Guide to Making Loaded Teas at Home for Starters

If you are looking for a beginner’s guide for making your own loaded teas at home, then this post is for you!

Or maybe you’re just wondering what loaded teas even are. We’ll go over that, too!

**The links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase an item, I will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. All opinions remain my own.

What is a loaded tea?

A loaded tea is a drink with vitamins, aloe, caffeine and flavoring mixed with water. The majority of them, especially the super popular tea and “nutrition” shops, are made using Herbalife products. 

Most of us see the brightly colored drinks in clear cups labeled with cool names flooding our social media timelines. In addition to the punch of energy, they claim to increase mental clarity, help burn fat, and boost your metabolism. 

why are they so expensive?

In all reality, they are crazy expensive because they are crazy popular! These tea shops can charge upwards of $7.00 per tea simply because customers will pay for it thinking they are getting high quality and healthy products. 

As you can see in this chart, the actual Herbalife ingredients are not that costly, and you can get them even cheaper at the member price, which is how they try to recruit customers to join their “team.” It’s Multi Level Marketing at its finest! 


Now, let me tell you how you can make your own loaded teas at home without being overcharged or misled into signing up to join a Multi Level Marketing pyramid scheme. We just want our loaded teas without all the bull — am I right?

Here at Silver Lining Lessons, we knew there had to be a better, more budget friendly way to duplicate “dupe” these teas. So, we got to work and developed a method to make loaded teas at home using products that can be purchased at Walmart, grocery stores, discount stores, and online. Not a single one of the products we use is part of a Multi Level Marketing scheme and nothing we do requires you to join any such recruiting based business to enjoy these teas at home.


If you’re interested in trying to make your own loaded teas at home but don’t really know where to start, we’ve put together this list for you. We believe this starter pack will get you the basic items to experiment with multiple flavors and see if you love them as much as we do. If you do, which we just know you will, then you can easily and affordably expand your stock from here. 

So, let’s make your shopping list! 


First, you will need your tea component, which needs to be an instant tea powder. This is the dupe for Herbalife’s tea concentrate. Their concentrates are filled with maltodextrin, fructose, tea extracts, caffeine powders and cardamom seed extract. Through all of our extensive research, we’ve discovered that the flavored tea concentrates that Herbalife distributors use do not impact the overall flavor of the drinks when all of the ingredients are mixed. You really only need a black tea and/or a green tea to make the teas.

You are much better off by  using a pure tea powder with no extra junk! Out of all of the instant teas we’ve used, we prefer Waka Instant Tea, which has one ingredient – pure tea powder.  You can get the black tea and/or green tea, depending on what you prefer. You can make 113 TEAS with just one 4.5 oz. bag of Waka Instant Tea! That’s a whole lot of bang for your buck.  

black kenyan instant tea

WakA Discount code: silverlining

15% off everything on waka's website


Next, you will need a box of 4C Energy Rush drink mix, which comes in a variety pack of citrus, berry and orange. This is your Herbalife Liftoff dupe. 4C Energy Rush Orange is the Orange Liftoff, 4C Energy Rush Citrus is the Lemon Lime Liftoff, and 4C Energy Rush Berry is the Pomegranate Liftoff. You can find the full article of how these two products compare here — The Ultimate Herbalife Liftoff Dupe.

Using the 4C Energy Rush will give you the lightly carbonated and caffeinated elements of the loaded tea while also providing vitamins. These can be found at most Walmart stores in the drink mix aisle, some smaller chain grocery stores and online.

It is important to note that 4C does make some other flavored drink mixes that are not caffeinated, so it is important to make sure you are grabbing the 4C Energy Rush if you want the caffeine boost. 


These flavored drink mixes are the ones most commonly used to make our loaded tea recipes and will allow to make the most variety without buying too many at once.

  • Skittles variety pack (Grape, Strawberry, Orange and Green Apple)
  • Hawaiian Punch Berry Blue Typhoon
  • Pineapple
  • Watermelon
  • Cherry Limeade (can be used alone & combined with grape to make Rainbow Candy)

You should be able to find all of these flavors at Walmart, grocery stores, and even most discount or dollar stores.

Note that most of the powdered drink mixes are sugar free and are made using some type of artificial sugar. If you are interested in making teas that specifically do not contain aspartame, these are some aspartame free options:

  • Gage Foods drink mixes (use sucralose)
  • Gram Zero drink mixes (use Stevia)
  • Most liquid drink mixes
  • Crush brand watermelon and orange
  • Most Welch’s, Tampico, True Lemon, Stur and ZHOU brand mixes.

There are other aspartame free options, but they really are hit or miss depending on the brands available to you in stores. Double check the labels if you are curious.


