Can You Heat Up Cold Brew Coffee?

Can you heat cold brew coffee? Yes, you can heat up cold brew coffee. Heating it up will cause the coffee to become more concentrated and less acidic.

Cold brew coffees are not meant to be drunk as they are cold all the time. Of course, you can drink it hot if you want.

Well, take out your cold brew coffee from the refrigerator. Heat it or add some hot boiled water to it. This cup of joe will be smoother and sweeter.

Can You Heat Up Cold Brew Coffee?

Yes, you can. The name cold brew misleads us to think that you cannot heat up the cold brew. Also, it is a familiar concept that it should serve as cold all the time. But you can do otherwise, as we’ve mentioned already.

Unlike hot coffee, cold brew coffee is more concentrated and less acidic in taste. So, if you it heat up, you will experience a whole new taste that generally lacks in hot coffees. Diluting with hot water does not change the flavor so much in this case.

How? Here’s The Explanation…

Cold brew coffees get brewed with regular or cold water. It takes 12-18 hours to brew the drink. Cold brew coffees are generally very concentrated coffee because of this very long brewing time. It’s served by adding a little bit of cold or room-temperature water to tone down the strength sometimes. A cold brew is not an iced coffee though. Iced coffee is a whole different preparation style.

It is pretty easy to warm up your cold brew. Since the concentrate of the cold brew has high caffeine content, it dilutes into cold water before serving. The taste of the concentrated cold brew does not change at all if you make it warm. There are 3 popular ways to heat up cold brew coffee.

  • Add hot water
  • Stovetop heating up process
  • Warm it in the microwave

Adding Hot Water

The simplest and most popular way to heat up the cold brew is by adding hot water. Note that this method is only applicable to cold brew concentrate only. Do not put it over boiled water, or you will burn your coffee. Burnt coffee leads to a bitter taste.

Take the concentrated cold brew coffee in a cup or a mug. Then, heat up the water near the boiling point. Now add hot water into your cup as much as you like. Stir the coffee mixture well and serve. You can add sugar, cream, chocolates, and syrups if you prefer.

Stovetop Heating Up Process

You can use stoves to heat up your cold brew coffee that is ready already. By the way, you can use stoves to make warm both the cold brew coffee and the cold brew concentrate.

Take the cold brew coffee into a pan. Add water if you need more liquid. Now, adjust the heat to the medium-low range. Remove your pan before your coffee boils out. Pour it into the mug and serve.

Warm It In The Microwave

Using a microwave to warm up coffee is another idea. If your cold brew is not concentrating, then it is the best way to heat up. Use a microwave mug to heat up your cold-brew coffee. It is for safety. Otherwise, any unwanted situation may occur.

Put the mug with cold brew coffee into the microwave. Heat up the coffee for 30 seconds or a little more. Do not boil else it will get burnt and become bitter.

How To Reheat Coffee

Many people are embarrassed to ask this question. They also think it is silly at the same time. But no, it’s not (it’s your safe space)! Nothing is silly when you show the desire to know something new!!

There are lots of processes to heat up coffee and liquids. But all are not the perfect way to heat up coffee. We will describe two methods depending on the coffee you have.

Concentrated Coffee

If you have concentrated brewed coffee, then follow the below steps.

  • Take a cup or mug out of the cupholder
  • Pour the amount of concentrated coffee into your cup. Remember, the concentrated coffee-to-water ratio should be 1:4
  • Now, take off the kettle before the water starts boiling. Pour about 3 units of hot water into the cup
  • Stir the coffee well, and it is ready to serve
  • Add other milk, chocolates, and other ingredients. Enjoy your drink as you want

Ready Liquid Coffee

If your coffee does not concentrate, then do not go for adding hot water to it. Follow the below steps for your ready liquid coffee.

  • Take a pan from your kitchen
  • Place it on the stove and pour ready your coffee into the pan
  • Lower your flame so that the process is slowed down. It will help your coffee not to burn. Obviously, it takes some time to warm up. So, be patient!
  • Remove your pan from the stove as soon as your coffee is warm well enough
  • Pour it into the mug and enjoy your sip

Difference Between Cold Brew And Iced Coffee

For most drinkers, both cold brew and iced coffee are the same. No, they’re not at all, to be honest.

An iced coffee is freshly brewed hot coffee that gets served with ice. A cold brew is where coffee grounds steep in cold water overnight before serving.

Their commonality is that both these coffees are served as cold drinks. Sometimes, you may find cold brew drinks at room temperature. Let us show you the differences in the tabular format below.

