Iced coffee tips and tricks

I enjoy my hot coffee in the morning. It’s invigorating; it’s delicious; but…it’s too dang hot in the already 90-degree weather down here in Florida. Iced coffee is the solution, but the recipe just never turns out right: the ice waters down the coffee; it’s weird to drink it out of a travel mug; a normal plastic cup will melt or give off toxins when pouring the hot coffee in over the ice; my cream-to-coffee ratio gets thrown off.

So I compiled some tips and tricks to make summer iced coffee more enjoyable for all of us:

Waste not, want not. Whenever you make a cup of hot joe, it always seems there’s leftover coffee in the carafe that get’s overly strong from sitting on the burner. From the moment the outdoors hits 80-degrees, start saving that “waste” coffee, because it’s strong enough to withstand some watery ice cubes. Plus, it’s cheaper and greener, too!

Tip 1: Keep a glass jug in the fridge to collect “waste” coffee over time.

Tip 2: Pour “waste coffee” into ice cube trays and make extra-strong coffee ice cubes. Play around with flavors by adding cream and sugar, vanilla extract, etc. to the cubes to add some ready-to-go pizazz to your morning chill-fest.

Random unrelated tip: Hate the burnt flavor? Brew extra strong coffee and chill overnight instead. But don’t throw out that waste! Add water to it and use it to water acid-loving plants such as African violets, impatiens and certain types of orchids. Click here for more info.

Use high-quality tumblers. If you’re going the ‘make hot coffee and pour it over ice’ route, buy high-quality tumblers such as Tervis Tumblers® that can withstand boiling hot water, aren’t breakable (in fact have a lifetime guarantee), and have straw-capable lids for properly sipping a cold brew. Their quality of plastic also means they are dishwasher safe, so you can get the coffee stains and smell out easily and repurpose them for margaritas by the pool.

Use a cocktail shaker. Never thought you could use your cocktail shaker at 7am? Well here’s your chance. If your iced coffee jug and ice cube trays are left empty on a hot day, make a pot of extra strong coffee and shake it with ice like you do your martinis before pouring it in your to-go cup.

Cold-brew from scratch. Thought you needed a cold brewer to make iced coffee legitimately? Think again! Try this recipe for cold-brewed coffee requiring nothing more than the materials you use for hot coffee plus a refrigerator. I suspect a French Press would be the easiest route to take for that process.

Any other tips for making a delicious cup of cold coffee? Post in the comments!

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About Chloe

I'm a writer, editor and constant student of living (and eating) better. I currently work as an HR communications specialist in downtown Minneapolis, MN, with my very non-writery husband and a gruff little Scottish Terrier named Ginny. View my professional portfolio at, or my linked in profile at

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