Though I’m typically a hot coffee drinker, soon enough, the Texas heat will rule out anything sweat-inducing from my routine. And as much as I love a steaming mug in my hands in the morning, I refuse to let the weather keep me from getting my coffee fix. So, I set out to find easy cold brew recipes that would get me excited about making the switch. From my research, I found that people love getting creative with their coffee, and our particular blends and brews are totally unique. While I’m trying to be more mindful of afternoon caffeine lately, here I am at 4:30 on a weekday afternoon wanting to indulge in one of these easy cold brew recipes. From brewing tea bags with the cold brew to adding your caffeine-charged fave to a smoothie, I now have a bucket list of cold brew techniques that I’m dying to try.
Not only are all the many ways to use cold brew intriguing, but the flavors are refreshing and delicious. But I have to say, a few recipes left me scratching my head. Coffee lemonade? Coffee tonic? Comment below if I’m wrong, but I think I’ll stick to flavors like cinnamon and vanilla… for now.
Featured image from Brewing Happiness.
Among my friends, it was Starbucks that coined the term “cold brew” and led the charge in its popularity. But I never quite understood the difference between a chilled cuppa and good old iced coffee. In Cookie + Kate’s simple cold brew recipe (linked below), she shared a few facts about cold brew that merit a highlight before diving into these easy cold brew recipes:
- Cold brew is less acidic than regular coffee.
- It’s brewed in cold water (hence the name), so it takes longer to brew.
- The cold water makes it less bitter and naturally sweeter.
- If you’re in the mood for hot coffee, cold brew can be warmed up!
- The basic ratio for making cold brew is ½ cup of ground coffee to one cup of water.
With those fun facts stored away, let’s dive into the easy cold brew recipes on my cold brew bucket list.
12 Easy Cold Brew Recipes That’ll Keep You Cool
Cold Brew Coffee from Cookie + Kate
Why we love it: Consider this recipe your Easy Cold Brew Instruction Manual. If you’re wanting to make a simple cold brew concentrate from scratch, this post not only takes you through the steps but gives you all the tips and tricks you need to feel like a real barista. The hardest part is waiting 12-18 hours for it to steep. But after that, it’s good in your fridge for up to two weeks, so you can get creative with the rest of these recipes.
Hero ingredient: Any kind of coffee you prefer.
Get the recipe for Cold Brew Coffee.
Lavender Cold Brew Latte from The Wooden Skillet
Why we love it: Now this is the kind of creative coffee drink I can get behind. The lavender syrup gives it the perfect amount of sweetness and the almond (or oat) milk makes it dairy-free. Definitely make sure to buy or make the lavender syrup in bulk—this drink will quickly become your refreshing summer addiction.
Hero ingredient: Lavender has gone from my favorite color to my favorite coffee flavor.
Get the recipe for Lavender Cold Brew Latte.
Cinnamon Vanilla Coconut Cream Cold Brew from Danilicious
Why we love it: Starbucks Sweet Cream Cold Brew fans, let me introduce you to this healthier, homemade alternative. The homemade cream is made with coconut cream, vanilla, cinnamon, stevia, and monk fruit sweetener and is the perfect topping for your favorite pre-made or homemade cold brew. This is your sign to stop spending money on Starbucks and start making it yourself using whole, clean ingredients.
Hero ingredient: A little vanilla goes a long way.
Get the recipe for Cinnamon Vanilla Coconut Cream Cold Brew.
Easy Lavender Rose Cold Brew from Brewing Happiness
Why we love it: If you’ve ever ordered and loved a rose latte, this is a must-try. Instead of adding flavor to the drink with a topping, this easy cold brew recipe steeps flavor directly into the brew with tea bags. It’s just one extra step that makes all the difference. The lavender and rose tea bags add the perfect, springy freshness that I crave during this time of year. It’s also totally Instagram-able.
Hero ingredient: Has to be rose, I suppose.
Get the recipe for Easy Lavender Rose Cold Brew.
Vanilla Chai Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew from Half-Baked Harvest
Why we love it: Don’t @ me for suggesting a pumpkin-flavored drink in spring. While some of you might be burnt out on PSLs from fall, this girl could drink/eat pumpkin all year long. This recipe is also ice-cold, so by default it has to be a spring/summer drink, right? Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew was my go-to drink order for a while, but this vanilla chai rendition is over-the-top good. Don’t let the vanilla chai syrup intimidate you either. If I can do it, so can you.
