Bottling Cold Brew Coffee: How To
Bottling cold brew coffee can be done many ways. Find out how to bottle safely and effectively to preserve flavor and freshness.
We are going to help you decide what the best method for bottling cold brew coffee is.
There are various reasons for why and how you would want to bottle your delicious cold brew.
These could be going on a picnic, sharing with friends, selling it, or preserving your concentrate in the fridge to make it last.
If you have a family that loves it as much as you do you can share it out into ready-to-go bottles for their on-the-go lifestyle.
What Is Cold Brew Coffee?
Cold brewed coffee is growing in popularity. You may find that a cup or two during one of those hot summer days, or even a warm winters day, will become your new favorite beverage.
The fact that cold brewed coffee pairs very well with so many other ingredients, such as:
and so on just makes it that much more enjoyable.
It’s also much healthier than a soda thanks to coffee’s richness in antioxidants and other micro-nutrients.
Cold brew coffee is simply coffee brewed using cold water or water at room temperature. Some of the same techniques employed to brew hot coffee are used to create a cold brew coffee.
The only difference is the temperature of the water and the brewing time.
The two main methods used to create a cold brew coffee are:
- Steeping or immersion brewing
- Slowly dripping cold water through the ground coffee
In both of these cases brewing is a slow process taking several hours or longer.
Home Bottling Cold Brew Coffee
The quality and freshness of the coffee beans or coffee grounds along with the process you use to make your cold brewed coffee will determine how well it tastes.
Additionally, how you choose to store your cold brew coffee will determine how long it remains fresh.
Storing the brew well means it will retain that delicious original flavor.
For most home brewers, there are essentially two cold brew bottling choices – plastic or glass.
Let’s find out how to bottle cold brew coffee successfully.
Bottles And Jars Available From Amazon
Plastic Bottles And Cold Brew
The abundance and cheapness of plastic make it an obvious choice. But plastic does present some problems that may make it unsuitable for storing your batch of cold brew coffee.
The pros and cons of plastic are:
- Cheaper than glass bottles
Cheap ingredients; simple and quick manufacturing; and mass production certainly make plastic containers cheaper than their glass counterparts.
- Doesn’t break
Plastic is flexible, yet durable which means it will not break as readily as glass.
- Chemical compounds
Many plastic containers, even those designed to store food and drink can contain chemical compounds, such as BPA. This can leach into the food and drink stored within.
- Acetaldehyde lining
Some plastic containers are lined with acetaldehyde. This can negatively affect the taste of your cold brewed coffee.
Plastic is semi-porous and will allow carbon dioxide (CO2) into the container. This will have a negative impact on the freshness of your cold brewed coffee.
Glass Bottles And Cold Brew
Glass may be more expensive and fragile than plastic.
However, the fact that it doesn’t contain any leachable chemicals and is non-porous makes it the preferred storage container for your cold brewed coffee.
Like plastic containers above let us look at some of the pros and cons for glass containers:
- Chemical free
Free from chemicals such as polycarbonate, phthalate, and BPA that can lead to leaching. This makes it healthier to use for all types of drinks.
- Fridge friendly
Glass doesn’t insulate, so your contents are going to get colder quicker in the fridge.
However, it is not a good idea to place glass containers in a deep freezer. They are susceptible to cracking or breaking.
- No linings
Glass containers do not have any interior linings that can negatively affect the taste of your cold brew coffee.
Glass is non-porous so, if sealed, no CO2 can enter the glass container. This keeps your cold brew coffee fresher for longer.
- More expensive and fragile
- Glass is breakable and more expensive than plastic.
Different Ways to Bottle With Glass
How long you intend to store your cold brew coffee in the fridge will determine what type of glass container you will need to use.
Glass containers that can be sealed are what you will want to use if you need to keep your cold brew coffee fresh for a long while. These types of glass containers are thus best if you have made a batch of cold brewed coffee concentrate.
Have you have brewed a small batch of cold brew coffee for consumption over the next 24 to 48 hours?
You can safely refrigerate it using an unsealed glass container.
Almost any glass container can be suitable.
For glass containers that can be sealed with a lid or top, you can use:
- mason jars
- cleaned jam jars
- sauce bottles
- or jars
In fact, glass bottles of almost any description.
