How to Make Iced Coffee at Home

Updated September 16, 2021

Pouring iced coffees at home using a Chemex

There is no better way to cool down quicker than with a delicious, refreshing, and energy-boosting iced coffee during a hot day. Making this crip and chilly energizer drink is simple, and you will not need any fancy equipment if you follow our easy step-by-step instructions.

We will show you an easy way to make iced coffee at home. You will also learn what exactly you need to look out for if you want to make that perfect iced coffee and avoid a watery and weak brew. If you ever tried to make iced coffee at home and you were not satisfied with the results, then this guide is perfect for you.

What Kind of Coffee Should I Use to Make Iced Coffee?

Any kind of coffee you like. Make sure to use freshly ground coffee beans to get the best-tasting coffee. The type of roast: light, medium, or dark roast, is up to your preferences.

Use a lighter roast, such as a Kenyan or a Honduran coffee, for fruitier and lighter notes and more caffeine. Alternatively, use a medium to darker roast such as a Colombian Supremo or coffee from the Antigua Valley of Guatemala if you prefer less acidity, more robust flavor, and lower caffeine levels.

How Should I Brew Iced Coffee?

Strength is of primary importance when making the perfect iced coffee. What many people tend to do at home is brew a regular strength coffee and pour it over ice cubes at the end. This practice is far from ideal because after melting the ice cubes, this will result in a watered-down and weak cup.

A better way to prepare iced coffee is to make your coffee stronger than the regular brew. Our recommended way to prepare iced coffee at home is by using a pour-over brewer, which could be either a Hario V60, Chemex, Kalita Wave, Melitta, or an OXO Brew.

How to Make Iced Coffee

Making iced coffee in a Chemex Pour-Over Glass Coffeemaker

Time: 10 minutes

Servings: 2 drinks

Equipment

  • A pour-over coffee brewer like a Hario V60 Ceramic Coffee Dripper, Chemex Pour-Over Glass Coffeemaker, Kalita Wave 185 Pour-Over Coffee Dripper, Melitta Pour-Over Coffee Cone Brewer, or an OXO Brew
  • Kettle
  • Kitchen scale
  • Timer
  • Spoon
  • 2 Tall glasses

Ingredients

  • 40 g coffee medium grind
  • 12 oz hot water, finished boiling
  • 300 g large ice cubes

Instructions

1. Add 250 g ice cubes to the mug. Save 50 g of ice cubes for step 7.

2. Fill your brewer with the coffee.

3. Start the timer and pour the first 4 oz of hot water over the coffee in about 30 seconds. Stir the grounds with a spoon. Make sure to wet all the grounds evenly.

4. After 1 minute, pour an additional 4 oz hot water over the wet coffee.

5. After 2 minutes, slowly pour the remaining 4 oz hot water over the coffee grounds.

6. Brew will stop dripping through coffee grounds after 5 minutes.

7. Serve your iced coffee in a tall glass, add remaining ice cubes as needed.

8. Enjoy plain or with cream, sugar, and flavored syrup!

Notes

We used a nearly even split between water and ice in our recipe, but you can adjust this according to your taste.

If you think that the iced coffee is too strong, just add some cold water to dilute it.

Always remember, brewing strong coffee is key to preparing a delicious iced coffee, and we do not want ice to dilute the drink.

How To Serve Iced Coffee?

Serving Iiced coffee in a tall glass

If you are preparing the iced coffee fresh, then serving it in a tall glass would be suitable.

Additionally, you could also serve it in a Yeti Tumbler or a similar stainless steel insulated mug to keep your coffee cold for 2 hours on those hot summer days and prevent dilution and preserve the original flavor longer.

When you are making a larger batch, then you can store it in any glass or jar you like; mason jars are a great way to keep your iced coffee fresh in the fridge.

The Perfect Coffee Ice Cubes

Coffee ice cubes in a glass and a pitcher full of half and half ready to be served.

Are you still following? Then you are really serious about taking your ice coffee game to the next level. So here is an extra tip for you: You can prepare your iced coffee using coffee ice cubes.

Now, the best way to make these is to brew coffee, then carefully pour it into an ice cube tray. Freeze it for at least 6 hours if you want to use it immediately; great. Otherwise, you might want to put a large Ziploc freezer bag around the tray to protect the cubes from any unwanted freezer flavors. There you have it; with our homemade coffee ice cubes, you can have a cool coffee drink without diluting it.

Add Cream, Sugar or Syrup (optional)

We like to add some grass-fed half and half for consistency and flavor, also do not forget that it is healthier than a coffee creamer. If you are using a sweetener, we leave this up to you.

A great way to further experiment with your iced coffee is to mix it with some kind of syrup. We would recommend using vanilla or cinnamon syrup, which goes well with iced coffee. This will flavor and sweeten your drink at the same time.

You could even add maple syrup or brown sugar syrup to indulge your taste buds. Or simply add chocolate syrup, which will then turn your iced coffee into a delicious iced mocha.

Summary

Now that you are a pro, you surely will not be missing waiting in line to pick up your iced coffee. With our proven tips, you can prepare your very own coffee-shop quality iced cuppa while experimenting with various roast strengths, the quantity of ice, using coffee ice cubes, and even adding some extra flavorings.  

Once you get the hang of it, you can even prepare a larger batch to enjoy it for a few days.

We hope you enjoyed our delicious iced coffee recipe!