How to make Cold Brew Coffee with Instant Coffee

How to make Cold Brew Coffee with Instant Coffee


Today you will learn how to make Cold Brew Coffee with Instant Coffee. Cold brew coffee is different from regular coffee. Instant coffee is mixed with cold water, not with hot water. Then the mix is either left at room temperature or stored in a refrigerator. After straining out the coffee powder or coffee ground, users can make their cold brew coffee with the remaining coffee concentrate.

An advantage of a cold brew coffee is that it never gets watery and can be made as strong as the user wants it to be. Cold brew coffee is less bitter than coffee made with other traditional brewing methods. Making a cold coffee is an easy task and does not require any special equipment.

Requirements for making a Cold Brew Coffee

  1. Instant coffee
  2. A large container with a lid
  3. A fine-mesh sieve
  4. A cheesecloth or nut milk bag
  5. A set of cold brew coffee tumblers

The total time for preparing a cold brew coffee is 10 mins while the total time for making it is 14 hours. A cold coffee brew made with the instructions given below can last for four servings.

How to make Cold Brew Coffee

Step 1: Mix the instant coffee with cold water in a liquid measuring cup, a mason jar, or any other container. Cover the lid of the container with plastic wrap. For every one cup of water, ¼ cups of instant coffee has to be mixed. The proportion can be scaled up as users require, provided that they stick to the ratio of 1 cup of water for every ¼ cup of instant coffee.

Step 2: Store the coffee mix in a refrigerator for about 12-18 hours to let the coffee blend well with the cold water. 14-18 hours is the ideal time for steeping the coffee brew as it would give the cold brew coffee its taste without excess bitterness from steeping for too long. The brew can also be left at room temperature

Step 3: Strain the instant coffee from the coffee mix. This can be done with a large mesh strainer placed above a large container bowl. It would be better if the coffee mix is drained into a container from which the mixture could be easily poured and transferred to a storage container.

Cheesecloth or a nut milk bag could be placed on the mesh strainer to catch the coffee powder. A nut milk bag is preferable as it is inexpensive and reusable. It would be easy to get the coffee powder out and rinse the nut milk bag clean if folded on top.

Step 4: Transfer the filtered coffee brew into a large jar or container and store it for about a week in a refrigerator. It is best not to keep the cold brew coffee in a fridge for more than a week as the coffee will start to lose its flavor and will not taste good.

Step 5: The cold brew coffee can be served with a bit of cream or milk. One can also stir the cream in the coffee and add a pinch of sea salt and honey to make a sweeter cold brew coffee.

If needed, the cold coffee brew can be enjoyed overnight. However, it may not give the same flavor and strength as a cold brew coffee chilled over the week.

Making a Cold Brew Coffee with a French Press

French press is commonly used for making regular coffees. However, many do not know that it can be used to make cold brew coffees too. French presses rely on the immersion process to make coffee. Cold brew coffees require cooler temperatures, which will slow the dripping process down. The French press is a good option for making a cold brew coffee as it helps extract the ideal flavor needed to make an excellent cold brew coffee. As the process is relatively easy, it is a favorite among home and commercial brewers. Though there aren’t any difficulties while using a French press to make a cold brew coffee, additional tools can make the immersion process more seamless.

Making a cold brew coffee with a French press is slightly different from what it is regularly done. However, the items required to make a cold brew coffee with a French press are the same items necessary to make it in a general way, with the addition of the French press.

Therefore, the items required to make a cold brew coffee with a French press include:

  • Instant coffee
  • Filtered water
  • French press
  • Spoon

Step 1: The coffee has to be measured as more coffee will be required than what is needed for a hot brew. It is better to start with double the amount of instant coffee used to make regular coffees. The maker has to play with the water to coffee ratio depending on the strength of the mix. If the mix is too strong, more water has to be added, and if it is too weak, more instant coffee has to be added.

Step 2: Add the instant coffee and water in the French press like one would do for a hot brew-adding the coffee to the bottom of the press and then add the filtered water.

Step 3: Gently mix the instant coffee with water. The instant coffee and the water have to be mixed slowly until the instant coffee is mixed thoroughly with water.

Step 4: Let the brew in the French press sit for about 12 hours. This can be kept at room temperature or by placing the mixture in a refrigerator. Brewing at room temperature speeds up the brewing process while brewing in a refrigerator gives better results.

Step 5: End the brew by slowly pressing the French press plunger like how it is done while making a regular coffee. The best results are obtained when the French press is set for a full thirty-second plunge. The leftovers of the coffee in the cup can be removed with a paper filter, cheesecloth or a nut milk bag.

Step 6: Enjoy the cold coffee brew with cream, milk or some sweeteners. These sweeteners can be avoided with a nitro infusion if needed or by not adding any sweeteners at all.

Almost anyone can do the entire process with a bit of experience in coffee making

Tips to enhance the Cold Brew Coffee

  • Unless the user intends to make a really strong coffee, the instant coffee has to be diluted with water. A 1:1 ratio of water and instant coffee will work fine for a strong cold brew coffee.
  • The cold brew coffee can be heated up for a hot cup of coffee. The easiest way to do so is to microwave the coffee.
  • The coffee can be best enjoyed with oatmeal or pancakes.
  • The cold water used in the coffee mix has to be filtered to get the best flavor.

