How to: Cold Brew
There is no denying that for many of us, coffee is life. In fact, some of us consider it an “approach at your own risk” type scenario to try to come at us before we've had our morning brew. While few things can beat a steaming cup of coffee, sometimes it's just too hot for something warm!
It's much more refreshing to sip on something cold. That's when it's cold brew to the rescue. It's important to note that cold brew is different from iced coffee. Yes, both are chilled and delicious, but cold brew requires a whole other preparation method. It also tends to taste fresher, smoother, and be less acidic than iced coffee.
Got questions? Well, we've got the answers. Read on and let us tell you all about the joys of cold brew, and how to make it at home.
What Is Cold Brew?
It would seem like the name alone would dispel a lot of the mystery as to what exactly cold brew is. But, there's a bit of a trick here. It's all about the preparation. With iced coffee, all you do is brew your coffee as normal and then cool it down and pour over ice. Cold brew, however, requires you to steep your beans. Coarsely ground beans are left to steep in cool for no less than six hours, though twelve hours is more ideal.
The longer the beans sit, the stronger the flavor. While the beans are chilling in their cold bath, all those lovely sugars, caffeine, and oils are slowly being extracted. This creates a coffee concentrate that is incredibly smooth, and far less acidic than coffee brewed with hot water.
What do you need to make it?
- Jars or bottles
- Coffee grinder
- Cheesecloth or extra fine sieve for straining
Sippy’s Cold Brew Recipe:
Step 1: Grind
- You can use a spice grinder, a coffee grinder, or have the beans ground for you at the store. No matter what approach you take, you'll want to make sure the coarsest setting on the grinder is being used. If your grounds are too fine, you'll end up with cloudy cold brew, breadcrumb sized grounds, not a powder. Pulsing works best.
Step 2: Add Water
- Transfer your grounds to a large jar or container that you want to make your cold brew concentrate on.
- Then, it's time to add the cool water, however you can also use room temperature water.
- You'll want to use a 1 part coffee to 8 parts water ratio or 80-90 grams of coffee for every liter of water.
- Give it a good stir. Seal it up, and pop it in the fridge.
Step 3: Wait
- This is the hardest part. Let those delicious beans steep for anywhere from 6-12 hours. The longer they sit, the deeper the flavor. You can even steep your beans for up to 24 hours.
Step 4: Strain
- Once you've completed the waiting game, it's time to strain out those grounds. You can do this using either a fine mesh wire sieve, or a bit of cheesecloth, if you notice some grounds still remain, you can strain it again through a coffee filter.
Step 5: Serve
- Fill up a glass with some ice and add your desired amount of cold brew. You can drink it black for a super concentrated kick.
Voilà! There you have it, a wonderfully made cold brew.
Here at Sippy we are all about pure coffee, without any additives that might impact or mask the coffee's natural flavor profiles. But, we won't judge you if you add cream and/or sugar. You can even put some of your cold brew into ice cube trays and freeze them to use in place of regular ice cubes, if you feel the latter waters down your coffee too much.
How Long Does It Stay Fresh?
Cold brew can stay completely fresh, and at peak flavor, for anywhere between 24-48 hours. Additionally, it will still stay good for up to two weeks if stored in an airtight container in the fridge. This is typically a much bigger window than iced coffee. Iced coffee rather notoriously starts to turn “stale” tasting rather quickly. With cold brew, you'll be able to enjoy a nice smooth finish, free of that bitter taste, for much longer.
Happy brewing! You have now graduated from The Sippy University as a Cold Brew expert.