Every coffee lover agrees that a fresh cup of Joe is the best. However, there are different opinions regarding how this fresh java should be brewed.
Some even suggest that the coffee brew should be refrigerated during and after brewing. So how does that work? Let’s find out!
Should Coffee Brew be Refrigerated During and After Brewing?
People like their coffee in different ways. Some like it hot, while some prefer cold brews. Many people have different ways of preparing a cold brew as well.
Cold brew can be made by refrigerating coffee during steeping or brewing it at room temperature. However, both processes produce different results.
Continue reading to understand the difference.
When you leave your coffee in the refrigerator, it takes more time to brew than it would outside.
Cold brew takes a long time and would require anywhere from 8 to 24 hours to prepare a good cup of coffee.
This involves the whole process of brewing in the refrigerator. Leave the brew in the fridge for a long time for a good-tasting coffee.
Coffee experts suggest leaving it in the fridge for a good 12 to 24 hours. The caffeine in the coffee beans dissolves in the coffee quite quickly.
The water soaks up all the caffeine in the coffee beans in 8 hours. However, the other properties might take some time.
Twenty-four hours are enough to let the coffee brew in the refrigerator and extract all the flavors that make up the rich and strong taste.
Cold brewing for more than 24 hours does not add any value and is, in fact, a waste of time.
If you are only just trying out cold brews, it will take some time to discover the duration that works well for you. The longer you steep, the stronger the coffee you will get.
You must also note that a cold brew always produces coffee that is milder in taste.
Brewing at Room Temperature
The steep is shorter when you brew at room temperature. However, it is not as fast as a regular brew with hot water.
It will take approximately 4 to 6 hours for the brewing process to finish. It takes this long for the water to extract and develop the flavors thoroughly.
This shows that brewing in the fridge takes quite a long time compared to brewing at room temperature.
Now you would need to figure out which one suits your needs. If you have time and find the mild flavors suitable for your taste, you can opt for the cold brew.
If you don’t have a long time and want to consume the coffee in the morning, you can leave the coffee to brew at room temperature at night and enjoy your java in the morning.
When you taste coffee made through both methods, you will notice that both taste slightly different. This is because the temperature and the time affect the flavors. It is also essential to note that the room temperature varies in every region. Hence, your brewing time will differ, and so will the taste based on the room temperature.
Another thing people are unaware of is how to store the brew once it is prepared. Let’s explore the answer to this concern.
Storing Your Cold Brew
Similar to the brewing methods, there are two ways to store your brew. You can either store it inside the refrigerator or keep it outside the fridge. Let’s explore both:
Storing in the Refrigerator
You will be able to keep your brew for a longer time if you keep it in the fridge.
That is enough reason for you to keep it in the fridge since it provides easy access, and you can have a cup of coffee whenever you want.
You can keep your cold brew in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. If multiple people are drinking from this batch or if you regularly consume coffee, you will quickly finish the stored coffee within this time.
If not, try making enough that you will be able to finish in a week’s time. It is essential to remember that your brew will not taste the same all week long.
It will start tasting differently by the 4th day. It is safe to consume, but the taste sure doesn’t match a freshly brewed cup of Joe.
It is better to only make enough that will not go to waste or last longer than four days. Smaller batches will ensure that you will consume coffee in time, and the taste will not go off.
Also, storing your coffee brew in the refrigerator is the best option for people who like to consume the cold brew chilled.
If you like having your coffee cold and brew it at room temperature, you will have to add ice to your coffee, but this will dilute the coffee further and alter the taste.
Keeping it in the fridge will ensure you have a flavorful cold drink that doesn’t need ice.
Storing Outside the Fridge
If you want your brew to last longer, then keeping it outside the fridge is not ideal at all. Without the cold temperature, it will be difficult for the coffee brew to last as long as the one in the refrigerator.
If the weather isn’t too warm, it might stay good for up to 2 days, after which the taste will be off and inedible.
If you prefer the taste and can consume it before it goes bad, you can indeed store it outside.
However, if you like having your coffee cold, we suggest storing it in the refrigerator so you can enjoy the taste without the coffee getting diluted by ice.
Keeping your coffee brew outside for a day is not an issue, especially if you drink coffee multiple times in a day and like it better at room temperature.
Many people like having a robust cold cup of coffee but do not like the watery taste that develops after adding ice.
If you feel the same way, you can freeze your cold brew in ice trays once it has finished brewing in the fridge.
This way, you will have a cold cup of Joe and won’t have to worry about the ice diluting the coffee, which means it will also be stronger.
Extending the Life of Your Cold Brew Longer than Two Weeks
Although fresh coffee is the best-tasting, many people do not have enough time to keep brewing new pots of coffee.
Hence, they prefer to prepare the brew in advance and simply have cold brews to save time while also enjoying the robust flavor.
There are ways to ensure your cold brew in the refrigerator lasts longer and also keeps its taste. Of course, the first thing to remember is to keep it in the refrigerator after brewing is done.
Your coffee brew will not last long if you keep it at room temperature outside the fridge.
A little trick that people who are always on the go religiously follow is to brew the quantity they need and will consume for the next two to three weeks.
The next thing you need to do is divide the entire brew into smaller portions and store them in several small air-tight containers.
Divide the portions according to days. For instance, if you have 2 cups of coffee daily, ensure that one small container has enough to last you all day or a maximum of two.
This way, you won’t have to open the other jars that can let out air, causing the rest of your coffee brew to go stale quickly.
This is also why you shouldn’t put the coffee brew in one big pot when storing it in the fridge because you will have to open it several times in the entire week.
As mentioned above, the coffee will lose its flavor if it sits too long in the fridge.
Small air-tight containers will ensure the taste remains intact, and you can enjoy your drink at a nice cool temperature.
Many people like taking their coffee out in portable containers so they can have freshly home-brewed coffee outdoors.
If you also prefer this, you can take out your cold brew coffee from the fridge, pour it into your portable container, and quickly consume it on the go.
The Final Takeaway
If you like having cold brew, leave your coffee in the fridge for the steeping process. Give it up to twenty-four hours to ensure that the water has extracted all the flavor.
Similarly, if you like to drink your coffee at room temperature, you can leave it to steep outside. It takes a good twelve hours to brew completely. Afterwards, you can store it in the fridge so it lasts longer.
Furthermore, you should always try to make smaller batches so you can enjoy your coffee fresh and it doesn’t go to waste.
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