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Top Tips for Making Cold Brew Coffee at Home

Top Tips for Making Cold Brew Coffee at Home

Cold brew coffee is amazingly simple to make at home. You’ve likely had cold brewed coffee before, either at a local coffee shop or from the supermarket in packaged containers, for the best grab and go drink.  

But when you find out how easy it is to make cold brew coffee at home, you’ll wonder why you haven’t been making it yourself all along. Grab these tips for making cold brew coffee at home and enjoy with a few treat recipes we have selected just for you.  

What exactly is cold brew coffee?

Not to be confused with iced coffee, cold brew coffee is a type of brewing method that significantly alters the taste of coffee when compared to its usual flavors when brewed with heat.  

Cold brew vs iced coffee. Iced coffee often has connotations of added sweeteners and extravagant toppings, but cold brew coffee couldn’t be further from this. Although it has only just become a popular choice in cafes, it’s a method that has been around for a long time. The Japanese were even using cold brew methods in the 17th Century! 

Before you brew: Here’s what to know about cold brew

01. Pick your roast

You can make cold brew at home using any coffee roast you like. However, if you’re new to picking out your roasts, you’ll want to choose carefully. 

If you’re not sure where to start, grab a bag from your favorite local coffee shop. 

02. Get the right grind

Here’s the only fussy thing about making cold brew coffee: you should take care to use coarsely ground beans. A fine grind can slip through the sieve you use in this method and create a gritty, cloudy end product. 

When you grab your beans, be sure to grind them coarsely or ask your local barista to grind them as coarse as they recommend for this method. 

03. Get the ratio right

Cold brew is just coffee and water. Simple, right? But search for a cold brew recipe, and you’ll find a huge range of ratios. I’ve seen everything from 1 part ground coffee to 4 parts water, to 1 part ground coffee to 16 parts water. We prefer somewhere in the middle, about 1 part coffee to 8 parts water. 

If you are just getting started, we recommend making a stronger brew. You can always dilute it with cold water or milk. If you brew it too weak, it’s harder to correct. 

How to make cold brew coffee at home

To make cold brew at home you’ll need 

  • 1 ounce coarsely ground coffee 
  • 1 cup simmering water, optional but recommended 
  • 6 – 7 cups cold water 

Basic cold brew coffee ratio

Here’s the deal: This ratio is flexible. A kitchen scale will come in handy if you have one, but it’s not necessary. You’re making cold brew concentrate, and you can dilute the concentrate to taste once it’s finished. 

  • Per 1 cup of water, you’ll need 1 ounce (by weight) coarsely ground coffee. That’s about 1/4 cup whole coffee beans, which yields roughly 1/2 cup ground coffee. If you’re accustomed to the metric system, 1 ounce is equal to 28 grams. 
  • You’re going to end up with a little less concentrated than the amount of water you used, since some of it will be absorbed by the coffee grounds. However, you’re going to dilute it with an equal amount of water, so you will be doubling your final yield. 

Step 1: Bloom the Coffee 

Place the coffee grounds in a clean glass container and pour in the hot water; let stand 10 minutes. You’ll see the coffee swell and bubble up. This is called blooming. 

While many cold brew recipes don’t use any hot water, we like the effect. The near-boiling water releases carbon dioxide in the grounds, extracting more flavor from the beans.  

If you want to use cold water only, simply skip this step and add an extra cup of cold water to this recipe. 

Step 2: Add Cold Water 

Once your grounds have bloomed, stir in the cold water. Cover the container and refrigerate for 12 – 16 hours, or up to 24. The longer the coffee sits, the stronger the flavor. 

Step 3: Strain 

Strain the coffee through a fine-mesh sieve. Discard the grounds. Then, do a second strain, this time pouring the coffee through a coffee filter. This will remove any fine particles or grounds, yielding the smoothest possible cup. 

Step 4: Enjoy or Store 

Serve the coffee over ice. It’s delicious black or with a dash of milk or cream. You can even add in a little simple syrup to sweeten the cup. 

You can store the cold brew, refrigerated, for up to two weeks. Keep it in a glass pitcher or large mason jars. 

Here’s a tip I believe you will enjoy. Freeze some coffee in ice cube trays. The frozen coffee cubes will chill your beverage without watering it down. 

How to make cold brew french press

With its built-in filter, a French press makes cold brewing easy. Simply mix the coffee and water in the chamber and then, without pressing the plunger down, place in the refrigerator overnight.  

The next day, slowly press the plunger down. Then pour the brew through a coffee filter to remove the fine sediment. 

Don’t forget to dilute the concentrate. As mentioned above, serve it with ice, water or some type of milk or creamer. 

The cold brewing technique reduces the acidity of coffee, which in turn enhances its natural sweetness and complex flavor notes. Even those who take hot coffee with sugar and cream might find themselves sipping cold brew plain.  

Looking for treats to enjoy your delicious cold brew coffee with? Try some of our favorite treat recipes, like these 3 desserts inspired by family recipes, and if you wish to have the recipes in Spanish grab them here. Or you may enjoy a delicious Coffee French Toast Casserole– which you can easily make with the cold brew you made at home.  

As they say, “good things come to those who wait” and if you can wait 12-24 hours for your coffee to brew, then you’re in for a treat by trying cold brew out! 

We hope you enjoy yourself today and keep checking back for ongoing tips, guides and great shopping!

About The Author

Wanda Lopez

Wanda Lopez a blogger at heart and shares her insight on all things food, recipes, home décor, travel and more at She’s a passionate content editor and contributor for household brands such as Kraft, Publix, Ford, Best Buy and more--all while balancing work, motherhood and all things in between. An educator and avid photographer, she is in love with design, food and the outdoors.

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