Cold Brewed Iced Coffee

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Cold Brewed Iced Coffee

Happy 4th of July!  Now that it’s summer and HOT… I’ve been making a lot of iced coffee.  My favorite way to make iced coffee is using a cold brew method – it’s a bit slower – but flavor-wise, the resulting coffee is rich and sweet.  Part of the reason for the enhanced flavor using this method is that by not using hot water, you don’t release all the acidic and bitter compounds from the oils.  Therefore, the resulting coffee is fruity and sweet to the tongue – not bitter, acidic, or sour.

The beauty of this technique, is that you don’t need any fancy equipment.  You just need ground coffee, a small pitcher, and some sort of straining device.  I prefer to grind whole beans right before using, but you can skip this step and just purchase pre-ground coffee if you wish.

If you aren’t sure what type of coffee to use… I would suggest a medium roast, in a slightly more coarse grind for easy straining later (what you have in the cupboard is probably fine).  Just keep in mind that the better your coffee quality, the better the taste of your iced coffee… so make sure you use coffee that you like!

Basic Cold Brewed Coffee Concentrate:

I prefer grinding whole bean coffee right before use... but you can use ground coffee also.

  • 2/3 c. ground coffee
  • 3 c. filtered water



1.  If you are starting with whole beans, measure out 2/3 cup of whole bean coffee and grind. You can just buy ground coffee if you wish, but if you grind the beans right before making your coffee, the taste is a bit richer.

2.  Measure 3 cups of filtered water into a small pitcher.  Stir the ground coffee into the water.

3.  Cover with a lid or plastic wrap, and leave out at room temperature overnight (12 hours).

4.  The next day, strain the coffee through a mesh filter to remove the coarse coffee grounds.

5.  You may want to strain one more time lining your filter with 1-ply paper towel or cheesecloth to remove any fine bits of coffee grounds.

6.  You now have a strong cold brewed coffee concentrate that you can dilute to your preference.  Pour over ice and add more cold water, sweetener, and milk/cream to taste.  (Suggested ratio of concentrate:water is about 1:1 to start – mix a little bit in this ratio and taste, then alter the ratio to be stronger or weaker depending on your preference.  Keep in mind, this is just a suggestion – your concentrate will vary in strength depending on the particular beans and grind (coarser vs. finer) that you use.)  The concentrate will store in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks.