A glass of Homemade Cold Brew Coffee with a straw.

Homemade Cold Brew Coffee

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For a tasty treat any time of day, try this concentrated Homemade Cold Brew Coffee. It’s easy to make by steeping water and coarse-ground coffee in the refrigerator for a sweet, smooth, rich flavor. Enjoy it poured over ice, or add a splash of cream with your favorite sweetener.

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What Is Cold Brew Coffee?

Cold brew seems to be making a grand appearance everywhere. Either in coffee shops or bottled on grocer’s shelves. It’s not the ice coffees most places offer, which is regular hot brewed coffee poured over ice.

Not at all! It’s a brewing process that produces a chemically different outcome, with a milder, sweeter, smoother taste.

The Japanese have been making coffee this way for years which was introduced to them by the Dutch in the 1600s. (Just in case ya’ wanna know!)

Cold brew coffee has gained popularity since I first tried it a few years ago at CC’s Coffee House in Monroe, Louisiana. I noticed a boxed contraption sitting on their shelf. The friendly lady behind the counter said it was a cold brew coffee maker. Then she offered me a sample of the maker’s product. I was pleasantly surprised to find a mellow coffee flavor without any bitterness.

A cup of CC's cold coffee.

Making Homemade Cold Brew Coffee

To make cold brew, you don’t have to have a lovely contraption like the one I saw at CC’s, but you may need a coffee grinder. Cold brew coffee is best with course-ground coffee. Which is usually made for French press coffee makers and is sometimes hard to find. A coffee grinder can get you the perfect coffee grinds you need.

The first step is choosing a medium to a light roast coffee bean. Then, grind the beans on the lowest setting of your grinder or just enough to result in a course ground. The outcome you want is smooth and mild, and using a finer ground or a dark roast will produce a sharper taste.

Coffee grounds poured into a glass jar.

Next, place the grounds into a glass container with a lid and pour the room temperature water over the ground beans. I use filtered or bottled water for the best results.

Mix well with a spoon and close the lid tightly.

Now, place the container in the refrigerator for 24 hours. You can steep the coffee on the counter at room temperature for 12 hours, but for the best flavor, use the refrigerator method. It gives a deeper, smoother taste.

The last step is to strain the beans with a sieve, then again a second time with a coffee filter inside the strainer. You don’t want any leftover coffee grinds in your drink. Don’t push the concentrate through; just let it drip naturally. The coffee will be clear and uncloudy.

The Results

After 24 hours of steeping, you get a flavorful, mild coffee drink. The reason for its non-bitter taste is that cold water brewing reduces the heavy oils and acid on the coffee grounds normally released by the hot water method.

Another benefit of this method is that while traditionally made hot coffee loses its flavor quickly, the cold waterway stays fresher longer. It can also be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.  Also, as a concentrate, the coffee can have as much as twice the amount of caffeine depending on the coffee-to-water ratio. I say that’s a plus!

Note: In making Homemade Cold Brew Coffee The caffeine content increases during the brewing process along with the taste. What a bonus! Trying to avoid caffeine? You can use decaffeinated coffee grounds and still enjoy this special coffee drink.

I enjoy regular hot brewed coffee, but sometimes too much of the high acid drink hurts my stomach. To remedy that, I drink a cold brew coffee or a low-acid hot brewed coffee called Puroast House Blend. I get a satisfying hot cup of coffee with caffeine and without the stomach ache. Blessed!

Coffee Is Served

Two glasses of homemade cold brew coffee with straws.

The cold brew can be served in several different ways. Either as is or diluted with milk or water. You can add sugar, sweetener, flavored syrup, or flavored creamer. The possibilities are endless. You may also like it heated up for a mild cup of joe. I prefer mine cold with a little cream and stevia, but I also like it with nothing but ice. It’s that good!

Recipes You Might Like With Cold Brew Coffee

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Water pouring into a glass jar.

Homemade Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee steeps long and slow with water and coarse ground coffee beans in the refrigerator resulting in a concentrate that is slightly sweet, smooth, and rich in taste.

  • Total Time: 24 hours
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 3/4 cup coarse ground medium or light roast coffee
  • 4 cups water, preferably filtered and at room temperature

Instructions

  1. Place coffee grounds in a 2-quart glass jar.
  2. Add water and stir well; screw the lid on tightly.
  3. Place the jar in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
  4. Pour the coffee through a sieve to separate grounds from the cold brew into a pitcher.
  5. Strain a second time using a coffee filter to filter coffee again without forcing it through; coffee should be clear and cloudless.
  6. Enjoy right away or store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Notes

  • If you don’t have a full 24 hours to steep cold brew in the refrigerator, you can add warm water to speed up the non-refrigerated brewing process. Eight to ten hours left on the kitchen counter should be long enough.
  • The recipe can be increased as much as possible if you have a large enough container.
  • Author: Louisiana Woman
  • Prep Time: 24 hours
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Steep
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: homemade cold brew coffee, cold brew, cold brew coffee, iced coffee

Cold brew coffee poured through a filter.

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4 Comments

  1. Just started making this a few months ago. It is beyond delicious and by far beats the iced coffees you can purchase. I add stevia, cashew milk (25 calories per cup and no non-dairy aftertaste), and if I’m feeling frisky, a squirt of Ghiradelli chocolate syrup and just endings. I enjoy my hot tea first thing, then this in a go-cup for work. I’m glad you shared as I picked up a few tips I didn’t know!

    • Thanks for the tip about the cashew milk and the chocolate syrup fix for the friskies. Sounds divine!

  2. I make my cold brew in a Toddy with chicory coffee. I find it is a bit thicker than other cold brews, but I only use a quarter of what I would normally pour. I mix mine with vanilla soy milk and it doesn’t need any sweeter with it. It’s very strong (this will def. put pep in your step) and it has a very low acidity level!

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