What Is An Arnold Palmer Drink Made Of?

There's nothing quite like a cool, crisp drink on a hot day, and the popular Arnold Palmer drink is a prime example of what happens when you combine two much-loved flavors to make one spectacular concoction. Easy to make at home and also widely available at grocery stores and restaurants around the country, the Arnold Palmer is enjoyed everywhere. So what exactly is an Arnold Palmer made of?


An Arnold Palmer drink is a 50/50 combination of iced black tea and lemonade. The sweetness of the lemonade blends perfectly with the sharper taste of the unsweet iced tea, resulting in a pleasantly refreshing drink that makes taste buds happy and comes with a nice little caffeine kick, too. While it's traditionally made by simply pouring unsweet tea and lemonade together into a glass, people have been expanding on the recipe for years, and modern variations of the Arnold Palmer include ingredients like mint or even bourbon. The Arnold Palmer flavor combo is so popular (and tasty) that you can even find it in food recipes, like Arnold Palmer-style fried chicken or Arnold Palmer vinaigrette.

What is the history of the Arnold Palmer drink?

It was the late 1960s when Arnold Palmer was overheard asking a waitress for his favorite drink. This exchange would change the trajectory of his business career in an unexpected way. Already an accomplished golfer with a devoted following, he was about to walk down a path that would make him a leader in the beverage industry 30 years later. At home back in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, his wife would often mix his iced tea and lemonade for him after a long day on the course. One afternoon at lunch, after spending the morning designing a golf course in sunny Palm Springs, California, Arnold asked the waitress to make his favorite drink — a glass of lemonade and iced tea. A woman sitting near him overheard the exchange, and immediately requested her very own "Arnold Palmer drink." It quickly caught on at the restaurant and, as Arnold's popularity grew, so did the popularity of this refreshing drink.


In 2001, Arnold Palmer joined forces with the Arizona Beverage Company to create a canned version of his beloved drink. Quickly gaining popularity, the annual revenue of the brand has exceeded $200 million. This quintessential combo of lemonade and iced tea has also found a home in restaurants around the country. Today, you can order a frosted Arnold Palmer at Chick-fil-A, or request an Arnold Palmer on In-N-Out's secret menu (they use pink lemonade instead of traditional lemonade).