Best Grind Size for Cold Brew

Cold brew coffee has seen a meteoric rise in popularity over the years due to its smooth and rich taste. While several factors contribute to making the perfect cup of cold brew, one of the most important is the grind size of your beans – this determines how much flavor is extracted from each serving. This article will investigate various grind sizes commonly used for cold brew and explain their advantages and drawbacks. Whether you’re an experienced cold brewer or starting, this guide can help determine the best grind size for cold brew.

cold brew

What’s the Best Grind Size for Cold Brew?

Determining the ideal grind size for cold brew is a personal choice and depends on individual taste preferences. Generally, coarse grinding is recommended when crafting this beverage due to its slower extraction rate, which produces a smoother and less bitter finished product.

When grinding coffee grounds, aim for a consistency similar to coarse sea salt. This will maximize flavor extraction without producing an overly concentrated or murky beverage. If the grind size is too fine, it could lead to over-extraction and bitter or astringent tastes.

Overall, the ideal grind size for cold brew coffee produces a smooth and balanced cup of coffee. Experiment with different sizes to find what works best with your preferred brewing method.

How Much Coffee Do You Grind For Cold Brew?

coffee grinds

When making cold brew, the amount of coffee to grind depends on personal preference, desired strength and the size of the brewing container. As a general guideline, use either 1:4 or 1:5, meaning every part of coffee should be 4 or 5 parts water.

For instance, if you want to make cold brew with just 1 cup of coffee, use 4 to 5 cups of water. This would result in a potent concentrate that can then be diluted with water or milk before drinking, depending on your preference.

When measuring coffee, using a scale for accuracy is recommended. Use one ounce (28 grams) of ground coffee per 4 to 5 ounces (118 to 148 milliliters) of water as a starting point. Adding more or less coffee can adjust this amount according to your preferred strength.

Remember, the amount of coffee used depends on the grind size. For coarser grinds, you may need more coffee to achieve your desired strength; on the other hand, finer ones require slightly less coffee to prevent over-extraction. Experiment with different ratios and grind sizes until you find what works best for your palate.

Does Grind Size Affect Cold Brew?

Yes, the grind size does affect cold brew. In general, a coarser grind is recommended for cold brew coffee as it allows for a slower extraction process and helps to prevent over-extraction and bitterness. This is because the cold water used in the brewing process takes much longer to extract the flavors from the coffee beans compared to hot water, which requires a finer grind to achieve the desired taste.

Using a finer grind for cold brew can result in a bitter and over-extracted taste, while using a coarser grind can result in a weaker and under-extracted taste. Therefore, it is important to find the right grind size for your personal taste preferences and brewing method.

It is also worth noting that the ideal grind size for cold brew may vary depending on the brewing method used. For example, a French press may require a slightly finer grind than a drip coffee maker to achieve the desired taste. Ultimately, experimenting with different grind sizes and brewing methods is the best way to find the perfect cold brew for your taste.

Can I Oversteep Cold Brew?

Yes, you can oversteep cold brew. Cold brew coffee is typically steeped for a longer period of time than hot coffee, usually between 12 and 24 hours, to extract the desired flavors from the coffee beans. However, if the coffee is left to steep for too long, it can become over-extracted, resulting in a bitter and unpleasant taste.

Oversteeping can also cause the coffee to become more acidic, which can make it taste sour or unpleasant. Additionally, leaving the coffee to steep for too long can cause it to become darker in color and thicker in texture, which can also affect the taste.

To avoid oversteeping your cold brew, it is important to follow the recommended steeping time for your brewing method and adjust it based on personal taste preferences. It is also important to store the cold brew properly after steeping, as leaving it at room temperature or in direct sunlight can cause it to spoil more quickly.

What Happens if You Steep Cold Brew for a Week?

pouring cold brew

If you steep cold brew for a week, it can result in an over-extracted and unpleasant taste. According to an article by The Kitchn, “If you let your cold brew steep for too long, it will become bitter, acidic, and generally unpleasant to drink.” Source: The Kitchn

Additionally, oversteeping can also cause the coffee to become more acidic, which can make it taste sour or unpleasant. According to an article by Coffee Affection, “If you steep your cold brew for too long, the coffee can become more acidic and taste sour.” Source: Coffee Affection

It is recommended to steep cold brew for between 12 and 24 hours, depending on personal taste preferences and the brewing method used. Steeping cold brew for a week is not recommended as it can result in an over-extracted and unpleasant taste.


Finally, grind size is essential when producing a great-tasting cold brew. A coarse grind is usually recommended to prevent over-extraction and create an even flavor profile; however, personal preferences, the brewing method, and container size all play into deciding the best grind for cold brew coffee.

Using a scale when measuring coffee grounds accurately and maintaining an even water-to-coffee ratio is essential. Experiment with different grind sizes and ratios until you find the ideal balance for your taste buds.

By finding the ideal cold brew grind size and coffee-to-water ratio, you can create a delightful cold brew that is ideal for any time of day. Experience its rich taste with your chosen brewing method and grind size.