How to Make Cold Brew Coffee

Avoid the long coffee shop lines, and make your own iced coffee at home -- and we're not talking pouring hot coffee over ice. With our cold brew coffee recipe and tips, you can learn how to make cold brew coffee in your own kitchen.

We're head over heels for the cold brew coffee trend. This DIY version will have you making your own cold brew at home.

Iced Coffee vs. Cold Brew

Although they are both served cold, the similarities stop there.

Iced coffee begins with a hot brewed coffee that is poured over ice. (Hot brewing coffee releases the acids from the ground beans, so even served cold, you get the full flavor -- sometimes bitter -- and coffee aroma as a result of the hot brew.) Pouring the hot brew over ice may dilute those robust flavors. 

Cold brew uses time instead of heat to steep the coffee so minimal acids are released. The cold brew is rich and smooth with a gentle natural sweetness.

Get our Cold Brew Coffee recipe.

Cold Brew Coffee Materials

To make your own cold brew coffee, here's what you need:

  • Coarsely ground coffee beans
  • Cold water
  • Creamer or milk (if you like)
  • 2-quart pitcher
  • Fine-mesh sieve
  • Cheesecloth or coffee filter

Get the Cold Brew Coffee recipe.

Choose the Right Coffee Beans

When selecting coffee for a cold brew, choose a medium-dark roast, also referred to as a full-city roast, after-dinner roast, or a Vienna roast. Beans roasted to this stage have a fuller body and a nutty, chocolaty flavor. You may like some of the African and Central American coffees for cold brew. Whatever beans you choose, make sure they're fresh.

Got your beans? Here's the recipe:

Cold Brew Coffee

Sweet & Creamy

Don't just DIY coffee -- you can make your own creamer too! It is cheaper (you probably own all three ingredients already), and you'll know exactly what you're flavoring your coffee with.

The Perfect Ratio:

1/2 cup cold brew + 1 to 2 tablespoons creamer + ice

More Coffee Recipes

1 Comment

  1. Adding a pinch of salt to your grounds will make your coffee taste better, hot brew or cold brew

    1. Awesome, I'm going to try that, thanks for the tip!

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