Why is Cold Brew Coffee More Expensive Than Regular Coffee?

Jars of Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee is more expensive than regular coffee because of the time and effort needed in the preparation. You’ll also need a lot more coffee grounds to extract the perfect flavor profile.

Many people prefer making cold brew coffee because of the taste. It’s also unique in that it can be made at home without a specialized machine.

Let me explain why cold brew is pricey in a little more detail.

How To Make Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brewing is a method of steeping grinds in cold or room temperature filtered water for an extended period of time.

If you want to make your own cold brew at home, you’re going to need coarsely ground, mild to dark roast coffee.

Glass Jar of Cold Brew Coffee

There are two ways to do it:

  1. The slow way – The simplest way to make cold brew is to mix coarsely ground coffee beans in a French press with room temperature or cold water. Put the lid on and give it a good shake, then let it steep for 12-24 hours.
  2. The slower way – If you have more time, combine coarsely ground coffee in a gallon pitcher with room temperature or cold water. Stir the mixture well, then let it stand for 12-24 hours.

Once the long steep time is finished, pour the coffee through a cheesecloth and place it over a sink to drain.

Then, using your hands, roll it into a ball and twist to release the water easily and less messily.

Cold Brew Bean to Water Ratio

A coarse grind of 1:8 coffee to water will generally produce a delicious cold brew after around 24 hours at a coarse grind.

Another option is to make a stronger (cold brew concentrate) by using ratios ranging from 1 part coffee to 4 parts water up to 1 part coffee to 2 parts water.

Cup of Coffee Beans and a Glass Of Water

Once cold brewed, the coffee can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 14 days.

If you want cold brew that’s ready to drink right after steeping, use a 1:1 grind and add cold water before serving over ice.

The extra time and effort involved make cold brew more expensive than other brewing methods, but the seasoned cold brew drinker may not be too concerned about that.

Why Does Cold Brew Coffee Taste So Good?

Cold brew has a few distinct advantages over hot brewed coffee.

First, cold brewing produces less acidity than other methods. While that means the flavor is more muted, it also means you don’t have to add milk or sugar to tone down the taste.

Try cold brew instead of your regular cup to lessen acid reflux symptoms.

Pro Tip: To help in your quest to make the perfect cold brew make sure you know the difference between Arabica and Robusta Beans.

Second, cold brewing uses less acid. The next time you mix up a batch of regular iced coffee at home why not use cold brew instead of your regular hot brewed favorite?

That said, if you’re trying to cut back on acid why not start by switching to cold brew?

Cold Brew Vs Iced Coffee: What’s The Difference?

Cold brew is often confused with Iced Coffee. The only similarity between the two is perhaps that they are both consumed cold or chilled.

The main difference is in how they are made. I have described how cold brew is made above.

Iced coffee is made by brewing a hot batch of coffee then chilling it either by placing the hot coffee in a container to cool or by adding ice cubes.

This brewing process is a lot quicker and easier than it is to make cold brew.

Two Cups of Iced Coffee


Is Cold Brew Coffee Worth It?

The health benefits that come from drinking cold brews outweigh the costs.

It’s also important to remember that cold brew is not just another coffee drink, it’s an entirely different way of consuming coffee.

The way that cold brew is made and the process involved makes it more exclusive than coffee brewed by other methods.

So enthusiasts would definitely say it’s worth it.

If you’re not too fussed about how your next coffee fix is made, then stick to the usual run-of-the-mill coffee making methods.

Does cold brew have more caffeine than hot brewed coffee?

Anytime you brew coffee, when water is added to ground beans, the dry matter in the mixture absorbs some of the water.

This means that your final product will always have a certain amount of caffeine since the bean itself contains caffeine.

However, the caffeine content including brewed coffee and cold brew coffee is very similar.

Related: To see how Starbucks beverages measure up in terms of caffeine content, check out our guide – Which Starbucks Coffee Has the Most Caffeine?

Why Do Baristas Hate Cold Brew?

Coffee shops would love for you to think baristas hate making cold brew. Why?

Because they want you to buy their pre-made bottles of iced coffee, which are usually made with hot coffee poured over ice cubes.

Or, if they’re feeling generous, the shop will make your drink from freshly ground beans that are brewed hot then poured over ice.

You might think that’s just as good as cold brew, but there are a few drawbacks. For one thing, the taste of hot coffee becomes bitter when it is cooled down with ice cubes.

As said earlier, this makes iced coffee more acidic than cold brew.

And finally, if you prefer a smooth cold coffee drink, cold brew is definitely the way to go.

The next time you’re at a coffee shop and they offer to make your coffee “for here” or “hot”, be sure to ask for it cold brewed! And if they have never heard of this before, tell them about cold brew and why it’s worth it.

Delicious Cold Brewed Coffee

Why Does Cold Brew Taste Like Chocolate?

In addition to having less acidity, cold brew also has plenty of bitters.

This is why some people say it tastes like chocolate, as the same flavors are found in dark chocolate as well as coffee beans.

What’s even better about the flavor is that you don’t have to add sugar or milk to your cold brew if you don’t want to.

If you’re a chocolate lover, you’ve really got to try iced cold brew!

Are 8 Hours Enough For Cold Brew To Steep?

After the first 8 hours, the caffeine is absorbed into the water, and the more time it sits, the more flavor will be extracted from the ground coffee.

The flavors and distinct fruity or chocolate nuances only appear after the first 8 hours.

So you may leave your coffee to steep for as long as 24 hours, but not longer than that.

Should You Brew Your Cold Brew in The Fridge?

Yes, you can brew your cold brew in the fridge. However, you would have to steep for a minimum of 20 hours.

This is because the cold temperatures slow down the steeping process, which makes the flavors more difficult to extract.

This is why it’s important to make sure you always steep your cold brew long enough.

If you steep for 20 hours, then this will maximize all of the flavors that can be extracted from your coffee grounds!

Overall Impressions

As you can see there are many reasons why cold brew is more expensive than regular coffee.

Cold brew is more expensive than hot coffee because it requires a different brewing method and has lower acidity.

Even though iced coffee may seem like the same thing, there are many factors that make cold brew worth the higher price tag.

If you’re looking for an alternative to your usual cup of joe, give cold brew coffee a try!

Aside from health benefits, coffee lovers find that it just tastes better.

About The Author

Scroll to Top