Mind Over Munch's Easy Homemade Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
The finest iced coffee starts with a high-quality cold brew coffee concentrate. A simple, slow-brewed brew that's extra robust and flavorful; it's the ideal beverage to keep on hand in the refrigerator. Here I will outline the three simple steps necessary to prepare cold brew concentrate, as well as
The finest iced coffee starts with a high-quality cold brew coffee concentrate. A simple, slow-brewed brew that's extra robust and flavorful; it's the ideal beverage to keep on hand in the refrigerator. Here I will outline the three simple steps necessary to prepare cold brew concentrate, as well as the recommended coffee-to-water ratio.
Begin with your preferred coffee beans, grind them coarsely, and combine with water. The next day, strain the mixture and dilute it before serving. Easy as that, you now have cold brew coffee concentrate to use in your favorite iced coffee recipes.
The ratio of coffee grounds to water in the cold brew concentrate is the most crucial part of the process. The purpose of a coffee concentrate is to make a beverage that is more potent and concentrated than regular cold brew. Since it's meant to be watered down, the recommended ratio of coffee to water will vary slightly when using concentrate.
I'll give you the ratios for both DIY cold brew concentrate and regular cold brew so you can choose which you prefer. Making your own cold brew at home with your preferred beans is simple and will always be much less expensive than buying it from the store or visiting Starbucks.
Ingredients for Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
- 1 liter (or 3 cups) of ice water
- 112 cups of coffee, coarsely ground (4 5oz)
You can use either coffee beans or ground coffee to make this concentrate. The beauty of homemade is that you can tweak it to your liking. Using whole beans yields the best results when ground coarsely. Using pre-purchased coffee grounds is fine if you can locate a coarse grind. However, if you don't have any specialty coffee grounds on hand, regular ones will suffice. Amounts of ingredients can be modified to suit the desired serving size.
While cold brew concentrate has a higher caffeine content, traditional cold brew is still quite similar. These two beverages share a common preparation method: cold brewing, in which coffee grounds are soaked in water for a long time and then strained. It takes a lot longer than hot brewing, but the resulting coffee is richer and more flavorful.
As hot brewing dilutes coffee's flavor and removes some of its caffeine, cold brew's higher coffee-to-water ratio is an advantage. This means that even traditional cold brew coffee has more kick than the coffee you make in a traditional coffee maker.
However, cold brew coffee concentrate is your best bet for the strongest possible brew. As the name suggests, this is a stronger and more caffeinated version of regular cold brew because of its increased concentration. (That's why it tastes better when watered down.) The most notable distinction is the higher coffee-to-water ratio found in cold brew concentrate.
The Optimal Coffee-to-Water Ratio for Cold Brew
For a standard cold brew, I recommend a ratio of 8 ounces of water to 1 tablespoon of coffee grounds. One cup of water to one-third of a cup of coarsely ground coffee is the ratio to use here. The standard hot brewing ratio is 8 ounces of water to 1/2 an ounce of coffee grounds.
*Conversions based on common measurements for ground coffee, 10g per 2 tablespoons (or 1 Half a cup contains 5 ounces.
Concentrate to Water for Cold Brew
For a more concentrated cold brew coffee, just up the coffee to water ratio. Both of the following proportions will produce a potent beverage that benefits from being diluted with water at a 1:1 ratio before serving. Depending on how potent you like your homemade iced coffee, you can use whichever ratio you like.
- Put 8 ounces of water and 1 teaspoon of coffee into a Ground Coffee, 5 oz. What that means, in terms of cups, is 1 cup water plus 1/2 cup coffee grounds. If you're just getting started with coffee concentrate, I recommend starting with this mix. This proportion strikes me as just right.
- The following ratio of water to ground coffee in cold brew concentrate yields the strongest brew possible: 8 ounces water to 2 ounces ground coffee, or 1 cup water to 2/3 cup ground coffee.
It's simple to learn how to make cold brew concentrate once you know the ideal ratio. First, in a large bowl, pour in the amount of water you prefer, then add the coffee grounds and stir until everything is well-combined. The same holds true for the grounds; you can buy them pre-ground or coarsely grind your preferred beans at home.
After that, refrigerate the bowl, uncovered, for 12-24 hours. The steeping time is also variable, like the ratio. Your brew will become more potent and bitter the longer it steeps. Coffee from Starbucks, for example, is steeped for 20 hours. For my cold brew coffee concentrate, I've found that 14-18 hours is optimal.
Strain the brewed beverage using a fine mesh sieve after steeping. My preferred sieve lining is a pair of coffee filters, but a clean handkerchief, T-shirt, or nut milk bag would work just as well. As needed, pour in batches and stir gently to aid in straining. The DIY cold brew coffee concentrate is finished once all the liquid has separated from the grounds. I store mine in mason jars in the refrigerator and use them all week long.Line a fine-mesh sieve with coffee filters, a clean handkerchief, or a nut milk bag. The coffee grounds and water mixture should be strained into a sieve. Gradually add more water, stirring gently to help the liquid strain. Once the coffee has cooled and the liquid has separated from the grounds, store the concentrate in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Many people are surprised to learn that you can even reheat coffee concentrate. First things first, dilute your cold brew coffee concentrate with water until it reaches the desired strength before serving if you made a true cold brew rather than just a classic cold brew. In order to make iced coffee or hot coffee from the concentrate, you should mix together 1/2 cup coffee concentrate and 1/2 cup water. Feel free to take your ultra-strong beverage straight up if that's how you like it.
Cold brew concentrate is most often used to create iced coffee beverages at home. You don't need ice because it's already cold, extra flavorful, and ultra-potent. For added depth of flavor, try it with my homemade coffee ice cubes. Below is a recipe for a simple iced coffee, but there are countless other delicious and entertaining variations out there, from fancy flavored lattes to the simple iced coffee described above.
But don't let the name fool you. The term "cold" refers to the method of brewing, which involves a slow, not-hot process, but drinking the brew at room temperature is perfectly acceptable. After adding water, you can warm it up on the stovetop or in the microwave to enjoy a hot cup of coffee. A brew that can be used in a variety of contexts and has all the flavor and caffeine a serious coffee drinker could want
See my video, "Immune-Boosting Iced Coffee Drinks," for a demonstration of how to make this beverage.
- Put some water into a big bowl. Add coffee grounds and mix thoroughly.
- Place in the fridge for 12-24 hours covered*.
- After infusing, strain the liquid using a fine mesh sieve lined with two coffee filters (or a clean handkerchief, T-shirt, or nut milk bag). As needed, pour in batches and stir gently to aid in straining.
- DIY cold brew, once strained, should be stored in a mason jar or other airtight container in the fridge.
- Depending on your personal preference, we recommend diluting it with water at a 1:1 ratio. (For instance, combine 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup concentrate.) )
- Produces about 2 and a half cups (about 20 ounces) of cold brew concentrate.
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Read up on the background of cold brew coffee concentrate.
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