How to Make Iced Coffee Without a Coffee Maker: The Complete Guide

make iced coffee without coffee maker

Having a long day and need to awaken your brain cells? There’s nothing better than a cup of iced coffee, especially in the hot summer months. But what if you don’t have access to a coffee maker? Can you make iced coffee without a coffee maker?

Of course, you can! In this article, we’ll go over exactly how to make iced coffee without a coffee maker. It might take longer than traditional brewing, but you’ll end up with a delicious cup of iced coffee when you’re done. If you decide to make cold brew, you’ll end with a stronger coffee than traditional brewing too!

Let’s get into it.

Iced Coffee vs. Cold Brewed Coffee

Iced coffee and cold brew coffee may sound like the same thing, but they aren’t. To begin with, the way each is prepared is different. Additionally, the coffee doesn’t taste the same.

Let’s take a look at the differences between the two to help you decide your preferred method.

Iced Coffee

In a rush? No need to give up your beloved cup of iced coffee. Iced coffee recipes have the advantage of being a delicious and quick fix to help satisfy your caffeine needs.

Author Note: Not only that, if you prefer your coffee strong and a bit bitter, then iced coffee is probably for you! It’s prepared using hot water, like regular hot coffee. The hot water reacts with the coffee, causing it to become a little bitter when cooled.

If you aren’t a fan of bitter coffee, you can add milk, sweetener, or flavor to your coffee. That way, you can cover the bitterness!

Cold-Brewed Coffee

A man pouring coffee in a jar with milk.

Cold-brewed coffee, as the name suggests, is prepared with cold water. This method gives the coffee a smooth and full-bodied taste. It allows the coffee to release its sweet components.

Additionally, cold-brewed coffee is less acidic, which makes it easier on the stomach.

How to Make Iced Coffee Without a Coffee Maker

There’s no one way to go about making your cup of iced coffee. Our taste buds aren’t all the same, so my perfect cup of java may not necessarily be yours.

In the section, we’ve included a simple iced coffee recipe, with a few delicious variations.

Step 1: Prepare What You Need

  • A tall glass
  • A long spoon
  • A pour-over or a strainer
  • A stovetop pot
  • 1 tablespoon ground or instant coffee
  • 4 ounces filter water
  • Ice
  • Milk or creamer (optional)
  • Sugar or sweeteners (optional)
  • Coffee flavor (optional)

Step 2: Prepare the Coffee

Some people love ground coffee, while others prefer instant coffee. Luckily, you can use either to prepare rich iced coffee.

Instant Coffee

Boil the water in an electric kettle or a stovetop pot till it reaches boiling point.

Add the instant coffee into a mug, pour the water over it, and stir well till it dissolves.

Ground Coffee

We like to use ”the golden ratio,” which is 2 tablespoons of coffee to 6 ounces of water to make the coffee. Follow those simple steps to prepare your coffee:

  • Place a pot filled with filtered water on the stove and bring it to a boil.
  • Add in the coffee grounds.
  • Turn off the stove and cover the pot for around 5 minutes.
  • Check that the grounds have settled in the bottom of the pot.
  • Pour the coffee into a glass. You can use a strainer to make sure none of the grounds is transferred to your drinking glass.

We’ll let you in on a couple of secrets to make your iced coffee even better:

  • Prepare the coffee stronger than you like it because when you add the ice, it’ll dilute the coffee.
  • Prepare the coffee shot-like; don’t add too much water. You’ll need to add around a third of what you’d add to a hot cup of coffee.
  • Let the coffee cool for as long as possible before moving on to the next step.

Step 3: Make the Iced Coffee

There are 3 ways by which you can go about this step.

Option 1: Start with the Ice

For this recipe, we prefer to use ice cubes. However, you can also use crushed ice. Fill an empty glass with your desired amount of ice.

Author Note: Pour the coffee you previously prepared over the ice. You may need to add some more water at this point. Finally, stir to mix well.

Option 2: Start with the Coffee

You can alternatively add the coffee first to the glass, then fill up the glass with ice. Again, here you may need to add filtered, room temperature water.

Option 3: Combine Steps 2 and 3 Using a Pour Over

Male hand holding a teapot pouring milk into a cup with iced coffee cubes, preparing an iced coffee

If you have a pour-over, then you can combine steps 2 and 3. Here’s what you’ll do.

