Blues skies, sun-kissed days, and a cold, refreshing iced coffee? Could it get better? Yes! Today, we are sharing our tips for creating a fun, flavor-packed, personalized iced coffee. All of the below recommendations work equally well for iced, cold brewed, and chilled coffees. Brewing ratios for each brew method are different and can be found here.
Everyone who enjoys a sugary iced coffee knows that irksome moment when you realize all of the sugar has sunk to the bottom of the glass. In truth, sinkage is inevitable. Raw, white, Madagascar, refined — they all sink to the bottom of your cup and it’s not their fault, it’s just chemistry. Sugar needs heat to dissolve properly and unless you brew a hot coffee, add sugar, and let it chill (which we do not recommend) adding sugar granules directly to cold coffee is destined to disappoint. Thankfully, there is an easy solution to this pesky problem: simple syrups. Simple syrups are easy to make (for instructions, see the bottom of this blog entry), can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one month, and offer a host of flavor options. The classic simple sugar is made of sugar and water, and the classic is just the start of what you can do with a simple sugar. From extracts to real fruits and flowers, simple syrups are a flavor wonderland. Here are some of our favorite simple syrup and iced coffee combinations.
Beach day: Iced Sumatra Mandheling with coconut simple sugar
Paradise Island: Iced Guatemala Antigua with rose or hibiscus simple syrup
Summer in Provence: Iced French Roast with lavender simple syrup
Mint Mocha: Iced Belgian Chocolate with a mint mocha simple syrup (using mint and vanilla simple syrups)
Bonfire: Iced Funky Monkey coffee with banana simple syrup
If creating a simple syrup sounds like too much work, try swapping your sugar for maple syrup, honey, homemade coffee syrup, and / or natural commercial flavored coffee syrups.
Pro tip: After making your simple syrup, chill it for at least one hour before using it.
An ice cube upgrade? Flavored ice cubes are functional, versatile, and the best option if you plan to add ice cubes to your brewed cold brew or iced coffee. Coffee ice cubes chill your coffee without disrupting your grounds-to-water ratio, ensuring a cup with full extraction and rich flavor. Coffee ice cubes can be made with any coffee (including flavored coffees), chocolate, caramel, vanilla, and most other coffee-enhancing flavors. To learn more about making flavored coffee ice cubes, click here.
Another benefit of always having coffee ice cubes on hand is that they melt into iced coffee. All you need to do is drop your coffee ice cubes into a glass, add any sweetener and / or creamer, and wait for your cubes to begin to melt (usually 1-2 minutes).
The QB pick: An iced mocha made with chocolate-cream ice cubes.
Dairy, like ice cubes, can make or break an iced coffee or cold brew. Milk, which is naturally low in fat dilutes the coffee and weakens the mouthfeel. Cream, which is higher in fat, adds to a coffee’s mouthfeel but often overpowers the coffee’s natural flavors. Our solution? Sweet creams, sweetened condensed milk, non-dairy flavored milk, and (my personal favorite) chocolate milk and / or coffee milk. If this sounds appealing and you don’t enjoy milk in your coffee, top your masterpiece with a dollop of chilled flavored milk foam. Whipped cream and fun toppings such as coffee jello cubes, sprinkles, ice cream, and cookie crumbs are other festive, colorful ways to dress up your perfect iced coffee.
The QB pick: Black iced coffee topped with chocolate milk cold foam and a dollop of raspberry whipped cream.
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