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How to Make Your Own Instant Spiced Tea Mix

Updated on September 7, 2014
Tangy Spiced Tea, hot and ready
Tangy Spiced Tea, hot and ready | Source
5 stars from 4 ratings of Instant Spiced Tea

My first taste of this concoction

A friend of mine gave me a jar of this homemade mix for Christmas one year, complete with a pretty piece of fabric over the lid, and a ribbon tied around it. I thought it was so sweet and thoughtful of her to share a piece of the South with me! I tried a cup of it shortly after, and was impressed by how it tasted.When I asked what was in it, she gave me the recipe, and I was surprised it was so simple. As a lover of many hot beverages (coffee, tea, hot cocoa, and hot apple cider alike), this hit the spot for me. I hope you like it, as well.

Note that even though this is not a healthy drink, it does have quite a bit of Vitamin C in it, due to the Orange and Lemonade. The lower sugar version (the second recipe) has about 225% of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin C (If it is too much, try diluting it with more iced tea mix, or use less than the recommended 1 Tablespoon of mix).

Where can these ingredients be found?

Most grocery stores, and some convenience stores, have the drink mixes in their powdered beverage section, which is usually near the water and sports drinks.

The spices in this recipe are very common, found in grocery stores, many convenience stores, and even many of the dollar stores that sell food. They can be found in the spice section, usually in the baking aisle.

Variations

  • You can replace the lemonade with 1 package of lemon flavored Kool-Aid, and increase the sugar to 1 cup, if you prefer
  • Nutmeg can be used instead of, or even in addition to, the ground cloves
  • I think it is fun to experiment with spices, so if there is another one that you think would complement the flavors, experiment. You may be surprised by how one ingredient can alter the taste
  • There are many sugar-free versions out there, in case you don't want to consume too much (or any) sugar. See also "My Observations".

Spiced Tea Mix, Recipe #1

  • This version has more sugar in it than the second recipe. It is the kind that I tried several years ago, and it is delicious, but not good for diabetics or those on a low-sugar diet

Yield: 3 cups, which makes 24-48 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups orange beverage powder (such as Tang)
  • 1 cup unsweetened (powdered) instant tea
  • 1/3 cup sweetened lemonade mix
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients completely. Keep in mind that if you bought any sugar-free varieties with Splenda or aspartame in it, you may not need to add any sugar. At this point, you may want to test out a little bit of it, and adjust the amounts to your taste.
  2. Store in mason jar or airtight container
  3. For one serving, pour 1 cup of boiling water into a mug (or heat up water in a microwave for about 1 minute), and stir in 1-2 Tablespoons (depending on how tangy you prefer it) of the mix until it is dissolved

Purchasing the Main Ingredients

Tang, instant tea, and lemonade can also be found online, many times in large quantities.

Lower Sugar Spiced Tea Mix

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Half and Half Iced Tea and Lemonade mix, and TangCinnamon and cloves, both of the ground varietyI used a funnel to pour the powdered mixes into the container that originally held the iced tea/lemonadeThis shows the beverage mixes on the bottom, and the colorful spices on topI poured it into a large jar to mix it well, but it's too big to store only 2 1/2 cups of mix in. I stored the mix in the original iced tea/lemonade container, and it fit perfectlyMy cup of waterThe mix, with a Tablespoon in itThe finished product. Mmm, it's tasty. Quite sweet
Half and Half Iced Tea and Lemonade mix, and Tang
Half and Half Iced Tea and Lemonade mix, and Tang | Source
Cinnamon and cloves, both of the ground variety
Cinnamon and cloves, both of the ground variety | Source
I used a funnel to pour the powdered mixes into the container that originally held the iced tea/lemonade
I used a funnel to pour the powdered mixes into the container that originally held the iced tea/lemonade | Source
This shows the beverage mixes on the bottom, and the colorful spices on top
This shows the beverage mixes on the bottom, and the colorful spices on top | Source
I poured it into a large jar to mix it well, but it's too big to store only 2 1/2 cups of mix in.
I poured it into a large jar to mix it well, but it's too big to store only 2 1/2 cups of mix in. | Source
I stored the mix in the original iced tea/lemonade container, and it fit perfectly
I stored the mix in the original iced tea/lemonade container, and it fit perfectly | Source
My cup of water
My cup of water | Source
The mix, with a Tablespoon in it
The mix, with a Tablespoon in it | Source
The finished product. Mmm, it's tasty. Quite sweet
The finished product. Mmm, it's tasty. Quite sweet | Source

