Can I Make Cold Brew with Ground Coffee?

Marlin Dariel

Do you love the smooth and rich taste of cold brew coffee, but don’t have the fancy equipment to make it at home? Well, fret no more! You’ll be thrilled to know that making cold brew doesn’t have to be complicated or require any special gadgets. In fact, all you need is some ground coffee, a few basic kitchen supplies, and a little bit of patience. So, grab your favorite bag of ground coffee and get ready to embark on a journey of brewing delicious cold brew coffee right in the comfort of your own home.

Can I Make Cold Brew with Ground Coffee?


Cold brew coffee has gained popularity in recent years due to its smooth and bold flavor. Many coffee enthusiasts are opting for this method as it provides a refreshing alternative to traditional hot brewed coffee. But can you make cold brew with ground coffee? In this article, we will explore the answer to this question and provide you with all the information you need to know about making cold brew with ground coffee.

What is Cold Brew Coffee?

To fully understand whether ground coffee can be used for cold brew, let’s first discuss what cold brew coffee is. Cold brew is a method of coffee preparation that involves steeping coffee grounds in cold or room temperature water for an extended period, usually 12 to 24 hours. This slow extraction process ensures a smoother, less acidic, and less bitter coffee concentrate.

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Why Choose Cold Brew Coffee?

Cold brew coffee offers several advantages over traditional hot brewed coffee. Here are a few reasons why people choose cold brew:

  • Smooth Flavor: Cold brew coffee has a milder and less acidic taste compared to hot brewed coffee.
  • Lower Acidity: The long steeping process significantly reduces the acidity of the coffee, making it easier on the stomach.
  • Less Bitterness: Cold brew coffee has a less bitter aftertaste, allowing the subtle flavors of the beans to shine through.
  • Convenience: Cold brew coffee can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, providing a ready-to-drink coffee anytime.

Can I Make Cold Brew with Ground Coffee?

Now, let’s address the main question: can you make cold brew with ground coffee? The answer is a resounding yes! While many coffee aficionados prefer using coarse coffee grounds for cold brew, you can still achieve a satisfying cold brew using regular ground coffee. The key is to adjust the brewing time and ratio of coffee to water to ensure a proper extraction and prevent over-extraction.

How to Make Cold Brew with Ground Coffee

Making cold brew with ground coffee is a relatively simple process. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

What You’ll Need:

  • Ground coffee: Choose a high-quality coffee with a flavor profile you enjoy.
  • Water: Filtered water is recommended for better taste.
  • A container: Glass jars or pitchers work well for steeping.
  • A fine-mesh sieve or coffee filter: These will be used for straining the cold brew concentrate.


  1. Measure out the desired amount of ground coffee. A general guideline is 1 cup of coffee grounds for every 4 cups of water, but feel free to adjust the ratio based on your preference.
  2. Add the coffee grounds to your container.
  3. Pour cold or room temperature water over the coffee grounds, ensuring all the grounds are fully saturated.
  4. Stir the mixture gently to ensure even extraction.
  5. Cover the container and let it steep in the refrigerator for 12 to 24 hours.
  6. Once the steeping time is complete, strain the cold brew concentrate using a fine-mesh sieve or coffee filter.
  7. Dilute the concentrate to taste by adding water or milk, depending on your preference.
  8. Serve the cold brew over ice and enjoy!
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Advantages of Using Ground Coffee for Cold Brew

While some coffee enthusiasts may argue that using coarse coffee grounds is ideal for cold brew, there are advantages to using regular ground coffee as well:

1. Accessibility:

Ground coffee is readily available in most households and coffee shops. You don’t need any special equipment or extra steps to make cold brew with ground coffee.

2. Cost-Effective:

Compared to whole bean coffee, ground coffee tends to be more affordable. Using ground coffee for cold brew allows you to enjoy a delicious and economical alternative to expensive coffee shop cold brews.

3. Versatility:

Ground coffee provides a wide range of flavors and options to experiment with. You can choose from various coffee blends and origins to find the perfect taste profile for your cold brew.

Disadvantages of Using Ground Coffee for Cold Brew

While using ground coffee for cold brew is possible, there are a few drawbacks to consider:

1. Over-Extraction Risk:

Ground coffee has a larger surface area, which increases the chance of over-extraction during the long steeping process. It’s crucial to monitor the brewing time and adjust accordingly to prevent a bitter taste.

