14 Roasty’s Most Thirst-Quenching Cold Brew Coffee Recipes (2024)

How to Brew

There’s nothing wrong with letting the baristas at your local coffeehouse handle all of your Java-related needs, but sometimes it’s fun to whip up homemade coffee drinks, provided you have a good recipe to follow. That’s where Roasty comes in. This recipe round-up is for anyone who regularly cold brews coffee and wants to find fun ways to dress up their cup.

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By Starla Gatson

Last updated: November 28, 2022

So, you’ve accepted that hot coffee isn’t the only worthwhile option and hopped on the cold brew bandwagon — now what?

Why, you start experimenting with your cups of coffee, of course, and you use our favorite cold brew recipes to do it!

Our list of cold brew drinks spans several flavors, from sweet chocolate to crisp peppermint. So, no matter your personal preferences, we have no doubts that there’s something here that will hit the spot.

What Is Cold Brew vs. Iced Coffee?

First, know that iced coffee and cold brew aren’t the same. Yes, you serve both beverages over ice, but their brewing methods set them apart.

The iced coffee brewing process involves hot water. After it brews, the joe chills in the refrigerator before being served.

On the other hand, cold brew comes to be when coarse coffee grounds steep in room temperature or cold water for a few hours. The exact length of this brewing process depends on how strong you want the resulting joe to be.

Then, the brewer uses a filter — often a fine mesh sieve or piece of cheesecloth — to separate the used ground coffee beans from the cold brew concentrate. From there, the options for dressing up the cup of cold brew are almost endless.

You can go as plain as sipping it as-is or diluting it with water (which we highly recommend), or as fancy as using simple syrups, a splash of your milk of choice, and a dollop of fluffy whipped cream.

Roasty’s Cold Brew Coffee Recipe Round-Up

Below are some of our favorite cold brew-based drinks for you to try. So, fill a tall glass with ice, pull out your fresh cold brew, and start working your way through this list!


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Classic Cold Brew

In our humble opinion, one of the best things about making this kind of coffee is that there are multiple cold brew methods from which you can choose. Fortunately, we have a guide for them all.

Whether you use a mason jar or invest in a fancy drip-style brewer, the result is a smooth-tasting batch of flavorful coffee that hits the spot on its own or as a base in one of the recipes below.


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Simple Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew

A cold cup of water brings much-needed refreshment on a warm day, but it can't give you the same caffeinated pick-me-up cold brew could. Top it off with vanilla sweet cream, and you've got the perfect summer sip.

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Our Starbucks copycat vanilla sweet cream cold brew recipe is perfect for anyone who wants to make their morning routine a little sweeter. Plus, this coffee drink doesn't take very long to make. So, if you're looking for minimal effort and maximum satisfaction, this might be the right recipe.


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Starbucks Copycat Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew

We won't hold it against you if you visit your nearest Starbucks coffee shop almost every day in the fall to pick up a pumpkin cream cold brew. It's addictive and delicious!

However, what if we told you there was a way for you to get your pumpkin-flavored coffee fix from home, and save yourself a few bucks? Our Starbucks-inspired pumpkin cream cold brew recipe is just the ticket!

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Our Favorite Maple Cold Foam Cold Brew

Since we just mentioned pumpkin cream cold brew, it's only fitting that we introduce you to more fall-flavored goodness via the maple cold foam cold brew recipe.

Strong coffee flavors join with the sweet taste of maple syrup and the creamy texture of your favorite milk to create a drink that reminds you of all of the autumn delights — falling leaves, bonfires, crisp air, etc.


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Copycat Starbucks Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew

Cold coffee lovers flocked to the salted caramel cream cold brew when it debuted on the Starbucks menu in 2018, and it isn't hard to understand why.

The combination of vanilla syrup, smooth cold brew, and salted caramel-flavored cold foam gives your taste buds something salty and sweet.

Our recipe provides the same flavor experience, but with one noteworthy caveat: you don't have to trek down to your local café to make it happen.


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Easy Copycat Starbucks Irish Cream Cold Brew

If your ideal cup of coffee sports noticeable sweetness, you'll love the Irish cream cold brew.