My Observations:

There are many options in the store, as far as the powdered drinks. Tang is a fantastic orange beverage, but if you are diabetic, or on a low-sugar diet, you may want to find an orange-flavored beverage (as well as lemonade) that is sugar-free. Many sugar-free varieties have either Splenda (containing dextrose, maltodextrine, and sucralose) or aspartame in it. Read the ingredient label if you have any sensitivities to, or misgivings of, any of those ingredients.

I also noticed another shortcut, and took advantage of it: Half and Half is a term used for half iced tea and half lemonade. It is not exactly the same formula as the recipe above (a little more lemonade, a little less iced tea), but I am going to try it out. I bought the half and half, sugar free (with Splenda), as well as Tang.

Spiced Tea, Lower Sugar Version

  • Note that this is lower sugar, not low sugar. I used the Tang, which initially has 22 grams of sugar per serving (the equivalent of about 5 1/2 teaspoons of sugar). But I also used 4C Totally Light Half and Half Iced Tea & Lemonade, which has 0 sugar, and uses Splenda. It balances the recipe out, bringing the sugar down to only 11 grams of sugar (less than 3 teaspoons) per serving.
  • Yield: 2 1/2 cups, which makes 32 servings at 1 Tablespoon each
  • Here we go with this version that I personally mixed myself today:

Ingredients:

  • 4C Totally Light Half and Half Iced Tea & Lemonade, all 7 tubs from the 1.975 0z (56 grams) container [you could get away with using less]
  • 2 cups of Tang orange drink mix
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves

Instructions:

  • Mix all ingredients completely
  • Test your mix out, to make sure it suits your taste
  • Store in a mason jar or airtight container in a cool, dry place, such as a cupboard
  • If you are giving as a gift, you may want to affix a pretty label or tag onto the jar, with the instructions listed below:

~ For one serving, pour one cup of hot water into a mug (or microwave water for about 1 minute), and stir in 1 Tablespoon of the mix (or a little less) until it's dissolved. If desired, add more, but even 1 Tablespoon is quite sweet and tangy.

Lower Sugar version of Spiced Tea

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 Tablespoon
Calories 45
Calories from Fat0
% Daily Value *
Fat 0 g
Saturated fat 0 g
Unsaturated fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 11 g4%
Sugar 11 g
Fiber 0 g
Protein 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 18 mg1%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.
Source

Author Information

To learn more about the author, or read more of her works, click on http://kathrynstratford.hubpages.com

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    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Natasha, I think it is a cool idea for a gift. When I received some myself years ago, I had not thought of it, either. It's a cool gift!

      Good luck with your mom's birthday- I hope it is happy for her!

      Thanks for reading and commenting, and have a wonderful day.

      ~ Kathryn

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 4 years ago from Hawaii

      I was just browsing around looking at recipes when I noticed this. I have never thought to make tea mix! This would be a really cool gift idea. My mom's birthday is next month - this may very well be what she gets!

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Laura, you're welcome. I hope you enjoy! Once you try it, feel free to give input or suggestions.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      MJ, my blood is made of caffeine, too. As I sit here I am indulging in a French Vanilla coffee. I have considered doing a hub on coffee of some sort, and I will sometime. Right now I have so many ideas, and not enough time. But I will start thinking about which way to run with it :)

      Thanks for reading, commenting, voting up and sharing. Much appreciated.

    • LauraD093 profile image

      Laura Tykarski 4 years ago from Pittsburgh PA

      Thanks for the recipes I'm going to experiment with them both.

