If you’ve heard of cold brew but aren’t entirely sure how it’s different from iced coffee, then it may not be clear which one is the better option.
To help you with making that call, we’re going to take a look at what sets these two delicious beverages apart from one another.
That way, you’ll know what you’re getting when you order or make each one, and it will be easier to determine which you prefer more!
Read on and enjoy!
What Is Cold Brew?
Cold brew is a type of coffee that is made with water that isn’t hot.
Most of us are familiar with some of the standard ways in which coffee is made. Using hot water and sometimes pressure, the extraction doesn’t take long to occur.
That’s why many of these methods can take just a few minutes at most to finish brewing.
Meanwhile, cold brew can take up to a full day to be ready to drink because of the cooler water.
That said, many can also find that the cool water allows the beverage to be less acidic, and the longer brewing time maximizes extraction of flavor and caffeine.
Differences Between Cold Brew And Iced Coffee?
The concepts of cold brew and iced coffee can sound pretty similar if you haven’t taken a close look into them.
However, they really are different concepts.
To begin with, iced coffee is made through a standard brewing technique, like in a drip coffee maker. After that, it is cooled down before drinking.
On the other hand, cold brew only uses water that is room temperature or cooler, and the brewing process is much longer.
In addition, cold brew can be heated after it’s brewed, while typically iced coffee is cooled down because the drinker desires a cold coffee beverage.
Which Is Stronger?
There are a couple of things to note when you consider the strength differences between cold brew and iced coffee.
The first is the ratio of grounds to water used in each.
Because iced coffee uses a standard brewing method, it often also uses a ratio closer to what you’d use if you were just going to drink the coffee hot.
However, the ratio for cold brew is much higher, at about a cup of grounds to four cups of water.
The brewing period is also much longer, which allows for basic cold brew to contain more caffeine than iced coffee.
However, depending on how many other ingredients you add to each, the final beverage may be more similar in caffeine content.
If you use about the same amount for each one, then it’s likely that cold brew will still be able to offer more caffeine than iced coffee.
Is Cold Brew Better?
The answer to this is really going to depend upon your personal preferences and what you’re looking for.
After all, not everyone is looking for the same things from their coffee drinks!
If you want a solid caffeine boost, but in a colder variety than a hot cup of coffee, then cold brew is a great way to go.
Whether you order it from a coffee shop or buy some ready-to-go bottles, it is an easy beverage to enjoy. However, it can be a bit on the expensive side.
That said, it is relatively simple to make. Oftentimes, a French press coffee maker can be used in the process quite easily.
Iced coffee may not contain as much caffeine, but it is often quicker to make, less expensive and is highly convenient.
If you’re unsure, it can also be worth trying out both just to see which one has a flavor you prefer at a price you’re content paying. You can also take a deeper look at the differences between the two here!