2. Sediment in the Brew:

Ground coffee may result in more sediment in the final cold brew, which can affect the overall texture and clarity of the drink. Using a fine-mesh sieve or coffee filter can help minimize the sediment.

Tips for Making Cold Brew with Ground Coffee

To ensure the best results when making cold brew with ground coffee, consider the following tips:

1. Choose a Coarser Grind Size:

While using regular ground coffee is possible, opting for a slightly coarser grind can help reduce the risk of over-extraction and minimize sediment in the final product.

2. Experiment with Ratios and Steeping Time:

Finding the perfect balance of coffee to water ratio and steeping time is essential for achieving your preferred strength and flavor. Feel free to adjust these variables until you find your ideal cold brew recipe.

3. Use Cold or Room Temperature Water:

Avoid using hot water for cold brew, as it can result in a more bitter flavor. Cold or room temperature water works best for a smoother and milder extraction.

Comparison Table: Ground Coffee vs. Coarse Coffee for Cold Brew

Factors Ground Coffee Coarse Coffee
Accessibility Widely available Might require special purchases
Cost Affordable Can be more expensive
Flavor Options Wide selection Varies depending on availability
Extraction Risk Higher risk of over-extraction Less risk of over-extraction
Sediment May result in more sediment Less sediment
See also  Can You Cold Brew With Regular Coffee?

Note: The table above provides a comparison between using ground coffee and coarse coffee for cold brew. Both methods can yield delicious cold brew; it’s a matter of personal preference and convenience.


In conclusion, making cold brew with ground coffee is absolutely possible and can result in a delightful coffee experience. Despite a few potential drawbacks, using ground coffee offers accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and versatility. By following the recommended tips, adjusting variables, and finding your preferred strength, you can easily achieve a satisfying cold brew with ground coffee. So go ahead and give it a try – enjoy the smooth and refreshing flavor of cold brew made with ground coffee!

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Question 1: Can I use any type of ground coffee for making cold brew?

Answer: Yes, you can use any type of ground coffee for making cold brew. However, the type of coffee you choose will greatly affect the flavor of your cold brew. Some coffee enthusiasts recommend using a medium to dark roast for a fuller and bolder flavor, while others prefer lighter roasts for a smoother and more delicate taste. Experiment with different types of coffee until you find your preferred flavor profile.

Question 2: Do I need to use a specific grind size for making cold brew?

Answer: Yes, the grind size is crucial for making a great cold brew. Ideally, you should use a coarse grind for cold brewing. A coarse grind allows for a slower extraction process, resulting in a smoother and less acidic cold brew. Finer grinds can lead to over-extraction and bitterness. If you don’t have a grinder at home, you can ask your local coffee shop to grind the beans specifically for cold brew.

Question 3: How long should I steep the coffee grounds for cold brew?

Answer: The steeping time for cold brew can vary depending on personal preference. On average, most recipes recommend steeping the coffee grounds in cold water for 12 to 24 hours. This longer steeping time allows for a more concentrated and smooth flavor. However, if you prefer a lighter taste, you can reduce the steeping time to around 8 hours. Experiment with different steeping times to find the perfect strength and flavor for your cold brew.

Question 4: Can I use hot water instead of cold water for cold brew?

Answer: No, you cannot use hot water for making cold brew. Cold brew specifically refers to the process of steeping coffee grounds in cold or room temperature water for an extended period. Using hot water will result in a completely different brewing method called hot brewing or traditional brewing. Cold brew is known for its low acidity and smooth flavor, which is achieved through a slow extraction process in cold water.

Question 5: How should I store the cold brew after brewing?

Answer: After brewing your cold brew, it is best to transfer it to a sealed container and store it in the refrigerator. The cold temperature of the refrigerator helps to maintain the freshness and flavor of the cold brew for an extended period. When stored properly, cold brew can be kept in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. It’s important to note that the flavor may change over time, so it is best to consume it within the first week for the best experience.

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Marlin Dariel

A seasoned coffee connoisseur, reviews coffee shops, recommends unique places to enjoy a great cup of coffee. "Every coffee bean has an interesting story"


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