This is the dupe for Herbalife’s aloe concentrate. We use Fruit of the Earth brand, which can be found in most Walmart stores, and it works perfectly in the teas. Remember to refrigerate your aloe after opening and read the product labels to ensure you aren’t exceeding the recommended serving amount if you are drinking multiple teas per day. It helps with color separation and digestive health while also adding vitamins and antioxidants. There is great information on Healthline and WebMD if you are interested in finding more information.

Adding aloe juice is totally optional depending on your preference. If you want to start making loaded teas without buying this part, go right ahead! You can always incorporate it later or just leave it out. If you don’t use any, just sub cold water in its place in our recipes.


This is the dupe for Herbalife’s NRG powder, which stands for Nature’s Raw Guarana Tea. Ironically, Herbalife’s NRG is filled with maltodextrin, guarana seed extract and caffeine powder. Sounds far from natural!

This is not a critical ingredient for loaded teas. You can absolutely make any recipe without adding any, and it will still have the same great flavor. Guarana is only needed if you want an extra boost of caffeine, in which case you can actually buy a pure guarana powder, again without all of the added junk. We recommend the Nutricost brand guarana powder, which we get on Amazon. You only have to use 1/8 teaspoon to get about 55 milligrams of extra caffeine. It also has a finer texture, which helps it dissolve easier, leaving no grainy texture.

Remember to check places like Walgreens, CVS, Big Lots, Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, etc. for drink mixes! I’ve also linked the items we use that are sold on Amazon in my shop under the Tea Things Category – Silver Lining Lessons Amazon Shop.


Okay, now let’s take a look at all of the Silver Lining Lessons loaded tea recipes you can make at home with these starter pack ingredients. Click any one of these for the full recipe.

Also, don’t forget that you can find our video tutorials and lots of information on our TikTok, Facebook page and Instagram.

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When you get ready to expand your loaded tea making collection, remember to check out our Tea Master List for a full list of ingredients we use along with some links and discount codes you can use to save even more money.

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30 thoughts on “Guide to Making Loaded Teas at Home for Starters”

  1. Love making teas with you! I make them almost every day.

    By the way, you can also order Fruit of the Earth products directly from their website. They offer other good products, such as the lemon cleaning products. 😉

  2. At the nutrition drink stores that I go to I get a Pardise Punch, TN Bowl, or an Emerald Isle, was wondering if you knew the ingredients to those

  3. Hi! Love love love all of your teas! I have been making them daily for two months now. Can you tell me which recipes use the berry 4c? I have so many left ( obviously it’s not my favorite) but I feel like I should try more combos…. Thanks again for what you do! It’s awesome

    1. I’m just a follower of them as well…but I LOVE the berry 4C. I mix it with pineapple……….it’s delicious! You could try it! 🙂

  4. Hello. I tend to have lots of Orange 4C left from each box. Is there a way to filter the recipes by ingredient? And thanks for providing us with great recipes!

  5. I love all this! I got sucked into Herbalife and the amount of money you spend is insane with that stuff. I do have one question is there a dupe for the Niteworks? That stuff was wonderful for my migraines.

  6. Antonette Castillo

    Hi, I love the teas and shakes. I drink a shake and a tea everyday. I was looking on the tea board and saw a tea “frost bite” but don’t find a recipe for it. Do you have a recipe? Thank you

  7. Am I the only one who hasn’t been able to find 4C at my local store for a few months now?!

    I know Amazon has it, just curious if anyone else has noticed.

    1. 1/4 tsp orange 4c and 1/4tsp of lime 4c is supposed to be a tropical lift off dupe I just tried it and like it but I’ve never tried the tropical lift off so not sure if it taste the same or not

  8. I really enjoy your videos on tik tok and I would love to start making these teas but for flavor and not caffeine purposes….sure wish you had more caffeine free recipes..

    1. First off….thank you for saving me from HL! 😁
      Can you combine the any of the 4Cs flavors like HL tropical liftoff? A few of my favorite teas use that liftoff & I miss it but refuse to waste $$ on HL anymore.

  9. Hello from Chickamauga GA! I’m loving all this great info. My favorite tea this far (at the stores) is Twisted Flamingo. I think it’s original tea, NRG, Pomberry, pink lemonade and a sprinkle of blue blast. I can’t wait to try it out with your awesome info!

  10. Anyone have any tips for storing drinks sticks that are open but you haven’t used all of?? I tried a binder clip but its not really working out.

  11. Sorry if this has been asked before but i’m not seeing anwhere on your
    social media;
    I’m not sure what these combinations taste like but I know I like something with a little pucker/tartness. Can you suggest one to start with? I don’t want to buy a ton of product and then it’s only just a sweet mix. Thanks much for doing all this work for us!

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Jana Rogers

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At Silver Lining Lessons, we want to help you maximize every dollar, moment and misstep on your way to a debt free life.

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