Cold Brew Coffee

Coffee is complex, delicious, comforting and familiar; but most of the time, it’s also HOT.  When the heat index is 105 in the middle of July, it may be time to find a new way to enjoy your beloved cup. Here are a few tips for brewing delicious iced coffee at home so your morning pick-me-up can also be your go-to refresher on a hot summer day.

Cold Brew vs. Hot Brewed Iced Coffee:

First things first… What is “cold brewed” coffee?  Not all iced coffee is “cold brewed”.  Iced coffee can be brewed by extracting the solubles from ground coffee with hot water, brewed directly over ice.  This is a great method for iced coffee with many different recipes and methods which can be found online.  Cold brew, on the other hand is brewed with room temperature water.

Cold brewed coffee offers versatility; easy and convenient storage as well as a sweet, non-acidic cup.  There are many great cold coffee brewers on the market from great manufacturers like Filtron, Toddy, Bruer and Hario among others.  If you have yet to make the leap to invest in one of these brewers, never fear, great cold brewed coffee can be brewed using a few common household items and the instructions below.

How to Prepare Cold Brew Coffee

What you’ll need:

  • Fresh roasted coffee, ground coarse (we recommend our Cicada Cold Brew Blend)
  • Clean, filtered water
  • A brewing vessel (a quart sized mason jar, pitcher or french press works great)
  • A whisk (or something stir with)
  • A filter (a paper coffee filter, cheese cloth, or the wire mesh of a french press.)
  • A storage container

5 Easy Steps

  1. Mix filtered water and ground coffee in brewing vessel at a 5:1 ratio by.  We recommend setting your brewing vessel on a kitchen scale, taring the weight of the vessel and adding 20 grams of coffee for every 100 grams of water.  If you don’t have access to a scale a table spoon of coarse ground coffee weighs approximately 5 grams and a gram of water is roughly 1 ml by volume (4T coffee for every 100ml of water)
  2. Once the ground coffee and water are combined in the brewing vessel, stir and set aside for 15-20 minutes.
  3. After 15-20 minutes, return to the brewing vessel.  There should be grounds floating at the top.  Give the mixture one more quick stir.  This will ensure no coffee is left “high and dry”, and therefore under-extracted.
  4. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 8-12hours.
  5. Strain coffee through filter, and decant into storage container.

What you will now have is a “cold brew coffee concentrate”.  Mix 1 part concentrate with 2 parts water and serve over ice for delicious iced coffee, or mix 1 part concentrate with 2 parts milk for a creamy iced latte. The concentrate will hold for 3-4 weeks when stored in a refrigerator. Enjoy!