This coffee concentrate just might change your life. It makes a potent coffee-flavored liquid that can be creatively mixed with many things–hot water, milk and sugar, pancakes, brownies, smoothies, or whipped cream–to give them all that coffee zing. Of course, it also makes a smooth-flavored cuppa joe.
I have tried it out on friends and neighbors–even non-coffee types–and it’s has never failed. The best part, though, is its simplicity.
You only need two ingredients to make coffee concentrate: coffee and water. See below for recipes that can be made with the finished product.
Step one: Buy 1 pound of coffee.
Make sure the coffee is decent because you’re going to taste the flavor in the final product–good or bad. Also, grind it fresh at the store before using it and make it a coarse grind. The finer the grind, the more mess you have to deal with.
Step two: Measure water
You’ll need 8-10 cups cold water, depending on your strength preferences. Try to filter the water if possible. It is, after all, the main ingredient and you want it to taste clean.
Step three: Mix.
Pour the coffee into a large bowl (with a lid). Slowly pour the water over the coffee, making sure to saturate all the beans. Close the lid and set aside.
Step four: Wait.
This is the hardest step, but you have to let the coffee brew for 10-12 hours. Resist the urge to move on to step five sooner.
Step five: Strain the coffee concentrate.
Now you have coffee concentrate…all you have to do is separate it from the coffee grounds. I recommend using a strainer lined with a coffee filter. Get a second large bowl and slowly pour (or scoop) the coffee sludge into a filter-lined strainer over the second bowl. It will take a few minutes to get it all strained, and you will have to swap out the filter 2-3 times as it clogs, but the end result is magical and cheap.
If you’re rich and impatient, you can buy a Toddy cold brewer here, that makes the straining part easier (but less exciting). I recommend trying it once the home-baked way just to say you did.
Step six: Refrigerate.
Put the strained concentrate into a seal-able bottle/jar and into the fridge. It will stay fresh for a solid 2 weeks when refrigerated.
Step seven: Enjoy.
Here are some basic coffee concentrate recipes to try. Feel free to experiment.
Hot Coffee: Mix one part concentrate with three parts hot water. Serve.
Creamy Iced Coffee: Mix one part concentrate with two parts milk and one part water over ice. Add sugar. Serve. This is the perfect drink for people who don’t love coffee.
Iced Irish Coffee: Mix one part concentrate and one part Bailey’s over ice. Swerve.
Coffee Pancakes: Put an ounce or two of concentrate, along with chocolate chips, into your favorite pancake batter. Cook and serve.
Coffee Heaven: My personal favorite involves pouring a shot of concentrate over a healthy scoop of chocolate ice cream. Top with fresh raspberries and serve. There is nothing more enjoyable than coffee and chocolate.
Coffee Smoothie: Blend one shot concentrate with two scoops ice cream (chocolate or vanilla) and iced cubes. Add frozen fruit, cinnamon, or rum, if you like.
Coffee Whip: Beat an ounce of concentrate into some heavy whipping cream. Use the coffee whip to top your favorite pies or even a coffee smoothie.
Coffee Ice Cubes: Mix one part concentrate with two parts cold water. Freeze the resulting mixture in an ice cube tray. Use the coffee ice cubes in your morning iced coffee.