Recipe: Cold Brew at Home

Thursday, 22 August, 2019

3 Steps to Better Cold Brew at Home

Get the grind right. 

Cold brew requires a specific grind. A larger grind — something closer to the coarseness of raw sugar — keeps the brew from getting bitter overnight. If you've got a small home grinder, it's best to grind the beans in batches.

Use a higher ratio of coffee to water. 

This recipe uses a ratio of 225g of ground coffee to 8 cups of water. You’re generally looking to achieve a 1:4 or 1:5 brew ratio, a bit higher than hot filter methods.

Strain slowly. 

The Toddy System relies on gravity to gently remove the cold brew from the grounds. To replicate that at home, you'll need to strain the cold brew gently through cheesecloth and a strainer, we’ve also used Chemex filter papers successfully. Avoid pressing or squeezing the coffee grounds, as that extracts bitter flavours. Work in batches to strain as gently as possible. It is a slow straining process and if you’re doing a big quantity you may need to use more than one filter so as to avoid any unwanted tearing which creates more of a mess than anyone should have to deal with before coffee.

This cold brew concentrate keeps in the fridge for up to two weeks (one of the perks of investing so much time!), so you can pour a cup anytime you want that sweet, smooth flavour.

What You Need

225g whole coffee beans

2 litres of water, preferably filtered

Coffee grinder

2 jars or pitchers with lids

Cheesecloth + Rubber band/ Strong Filter Papers (Chemex filters work pretty well! But you will still probably need to use a couple)


Grind the coffee beans in a coffee grinder until they are coarsely ground. The goal is a coarse grind about the size of, dare we say it, instant coffee granules!

Combine the ground coffee and water in a 3 litre jar or pitcher. Gently stir the coffee with the water until well-blended. The coffee will float to the top as it sits, but don’t stress about that — just make sure all of the coffee gets wet.

Cover and steep the coffee overnight in the fridge for at least 12 hours or up to 24 hours.

Now for the straining! Line a small fine-mesh strainer with cheesecloth and set it over a large measuring cup. Slowly pour the coffee concentrate through the strainer. Depending on the size of your strainer, you may need to strain the coffee in batches. Fight the temptation to squeeze or press the coffee grounds in the cheesecloth. Or go with the Chemex filters in batches.

Transfer the cold brew to a clean jar for longer-term storage. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

To serve, fill a glass with some ice cubes. Pour 1/2 cup the cold brew over the ice, add 1/2 cup cold water, and stir to combine. Add milk if desired and enjoy.

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