Though it's an alcohol-free java beverage, the Irish cream cold brew tastes like its namesake, Irish cream, a combination of Irish whiskey, cream, and added flavors like vanilla and chocolate.

You might have seen this beverage on the menu at Starbucks during its limited-time run; perhaps you even got to try one for yourself. If not, no worries; our copycat drink recipe mimics the real deal!


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Copycat Starbucks Toasted Coconut Cold Brew

Fewer flavors scream "summertime" as coconut does, and that's why we've deemed the toasted coconut cold brew the ultimate seasonal coffee drink.

Unfortunately, the beverage had a short run on the Starbucks Coffee menu. However, if you round up a bottle of toasted coconut syrup, coffee creamer, and a fresh batch of cold brew, you can make a homemade version that's just as satisfying.


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Nutella Cold Brew

You've had it on toast, pancakes, and strawberries — it was only a matter of time before Nutella made its way into your coffee cup.

Make a busy morning a little sweeter by serving yourself a Nutella cold brew. All you need is cold brew coffee, milk or coffee creamer, chocolate syrup, and a dollop of the beloved chocolate-hazelnut spread; a few minutes later, your sweet tooth will be satisfied.


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Homemade Peppermint Mocha Cold Brew

Just as the almighty PSL rules the fall season, the peppermint mocha is the unofficial favorite coffee drink of the winter months.

The beverage, made by mixing peppermint and chocolate into a latte, is a classic. Using a splash of smooth, rich cold brew instead of a shot of espresso is an easy way to experience this drink in all of its glory while keeping things cool.

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Peppermint Cold Brew

Enjoy the ultimate morning cup during the winter holiday season (or whenever the mood strikes) by spiking your cold brew with a bit of peppermint.

This festive flavor paired with robust coffee flavor and a splash of cold milk will surely put some pep in your step and get your day off to a good start!


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Easy Starbucks Copycat Chocolate Cream Cold Brew

Starbucks introduced the chocolate cream cold brew in the spring of 2022, and right away, we knew we had to come up with a copycat recipe. If we didn't, we'd end up in the drive-thru line every day, and those costs would start adding up quickly.

This cold brew coffee drink tastes like a chocolate milkshake or a handful of malted milk ball candies, courtesy of Starbucks's chocolate malt powder.

Our recipe doesn't use that ingredient, but no worries; it'll still give you and your sweet tooth the chocolatey pick-me-up you desire!


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Bone-Chilling Cold Brew

Nothing is scarier than busy mornings with no coffee involved. Fortunately, our bone-chilling cold brew recipe makes it so that never has to be the case.

Steep ground coffee beans (use a coarse grind for best results) in a few cups of water for at least 12 hours before filtering them out.

Then, pour coffee creamer or milk (you can use whatever you'd like, but we love almond milk and oat milk if you're looking for recommendations) into bone-shaped ice molds and let it harden.

Your spooky scary skeleton ice cubes pair perfectly with your cold brew, especially when you need something to help get you into the Halloween spirit.


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Nitro Cold Brew

When regular drip coffee or plain old cold brew won't suffice, spice things up with a cup of nitro cold brew instead.

This joe, infused with nitrogen, has a smooth texture and a foamy head — honestly, it looks more like something you'd buy from the pub downtown than your local café.

You'll need some special equipment to make nitrogen-infused cold brew, so be sure you read the supplies list carefully before setting out to make this java.


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Decaf Cold Brew

While it's not easy to find a coffee shop that doesn't serve cold brew nowadays, it's even harder to find one that offers a decaffeinated version. So, what are you to do? Suffer through caffeine-induced jitters? Of course not — you whip up some of your own!

Choose a bag of decaf beans, dial your coffee grinder to the coarse setting, and click over to our recipe; we'll explain the rest there.

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A Quick Cold Brew Q&A

What do you mix into cold brew coffee?

There is no one-size-fits-all magic coffee recipe you have to follow. You can mix cold brew with anything you want; what’s important is that you like what’s in your cup.

