How To Use Cold Brew Concentrate
There are endless possibilities of what to do with cold brew concentrate. Cold brew coffee concentrate is a versatile, choose your own adventure-type ingredient. So, its entirely up to you to choose what youd like to use to dilute your concentrate. You can either keep it simple with ice, add a little richness with milk, use the concentrate as a base for a coffee cocktail, or as an ingredient in your favorite coffee-based baking recipe.
While cold brew concentrate is the magic ingredient for a variety of drinks, the concentrate should never be heated up. While it could be tempting to create a cup of hot coffee thats every bit as smooth as your favorite cup of cold brew, reheating coffee drastically changes the chemical make-up. Coffee is full of compounds that, when reheated, will result in a cup that is astringent and bitter.
The 12 Best Cold Brew Coffee Concentrates And Cans To Get Your Caffeine Fix At Home
Were all about hitting the snooze button, so naturally were obsessed with at-home cold brew. It lets us skip the trip to the coffee shop and make our own barista-worthy brew in the comfort of our own kitchen. But you dont have to make your own from scratch or panic in the refrigerated aisle at the store at all the options. Weve already rounded up the best cold brew coffee options, just for you.
Why Does A Dedicated Cold Brew Coffee Maker Make A Better Batch Of Cold Brew Coffee
A cold brew coffee maker is necessary for two simple reasons. It helps you properly:
- 1) disperse the water into the grounds, and
- 2) filter out the coffee grounds.
The cold brew coffee maker we use at home is this OXO Cold Brew Coffee Maker, and it makes an incredibly clean and strong batch of cold brew coffee.
A cold brew concentrate maker will help you disperse the water over the coffee in a more even manner
I’ll explain how to make cold brew coffee without a cold brew coffee maker later, but I’ll touch on a couple of key points now.
First, you want to disperse the water over your coffee grounds so that they get wet in an even manner to help with the “bloom” . The OXO cold brew coffee concentrate maker, for example, has a “rain cap” that helps you pour water evenly over the coffee grounds.
You can better drain/filter your cold brew coffee concentrate from the used coffee grounds with a dedicated cold brew coffee concentrate maker
Second, when you are draining your cold brew coffee concentrate through a filter, you want to avoid agitating the coffee grounds by moving around too much. Doing so will release bitter compounds into the coffee concentrate.
Thus, most cold brew coffee makers account for this by allowing you to transfer the concentrate with minimal movement.
With the OXO cold brew coffee maker, you literally put the coffee container on top of the stand and flip a switch. The cold brew coffee concentrate drains right into the serving/storage pot.
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Stumptown Coffee Concentrate Cold Brew
Portland-based Stumptown Coffee is one of the early leaders of the third wave coffee movement, which is coffee-nerd speak for the specialty cafes that followed major chains like Starbucks and Peets . Their cold brew concentrate is bold and strong, with a unique but not at all unpleasant aftertaste. This concentrate comes in a 25 oz bottle and is designed to be diluted 1:1 with water for easy mixing.
How Fine Should You Grind Your Coffee
For cold brew coffee concentrate you should use the same grind as you would for regular cold brew extra coarse.
The grind you use for cold brew should be coarser than for any other coffee brewing method.
Why, you might be wondering?
Its because of the insanely long brewing time. Because the coffee and the water are in contact for so long, theres plenty of time for all the flavors and aromas to be extracted.
Think about it:
Espresso is the fastest method, and you use the finest grind to make it. Thats because more surface area means the coffee can be extracted quickly.
So it makes sense that on the flipside, cold brew the slowest brewing method uses the coarsest coffee grind.
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How Do You Serve Coffee Concentrate
We’re finally here. Now that we have our cold brew coffee concentrate made, what do you do with it?
You can enjoy the coffee so many different ways. You can:
With a batch of cold brew coffee concentrate in your fridge, it doesn’t matter whether it’s a hot summer day, a rushed morning, or a slow weekend – you will be ready for it all!
Whew, you made it! Consider yourself a pro at making this type of coffee. Well done!
The Magic Of Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
Bizzys pre-made cold brew coffee concentrate looks like a jug of soda, albeit slightly smaller. Its pretty handy for storage, and lasts a whopping 30 days in the refrigerator once opened. If youre like me, theres no way a bottle of this size is going to last that long!
I usually spend 5 to 10 minutes making coffee in the morningdepending on how sleepy and how slow I ambut having a pre-made concentrate on hand is super convenient. Just grab a mug, fill it one-third with water, one-third with ice cubes, then top it off with the concentrate. Bam! A cold cup of coffee ready to drink.
