Everyday Food Blog

make your own cold brew and skip the line

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Cold brew is really popular these days, and boy it sure can be expensive when you buy it by the cup from your local barista. Here at the Everyday Food test kitchen, we decided to make our own, and in the process found out why it might cost more at your favorite coffee haunt. Click through for our step-by-step instructions.

In a large plastic container, mix together 4 quarts cool tap water with 4 cups ground coffee (If that seems like a lot, you can cut this recipe in half. I'm making coffee for 5 caffeine-addicted food editors).

Cover and let set at room temperature for 24 hours. There's no need to stir, just let it be.

Strain your super-potent brew through a cheesecloth-lined sieve. To my surprise, It only yielded 3 1/4 quarts!! Granted, the brew is really concentrated so you use more milk to dilute it. Hence the reason for the price hike?

Store in the refrigerator in containers with tight-fitting lids. Enjoy over ice with half and half, or vanilla soy milk (my personal favorite).

Comments (7)

  • avatar

    Is there a special reason to use plastic over glass? Just wondering as whenever possible, I use glass.

  • avatar

    I'd bet this would be amazing with sweetened condensed milk...kind of Vietnamese style. mmmmmm

  • avatar

    The secret is spilled at last. BUT... We make cold brew at my cafe. You are correct in letting it steep over night and straining it. But, the concentrate should be diluted with water, not milk as indicated in your posting. Once served, it can have milk, half and half, or soy added to it as one usually would.

    (If you bein with 4 quarts of water you should end up with roughly 4 quarts of concentrate before diluting with water. Once diluted you should have roughly 6-8 quarts, depending on desired strength.)

  • avatar

    Yay coffee! Yay Everyday Food for letting us in on the secret!

  • avatar

    Cold brew is the best! For a smaller scale I take a 2c container (glass or plastic) and put 1/2 c dry measure of dark roast ground coffee. Then I fill the rest up with water. Stir or shake and let sit 12-ish hours. Then I strain it thru a basket coffee filter placed in a mesh strainer on top of a container (I use a 4c Pyrex because that's what I have). It's awesome. I dilute mine w milk too, not water because I think it's creamier.

  • avatar

    I was inspired to make my own cold brew after buying a Cuppow. It's just delicious. I figure I have saved several hundred dollars this summer since I have not bought a single cup of iced coffee since mid June. I use large mason jars to brew and store it. I brew a pound at a time which lasts for a little over three weeks.

  • avatar

    Just made my first batch, cannot wait to try it. I think I will try some sweetened condense milk as suggested by a few, sounds delish!

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