Cold brew coffee is a delicious alternative to the hot stuff, not to mention perfectly suited for the warmer months of the year. However, it takes ages to brew properly and the pre-bottled cold brew at the grocery store can be wildly expensive.
While brewing cold coffee takes time, it’s not difficult. There are many different types of cold brew coffee makers that you can use at home, and most only require a few minutes of effort before letting the slow steeping work its magic. And then you’ll have a nice big pitcher of cold brew to last for days (or hours, maybe) at a fraction of the cost of the bottled stuff.
Here are five of the best cold brew coffee makers to bring into your home.
Takeya’s Deluxe cold brew maker is ideal for beginners due to the total lack of difficulty and hassle. This plastic pitcher comes with an infuser that holds the grounds and sits within the cold water, slowly bleeding out the coffee flavor. And then when you’re done brewing, you can simply pull it out and dump the grounds. It’s dishwasher safe, too.
You’ll only get about four servings from the one-quart bottle, but you can step up to a two-quart bottle if that doesn’t sound like quite enough. Just be gentle when washing the infuser, as the thin filter material can detach from the plastic with just a bit of pressure.
This is the cold brewer I use now after wearing out the Takeya model above. The Crave Cold Brew coffee maker has a more rustic look thanks to its large glass Ball jar design, but I love this brewer for two key reasons: it’s a huge two-quart jar that keeps me stocked with cold brew for more than a day or two, and the stainless steel filter is super durable.
Just pour some coffee into the filter, fill the bottle to the top with water, and give it 12-24 hours to give you a strong, delicious brew. It works like a charm.
You’ll typically pay more for OXO kitchen products, but you’re assured a quality product. That’s true again with this coffee maker, which costs more than most alternatives but produces excellent results.
Rather than keep the coffee grounds within a filter, the grounds sit directly within the water during brewing before they’re filtered out at the end. It’s a more elaborate setup that’ll take up additional space on your counter or in your fridge, but you’ll get a strong coffee concentrate for your hassle. Also, bonus: it kind of looks like a science experiment in your kitchen.
You don’t have to buy a dedicated cold brew coffee maker just for this single purpose. If you already have a French press around, then you can use that instead. Just follow the same process as making hot coffee, but pour in cold or room-temperature water and then let it sit for the better part of a day before straining.
If you don’t have one, then Secura’s French press coffee maker is an excellent option, with a 4.8-star rating from more than 10,000 Amazon customer reviews. It’s available in 17oz, 34oz, and 50oz models, so you can scale based on your expected needs.
Can’t live without nitro brew? If you’re serious about nitro cold brew and don’t mind investing for the pleasure of home-brewing it, then the Royal Brew nitro cold brew maker needs to be in your life right now.
This nitro keg—available in 64oz and 128oz versions—uses nitrogen cartridges to give you the same kind of rich, frothy results that you’ll get from your favorite coffee shop. It’s a pricier, more advanced brewer, but probably still cheaper over the long haul then spending an Honest Abe per cup at Starbucks or wherever.