However, the most common cold brew add-ins are as follows:

  • Milk or coffee creamer: You can’t go wrong with pouring some creaminess into your cold-brewed joe, whether you use the ol’ reliable whole milk or experiment with different kinds of milk.
  • Flavored syrups: Your cold brew already has a delicious natural flavor if it comes from high-quality coffee beans, but sometimes adding extra flavors to your morning joe is fun. That’s where flavored coffee syrups come in. From classic flavors like vanilla or caramel to more unique selections like blueberry or raspberry, there’s a syrup for everyone.
  • Herbs and spices: Spice up your cup — literally! — with cinnamon, cloves, star anise, a sprig of mint, and more. The possibilities are almost endless here.
  • Sweeteners: For some, the ideal cup of coffee has a sweet edge that’s often courtesy of granulated sugar. While you can stir the stuff into a cup of cold brew, using a liquid sweetener like simple syrup, maple syrup, or honey is a better option here, as those dissolve into cold liquids more easily than granules.
  • Water: Cold brew coffee concentrate is often strong in flavor and caffeine content, so some people dilute it with water before serving it. There is no one-size-fits-all cold brew concentrate-to-water ratio — it varies based on individual coffee drinkers’ preferences. However, mixing equal amounts of each is a common practice and a solid starting point for experimenting with dilution.

What is the best way to make a cold brew?

We prefer an immersion method for making cold brew, like leaving the coffee grounds to steep in an airtight container for a few hours before filtering them out with a mesh strainer or cheesecloth.

Immersion brewing produces smooth coffee with a balanced flavor profile and low acidity. Plus, it’s easy!

Do you want to know more about this rich, delicious coffee? Click here for brewing tips!

How long should I let cold brew steep?

To make a cold brew, let coarse ground coffee beans steep at room temperature or cold water for 12 to 24 hours.

If you let the coffee steep for less than this, you’ll end up with weak, under-extracted joe; leave it longer, though, and the result is a cup full of bitter flavor — so disappointing.

What kind of coffee should you use for cold brew?

We’re so glad you asked! We rounded up what we’ve deemed the best beans for use in your cold brew coffee maker just for you.

Our buying guide is pretty diverse, highlighting several of our favorite brands of coffee and giving suggestions that span different roast levels. Don’t worry if you don’t have a coffee grinder; we also threw in some pre-ground coffee options.

So, regardless of their preferences and brewing habits, we think all our fellow coffee geeks can find something there that they’ll like.

Cool Off with Cold Brew

We won’t deny that some days, hot coffee hits the spot. But when you need to cool off, put some cold-brewed coffee on ice and use one of the above recipes to give it an upgrade. You’d be surprised how many combinations of milk, flavored syrup, and spices you can put in your cup.

After trying all of our cold brew coffee recipes, check out our blended, frozen coffee recipe round-up for more chilled, caffeinated fun.

Happy Caffeinating!

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14 Roasty’s Most Thirst-Quenching Cold Brew Coffee Recipes (2024)


What is the ratio of coffee grounds to water for cold brew? ›

A ratio of 1:8 of coffee to water will produce a nice coffee ready to drink after around 24 hours at a coarse grind. Another option is to create a much stronger cold brew (named cold brew concentrate), by using a ratio anywhere from 1 part coffee to 4 parts water, up to around 1 part coffee to 2 parts water.

Can you use regular ground coffee for cold brew? ›

A coarse grind size is ideal for cold brew — similar what you'd use for a French press. The coarseness will allow water to evenly saturate the grounds for a nice even extraction. If the grounds are too fine, they tend to float together in a dense mass and won't be evenly saturated with water.

What is the best ratio for cold coffee? ›

Generally, we suggest aiming for a coffee ratio of 1 gram of coffee to 15-18 milliliters of water. To make it easier to read, we write this out as 1:15 to 1:18. Pro tip: 1 milliliter of water = 1 gram of water, so we'll just use 'grams' for simplicity's sake.

Which is stronger, cold brew or iced coffee? ›

Yes, cold brew does have more caffeine than a typical iced coffee. Due to its slow infusion, cold brew needs a higher ratio of coffee grains to water to achieve a full-flavored cup. The more coffee grains infused, the more potential caffeine to pull from.


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