    • profile image

      mjkearn 4 years ago

      Hi Kathryn

      Good job on this hub. Tea isn't my thing and I only visit the kitchen to refill my coffee and pick up the spanners I left there when last refilling the coffee. I have pure caffeine and petrol for blood.

      Now spiced and flavored coffee hubs would definitely be right up my street and it might even make me stay in the kitchen longer, not that I'm the sort to drop hints.

      Hint, hint and Bob's somebody's uncle I suppose.

      Great job, voted up and shared.

      MJ.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      sgbrown, I am glad that I have reminded you of the recipe your dad used to make, and I hope it is enjoyable. Thank you for reading and commenting, and I am happy that you are writing it down. Have a fantastic weekend!

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Blond Logic, I like regular tea as well, but this is certainly much more simple to make! Thanks for reading and commenting.

      Sometimes it is nice to create something simple and easy, and right now it is a priority for me.

      Have a wonderful weekend!

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      My dad used to make spiced tea when I was a child. I loved it! I had forgotten all about it. This sounds like it would be just like his. I am writing down the recipe right now! Voted up and useful. :)

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 4 years ago from Brazil

      This was not at all what I thought it was going to be. I had visions of grinding down spices etc. Thank goodness it wasn't! Anything for a simple life I say.

      Like your friend that gave you this, what a wonderful idea for a present.

      Thanks for sharing this with us.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      I hope you enjoy it. I like rediscovering things that I have had before. I forgot about it for quite a while, but when I came upon the recipe in my recipe collection, it brought back memories.

      I like tangy, too!

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 4 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Thank you for this wonderful recipe. One year at a women's Christmas event, the hostess presented this tea in a cute jar - just like the one you described. The tea was delicious. Now that I have the recipe, I can make more. I like it really tangy, so I use 2 tablespoons and sip it slowly.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      You're welcome, Emma, and I hope you like it when you make it. It definitely makes a great Christmas gift.

    • Emma Harvey profile image

      Emma Harvey 4 years ago from Berkshire, UK

      I was looking to buy a sachet to make spiced tea at Christmas, but now I know how to make it I will give it a go. Thanks so much for sharing this.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Wrenfrost, you're welcome, and I hope you enjoy it. I haven't made it in a while, but next cold season I want to keep the ingredients on hand during the Winter months, and even give some as unique gifts.

      I love tea, too. Right now I am sipping on a delicious Chai Oolong.

      Thank you for reading and commenting. I appreciate it.

    • wrenfrost56 profile image

      wrenfrost56 4 years ago from U.K.

      I enjoy hot drinks too particularly tea, this sounds very warming and delicious, yet as you mentioned simple. I think that it would be something that I would like to try, thanks for sharing your friends recipe with us. :)

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Thanks, Au fait. It would probably taste great even without the instant tea, it just wouldn't be spiced tea!

      Thank you for reading and commenting on my hub. It will probably be another week or so before I get a new hub out, because I barely have any time after work, just so you know!

      Have a good weekend!

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 4 years ago from North Texas

      I'll be frank, I'm not a tea, coffee, or soda drinker at all. But this recipe does sound delicious and if I were a tea drinker I feel certain this would be an addiction. I love all the ingredients -- except the tea. :( But I do think all those other goodies would make me forget the tea was even in it! :) And of course a lot of teas are good for a person, and that's something to consider. I am going to save this recipe and try it one of these days. Guests would almost certainly love it no matter how I decide, but it does truly look promising.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Cuttler, I'm not positive, but the instant tea does have caffeine in it, usually, so I wouldn't drink it right before bed, but I'm not sure it would keep you from sleeping if you drank it. Good question.

      Thank you for reading and commenting, and if you try it out, I hope you enjoy.

    • cuttler profile image

      Cuttler 4 years ago from HubPages

      Simple recipe; just the way I like it. By the way, what can I get from this beverage...for instance does it delay sleep like coffee?