TopicCold BrewIced Coffee
Brewing ProcessSteeping for longSteeping for short
Brewing Time12-18 Hours4-5 minutes maximum
Served AsColdCold
Mixed WithIce or WaterIce
Other ingredientsMilk and ChocolateIngredients suited to coffee

Cold Brew

The cold brew drink is named after its brewing process. It steeps for a lengthy period and needs 12-18 hours (overnight) of brew time and is kept in the refrigerator. It usually serves as cold with regular water or cold.

You require a dark roast to taste a better cold brew. And, the medium-coarse grind size is mandatory for this brew. Otherwise, it provides a bitter taste in long steeping. The dark roast contains less acid in the coffee beans. When you use this ground in the cold brew for 12 hours, every component extracts from the coffee grounds. But, the extraction is not that much bitter and acidic as hot coffee drinks (if done correctly). The cold water does not bring out the bitterness as hot water does. So, cold brews are mild and sweeter than regular coffee drinks.

You can use French Press, and coffee drippers to make Cold Brews.

Iced Coffee

Unlike cold brew, iced coffee is not that much complicated. For iced coffee, you can use any coffee drink. That means there is no specific brewing process for it. You can use Espresso, Chemex, cup brewers, French Press, or any method. Even grind size and roasting profile may vary.

It takes only 1-5 minutes to brew iced coffee. You may serve iced coffee with ice, cold water, cold milk, and any sweeteners. Other than cold brew, the taste is less sweet in its original form.

Tips And Cautions

Tips For Cold Brew Coffees

  • Choose your favorite coffee beans
  • Roasting profile: medium-dark to dark
  • Grind size: coarser
  • Water quality: filtered water
  • Water to coffee ration: 1:8
  • Brewing time: 12-24 hours
  • Storage: Refrigerator
  • Coffee brewer: French Press, Cup brewers, Aeropress, or others

If you miss one of the above points, it may change your cold brew dramatically. And, it is enough to ruin your mood for the day.

Cautions For Heating Up Cold Brew Coffees

Remember the below points when heating up cold brew coffee.

  • Do not add boiled water to the cold coffee. It may burn the coffee out
  • Do not warm the coffee in high heat when you use a stove to warm it. High heat will burn your coffee
  • Do not put concentrated cold brew coffee into the pan without adding water
  • Do not put the coffee pan over the stove for a long time. Remove it as soon as the coffee is warm enough
  • If you use a microwave oven, then do not put coffee for more than 2 minutes. But, mind that your heat will be in the low range


Does heating up cold brew coffee make it acidic?

No, not at all. Heating up cold brew coffee does not make it acidic. Due to the brewing process of cold brew, it contains a less acidic portion. Because the cold water does not extract the full bitterness and acidity as hot water does. Among 40+ chemical components, heating up may change 2-3 chemical components. Relax; it is not a big deal to worry.

What happens when you heat cold brew coffee?

When you heat the Cold Brew, it gets warmed up. It does not affect the taste in a significant number. Only 2-3 chemical components may change among 40+ chemical components. Nothing severe or harmful does happen during the heating up.

Can you warm up Starbucks cold coffee?

Yes, you can warm up Starbucks cold coffee. Use a microwave oven to reheat or warm up your favorite coffee. Do not go more than 1 to 2 minutes while reheating in the microwave. You can use a stove if you do not have a microwave. Then use a pan and low heat your stove. Wait until the coffee is hot enough to drink.

What is the best ratio for cold brew coffee?

The best ratio for served cold brew is 1:8. It means 1 unit amount of coffee and 8 unit amount of water. There is another strong form which is cold brew concentrate. Use 4 unit amount of water instead of 8 unit amount of water. So, the ratio of cold brew concentrate is 1:4.

Is it OK to heat up day-old coffee?

Yes, it is okay to heat up your one-day-old cold coffee. You can store your cold brew coffee for a week long. But, you have to put it into the refrigerator right after you finish brewing. If you do not store it in the refrigerator and passed one day, then test it first. Whether the taste and smell are still good or not. If the flavor or taste ruins, then it is not right to drink it.


Since you came to the last of this article, you already know everything. So, you do not ask again that can you heat up cold brew coffee. Follow our instructions and steps while you heat up the cold brew coffee. And, our tips can make your life easy. Also, check out the cautions to prevent any unwanted things happens. So, warm up your cold brew coffee and enjoy it when you need it.

Enjoy Your Coffee!

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