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Easy Cold Brew Coffee

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Save time in the mornings and get a better cup of coffee with this super easy method for big batch Cold Brew Coffee (it’s easy to make at home)! It’s concentrated, so you can make this on Sunday and can last the whole week

glass jar filled with ice and easy cold brew coffee on a green napkin

Years ago, I never really drank coffee. My family was raised on hot tea, so coffee was never part of my daily routine until I got older. Sure, we had coffee maybe once a week at church, but it wasn’t a great cup of coffee and it was more for a pick-me-up and not really for the great taste of it (believe me, most of that coffee didn’t taste great!).

Now that I drink more coffee, I’ve really tried hard not to I drink too much of it. These days I mostly drink decaf coffee (I use a great brand of decaf that actually tastes good). When I cold brew decaf coffee, I can have as much as I like and whenever I want since the decaf I use is 99.9% decaf, pretty safe for an evening drink.

glass jar of cold brew coffee and ice

For me, coffee is more than a means to an energetic end – I love the taste and smell of a great quality cup of coffee with some almond-coconutmilk and a few drops of Stevia. There is nothing quite like finding new coffee brands and trying new blends.

Why Cold Brew Coffee?

So why drink cold brew coffee instead of hot? To me, a lot of hot-brewed coffees are too bitter, acidic, and just don’t taste great. Once I started cold brewing my coffee, I never looked back. Cold brew coffee is mostly the only kind of coffee I drink these days because it beats the socks off hot coffee.

glass pitcher, reusable coffee filter, and low acid coffee, prepping for cold brew coffee

Cold brew coffee is smoother, less bitter, and less acidic. It’s concentrated, so you only need half of what you’d normally drink. Plus, you can make a big batch and it will last the entire week!

I’m able to use my favorite decaf and low acid coffee since I can’t have caffeine anymore, and this creates an even smoother and less acidic coffee. The Healthwise coffee I buy is nearly 100% decaf though the Swiss water method, so it doesn’t bother my sensitive system.

I didn’t know too much about cold brewed coffee until I read this cold brew coffee how-to post on Food52 back in 2012. Getting an iced coffee isn’t the same thing as a cold brew coffee, and if you’re ordering a hot coffee with ice in it, you’re missing out.

Good coffee houses cold brew their coffee to make sweeter and less acidic brew for perfect iced coffees. I was intrigued by this brewing method so I decided to try it for myself and see how well it stacks up to hot-brewed coffee. Since I’ve been cold brewing, I’ve hardly touched hot coffee – and I don’t like it when I do.

glass pitcher bowl with low acid coffee in it, preparing for cold brew coffee

How to Make Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee is super straight forward and simple: add grinds to water, let them soak for hours, and filter it. So easy.

image collage of preparation and steps to make cold brew coffee

With cold brew coffee, you can use fresh, coarse ground coffee so you don’t end up with cloudy coffee if you don’t have a super-fine filter. But I use a really fine nylon mesh filter for my cold brew (I use the one from my Takeya cold brew pitcher), and I have hardly any sediment at the bottom of my pitcher, and never any loose grinds. So ultimately, you can use either fine or coarse depending on your filter.

I like to add my grounds and water to a large batter bowl/glass pitcher bowl with a lid to make it a bit easier to pour into the filter and pitcher, but you can use any large pitcher you like.

glass pitcher bowl filled with water and coffee grounds for making cold brew coffee

Cold brewing coffee is an easy to make and the coffee did taste sweeter, without adding a ton of cream and sugar. Since it’s less bitter and less acidic, there is no need to add too much fat and sugar, so it’s healthier and easier on your stomach, too.

With my morning (and sometimes afternoon) cup of cold brew, I use half a glass of cold brew coffee concentrate and half a glass of unsweetened almond-coconutmilk. Then I’ll add 3 drops of flavored Stevia. Tastes great!

pouring cold brew coffee through filter into a plastic pitcher

Sometimes if I’m chilly, I’ll heat up my cold brew in the microwave then add a non-dairy creamer for a creamier hot coffee. On occasion I heat up a cup of coffee and make bulletproof coffee with it. So good!