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Shampa, thank you for reading and commenting, as well as sharing it. I appreciate it. I hope you like it!

    • shampa sadhya profile image

      Shampa Sadhya 4 years ago from NEW DELHI, INDIA

      Voted up and interesting!

      Nice tip. I will definitely try this. Sharing and pinning!

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Cyndi, I have never had Russian Tea, but I came across mention of it recently.

      Now that I have rediscovered this recipe, I think I will use it during the Winter holidats at the end of the year. I think a lot of my family would love it! I just need to make sure I have a similarly tasty sugar-free version, since my mother is diabetic, and others have cut down on sugar.

      Thank you for reading and commenting. Have a great day.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      KenWu, It is pretty simple. If you try it, I hope you enjoy! Thanks for reading and commenting on this recipe.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Angelo, I just checked, and there are sugar-free varieties of both Tang and Crystal Light Orange-flavored drinks, as well as lemonaid (Crystal Light or possibly Country Time). I am going to investigate further, and I intend to put a sugar-free recipe up in a while, so that people that can't or don't want to have a lot of sugar can still enjoy it.

      Thank you for reading and commenting on this recipe.

    • Cyndi10 profile image

      Cynthia B Turner 4 years ago from Georgia

      This is a wonderful recipe. In my family, it's called Russian Tea. There is a slight variation to it, but so slight I doubt it changes the taste. It's great to share the tea and then present the recipe to your guests, especially during the holidays. Voted up for great taste.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Rajan, thank you for reading, commenting and sharing. I appreciate it! I like that it is simple, yet tasty.

    • KenWu profile image

      KenWu 4 years ago from Malaysia

      It's not a difficult mix, perhaps I should try this. Thanks! Voted up! Shared too!

    • Angelo52 profile image

      Angelo52 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Great idea for tea drinkers who like it spiced up. Are there non-sugar alternatives to the tang and lemonade?

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Kathryn, this is so wonderful yet so simple. I'm bookmarking and sharing it too. Voted up, useful and interesting. Rated 5 stars.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      You're welcome :)

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Rose, it is great for gifts! I know I was happy the first time my friend gave a jar of it to me. I always like to customize recipes, because there are so many things that can make a drink or a dish taste different.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

      Awesome, thank you for answering that. :)

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I love hot drinks, too. What a great gift idea! I love that there are so many ways that you can customize this recipe.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Eddy, you're welcome, and thanks for reading and commenting.

      Have a wonderful day!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Interesting and useful.

      Thank you for sharing.

      Eddy.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Cyndi,

      This particular version uses the instant tea that is kind of granulated, so that you just add water directly to it and it dissolves, kind of like instant coffee. I personally don't have any on hand right now (I usually drink "real" tea), but I remember trying this years ago and really enjoying it. But one could try this using loose leaf, too, it would just need to be strained out. I'm going to try a looseleaf version soon, and if it comes out good, I will add a capsule with that version.

      That does make me realize that I need to make it clear what kind of tea, so people won't get confused. I think it would work with other kinds, just not the same. I'll also see if I can show examples of the ingredients, maybe using E-Bay capsules.

      I drink both teabags and looseleaf, too. I bought some delicious Chai Oolong from Teavana recently as a treat (it is expensive to buy more than a small quantity!). I love tea, and I also love variety!

      Thank you for reading, and for commenting. I love receiving input!

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

      I am a tea-drinking addict. This hub is great! One question: when you say 1 cup instant tea, does that mean "in the bag" or "loose leaf" tea? Or does that mean instant tea taken out of the bag? Hehe...I confess: I drink loose leaf tea, as well as tea from a bag and I would LOVE to make this. :)

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Thanks, Colin. I think I will try again. One of Bill's latest articles had to do with stretching our limits by writing in a way that we don't normally write. Poetry would be something like that for me. And since I used to do it, I suppose it is still in me. I never expect to be a poet, but it would be good for me personally. Thanks for the encouragement, Colin.

      As for the music, I think I will look it up online.

      I hope your morning is going well. I just finished a cup of coffee.

