How to Make Cold Brew Coffee at Home

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True coffee lovers, enjoy good coffee even when the sun is out. Rather than sipping from a hot brew, you can still get your daily dose of caffeine from a refreshing cold brew. But very few coffee lovers know how to make one at home. So, in this post, we are going to show you how to make cold brew coffee at home and enjoy those long, hot summer days without breaking the bank. Let’s do this!

Satisfy Those Cravings

To satisfy our coffee cravings, we all end up at Starbucks or our local coffee house for a pricey cold brew, but are they really that hard to make? Can’t we just make them at home? For some reason, cold brew coffee seems more complicated to make than hot coffee brewing, but is that really the case?

Why not spend this weekend making cold brew coffee and enjoying drinking it in the sun with your family and friends? On a hot summer day, this drink is a complete game-changer. 

This guide to cold brew coffee will demonstrate how to make a cold brew coffee at home. The best part is that this simple method doesn’t require an expensive coffee maker, or coffee roaster to create exceptional cold brew coffee. All you will need is a large container, a strainer and patience

What is cold brew coffee?

The clue is in the name. The coffee is brewed using cold or room temperature water instead of hot water. As long as you have patience, there is no need for any special coffee maker equipment, tools, or devices. It’s as simple as mixing ground coffee with water and leaving it in the fridge overnight.

Normally coffee is extracted at 91°C to 96°C. With a cold brew coffee, the coffee grounds are extracted at around 2°C to 21°C. This cold brew coffee is a beverage that is worth the wait.

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Fun facts about cold brew coffee

  • The cold brew coffee is twice as caffeinated ad regular coffee.
  • Cold brew coffee tastes less bitter, smoother, and more chocolatey than your ordinary hot brew.
  • The coffee grounds must soak in cold water for about 12 to 18 hours to soak in the coffee’s color, flavor, and caffeine.
  • You can make a big batch that will last you the whole week.

How to make cold brew coffee?

This refreshing cold brew coffee is perfect for sunny days and picnics with your friends. Refresh and impress with this cold brew recipe.

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What you need:

Step 1: The coffee water ratio

The standard coffee to water ratio for a cold brew coffee is 8oz cold water to 1oz coffee grounds.

It’s up to you if you want to experiment with this ratio to suit your preferences. If you love stronger coffee, increase the ratio of coffee grounds to water.

For 5 servings, mix 24 oz of water with 4.5 oz of coarse coffee grounds.

Step 2: Choosing your coffee beans

If you enjoy drinking coffee from your local coffee house, you will likely be accustomed to the favor of Arabica coffee beans. These are the preferred coffee beans of baristas and coffee connoisseurs and are primarily used in coffee houses and shops.

The best coffee roast- Again, it all comes down to your preferred taste. The light to medium coffee roast is more acidic and fruity. On the other hand, the dark coffee roast has a more intense flavor and earthiness. 

Step 3: Coarsely grind the coffee

Coffee lovers who enjoy experimenting with different blends and brewing coffee at home are likely to have invested in a coffee grinder already. If you’re still new to the coffee club, check out our blog on choosing the best coffee grinder. This may help you decide what coffee grinder is best for you and your coffee brewing needs.

Whether you’re using a burr grinder or a blade grinder to grind your coffee beans, make sure your coffee grounds are coarse for this type of coffee. If your coffee grounds are too fine, you will over-extract the coffee beans and your cold brew coffee will have a bitter taste. On the other hand, if your coffee grounds are too coarse, you’ll end up with under-extracted flavors that are sour, acidic, and salty. We recommend using a conical burr grinder to achieve the perfect coffee grind size. 

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Freshly grinding your coffee beans at home will give you a much stronger and more fragrant coffee flavor. But, if you don’t already have a coffee grinder at home, you can always blitz your coffee beans using a food processor (although they will be inconsistent in size) or you can use pre-ground coffee. Bags of pre-ground coffee can be purchased from your local coffee house, grocery store, or online.

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Step 4: Stirring properly 

Mix the cold water and coffee grounds together in a large jar using your preferred coffee to water ratio. Stir thoroughly using a long-handled spoon to get the mixture flowing. The grounds should be fully saturated with water.

We recommend using a mason jar or a jar with an airtight lid. Don’t worry if you don’t have this, you can always cover your jar with a small plate.

Step 5: Let it soak

The soaking time is flexible. Some advise 8 to 12 hours (basically just overnight)  in the refrigerator. Others recommend leaving your mixture in the fridge for at least 18 to 24 hours. The longer you leave it, the more intense your brew will be. For reference, Starbucks soaks their cold brew coffee for roughly 20 hours. 

If you leave it too long it can get bitter, but you can always dilute your cold brew with some extra water.

If you own a French press, you can actually make your cold brew coffee in your coffee press. Just mix it inside the French press, put the lid on top but don’t push down the plunger until it been left in the fridge overnight. Then press down on the plunger and serve.

Step 6: Strain your cold brew

Straining is essential to avoid murky, sludgy concentrate. There are various methods of straining your cold coffee brew. Select the one that works best for you.

  • Paper coffee filters
  • A clean cloth: Set your cloth on a fine-mesh sieve and pour the contents through it. make sure you put a container underneath to collect the cold brew coffee.
  • A funnel: You can use a funnel to strain the concentrate, but make sure you place a coffee filter or clean cloth over it first.
Filter Coffee Making

Choose the method that suits you best. While your cold coffee filters through, stir it gently to help the liquid strain through. You’ll need to be patient as this step can take a few minutes, especially if you’ve made a big batch.

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Even if you use a French press, we recommend going through with this step to ensure your cold brew isn’t gritty.

Once your coffee is filtered, transfer the cold brew coffee into portioned-out airtight jars and store them in the refrigerator. They should last for up to 2 weeks.

TOP TIP: Don’t squeeze or press the coffee grounds during the coffee filtering process, as it may release the bitterness that affects the flavor of your cold brew coffee.

Step 7: Serve your brewed cold coffee

As you serve, remember to dilute the cold brew coffee with water according to your taste. We prefer a 1:1 ratio, meaning 1 cup of brew, to 1 cup of water, and don’t forget to add some ice cubes. You can also add some milk, oat milk, almond milk, or cashew milk to make it nice and creamy. 

Why you should brew cold coffee at home

  • It’s refreshing and delicious, and perfect on a hot day.
  • One batch can be enjoyed for up to two weeks.
  • It is super cheap to make at home and expensive to buy from a coffee house.  
  • It doesn’t require barista skills to make at home. It easy enough for any coffee lover to create.

FAQs

Can I make a cold brew at home?

Yes, absolutely! Check out our recommended process, and you are good to go.

Can you use regular ground coffee for cold brew?

It’s better to use coarsely ground coffee for a cold brew coffee. The regular coffee ground size is a little too fine, and you could end up with a bitter tasting cold brew coffee.

What is the ratio of coffee to water for cold brew?

The standard coffee to water ratio for a cold brew coffee is 8oz cold water to 1oz coffee grounds.

What is the best coffee for cold brew?

It all comes down to your personal preference. For more information on the coffee beans, check out our blog on The best advice on coffee beans.

Are 8 hours enough time for cold brew?

If you are short on time, 8 hours should do the trick.

Is cold press coffee the same as cold brew?

No, the brewed coffee requires more time than press coffee.

Can I make cold brew coffee with instant coffee?

No! Instant coffee is already brewed. You only need to rehydrate it.

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About the author

Coffee addict and self confessed obsessive with all things Java, Dave loves to write about coffee nearly as much as he enjoys drinking it. Can always be found no more than 2 feet away from a fresh brew!

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