Cold Brewed Coffee
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Why Is Cold Brew Coffee So Hot?

If you had to give up either coffee, wine or exercise, which would you choose?

This question always gets an interesting response from people all over and you might be surprised to know that I would actually give up wine before I’d give up coffee (clearly exercise is not an option). And I don’t even like vodka that much…but I simply could not live without coffee, espresso, lattes, cappuccino — whether they are iced or hot is irrelevant. They all make me happy.

Cold Brew Coffee

Why is Cold Brewed Coffee So Hot?

Today cold brewed coffees are showing up everywhere —  they seem to be almost as hip as microbreweries and boutique doughnut shops.  If it’s all just coffee beans and water, what the difference really? Does it have lower acidity? Is it better for you? More caffeine? I was looking to dig into the topic anyhow, even before Kill Cliff reached out to me.  Here’s a little brief summary of my scientific findings (thank you uncle google for your help here) and some fun details on an awesome giveaway!

Regular Brewed Coffee

This basic process we’re all familiar with involves involve pouring hot water (195 – 205F) over a bed of coffee grounds. In general, the recipe is about 2  tablespoons per 1 cup of hot water. After running hot water through and/or letting it sit for just a few minutes, the grounds are strained out and the hot coffee is ready for consumption. Hot coffee smells great and is known for strong, bitter flavor and acidity.

Cold Brewed Coffee

This more time consuming process requires much more patience and involves pouring room temperature water over a bed of coffee grounds. In general, the recipe is about 4 tablespoons per 1 cup of water. The mixture is then left to sit for hours, like hours…2-24+ in an airtight container before the grounds are removed from the water via French press or filter or both. Often, water is then added back before serving to dilute the dense, thick coffee. Cold brewed coffee is known for a less acidic, sweeter and smoother flavor.

How does the brewing process impact flavor?

The ingredients are the same, only the time, temperature and density differ. There is a lot of magic in the little bean and a ton of little compounds in there that the fancy folks call “coffee solubles.” These solubles all work at different temperatures and some are less “soluble” in cooler temperatures. That’s why cold brewed uses two times the coffee to start with.

Because I’m not a coffee scientist nor you I think you want a full chemistry lesson here either, we’ll keep this simple. Based on my research,  it seems that the strong, aromatic, acidic coffee solubles are extracted only under high heat. That’s why a little patience and cold water can pull out smoother and sweeter compounds and the cold pressed coffee is not quite as bitter and is known for being less acidic. For this reason, cold pressed coffees are more frequently served sans sweetener and can also save you a few calories.

What is “Iced” Coffee

I felt like I should clarify this one here just in case there was anybody wondering. Cold brewed coffee and iced coffee are not the same thing. If a coffee is “iced,” most likely it was prepared using traditional brewing with a slightly higher coffee to water ratio and then cooled or chilled and served over ice. When it’s chilled over ice is a debatable topic, but best case is drip by drop when brewing like the Japanese method as it’s easier to cool the coffee and prevents it from becoming overly diluted. Iced coffee should still taste like traditional coffee as it’s  brewed under the same high heat and the same coffee solubles…are well…soluble.

In my case, it’s not so fancy and would be scoffed at by coffee snobs as I save all my un-dranken coffee-pot-coffee in the fridge in a jar with some vanilla almond milk and cinnamon and use as “iced” coffee in the afternoons. This would be overly “oxidized” and may offend some people. Sorry if you’re one of them but I happen to like it and I simply hate wasting stuff. Either way, it’s delicious on a warm day and much quicker to produce than cold brewed coffee.

What about the caffeine content?

The caffein content between traditional brew, cold brew and iced coffee would be 100% contingent on the coffee to water ratio as the caffeine extraction is not affected by time or temperature.

Kill Cliff Cold Brewed Coffee Review

I am in love with this product. It’s delicious. Maybe it’s because I was on a caffeine freeze for the past six weeks because of the Ventura Marathon, but probably because it’s awesome. And the brand is hysterical, get this, it’s directly from the can:

Protect yourself from scalding hot coffee injuries by drinking Kill Cliff Cold Brew Coffee. Brewed with extra mojo and infused with fair trade hugs, our cold brew is the tenderest, tastiest coffee you’ve ever had.

There are three flavors, Epic Mojo, Mojo Rising and Sweet Mojo and they all rock. They are sweetened with erythritol and stevia which keeps them low calorie and somehow free from the weird stevia aftertaste.

Now that you know it takes 100x longer to cold brew coffee and two times the coffee beans, maybe the larger price tag makes more sense too? Learn more about the brand here or stock up on product here. Use discount code “EATDRINK15” for 15% off your entire order. They also have a subscription service where you can save 10% and make sure your java-fix ends up at your door exactly when you need it. Connect with the brand on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest and use #KillCliffColdBrew to get their attention.

Cold Brew Coffee

Super awesome on the go! It came all the way to Santa Barbara for me for post race recovery.

I can’t wait to hear Coffee Confessions from the Caffine-Crazies out there. 

Cold Brewed Coffee

Coffee Brew Sources:

Thank you Kill Cliff for sponsoring today’s conversation!

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