Last Updated on October 25, 2021
You’re a fan of iced coffee, but you want to know, can you make iced coffee with hot coffee? That’s a great question, my friend.
Iced coffee is great because it has the taste and caffeine boost that you love about hot coffee, without being too hot for your taste buds or stomach. But what if you could get the same effect from using your regular cup of joe? Would this be something worth trying?
Yes! It might seem like an unusual idea at first, but there are several ways to make iced coffee at home out of hot brews.
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- Why Do Some Folks Prefer to Drink Iced Coffee?
- The Difference Between Cold Brew Coffee and Iced Coffee
- How Can You Make Iced Coffee with Hot Coffee?
Why Do Some Folks Prefer to Drink Iced Coffee?
If you’re not the kind of person who regularly enjoys iced beverages, perhaps there are certain days when it’s just too hot outside for a warm cup of coffee. I’m pretty tried and true to my steaming cup of java, even in the hot weather. But I’m probably in the minority!
During these times, people sometimes look for different types of caffeinated drinks that can provide them with some relief from the heat as well as a caffeine injection. Iced coffee is one ideal option in such instances, as it provides the same jolt that you crave without making you any hotter than before.
Another reason why people choose to drink iced coffee when it’s hot outside is that they want to enjoy the taste of their favorite beverage, a beloved cup of coffee! If you love the way that coffee smells and tastes, then you probably won’t be satisfied with a cold drink that lacks the caffeine boost. Why drink cold water, or soda, or lemonade, when you can have your coffee and enjoy the cool taste of it, too?
Even if your goal is simply to get something cold in your stomach, there might come a point when you decide that it’s worth sacrificing some degree of temperature for the sake of flavor. While iced coffee isn’t quite as cold as many people would like it to be, it remains a popular choice because many people enjoy the taste and aroma of coffee more than they do the flavor of most other types of beverages.
The Difference Between Cold Brew Coffee and Iced Coffee
Cold brew coffee may at first sound like iced coffee, but they are two different types of coffee, made in different ways.
Here is how they differ. Cold brew coffee starts with coarsely ground beans. The grounds are then soaked for 12 to 16 hours in cold water before being filtered and served. This process gives the coffee a different flavor than traditional drip-brewed or French press method, because the cold extraction time allows the heavy, earthy notes to develop and shine through.
Iced coffee is brewed using the basic drip method, but is served over ice. There are a variety of ways you can make iced coffee from this cold brew, from stirring in milk or cream to adding simple syrup or artificial sweeteners for sweetness.
How Can You Make Iced Coffee with Hot Coffee?
Now that you know why some people choose iced coffee as their drink of choice during the summertime (or anytime, really), you may now want to learn how to make this tasty, satisfying beverage for yourself. There are different methods that you could use, but the easiest way is by brewing hot coffee and then pouring it over ice.
If Making Coffee Ice Cubes Is Your Plan
If you plan to cool down your hot coffee by way of pouring it over ice, you’ll need coffee ice cubes. Using cubes made from coffee will eliminate the problem of diluting the flavor and intensity right out of your iced coffee as the cubes melt.
These can be made easily by filling up an ice tray with leftover coffee and freezing it overnight. The next day, your “coffee” cubes should be ready to use in a beverage any time you want.
If You’d Rather Not Add Ice to Your Coffee
Perhaps the idea of making coffee and ice cubes together is a little complicated for your tastes. If so, then there’s nothing wrong with indulging in iced coffee without using this option at all. Instead of using water, milk, or cream to dilute your hot coffee, you can simply chill it in the refrigerator overnight. The flavor of coffee is significantly diluted by ice cubes and other liquids, so if you prefer a stronger taste instead, this is an ideal alternative for you to try.
In addition to these options, here are some others for how to make iced coffee with hot brew:
- Pour leftover coffee over ice cubes and enjoy!
- Mix cold brew with hot coffee and add half and half, whipped cream, or any other sweetener that you like.