Whats most striking to me about Bizzys concentrate is how much depth of flavor it has. Like I said, Ive always made my own cold brew coffee, and Ive used all kinds of beans and roasts and techniques. Sometimes it comes out tasting nice, other times its flat and boring.
The taste of Bizzys cold brew rivals some of the best cold brew coffee Ive made , with lots of nutty and chocolatey notes that stick around even after all the ice melts. Its sweeter than most roasts, with just enough sourness and bitterness to keep it interesting. It actually reminds me of some dark porter-style beers Ive had in the past.
Im seriously impressed.
The Bizzy Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate sells for about $12 and produces around 16 cups of cold brew coffee, or about $0.12 per ounce.
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Caffeine Content Cold Brew Concentrate
The caffeine content of cold brew concentrate is between 240-280 mg per cup of coffee.
As more coffee is used in making cold brew concentrate, the caffeine can change slightly. So I believe its in the upper level of 250 mg per cup of coffee.
The amount of caffeine can also change depending on the coffee beans used and what their origin is.
A great way to eliminate caffeine from cold brew coffee is by using a decaffeinated coffee bean. These coffee beans are great and make for amazing coffee without caffeine.
If you want to learn more about the difference between decaf coffee and how great it is, you can check out this great article I wrote.
How To Tell If Your Coffee Is A Coarse Grind
I think of it like the same as coarse ground pepper.
How to tell visually:
- Probably something like this McCormick Grill Mates chicken seasoning, minus the long herbs.
If your grind size is too fine, you risk clogging up the filter in a cold brew coffee maker. It means that the coffee will get stuck, because there isn’t enough room between the coffee grounds for the water to run through.
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Cold Brew Vs Cold Brew Concentrate
Hang on a minute
Why even make a concentrate to begin with?
Cant you just brew your cold brew ready to drink?
Well sure, you can. But making a concentrate means you can get more coffee from a brewing container of the same size.
If youre using a smaller container like a mason jar, say it makes more sense to make a concentrate, so you can still get a decent amount of coffee. After all, the brewing process takes a while. Do you really want to wait all that time for just 2 cups of coffee?
On top of that, making concentrate gives you more versatility, because you can easily make hot coffee drinks out of it just by adding hot water or milk.
So, if youre already going to the trouble of making cold brew, you might as well make a concentrate.
It can keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks just like regular cold brew, so youll have even more delicious coffee stashed away for days to come.
How Much Cold Brew Concentrate To Use
After making your cold brew concentrate, youll want to dilute it before consuming. When choosing a starting point of how much water to add to cold brew concentrate, start with a one to two ratio of concentrate to water and dilute to taste. This same principle can be applied when using milk in place of water.
Here’s a great example of how to make a cold brew concentrate latte.
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Learn How To Make Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
This guide will teach you how to make cold brew concentrate that tastes even better than the kind you can buy at the store! It’s very easy to make cold brew coffee concentrate at home. And you will save yourself a lot of money.
Most importantly though, while the cold brew concentrates sold in the stores have a long shelf-life, coffee is best consumed fresh. If you make cold brew concentrate yourself, you won’t be drinking coffee that is months old.
TIP: You can store this cold brew coffee concentrate recipe for about 2 weeks in the fridge.
Once you have your hands on this cold brew concentrate recipe, it’s an eye opener. I really mean it.
So after you learn how to make cold brew coffee concentrate, I doubt you’ll be going back to the store bought cold brews. And yes, I promise it is easy to make at home.
Should I Make Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
Yes! From a time perspective, cold brew concentrate yields a lot of coffee. With our OXO Cold Brew Coffee Maker, I can get about 15 servings with one brew.
From a taste perspective, a concentrate gives you a bit more flexibility. Whether you want to dilute it with water to basically make a cold brew coffee or to dilute it with milk to make yourself espresso-like drinks, both options are open.
TIP: We use a simple milk frother and treat cold brew coffee concentrate as a shot of espresso to make lattes, flat whites, and piccolos.
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Best Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate Recipe
There are many ways to make a decent cup of coffee. An espresso machine will jet steam through your ground coffee beans a French press will let the coffee steep in hot water before being squeezed out of its flavor. A drip coffee maker will let hot water leach the coffee out of its delicious oils, and pod machines work with technology and magic.
The most flavorful, aromatic and fruity coffee, though, can only be achieved with a very particular brewing method, the cold brew coffee.
How does this method work? Cold water, ground coffee, some sugar and lots of time. Thats all you need, as the coffee infuses the water without a heat source. This is a much gentler method that makes fruity coffee with no charred or burnt flavors. Its just delicious!
What’s The Correct Coffee To Water Ratio For Cold Brew Concentrate
From my experience, different cold brew coffee makers specify different ratios, and I believe this has to do with the way the brewer is designed with respect to the surface area for example.
