How to Brew a Healthy Cup of Coffee: Cold Brew

If you’re reading this post, chances are you want to enjoy a cup of coffee without worrying about potential negative health effects. For more information on the potential risks and benefits of coffee, please read Is Coffee Healthy Or Not?

My preference for brewing a healthy cup of coffee is to use a process called “Cold Brew.” Cold Brewing coffee is exactly what the name implies: it involves brewing coffee without the use of heat. It is incredibly easy, but most of the instructions you find online make it sound very difficult. My goal with this post is to show you how simple it is to make a pot of Cold Brew coffee.

Cold Brew Coffee Benefits

The primary benefit of cold brewed coffee is that the coffee it creates has a very low acidity level. The low acidity is beneficial for anyone with digestive disorders or who is concerned about bone density or body alkalinity. Another benefit is the taste. Cold brewed coffee has a rich taste that I have not found in any other brewing process. More good news is that cold brewed coffee provides the same amount of caffeine as other brewing methods. Cold brewing also creates coffee that is lower in some of the harmful chemicals found in coffee. It also makes less of a mess, so it’s a win-win!

How to Make Cold Brewed Coffee

French Press Coffee Maker

Simple steps follow that explain how to brew a pot of cold brew coffee. To simplify the process, I recommend using a French press (see picture at right) or a cold brew system like the one shown at the bottom of this post. A standard French press holds 34 ounces, but there are larger ones which hold 50 ounces and more. French presses are typically used with hot water, but they are a dream come true when used to make cold brew coffee.

Cold Brew Coffee Instructions:

  1. Measure 5-7 tablespoons of ground organic coffee into a 34-ounce French press. (Use more or less coffee to suit your personal preference for strength. If you are not using a French press, you can make cold brew coffee in any glass or ceramic container.)
  2. Fill the French press half way with purified water. (At this stage, I like to add cinnamon, nutmeg or cayenne to liven up the taste of the coffee.)
  3. Blend the coffee and water well, then fill French press to top brew line with additional purified water.
  4. Allow to sit, or “brew,” for anywhere from five minutes to twelve hours. I know all the online instructions you’ve read insist it takes 12 hours to brew a pot of cold brew, but I’m here to tell you it does not. You can get a rich, full-bodied aromatic cup of cold brew coffee in as little as five minutes. Trust me!
  5. Strain (press), pour into a mug, add your favorite fixings, and drink. (If you are not using a French press, pour the coffee through several layers of cheesecloth or through a coffee filter to separate the coffee from the grounds.)
  6. If you prefer to drink it hot, heat the coffee briefly on the stove. (We don’t use a microwave.) 

*Standard cold brew instructions say the coffee must be allowed to brew for 12 hours. My brilliant husband discovered you get the same rich taste if the coffee is allowed to brew for as little as five minutes. This simplifies the task immensely!

That’s it! Have you tried cold brew? If not, please give it a try and let me know what you think. I look forward to hearing your responses!

Update: Since this article was posted, we’ve discovered a new “system” for cold brew that is wonderful. It simplifies the process and makes it even easier than using a French press. Click the pic below to view the Hario Cold Brew System. (It’s inexpensive, too!)

Hario Cold Brew System

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Dr. Pamela Reilly is a Naturopathic Physician dedicated to helping people improve their health and eliminate symptoms using natural, integrative methods. She has over 25 years of experience and has helped men, women and children improve their health using a holistic, client-centered focus. She sees clients in Indianapolis, does house calls, and also conducts consultations via Skype or telephone. Please feel free to contact her or visit her Consultations page for more information. Dr. Pamela speaks nationwide on a wide variety of health topics and welcomes speaking invitations.

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7 Responses to How to Brew a Healthy Cup of Coffee: Cold Brew

  1. Alexis says:

    excellent and timely article. Think I will try this with our French press. Thanks.

  2. Kathy says:

    GREAT information, I have to watch my acid intake. Can this brew be refrigerated and heated a cup at a time??

    • GWWR says:

      Yes it can! Many people brew one or more gallons at a time to refrigerate and use as needed. Enjoy! 🙂

      I actually have several clients who couldn’t drink coffee due to the acidity who are now able to drink a few cups daily.

  3. Lynn Daron says:

    Love this article… will be shopping for a new press!

  4. […] If you’d like to learn how to brew the healthiest coffee possible, please read my article, How to Brew a Healthy Cup of Coffee: Cold Brew. […]

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