How To Make The Best Mason Jar Cold Brew Coffee

Coffee shops only started to add cold brew to their menus a few short years ago. And, every shop has had their own method, claiming their process produced the best cold brew!


Luckily, cold brew is INSANELY easy to make at home. All you need is a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen if you make coffee yourself on a regular basis.


Chances are if you are wanting to make cold brew at home, you have previously tried cold brew. The mellow, smooth taste is one of the best ways to enjoy coffee chilled.  But if you are tired of buying it at coffee shops and grocery stores, it might be a great time to start tinkering and making it at home.


The Cold Brew Coffee Recipe


Making up a recipe for this actually feels a little silly. However, we kid you not when we tell you all you need to do is grind beans, put grounds in a mason jar, add water, let it sit, filter out the grounds, and...voila! You have a delicious concentrated cold brew in 5 easy steps.


The “recipe” is really very simple, but those five steps do need to be done correctly to ensure your cold brew will rival the creme of the crop downtown coffee shops.


We will break these 5 steps down and give you some great tips to make sure you have a successful cold brew batch–all the while saving yourself a ton of money.



Which Bean – Light, Medium, or Dark Roast?


In the end, it comes down to preference. There is no right or wrong, but it seems the majority tends to be in favour of a darker roast for cold brew, as cold brew favours a darker, richer taste with a nutty, chocolatey, and earthy flavour. The robust flavours tend to overpower the brighter ones.


Here are some tips to help you narrow down the bean that is best for you:


  • Don’t assume your coffee preferences for hot brewed coffee will be the same for your cold brew coffee. These are two different coffee beverages.
  • Start at one end of the roasting spectrum and work towards the opposite end until you find the flavour that best suits your taste.
  • Quality beans are important…but do not splurge on the expensive stuff yet! You can buy a cheaper coffee bean until you find the roast you want to use for your cold brew, then experiment with more expensive beans.
  • Single origin beans tend to cost more than blends, but they will give you a better understanding of what you like and what you don’t.


The Grind


Now that you have picked your bean, it is time to grind them! The most important thing to know is that overgrinding will result in a really bitter brew. Grind your beans coarsely. The grounds should resemble raw sugar, and NOT a fine powder.



The 5 Step Recipe for Cold Brew Coffee


Here is the super simple recipe for great tasting cold brew in just 5 simple steps:


  1. Add coffee grounds to the mason jar. The rule of thumb is for every 1 cup of water, you’ll need 1 ounce (by weight) of coarsely ground coffee.
  2. Add half the water and stir. Fill the mason jar halfway with cold water, then stir the mixture, making sure all the grounds are wet.
  3. Add the rest of the water. Add the remaining amount of water to the mixture into the mason jar and stir again.
  4. Refrigerate and steep. Put on our Brewing America Mason Jar Lid and place in the fridge. Allow the jar to steep between 12 and 24 hours. The longer the steeping time, the deeper the flavours develop. Overnight steeping is the easiest as you can have your cold brew first thing in the morning!
  5. Strain out the grounds. Once your cold brew has steeped, strain out the grounds with a stainless steel filter. It is important to use a top-quality filter to make sure to keep grounds out of your cold brew. This is especially important if you make a large batch, as you do not want to store finished cold brew with grounds in it.


Enjoy! Your cold brew is now ready to serve and relish. Keep in mind that the process of cold brew produces a concentrate. It can taste very strong. Even though it does not have the acidity or bitterness of other coffee beverages, you still could want a more mellow flavour. You can add a little cold water, milk, half-and-half, sweetener, or even chocolate milk to your freshly poured cup until it tastes just right.


Brewing Tip - Don’t Strain Too Quickly 


Resist the urge of squeezing or pressing down the coffee grounds while straining, as that extracts bitter flavours. After already waiting overnight for your cold brew, it can be tempting to rush the straining process by forcing the cold brew through a strainer. However, a poked and prodded batch of cold brew is bitter and will be disappointing.


When making multiple, big-batch cold brew, plan to strain in batches. Again, let gravity do all the work! It will reward you with sweet, smooth, delicious cold brew!


Straining Process


Many cold brew recipes will show instructions to strain the coffee with a coffee filter. DON’T!


First off, if you do, the straining process will be a lot slower. Additionally, the paper filter can tear, creating more of a mess than anyone should have to deal with before having coffee! This is where the Brewing American mason jar filter comes into play, and will make your life a heck of a lot easier.


Store in the refrigerator


If you have any leftover cold brew, you can store it in the fridge right in the mason jar. Ensure it’s airtight by screwing on a leak proof mason jar lid. It will last up to two weeks in your fridge.


Our superior design of the plastic lids for glass mason jars is patented and engineered as the first of its kind wide mouth plastic mason jar lid on the market. It is a spill proof lid, ideal for home brewers, featuring a screw down flip cap to easily drink from a straw.


Durable and made from BPA free plastic material, our lids and cold brew systems are easy to clean, consisting of a removable, FDA food-grade silicone seal that eliminates mold.


We strive to offer you the best homebrew tools. Learn more about our products here.