 2mg sodium, 17g carbohydrate (17g sugars, 0 fiber), 0 protein.