Hero ingredient: Chai and pumpkin are a match made in coffee heaven.
Get the recipe for Vanilla Chai Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.
Starbucks Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew Copycat from Coffee at Three
Why we love it: Does anyone else have a French press sitting around that goes unused, jealous of your regular coffee maker? Well, this easy cold brew recipe gives your French press its moment in the spotlight. I never knew you could make cold foam in a French press, but it takes the place of shaking the ingredients in a jar (i.e., it saves you from a serious arm workout). Plus, the sea salt caramel flavor in this recipe simply can’t be beat. It’s sweet, savory, and stunning.
Hero ingredient: Did you know salt minimizes the bitterness in coffee and highlights everything else?
Get the recipe for Starbucks Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew Copycat.
Honey Almond Milk Cold Brew from Creators of Coffee
Why we love it: As far as easy cold brew recipes go, this one might give you the most flavor for the least effort. You simply add some honey that’s been liquified with hot water to your favorite homemade or bottled cold brew and top with almond milk. A delicious, refreshing way to start your day without adding 20 minutes to your morning routine.
Hero ingredient: Honey, honey, how you thrill me.
Get the recipe for Honey Almond Milk Cold Brew.
Cold Brew With Cinnamon Oatmilk Foam from CoffeeSphere
Why we love it: This is another simply made, simply delicious cold brew recipe. Minus the vanilla syrup, it’s the exact method that I use every morning. Did you know that cinnamon is anti-viral, can support gut health, and may lower your blood sugar? It’s an ideal way to add both flavor and nutrients to your morning cup of coffee, hot or cold.
Hero ingredient: Once you froth cinnamon into your milk, you’ll never go back.
Get the recipe for Cold Brew With Cinnamon Oatmilk Foam.
Creamy Cold Brew Smoothie from Minimalist Baker
Why we love it: Make this easy cold brew smoothie in advance for those mornings when you have to roll out of bed and head out the door. It has a frozen banana and coconut milk ice cubes for added creaminess and flavor. The maple syrup and cacao powder also make me feel like I’m sipping on a chocolate-coffee milkshake for breakfast, which is obviously a dream. I like to add protein powder to make it more of a hearty drink, too.
Hero ingredient: The addition of my fave fruit makes this smoothie banana-crazy-creamy.
Get the recipe for Creamy Cold Brew Smoothie.
Cinnamon Mocha Cold Brew from Alice & Lois
Why we love it: I first dipped my toe into the world of coffee with chocolate mochas, and to this day, they make my mouth water. I mean, who doesn’t love a bit of chocolate in their coffee? This simple cold brew recipe has all the flavor of a traditional mocha without the trip to a coffee shop. It calls for half and half, but I like to sub for oat milk so it’s a little easier on my stomach.
Hero ingredient: Chocolate syrup–every adult’s childhood dream.
Get the recipe for Cinnamon Mocha Cold Brew.
Cold Brew Martini from Iowa Girl Eats
Why we love it: While I don’t recommend this first thing in the morning, I couldn’t NOT share this recipe for a cold brew martini. Perfect for any girls’ night or nightcap, this cocktail is three ingredients, delicious, and fun. Just don’t forget to top it off with three whole coffee beans for good luck!
Hero ingredient: I’m not sure you can call vodka a hero, but it’s definitely just as strong.
Get the recipe for Cold Brew Martini.
BONUS: Vietnamese Coffee Granita
Why we love it: This recipe might just be the most creative and delicious of all easy cold brew recipes. If you’ve ever had Vietnamese coffee, you know that it’s rich, decadent, and sweet. It’s a delicious treat, but can be a bit much to consume every day, which is what inspired Katie Wahlman to turn it into a dessert. She turned cold brew into fluffy ice crystals, topped with a homemade condensed coconut milk, giving you all the flavor of a Vietnamese coffee with a fun twist.
Hero ingredient: You’ll want to drizzle the condensed coconut milk on everything. Trust me.
Get the recipe for Vietnamese Coffee Granita.