Special Iced Coffee

iced coffee 1

In summer, a proper iced coffee is a beautiful thing. It can also be an expensive thing. Very often, it’s a necessary thing.

I wrote about cold-brewed coffee eons ago – the kind you make in a jar – which is smooth and not at all bitter, and intended to be used as an iced coffee concentrate. And then I came across a similar version on Food 52 that was sweetened as it brewed with dark brown sugar, and spiked with cinnamon. They call it magical coffee, contributed by someone who had it at her local coffee shop.

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I embraced the opportunity to use my instant-filter method, in which I mix up the water, coffee, sugar and cinnamon in a jar with a chopstick (or whatever), then cover it with a double layer piece of cheesecloth and screw on the ring. That way, it lives in the fridge and can be poured directly into a glass filled with ice, rather than rummaging around for a filter.

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The original recipe calls for a teaspoon of cinnamon, which I find too much – I add just a shake, which although I’d never think to add to my coffee at the coffee shop, adds a touch of warmth that goes well with the dark brown sugar and coffee and coldness. Give it a try – or leave it out.

iced coffee 2
Iced coffee 3

Add milk or cream to taste, and yes – it will make you, and anyone you’re with, very, very happy.

Special Iced Coffee


June 16, 2015


3 cups water

2/3 cup coarsely ground coffee

2 Tbsp. dark brown sugar (optional)

a pinch of cinnamon (optional)


1ice milk or cream, to taste

2Mix the water, coffee, brown sugar and cinnamon together in a jar, cover and refrigerate overnight.

3Pour through a filter or cheesecloth-lined sieve (or put a double thick square of cheesecloth over the jar and secure it with the ring) and use to make iced coffee: pour over ice, and add a big splash of milk or cream, to taste.


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20 comments on “Special Iced Coffee

  1. Wanda
    June 17, 2015 at 8:49 am

    Sounds so simple and delicious! Can’t wait to try it!

  2. Carol S-B
    June 17, 2015 at 1:38 pm

    Genius. Another great use for a mason jar. I love the ‘no filter’ thing (hah, it’s where I live).
    I’m thinking about leaving out the br. sugar, brewing cold coffee in a jar per your ratio, and pouring it over a glass of scooped vanilla ice cream.

  3. Emily
    June 17, 2015 at 1:57 pm

    While I’m a huge coffee fan I’ve never thought to venture into doing cold brews at home. I totally should though since they charge an arm and a leg at coffee shops to buy it! This looks so easy and so tasty!

  4. Jules @ WolfItDown
    June 17, 2015 at 2:47 pm

    Ah! This looks fantastic! And cold-brewed coffee? Clever 😀 I like the sound of its smoothness 🙂 Thanks for the recipe Julie! x

  5. Barb
    June 17, 2015 at 6:14 pm

    A couple or tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk instead of cream and sugar is also very good. (don’t hate me :))

  6. Lori
    June 21, 2015 at 9:30 am

    I love this! I made cold brew coffee last time we had some really hot days and I didn’t want hot coffee in the morning and was so pleased with the result.
    I really like cardamom in my coffee so I’m going to try that.

  7. Amy
    June 21, 2015 at 12:50 pm

    This is a great summer recipe, Julie! I made it this week and we added a touch of maple syrup–delicious, refreshing, and easy! Thanks for another winning recipe!

  8. Julie
    June 22, 2015 at 7:47 pm

    Sweetened condensed milk! Maple syrup! You guys are geniuses!!

  9. Stefanie
    June 23, 2015 at 7:22 am

    You are a genius!! I just spent far too long straining my cold brewed coffee from one jar into a second jar. This is fabulous!!

  10. Susan
    June 23, 2015 at 2:47 pm

    This is great ! Although I did cut down on the sugar as I tend to like things without sweeteners. Need to get some cheesecloth cause it takes too long using a coffee filter to strain it.

  11. Louis
    June 23, 2015 at 5:43 pm

    Reading your article about iced coffee brought back memories of my Dad who consumed vast quantities of iced coffee during the summer time. We live in the Southern U.S., so while we are big on iced tea, iced coffee is a more exotic drink to us. Made your recipe with just a dash of cinnamon as recommended. It was perfect and so are the memories of my Dad. A big thank you!

  12. Susan
    June 23, 2015 at 6:45 pm

    I made this today and oh my goodness, it was so delicious! I have to limit myself to one glass/day! Thank you for this wonderful recipe!

  13. Rachael from Vancouver
    June 26, 2015 at 3:12 pm

    I made this last night and had my first cup this morning – DELISH.
    Next time, I’ll cut the sugar to 1 tbsp – and I love the idea of cardamom!

    Thanks for sharing.

  14. Jenny
    July 2, 2015 at 10:45 pm

    Made this a few times since I saw the recipe. Love it SO much. Have to limit myself! Going to try the cardamom and condensed milk in it next. Thank you thank you!!

  15. Erin
    July 7, 2015 at 12:40 pm

    Julie!!!!!! This is fantastic!!!!! As a person who loves iced coffee year round, this made my year. I had tried making other recipes before, but this one is far superior to them all! It’s also better than any of the coffee shops in town. Thank you!!

  16. LISA
    July 25, 2015 at 3:35 am

    Thanks for sharing this post. I really want to make this iced coffee. It is really awesome. I already made so many varios coffee. Now I want to try this.

  17. potenzmittel zollfrei
    November 28, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    It’s great that you are getting ideas from this post
    as well as from our discussion made at this time.

  18. Brenda
    June 27, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    Could you cold brew the coffee in a bodum? Then you just press it when you are ready to drink it?

    • Julie
      June 27, 2017 at 8:55 pm

      Yes! that would be brilliant!

  19. Te
    June 8, 2019 at 8:53 am

    I had heard somewhere that a teaspoon of honey and cinnamon every day really helps arthritis but I can’t handle just eating it. I also know that during studies testing foods that affect blood sugar rise, it was discovered that cinnamon blocks that happening (get sugar rush if I eat sugar, even honey in morning – over production of insulin) Anyway (sorry about medical stuff) so I have been drinking my coffee in the morning with honey and cinnamon ever since and I love it. This is only anecdotal but interestingly enough, my arthritis has really settled down. And another note, buy organic cinnamon, as some cinnamon isn’t even the real thing. Your coffee looks delish – will definitely try it!

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