Simply put, iced coffee means any way to brew cold coffee that doesn’t involve espresso. Making cold brew coffee, therefore, is making iced coffee. Brewing hot coffee and letting it sit in the fridge is also iced coffee. But an iced latte would not be considered iced coffee as it contains espresso.
Our favorite method of making homemade iced coffee is flash brewing. Flash brewing (or flash-chilled coffee) is the process of brewing coffee directly onto ice. This simple brewing process cools the coffee, making it both convenient and makes the coffee taste less stale, which can happen while coffee cools to room temperature. Because ice dilutes coffee, our delicious iced coffee recipe uses less brewing water to maintain the coffee’s flavor, taste, and caffeine strength as the ice melts. And since you’re not using cold water (which has trouble breaking down some of the roast’s flavor compounds), flash brewing ends up tasting brighter than cold-brewed coffee. Whether you know how to make pour over coffee or prefer the convenience of a drip coffee maker, we have a recipe for how to make iced coffee that is both delicious and easy.
What You Need
- A Chemex or coffee maker, any brand will do.
- A gooseneck kettle
- A scale (optional)
- 8 oz / 300 ml of water
- 8 oz / 300 g ice
- 1.4 oz / 40 g of medium-fine ground coffee. Don't have a grinder? We can grind it for you!
1. Measure ice
Weigh out ice cubes in your Chemex (this iced coffee recipe works for any pour over brewer with slight adjustments. Water flows relatively slowly through Chemex filters, so pour slower with a Kalita Wave, for example). Because ice shapes vary, a scale helps, but if you don’t own one, just fill your Chemex until the top of the cubes reaches a little higher than the level your finished hot brew would usually reach.
2. Bloom Coffee
Place the coffee filter into your brewer and pour the coffee grinds in. Start your timer, and pour 80 grams of just off-boiling water, or just enough to evenly saturate the grinds. Wait 45 seconds. We call this the blooming coffee period, as the boiling water helps release the built-up carbon dioxide in the coffee so that the rest of our water can really get in there and dissolve the flavor compounds.
3. Pour Slowly
Start slowly pouring hot water, from the center of your coffee grounds out, trying to wet all the grinds evenly. Remember, we’re only using half the water we usually would for brewing hot coffee, but we don’t want to take half as long, so pouring slowly is key, but you’ll want to get all your water in at around 2.5 minutes. Here’s how to accomplish that:
- Pour up to 150 grams, and let the water drip down until it’s right above the coffee grounds.
- Pour about 25 more grams, and let it drip down again
- Pour again until you’ve got all your water in
4. Let It Drip
Wait until all the coffee drips through, melting all or most of the ice, pour into a tall glass (or your preferred vessel), and enjoy!