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      Speaking about St.Patrick's day - I love the music of the Dropkick Murphys, the Chieftains, the Clancy Brothers and the Pogues.

      I would definitely encourage you, Kathryn, to try your hand at poetry again - it is for everyone. And if you write from your heart the mind will always follow - just be yourself and have fun with it.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Bill, you're welcome, and thank you for reading. If you ever try it out, I hope you like it.

      I used to live in Worcester! My brother still lives near there. Great place.

      Have a good night.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
      Author

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Colin, sounds like you and the kitties are having a relaxing evening! The tea sounds great! I love variety, and have 1 container of whole tea (Chai Oolong), as well as about 8 or 9 of other varieties. I most commonly drink Echinacea, Irish Breakfast, and Green tea, although I like a fruit flavored variety, as well. And any black tea is great with a little milk and sweetener. I drink coffee in the morning and the afternoon. I drink tea in between, sometimes, and in the evening.

      Everything is going very well. I enjoyed my first South Boston St Patrick's Day parade (it was going on for hours), and it was so much fun! Now I am winding down, and catching up on my reading and commenting!

      You have been very busy with your poems today! I wish I could write like that. I used to wite some poetry, but it took too much effort, and most sounded quite elementary. But I FEEL like I could write poetry, like it is in me, but I just can't get to it.

      We are due to get some snow tomorrow night, although it shouldn't be a big deal.

      Have a wonderful night, and it was nice to "chit-chat" with you!

    • billd01603 profile image

      billd01603 4 years ago from Worcester

      Sounds Great Kathryn. Thanks for sharing this recipe

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      Good evening my Kathryn of Kool from Colin's jazz cafe and a nice cuppa tea with me right now - and how appropriate to sit down here with you having a honey lemon ginseng green tea.

      So nice to see you enjoy the finer things in life with your impeccable good taste and Little Miss Tiffy and Mister Gabriel both just woke up for probably a little late night nosh - how is everything with you tonight?

      We are getting one of those late March winter storms here by the lake tomorrow but my cats and I were sitting out earlier today for a bit on the deck while having my coffee. Coffee is my morning time drink.

      Sending to you warm wishes and good karma from lake erie time ontario canada 10:35pm

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Thanks, Careermommy, it is a recipe I don't see around that much. It would definitely satisfy a sweet tooth, and the good thing about making a batch is that you use whatever amt of spoonfuls you need to give your beverage the taste you desire. Some like it weak, and some like it sweet and tangy! I hope you like it. Thank you for reading and commenting. Have a good evening!

    • Careermommy profile image

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Kathryn, this is very original. And, I didn't realize it was also a recipe that would satisfy my sweet tooth. Thanks for sharing it.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Om, it is tasty, and the spices give the beverage a very plesant taste. I put cinnamon in a lot of what I eat and drink.

      Thanks for reading and commenting, and have a wonderful evening.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Bill, thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my simple recipe. If she tries it, I hope she likes it. But warn her it is quite sweet and tangy! It isn't quite like having just a simple cup of tea, but it is pretty tasty.

      I am having a spectacular Sunday! I just got back from the Southie parade, which is very long. It was worth it, though.

      I hope your weekend has been very pleasant, too.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image
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      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Joe, it is very simple, and if you like hot beverages, I think you would enjoy it. 1 teaspoon of nutmeg would be just right.

      You're welcome, and thank you for reading and commenting.

    • Om Paramapoonya profile image

      Om Paramapoonya 4 years ago

      Sounds lovely! I like all the ingredients, especially cinnamon and cloves. Rated up :)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bev is the tea drinker here. I will pass this along to her. Thanks for the tip and I hope you are having a great Sunday.

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Kathryn, my recent experience in the kitchen amounts to heating water or making popcorn in the microwave, but this recipe is so simple that I'm willing to try it. Like you, I just love hot beverages and the hub tales that are thus inspired. Regarding the alternative of adding nutmeg, would a teaspoon be too much? Thanks so much for sharing!