For glass containers that are unsealed, you can use your:
- French Press
- glass jugs
- or carafes
How Long Does Bottled Cold Brew Last?
Whether you refrigerate your cold brew coffee or concentrate in plastic or glass it is not going to stay fresh indefinitely.
Many of the stores purchased brands of cold brew coffee will keep for as long as 180 days. But you must remember that these will have added preservatives.
If you are one of those who do not appreciate these added chemicals, then the following is a simple guideline to how long you can expect your batch of cold brew coffee to remain fresh:
Plain Cold Brew
Most people will brew a batch of cold brew coffee concentrate that they will refrigerate, dilute, and drink from over a period of time before brewing the next batch.
If this concentrate is refrigerated in a sealed glass container(s) it will safely stay fresh for up to two weeks.
If refrigerated in an open glass container, such as a jug or pitcher, then it should safely stay fresh for up to three or four days.
Considering the fact that cold brew coffee concentrate is created in fairly large quantities, the best course of action is to refrigerate it in either a single or multiple glass containers that can be sealed with a lid or screw top.
This will keep the brew fresh for almost 2 weeks – if it lasts that long of course!
Cold Brew And Dairy Mixes
Cold brew coffee concentrate (created using a coffee to water ratio of 1:7 or 1:8) needs to be diluted before consumption. Therefore, one would never add any kind of dairy to a batch of coffee concentrate.
If you have created your cold brew coffee using the golden coffee to water ratio of either 1:15 or 1:17 you can add either milk or cream during refrigeration.
You do need to remember that dairy will not stay fresh for as long as the coffee will.
Plan on consuming your coffee and dairy mix within two to three days.
How To Sterilise Cold Brew Bottles
If you plan on enjoying a cup of cold brewed coffee on a regular basis you will need to brew a batch of concentrate regularly. This will obviously mean re-using the glass containers to refrigerate your coffee concentrate.
If you store or refrigerate prepared foodstuffs or beverages you need to sterilize your containers between uses. This, likewise, applies to your batches of cold brew coffee.
Sterilization between uses ensures that any bacteria, yeasts, or fungi that may be present do not contaminate the next batch of contents.
Bacterial growth and contamination are inevitable during storage or refrigeration. Re-using storage containers without cleaning and sterilizing first will only result in your next batch spoiling more quickly than you would like.
Some foodstuffs are more prone to spoiling than others and dairy is one of those. If you enjoy your cold brew coffee mixed with either milk or cream, sterilization becomes even more important.
Let’s see how you can safely store your cold brew bottled.
Methods Of Sterilization In The Home
Sterilizing those glass containers at home is a quick and simple process.
The brewing time for cold brew coffee can be 12 hours or more. It is a good idea to plan your sterilizing to coincide with the completion of the brewing process.
Traditionally, sterilization at home is done in one of three ways:
The Oven Method
This is the oldest and most trusted method of sterilizing glass containers.
It is the more time-consuming method and you will need to begin the process about an hour or two before the brewing process is completed. This allows for the cooling down of the containers.
- Preheat your oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit or 130 degrees Celsius. Do not heat it any higher as the glass containers might break.
- Put down a double layer of newspaper on each oven shelf, except for the oven floor. If you are doing this using a gas oven make sure the newspapers are kept well away from any open flame.
- Arrange your glass containers evenly on the layers of the newspaper. Make sure that they are not touching. Leave to sterilize for 20 minutes.
- Using oven mitts, remove the glass containers and place on a heatproof surface. Allow them to cool to room temperature. Never place cold food or beverages into a hot glass container or visa versa as the glass may break.
The Dishwasher Method
This method is good for sterilization if you have a high-temperature setting or a steam dishwasher.
- Program a single cycle for the minimum rinse time that your dishwasher provides.
- Once again allow time for the glass containers to cool to room temperature.
The Microwave Method
The quickest method for sterilization.
- Wash and clean your glass containers manually in the sink and while still a little wet place them in your microwave. Remember to remove the metal lids.
- Microwave for 30 to 45 seconds depending on the size of your cold brew coffee bottles.
Secrets to Bottling Cold Brew
Now you know all about bottling cold brew coffee and how to make it last without losing any flavor.
We hope you are now ready to start brewing and bottling coffee confidently.