What You Need
Coarsely ground coffee. This is important. A fine, espresso-like grind will result in a cloudy and over-extracted cup.
A jar or large container. Plastic or glass, you don’t even need a lid – anything in your kitchen that can hold coffee and water will be fine. A French press or Mason jar are Instagram-friendly options, and there also specific contraptions for gadget enthusiasts.
Cold water. The ratio of coffee grounds to water is subjective and depends on personal taste – about 1/3 cup of ground coffee per 1.5 cups of cold water. (For a standard 32-ounce French press, Food 52 recommends 3/4 cup beans for 4 cups of cold water.)
Filter. Unless you are using a French press, you’ll need a coffee filter or a fine-mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth.
What to Do
In your container, pour in the coarsely ground coffee. Gradually add the water and stir gently, making sure all the coffee grounds are moistened. Cover (using cheesecloth if your container doesn’t have a lid).
Let the coffee sit at room temperature overnight, or for 12 hours. Don’t rush this.
If you are using a French Press, simply press down on the plunger to move grounds to the bottom and pour. Otherwise, strain your brew through a coffee filter or a fine mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth into a large pitcher (or bowl or whatever else you’d like to store your cold brew in).
Strain a second time if needed. Discard the grounds (but they don’t need to go to waste – check our blog for ways to use your coffee grinds).
Sip (and Savor)
That’s it! You officially have cold brew.
Over ice, mix coffee concentrate with water to taste. Add milk, sweetener, or other flavorings if desired. The concentrate will keep for up to 2 weeks covered and chilled in the fridge.