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Cold Brew Coffee is Not Rocket Science

It is that time of year again when coffee shops start selling over-priced cold brewed coffee. Paying $4 or $5 for a cup of cold brewed coffee is ridiculous once you know how easy it is to make your own. Cold brewing a coffee concentrate is not rocket science.

  1. Place ground coffee in contact with cold water for several hours.
  2. Filter out the coffee.
  3. Done.
  4. At this point, you can add more water, milk or even Baileys Irish Cream.

What Coffee To Use?

You do not need a special coffee to make cold brewed coffee, but we recommend using cafféSUR organic Columbian coffee. Some roasters are making special blends for cold brew and iced coffee. Typically they tend to be lighter roasted.

#1 Grind Coffee and Add to Pouch

Add one cup of ground coffee into a cold brew pouch. Some brewing recipes say to use coarse ground and others say to use medium ground. Both work. Madesco coffee filter pouches advises a medium grind in the instructions, so I used a medium grind. Cold brew is super forgiving.

#2 Place Pouch Inside Jar and Add Water

Place the bottom of the cold brew pouch into the bottom of the glass mason jar. Don’t close the pouch drawstring yet. Slowly add cold water. Add enough water to fill the jar. Don’t pour the water in quickly or the coffee might float up and out of the pouch.

#3 Close the Pouch and Seal the Lid

Pull the drawstring. Push the pouch down into the jar and then close the jar. I kept the drawstring outside the jar to keep it dry, but you don’t have to.

#4 Let Coffee Steep for 12 or More Hours

You can “cold brew” in the refrigerator or set it on the counter overnight. I use the counter. How long you steep the coffee is up to you. Most cold brew recipes use a 12-24 hour range. The longer you steep the more concentrated the brew will become. So it all comes down to personal preference. My brews with the coffee pouch all fell into the 12-16 hour range.

#5 Remove Pouch and Place Coffee Concentrate into Refrigerator

Take the pouch out slowly letting all the coffee drain into the jar. Seal the jar and place it in the refrigerator. The concentrate is finished.

#6 Quick Clean Up

Empty the grounds inside the pouch into a compost container or your garden. Turn the filter inside out and rinse the pouch. Then hang it up somewhere to dry, so it is ready for the next brew.

#7 Serve the Coffee Concentrate

This is where the cold brew gets fun. You can decide how strong you like it based on your own personal tastes. I experimented with adding 2/3 of a mug filled with concentrate and 1/3 water. You can drink it cold or heat it up on a stove or microwave. You can also use cold brew concentrate for blended iced coffee drinks and coffee martinis.

A Word on Ratios

The standard advice for those that weigh when they make a cold brew concentrate is to use a 4 to 1 brewing ratio. That is 4 parts water to 1 part coffee. This is significantly stronger than hot brewed coffee which is often in the 15-17 to 1 range.

Because cold brew is a concentrate, you’ll be adding water and/or ice to dilute the coffee when you serve. If you don’t add the water, not only will you be getting a strong coffee, but a tremendous amount of caffeine.

Initial Guidance

If you don’t have much experience with cold brew, you may want to purchase a quality cold brew and have it on hand when you make your own. Being able to compare side-by-side will help you calibrate your tastes when you dial in your own recipe.

Last Words

Cold brew really is this simple. Cold brew coffee is not rocket science.