How To Make Ice Coffee

Learn how to make iced coffee four different ways. Master one of these basic techniques, then use your own creativity to enhance your beverage.

Here are three basic methods anyone with a coffee pot can use for making good iced coffee and a fourth method that requires special equipment. The methods use different techniques for ensuring that the brewed coffee doesn't get overly diluted by the ice and that no glass is broken. Pouring hot liquid into a cold glass can cause the glass to break, so be careful if you decide to take a shortcut and simply pour hot coffee into a glass full of ice.

For every method start with cold water that doesn't have any strong flavor of chlorine or minerals. Use whatever coffee you like to drink hot. Some people prefer darker roasts for iced coffee since they tend to be sweeter and less acidic. Some gourmet coffee producers make special blends for iced coffee. Some people like using flavored coffees like hazelnut or vanilla. Once you learn a basic method with your regular coffee, you can start experimenting.

If everyone who will be drinking the iced coffee wants it sweetened, add sugar or honey while the coffee is still hot so it dissolves better. You can add milk, cream, or flavored syrup to taste.



Brewed coffee does not keep well, so don't plan on making it far ahead of when it will be consumed. You can store it in a sealed container in the refrigerator, but after a day it will lose its freshness and its flavor will change. Some lower grade coffees lose their flavor within hours.

Basic Iced Coffee Method One

Brew double-strength coffee using twice the amount of ground coffee you normally use for hot coffee. Allow the coffee to cool at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Put ice in a glass. Pour the coffee over the ice.

Basic Iced Coffee Method Two

Brew enough coffee to fill an ice cube tray, using the same amount of ground coffee as you usually use to make hot coffee. Pour the coffee into the tray and freeze it. When the cubes are ready, brew fresh regular-strength coffee and allow it to cool. Put the coffee ice cubes in a glass and pour cooled coffee over them.

You can use leftover coffee to make coffee ice cubes and store them for later use. If you don't plan to use the ice cubes within a few hours, transfer them to a freezer storage bag that seals tightly.

Basic Iced Coffee Method Three

Brew double-strength coffee using twice the amount of ground coffee you normally use for hot coffee. Select an unbreakable pitcher that could hold twice as much coffee as you are brewing. Fill the pitcher with ice cubes. Pour the hot coffee over the ice cubes.

Iced Coffee from Concentrate

Make coffee concentrate using a cold-water coffeemaker, which steeps coarsely ground coffee in cold water for 12-24 hours, then filters out the concentrated solution. Mix one part concentrate with three parts cold water. Pour over ice.

Coffee made by this method is smooth, with less acidity and less caffeine than coffee made using hot-water methods. The concentrate can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks and can be used to make hot coffee, too.

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