There is also the additional factor of personal preference in terms of how one likes their coffee. Coffee can be a very exact science if you’re after a very pure brew on its own. But if you’re making a concentrate that is getting diluted with water or milk, it’s okay to be using a looser ratio.
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What Is Cold Brew Concentrate
Cold brew concentrate is a special concentrate that is made by steeping roasted coffee beans in cold or room temperature water for several hours. The resulting product is an extremely smooth and flavorful concentrate that can be mixed with water or milk to create a beverage.
Brewing coffee this way also eliminates the bitterness that some people dislike in traditional hot brewed coffee.
Cold brew coffee is made with a different coffee to water ratio than regular cold brew coffee. This is where it differs a lot, and the flavors of the coffee are also evolving.
The coffee also uses a very different grind size than youd normally use for the brewing of pour over coffee or French press coffee.
I like to use a coarse grind size for brewing cold brew coffee instead of a medium or medium/fine for other coffee brews. The coffee grind size looks like this:
Cold Brew Concentrate Coffee To Water Ratio
The best cold brew concentrate coffee to water ratio is 1:7.5. This ratio will ensure that youre extracting all the coffee flavor from the roasted coffee beans in a shorter time than normal.
I like to steep the coffee concentrate for 14 hours instead of 15-16 hours for regular cold brew coffee.
The coffee to water ratio might look kind of weird at the beginning, but it will be worthwhile to use it every time properly.
When I brew cold brew coffee at home, either regular cold brew coffee, cold brew concentrate, or espresso cold brew, I like to add it all to my French press to steep.
This French press holds up to 4 cups of coffee with the size that I own. This is great as it will make me a large enough batch to last a few days.
I add 80 grams of coffee to 600 grams of water to the French press beaker and let it steep for 14 hours. This will fit perfectly in the beaker and still have a bit of room left to add the plunger after steeping, but more on how to brew later on.
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How To Make Cold Brew Concentrate
You can make cold brew concentrate very easily when youve got every ingredient at home. Youll need the following items to make cold brew concentrate at home:
- Coarsely ground coffee: 80 grams
- Cold tap water: 600 grams
- A large container or French press
I suggest using a dark or medium roasted coffee bean to make cold brew coffee in general. These coffee beans have the most amount of flavor to give in the time that theyre steeping with the water. They look like this:
When using a lighter roast for the cold brew coffee, you might not get the most flavor out of them. Lightly roasted coffee beans are best prepared with a pour over technique like a Chemex or Hario V60, where it really shines.
Amount Per Serving:Category:
Note: Coffee itself doesnt contain any calories. When you dilute the cold brew coffee concentrate with anything other than water, youre adding calories to your cold brew coffee.
I used whole milk to dilute my cold brew coffee, and the number of calories is based on adding 1/4 cup to the cold brew recipe.
How To Make Coffee Out Of Cold Brew Concentrate
OK, so youve made your concentration.
Now, what do you do with it?
Dont worry it literally couldnt be any easier.
All you have to do is pour some into a cup with ice cubes and add water, milk, or plant milk. For an iced Americano, add water. For an iced latte, add milk or plant milk like soy, oat, or almond milk.
The amount of water/milk/plant milk you should add depends on how strong youve brewed your concentrate. We talked about this at the beginning, so scroll up to refresh your memory.
I brew mine at a 7:1 water to coffee grounds ratio, so I find that its best to dilute it at a 1:1 ratio. In other words, half cold brew concentrate and half of whatever else it is that youre adding to it.
However, if you prefer your coffee weaker or stronger, feel free to adjust the amount of water, milk, or plant milk to suit your own taste.
But what if youre in the mood for a hot coffee drink?
Say no more!
Skip the ice and add hot water, milk, or plant milk.
Thats the best part the liquid you add to your concentrate can be hot or cold. So you can choose between an iced coffee drink, or a hot coffee depending on what you feel like.
You gotta love that kind of versatility.
Of course, you can add in any extras you want like sugar, vanilla syrup, caramel, pumpkin spice anything you can think of to pimp your cold brew coffee.
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What Our Fans Are Saying
Nothing Better than the CoolBrew for those Early morning Kayak Charters. I also like one in the yak with me for that midday boost. Great product I highly suggest it.
I decided what the heck, I’ve wasted money in coffee shops, this is about the price I’d spend on two cups, might as well try it. I’m so glad I did. The taste is great. I’ll definitely keep it in stock at my house now.
Fantastic concentrated coffee. I like the plain version with 1.5 times the recommended dosage. That is how we roll down here in NOLA. We like our coffee strong. Mix it with milk for the perfect iced coffee. Thank you Cool Brew!