  • Add the ice to the glass.
  • Place the pour-over or strainer in the glass.
  • Add the ground coffee in the pour-over or strainer.
  • Boil water, and let it cool for 30 to 60 seconds.
  • Carefully pour the water over the coffee in a circular motion; the coffee will seep through the pour-over, and the ice will cool it down.
  • Add room temperature filter water as preferred.

Tip: If you’re planning on adding milk or cream, make sure to leave enough room in the glass.

Step 4 (Optional): Add Milk or Cream

If you like a splash of white to your iced coffee, then now would be the time to do it. Add in the milk, be it heavy cream, skimmed milk, or even plant-based milk such as almond. After pouring the milk, make sure to stir till well mixed with the coffee.

Step 5 (Optional): Add Sweetener

Add your preferred sweetener and stir well until dissolved.

Step 6 (Optional): Add a Bit of Flavor

Caramel, vanilla, and chocolate are all yummy flavors that you can add to your iced coffee. There are even some more innovative and festive flavors that you can experiment with.

Author Note: Some options combine both; a sweetener and flavor. Do note, though, that some flavor syrup brands work better with hot beverages than cold ones. So, when you buy coffee flavor syrups, make sure you can use them in both types of drinks.

Step 7: Add More Ice

We found that more often than not, you’ll want to add in more ice after you’re done. Add the ice and stir the coffee for an even, smooth, and refreshingly cool flavor. You can skip this step if you don’t like too much ice, of course.

Cold Brew Coffee Recipe

Have some free time? You can prepare cold brew coffee ahead of time. Making cold-brewed coffee may take a bit longer than regular iced coffee, but the outcome is worth it.

Step 1: Prepare What You’ll Need

  • A Mason jar – a quart size will do
  • 1 cup ground coffee
  • 4 cups filter water
  • 1 coffee filter
  • A glass container with a lid for storing your cold brew
  • Ice
  • Milk or creamer (optional)
  • Sugar or sweeteners (optional)
  • Coffee flavor (optional)

Step 2: Prepare and Store the Cold Brew Coffee

Place the ground coffee in the Mason jar and add the water. The coffee to water ratio should be about 2 cups of water to every half cup of ground coffee. Stir well and leave for 12 to 24 hours in the fridge to chill and brew.

Step 3: Strain and Serve the Coffee

Using the coffee filter, pour the cold brew into the glass container. You can store and use your brew to make delicious iced coffee drinks for up to two weeks in the fridge.

Step 4: Repeat Steps 4 through 8 from the Iced Coffee Section

Since the coffee preparation process is the main difference between both recipes, the remaining steps are the same.

Things to Consider When Making Your Iced Coffee

Here are a few tips and tricks that can be useful when preparing your iced-coffee.

Choose the Right Coffee

Ice americano coffee in plastic glass from Asian style street cafe

The type of coffee bean and the roast affect how good your iced coffee will be. Using freshly ground, dark-roasted coffee beans, especially in cold-brewed coffee, will help enhance the flavor.

Use a Shock-Proof Coffee Glass

Adding hot and cold to the glass may cause it to break and shatter. So, it’s always safer to use a shockproof glass for your iced coffee.

Sweeten the Deal

If you like your coffee sweet or just want to add flavor, we recommend using a syrup or liquid sweetener. They tend to dissolve better when added to the cold coffee versus the powder or granulated variation.

Alternatively, you can make it yourself using your preferred sweetener. An additional perk is that you can store it for regular use.

Make Coffee Ice Cubes

Can you freeze iced coffee? Love iced coffee but don’t always have time to prepare it? Coffee ice cubes are the next best thing!

You can freeze iced coffee easily in a regular ice cube tray and pop them into a glass of water or milk to enjoy the delicious taste of cold-brewed coffee instantly!

Wrap Up

You don’t need to go to a coffee bar to enjoy your cold coffee beverage. You don’t even need to own a coffee machine! Making your favorite iced coffee is easy. Moreover, it requires just a few ingredients that anyone can have at home!

It’s a great way to make use of the health benefits of drinking coffee.

Stay caffeinated, friends!

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