The beautiful thing about cold brewing coffee is that if you brew enough of it, you can cold brew on Sunday and have coffee made up for the entire week ahead! Now that is a time saver 🙂

Making flavored cold brew coffee

If you’re using a flavored coffee, you’ll want to cut it with regular unflavored coffee, otherwise the flavors will be very strong. I’ve made flavored cold brew coffee with 3/4 cup regular coffee and 1/4 cup flavored coffee grounds (or you can do 50/50 if you want it stronger).

pouring coconutmilk from a white creamer dish into a cup of cold brew coffee

Since it’s soaking for hours, those flavors have time to soak get into the coffee more than they would if you were making flavored hot coffee, so start sparingly with flavored coffee grounds.

Dark Canyon Coffee in Rapid City, South Dakota, is one of my favorite coffee roasters for flavored coffees, and they are not too far from us. They make great flavored coffees! One of our favorites is Highlander Grogg: a blend of Butterscotch and French Vanilla. Their CinnaDoodle flavor is also delicious!

This blog post was originally posted in 2013, I recently took new photos and updated it a bit. Here are a few of my older images:

almond milk being poured into a glass of cold brew coffee
older collage image of steps to make cold brew coffee

Easy Cold Brew Coffee

Save time in the mornings and get a better cup of coffee with this super easy method for big batch Cold Brew Coffee (it’s easy to make at home)! It’s concentrated, so you can make this on Sunday and can last the whole week
Paleo, vegan, nut free
4.67 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cold brew coffee, homemade cold brew coffee, how to make cold brew coffee
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Soaking time: 13 hours 20 minutes
Total Time: 13 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 2kcal

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Grind whole coffee beans, OR use any previously ground coffee you have on hand
  • Place 1 cup coffee grounds in a covered bowl or pitcher. Cover with 6 cups cold water.
  • Stir up the grounds so they are all wet and mixed fairly well.
  • Let coffee grounds and water sit in the fridge for at least 8 hours (I usually let it sit for 12 hours). 
  • Pour the coffee and grounds through a fine-mesh nut-milk bag or layered cheesecloth to separate the coffee from the grounds. 
  • This coffee is concentrated a bit, so it’s usually double strength. I prepare my cold brewed coffee this way: 1/2 cup coffee concentrate + 1/2 cup unsweetened almondmilk + Stevia drops
  • To serve: mix with as much unsweetened non-dairy milk or creamer as you like. Since this is concentrated, I usually use equal parts cold brew coffee concentrate and almondmilk
  • Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 2kcal | Carbohydrates: 0g | Protein: 0g | Fat: 0g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Sodium: 12mg | Sugar: 0g | Calcium: 8mg
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15 thoughts on “Easy Cold Brew Coffee”

  1. Thank you for posting this!! I am actually a black coffee drinker so would I dilute with cold water? I am not a fan of milk or creamer. I just mixed this up and it is brewing in the fridge!!

    Reply
    • Hi Shana! Yep, you can mix this with water for a black cold brew! Sometimes when I don’t want as much almondmilk or creamer, I mix it with water in equal parts and then add a little creamer if I still want some. You can always adjust the strength by using more or less water if you like 🙂

      Reply
  2. Sometimes it’s like you’re reading my mind when you post! I’m a relatively new coffee-drinking, just started last year. I’m just feeling things out, trying things at home, and was thinking about trying to cold-brew to see how I liked it! This is just perfect, I’m going to give it a try!

    Reply
  3. I, too, am not a very big coffee drinker. However, all of my family loves coffee! Thanks for posting the steps for make cold brewed coffee. I think that I’m going to try this and see if I like it more than regular coffee. It’ll be good to try something new.

    Reply
  4. Wow good to know! I had no idea that you could make iced coffee this way. I thought you just make coffee, then put it in the fridge, and then maybe make coffee ice cubes to add in lol. Thanks for sharing! This will be perfect to try out once it gets too hot out for hot coffee 🙂

    Reply
    • Let me know how you like it! I just bought some Sumatran Mandheling coffee yesterday to try out. I have had Vietnamese coffee (very tasty!), and the Sumatran coffee is pretty good so far cold-brewed

      Reply
    • No problem Mindy 🙂 I still love to add almond milk to my coffee, but it is less bitter and I think it helps my stomach, too, since I have reflux problems

      Reply
    • Making ahead is such a time saver! I love that I can grab a few sips before I go out to run in the morning – it’s all ready and waiting 🙂

      Reply

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