- Brew hot coffee and pour it into an insulated container that’s kept in the freezer for a few hours. Drink your beverage as soon as possible to avoid it becoming watered down.
- Use cold brew as a base for iced coffee by adding milk, cream, sugar, and other ingredients after it has been chilled.
How to Make Iced Coffee
The key to making a satisfying glass of iced coffee is to start with a brewed cup of strong coffee, with emphasis on the word strong. By the way, if you want to achieve the best flavor possible, then grind your beans fresh and use a French press or pour over method.
Planning ahead is always helpful when making iced coffee, my friend. Brew a cup (or more) of coffee that is strong, perhaps stronger than you usually brew. Then, let it cool until it is close to room temperature.
It won’t take too long for that to happen, usually 15 to 20 minutes will give your java enough time to cool off. You can wait that long, right?
- Fill your glass or stainless steel container with ice
- Add your strong coffee. The ice will begin to melt, and as it does, it will cool the coffee
- Keep stirring the coffee until your vessel feels cold enough to the touch so you know the temperature is right.
- If desired, add milk (or both) to dilute the coffee. You can also use cream, half and half, sweetener (honey, agave), simple syrup, vanilla extract, or other flavorings that you like.
- Give it a taste test. If you feel that the coffee is too strong, then add more water or milk and try again. You can also try using less beans when you brew your coffee so that the flavor isn’t as intense.
- Finish off with more ice cubes, to keep your iced coffee nice and cold.
Experiment with different amounts of ingredients until you find the perfect drink for your tastes!
Do you need the perfect iced coffee glass?
How to Make Flash Brewed Coffee
What is flash brewed iced coffee? Flash brewed coffee is simply a method where you use hot water, and drip the coffee directly over ice. This means you’ll use a pour over method, like a Hario V60 or a simple ceramic pour over dripper.
The awesome thing about this method is that the ice quickly cools the coffee, locking in the coffee flavors that we love. And, it’s quick and easy to do.
Here’s how to make flash brewed coffee at home:
- Use about 6 tablespoons of ground coffee, at a medium grind, and place it into your dripper (remember to use a filter if your brewing method calls for one) If this sounds like more coffee than you typically use, you’re right! We’re brewing it stronger and with less water
- Heat about 10 1/2 ounces of water to 200 degrees Fahrenheit
- Place about a cup of ice on your container
- Pour the water over the grounds slowly. As the brew hits the ice it will melt. That’s okay.
- When the coffee has filtered through the dripper, remove the dripper and add more ice to your coffee.
- Now enjoy that glass of flash-brewed ice coffee!
Best Tips to Make Better Iced Coffee
Tip 1: Use a French press for a bolder coffee flavor.
The slow brew time is perfect for bringing out the natural oils from your beans for a more flavorful cup.
Tip 2: Pour leftover brewed coffee into ice trays and freeze overnight to make cold-brew cubes. Stir two or three of these cubes into your freshly-brewed coffee for an iced coffee that won’t be watered down in any way.
Tip 3: Remember to use room temperature coffee to make your iced coffee so it doesn’t melt the ice cubes so quickly
Tip 4: You might want to experiment with different coffee brands and roasts, as well as the ratio of coffee to water (and whether you’re using regular ice cubes or frozen coffee cubes), to find the perfect combination of iced coffee for your palette.
Tip 5: Chill your glass or container before making your coffee drink, to keep the brew chilled longer.
Sum It Up
Can you make iced coffee with hot coffee? Absolutely! As long as you keep these simple but essential tips in mind, you’ll brew a tasty beverage that will cool you down as well as rev you up!
It might take a little time and experimentation to find the method, coffee roast, and ratio of coffee to water that works best for your pallete. But it will definitely be worth it.
Candi Randolph is a coffee lover, blogger, and content creator who loves to share her knowledge with the coffee-drinking world. You’ll often find her tending to her coffee bar at home, deciding which method to use to brew her next cup of java. Life is full of important decisions. ☕