Korean Iced Green Tea (Soju Cocktail)

Why you should drink this delicious soju cocktail

This soju cocktail is modeled after the green tea martinis which my husband and I drank in celebration of our engagement at a hotel bar in China. However, instead of vodka or gin for this drink recipe, I’m using Korean soju as a nod to my time spent in South Korea. Also, because there just aren’t many cocktails centered around this Korean alcoholic drink which is a shame because soju has lots of cocktail recipe potential.

If you can’t find soju, no worries-just substitute vodka and make a martini. This cocktail goes well with Korean fried chicken, any kind of barbeque, and KTV (karaoke). Just be careful of where you end up later after one too many soju cocktails.

Korean Iced Tea cocktails with lemon slices
a bottle of green tea syrup, Korean soju bottle and lemon with cocktails

What is soju?

Soju is the preferred alcoholic drink of choice for South Koreans. It can best be described as part rice wine and part vodka. It is traditionally made from rice and has a high percentage of alcohol given that it is meant to be a rice wine as opposed to a spirit.

In terms of taste, it has a fairly neutral taste making it perfect for cocktail recipes. This Korean drink can be found anywhere and everywhere in South Korea in restaurants, local shops, and hiking trips. No meal or outdoor excursion is complete without a bottle of soju on the table or packed away in a hiking bag.

Personally, I’ve seen South Koreans throwback straight soju while feasting on some delicious Korean BBQs. People have been known to drink this fortified rice wine whilst out on weekend mountain climbing trips, river rafting, and in pretty much any other activity that expresses their love of the outdoors. This includes passing out on the sidewalks. Hey, it’s still outside and yes, that does happen a lot…

How Soju is normally consumed in South Korea

Any ex-pat who has lived in South Korea for an extended period of time has a story about drinking too much soju. They either wake up on the floor hugging a refrigerator crisper drawer (for puking in) or regale you with stories about hallucinating that the CIA was coming to get them. What can I say? It has that effect on people.

When I was living in South Korea, there weren’t that many soju cocktail recipes. You drank it straight with a juice chaser. No offense to those hardcore drinkers who can throwback shots of this rice wine, but I much prefer the alcohol in soju cocktails where I can take my time and sip on my drink.

For this recipe, you are welcome to use any kind and flavor of Korean Soju that you like. The market seems to be full of all different kinds and flavors of soju so taste test and find the right flavor of soju for you and whip up this cocktail recipe.

건배 (geonbae) !

a bottle of green tea syrup, Korean soju bottle and lemon with cocktails

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Korean Iced Tea with lemon slices

Korean Iced Green Tea (Soju Cocktail)

  • Author: Spicepaw
  • Total Time: 15 minutes


A delicious and refreshing soju cocktail made with green tea syrup and a squeeze of lemon. It just might become your new favorite boozy drink! #cocktails #recipes #drinks #greentea #soju #lemon


Units Scale
Korean Iced Tea
  • 1 part green tea syrup **(recipe down below)
  • 2 parts soju
  • ice
  • lemon slices
Green tea syrup
    • 4 bags of jasmine green tea
    • 0.5L (a little over 2 cups) water
    • 100g (about 1/2 cup) sugar


For the Soju cocktail
  1. Combine 1 part green tea syrup with 2 parts of soju.  Stir thoroughly and add ice. Garnish with lemon slices.  건배! (geonbae!)
For the syrup
  1. Combine the ingredients in a medium-sized saucepan and let simmer for 10 min.
  2. Run through a sieve and let cool.
  3. Cover and refrigerate after making.


  1. This syrup can be used for cocktails (alcoholic and nonalcoholic), drizzled over fruit or shaved ice, and other desserts.
  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 10 min
  • Category: Cocktails
  • Method: boiling
  • Cuisine: Korean

Keywords: Soju, green tea, lemon, cocktails, drinks, alcohol

If you are smitten with this soju drink recipe, learn The Secret to the Perfect Mojito Cocktail.


Author: Natasha

I'm just a busy expat mom who has a psychological need to feed people. I enjoy learning about new cultures, (especially the food) and enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and spices

16 thoughts

  1. Super yummy, thanks! Only got ahold of some soju because someone had ordered a bottle from the liquor store and flaked out. It’s really good.

    1. Thanks! So glad you liked it. Soju was something we always had on hand in South Korea but if you can’t easily get it, just substitute vodka and make a green tea martini.

  2. Is it possible to make the green tea syrup with bottled green tea? I don’t have tea bags at the moment so I was looking for an alternative.

  3. This article is hilarious and such a great recipe! Going to test it out tonight & I have high hopes!

    1. Thanks! Let me know how it turns out. Also, let me know if you pass out anywhere interesting (like a sidewalk). 🙂

  4. I’ve made this several times – I love it! Friends have loved it too. I use a high quality loose leaf jasmine green tea. And I just add syrup ratio to taste. The floral sweetness is so good in an icy beverage. ☺️

  5. I have made this often and brought it to parties – always with RAVE reviews. Everyone says it is dangerously delicious. FIVE ⭐️ STARS

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