Signs of a spoiled Cold Brew Coffee

It is almost certain that a cold brew coffee must have spoiled when any of the following indicators are visible:

  • Weakened coffee flavor
  • Sour smell
  • Stale or acidic coffee taste
  • Mold and mildew
  • No coffee kick

How to make a Cold Brew Coffee last longer?

Generally, coffee enthusiasts accept that a cold brew coffee lasts only up to a week or two when stored in a fridge. After the first week, the cold brew coffee will lose its flavor and caffeine content. Within two weeks, the cold brew coffee will start to smell sour, which is almost a sure indicator that the coffee is starting to get spoiled.

Certain factors influence the shelf life of a cold brew coffee. These include:

  • Temperature of Storage: It is an essential factor influencing the shelf life of a cold brew coffee. If the coffee concentrate is undiluted, it will last up to two weeks in a refrigerator. Though it is possible to freeze the coffee into ice cubes and use them when required, they are most likely to have a different flavor when melted. If the coffee is left out at room temperature, it will most likely spoil within a few hours. It is vital to keep the cold brew coffee in a refrigerator as long as possible as it loses freshness every time it is taken out.


  • Containers: When the cold brew coffee is stored in a fridge, it would be better to keep it in an airtight glass container. This increases the coffee’s shelf life and limits its exposure to oxygen. Any product held in airtight containers tends to last longer, and cold brew coffees are no exception.


Given that there is no heat involved, makers may think that the coffee concentrate can be stored in a plastic container. However, plastic containers are more porous than glass containers. Plastic containers also absorb chemicals from the coffee concentrate or the cold brew coffee, accelerating the loss of flavor. Therefore, it is best to store the concentrate and the coffee in a glass container.


  • Level of Dilution: Cold brew coffee is a strong beverage with twice the amount of caffeine present in regular coffee. Therefore, drinkers tend to dilute the concentrate or the coffee itself with milk or water before drinking it. Undiluted coffee tends to last longer than diluted coffee. Therefore, the concentrate and the coffee have to be stored before added cream or water. Moreover, the cold brew coffee can be enjoyed longer if it is diluted by serving size.


  • Quality of the Coffee: The quality of the instant coffee or ground coffee beans decides the cold brew coffee’s quality. Instant coffees made from properly ground coffee beans of good quality tend to last longer than others.


Cold brew coffees steep for about 15 hours, which is why many people tend to put them at room temperature. If the coffee concentrate is to be steeped overnight, it should be placed in a refrigerator.

Differentiating between Cold Brew coffee and Iced Coffee

Cold Brew Coffee and Iced Coffee are among the most popular beverages. However, these beverages are also among the most mistaken drinks, as people use the names interchangeably. The fact is that cold brew coffee and iced coffee are not the same.

Cold brew coffee is made by mixing instant coffee with cold water or water at room temperature. This mix is then cooled for a day, the powder drained out leaving a coffee concentrate and cooled once more for a week before being enjoyed. As there is no hot water involved in the process, cold brew coffee is less acidic, has more body and has a more mellow taste.

Iced coffees are hot coffees poured on ice. However, the end product will taste more diluted. This is why people have started making a double batch or using double the amount of instant coffee or ground coffee beans. The double batch is let to cool before pouring into the ice. If the iced coffee has to be made even stronger, coffee can be frozen in ice cube trays to make coffee cubes, which can be put in a hot coffee to make iced coffee. However, iced coffees tend to be more bitter.

The most significant difference between cold brew coffee and iced coffee is their price. Iced coffee is cheaper than cold brew coffee.

What makes Cold Brew Coffee different from Hot Coffee?

Apart from being “cold” and “hot,” cold brew coffee and hot coffee have other differences. Hot coffee has more chlorogenic acid than cold brew coffee because of the hot brewing method involved.

Apart from the gastrointestinal benefits of cold brew coffee, it is preferred to cold brew coffee primarily because of the lifestyle of the drinkers. Most people do not have the time to make a perfect wake-up drink like a hot coffee. With a cold brew coffee, one can easily mix the instant coffee or ground coffee beans and cool them on Saturday, filter them out and cool them once again on Sunday, and enjoy the drink for the rest of the week. Suppose the coffee concentrate is already prepared and is by the refrigerator. In that case, all one has to do is dilute it as required and go out for study or work. One need not wait for the drink to cool down as the refrigerator will do the job. All the ingredients required to make a cold brew coffee are readily available in the market.

Advantages of drinking Cold Brew Coffee

  • Extra caffeine kick: Because of the lengthy process involved in making a cold brew coffee, the coffee drip ratio is 1.60 as opposed to the regular coffee drip ratio of 1.20. This means that there is almost 0.40 caffeine more in every drop of cold brew coffee than in a regular coffee. Though a cold brew coffee contains more caffeine than regular coffee, it does not mean that the drinker will stay active throughout the week. Nevertheless, a cold brew coffee can straighten up the drinker’s physical and mental setup.


