The Absolute Easiest Way To Make Iced Coffee

Iced coffee is growing in popularity. In 2020, it was one of GrubHub's top five delivery items, reports Food Service Director. At Starbucks, cold drinks are dominating recent sales, reports Delish. In fact, Gen Z has officially canceled hot coffee altogether, according to Metro UK. Social media influencers sport the drink as a lifestyle accessory, making iced coffee more desirable for their followers (via Bean & Bean). Whether the drink is in branded to-go cups or dewy mason jars, people want to be seen with an iced coffee in hand.

The drink's wide acclaim may be because iced coffee tastes more palatable for first-time coffee drinkers. Chris Bode of Unorthodox Roasters told Metro UK that iced coffee is sweeter than hot coffee since its acidity fades as it cools. Iced coffee's more accessible flavor profile could tempt those who usually shy away from coffee's taste. Furthermore, many consider iced coffee a low-sugar alternative to the cold sodas and energy drinks they rely on to keep them energized and awake (per Bean & Bean).

Iced coffee is commonly purchased at cafes or on the go to soothe the morning commute, ease errands, or accompany a self-care walk. That said, it's easy to save some money and make excellent-tasting iced coffee at home.

Brew your iced coffee the night before

When making iced coffee, the most important thing is to plan ahead. Take the extra time to brew and refrigerate the coffee the night before you drink it. This simple step can mean the difference between a strong, flavor-rich iced coffee and a watered-down disappointment, explains Takeya.

Making and cooling the coffee ahead of time ensures that you'll preserve the drink's flavors by not immediately melting the ice when you pour it into a glass. To do so, use a heat-safe container to store the coffee. Co-founder of Starbucks Jerry Baldwin suggests brewing your coffee extra strong. A more potent brew will compensate for the flavor lost when the ice melts (per The Atlantic).

Another way to avoid a watered-down flavor is to make ice cubes from brewed coffee to keep your drink cool. Bustle recommends making creamer or milk-alternative ice cubes. The key to superb at-home iced coffee is to compromise as little flavor as possible as the drink warms. Beyond that, you can drink it as is or add everyday pantry items such as cinnamon, maple syrup, or vanilla for a flavor boost.