How to Make Cold Brew Coffee (without a cold brewer)

How to Make Cold Brew Coffee (without a cold brewer)

by Alex Mastin 


There’s only one thing better than a hot cup of filter coffee on a cold winter morning: a fresh cup of cold brew coffee on a balmy summer afternoon.


If you weren't already aware, this may be a great time to remind you that iced coffee is not the same as cold brew coffee, but that doesn’t mean it’s any harder to make.


To get you summer-ready, and to celebrate the new Lanna Handcrafted Cold Brew, I am going to show you two simple ways to make cold brew coffee without a cold brewer.



The Simple-Yet-Effective Filter Method


The not-so-secret ingredient of a good batch of cold brew coffee is time, so with a little time up your sleeve and some basic equipment, you should be able to pull this one off.

What you will need:

  • Two large containers or jars (depending on how much you want to make). Preferably use glass, because things just taste better out of glass, don’t they?
  • Coarsely ground coffee. A Full-bodied, Dark French Roast will work very well.
  • A Filter of some sort - You can use anything, from a coffee filter, to a handkerchief or cheesecloth. All it needs to do is separate the grounds from the water.
  • Optional: A strainer (if you’re pedantic) and a pour over dripper to help you pour.

    How to Make It:

    1. Measure out the grounds and pour them into one of the containers. For cold brew, you want about a 1:4 coffee-to-water ratio. For this recipe we are going to make four cups of coffee, so pour in about one cup of grounds.

    2. Gradually pour in four cups of water.

    3. If there are any grounds that haven’t been soaked, lightly press them down with the back of a spoon.

    4. Let it sit for approximately 12 hours. Remember, cold brew requires time, so don’t rush.

    5. Now that your coffee is done steeping, place your makeshift filter along the inside of the strainer and set it on top of the other container.

    6. Gently pour your brew through the DIY filter and into the other container. Using a pour over dripper at this stage makes life easy. Here we are using our Hario v60:

    7. And you’re now ready to sample the goods! Pour yourself a glass with a few ice cubes and a splash of water (because cold brew is extremely concentrated), or cover it and place in the refrigerator for later. 

    With a French Press

    Not only can your French press make a great hot coffee, but it can also brew up a batch of cold brew that tastes just as good as cold brew from a specially made cold brewer.

    By now, you may have realized that brewing cold coffee requires very little: a container for steeping, a method for straining, and time. Assuming you’ve got the time, a French press provides the rest.

    What you will need:

    • A French press. I recommend the Bodum Chambord, but just about any French press will do.
    • Plastic wrap (or some other way to seal the top of your French press) if your press won’t fit in your fridge un-plunged
    • Coarse coffee grounds.

    What to do:

    1. Coarsely grind your beans, or measure out your grounds, and pour them into the French press container. Again, you want a 1:4 coffee to water ratio, and with the Chambord that’s roughly 1 ¼ cups of coffee.

    2. Fill up the French press with cool water and pat down any un-soaked grounds.

    3. Cover your French press and place it in the refrigerator. Make sure you cover it tightly to keep out any other fridge aromas.

    4. Let it sit for 12 hours.

    5. Once your 12 hours are up, put the French press’s top on and press down the plunger.

    6. Pour yourself a fresh cup of cold brew!

    And there you have it - 2 quick and easy methods to make cold brew coffee, without a cold brew coffee maker!

    Please leave a comment if you have your own DIY method of making cold brew coffee, we’d love to hear about it!




    More about our guest blogger, Alex Mastin...

    Artisan coffee and traveling the world are Alex's two biggest passions, and he's always on the search for new experiences that merge the two. Read more about the coffee side of things at Home Grounds