  • Weight loss assistant: Cold brew coffee can help in weight loss due to its high caffeine content. A cold brew coffee after a workout increases the body’s post-energy expenditure or after-burn effect. The after-burn effect refers to the body’s ability to burn out calories after a workout session. This means the higher the caffeine content in a cold brew coffee, the more fat that is burnt. All this can be achieved while having a sip of cold brew coffee from an armchair.


  • Cognitive benefits: Caffeine in a cold brew coffee is seen to increase the blood flow to the brain, thus improving cognitive function. The Human Nutrition Center on Aging conducted a research that showed that bioactive compounds present in a cold brew coffee would reduce mental defects and improve motor function. Therefore, the higher the coffee content in a cold brew coffee, the more significant the brain boost.


  • Perfect for a sensitive stomach: A cold brew coffee is less acidic and has a smoother flavor. This is because it does not use the heat of a brewer in a traditional drip brewing method, which also would have given it a bitter taste. These reasons make cold brew coffee a favorite among those who suffer from acid reflux or have sensitive stomachs.


  • Life-extending beverage: Research has shown that having a cup of coffee, which includes cold brew coffee, every day increases one’s lifespan and is good for health. This is because coffee reduces the chances of dementia and increases the body’s insulin production and fat-burning capabilities. Coffee contains antioxidants, like chlorogenic acid, that act as the body’s anti-inflammatories. It is generally believed that the antioxidants are left after the steeping process in a cold brew coffee, along with other oils and acids.


Also, coffees, in general, contain more free-radical fighting chemicals than in other caffeinated beverages like tea. These free-radical fighting chemicals are involved in fighting against specific cancers; the more free-radical fighting chemicals, the better the body.


  • Anti-aging effect: Coffee is considered one of the best beverages for anti-aging due to the presence of antioxidants. These antioxidants protect the skin from harmful chemicals in the air and the UV rays of the sun. They also help the skin stay moisturized and youthful.


  • Nitro Cold Brew: Nitro cold brew is essentially cold brew coffee infused with nitrogen gas. Cold brew coffee in general, and nitro cold brew in particular, helps keep the drinker’s weight in check while cutting down the sugar intake. A nitro cold brew is served without milk, sugar or cream. There is no need for any additives in the drink as the nitro infusion gives the cold brew coffee a creamy, sweet taste. Regular consumers of nitro cold brew suggest that nitro cold brew tastes a lot like milk chocolate. Therefore, drinkers can relish a sweet, creamy taste without compromising the weight loss program.


  • Mood Booster: Coffees, including cold brew coffees, are known to enhance a drinker’s mood along with increased cognitive function and alertness. This benefit of cold brew coffees generally proves beneficial for older people and those deprived of sleep.


  • Low-cost maintenance brewing: Cold brew coffees come with manageable brewing methods. While other coffees require expensive kits, a cold brew coffee requires only a ‘set and forget’ brewing mechanism. Moreover, a single brew can last a week and does not require making a brew every day.


For making a cold brew coffee, all one needs is instant coffee or ground coffee beans, a mason jar and a filtration method which could be a cheesecloth, a nut milk bag or even a French press. Even a regular paper filter can be used if the maker can secure it while filtering.


Other Cold Brew Coffee recipes to try out with Instant Coffee

  • Cinnamon Ice Latte: The Cinnamon Ice Latte is made with a coffee concentrate and some milk or whitener, like a regular cold brew coffee. The addition to the process is the honey cinnamon syrup and a pinch of cinnamon that will enhance the drink’s taste.


  • Cold Brew Toasted Coconut Coffee: The regular coffee concentrate of a cold brew coffee is added with milk or almond milk in a 1:2 ratio. The coconut shredding has to be toasted on a frying pan and then added. The shredding will make the coffee sweeter. If the drinker wants more sweetness, then a bit of simple syrup can be added.


  • Sweetened Condensed Milk Cold Brew: This cold brew coffee is made with the coffee concentrate made from instant coffee and milk, preferably in the ratio of 1:2. However, it is better to start with a small amount of milk before increasing the milk content based on the requirement. The cold brew is best served when extra ice cubes are added to it.


  • Eggnog Cold Brew Iced Coffee: This cold brew coffee is made the unconventional way. The coffee concentrate is frozen in ice cube trays, with a touch of eggnog or cream if makers prefer. The coffee ice cubes can be mixed with a regular coffee made from instant coffee to get the final drink.


  • Coconut Water Cold Brew Coffee: The instant coffee is mixed with coconut water and is left in the refrigerator for about 12 hours. The mixture is drained the next day and enjoyed with ice.


  • Fresh Mint Cold Brewed Iced Coffee: Apart from the coffee concentrate, a fresh mint syrup must be made with mint, sugar and water, and a dark chocolate ganache with coconut milk and dark chocolate. Ice cubes have to be added to the dark chocolate ganache, and the chilled coffee concentrate has to be added next. The fresh mint syrup has to be added at the end to get the perfect tangy drink.