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Best Cold Brew Coffee Maker and Reviews

Cold brew coffee is all the rage and you have to go and get yourself some, but you are wondering what the best cold brew coffee maker is.

Cold brew is a lot more than just brewing over ice(though that’s perfectly fine coffee, too).

We happen to be cold brew experts, and here are reviews of the best cold brew coffee makers out there.

Top Rated Cold Brew Coffee Makers and Reviews

Cuisinart Automatic Cold Brew Coffee Machine (DCB-10)

Cuisinart DCB-10 Automatic Cold Brew Coffeemaker, Silver

Brewing system: Automatic

Capacity: 7 cups

The Cuisinart Automatic cold brew coffee maker is a pretty interesting take on cold brew because it cuts down the brewing time quite drastically from 12 hours to just 25 minutes.

At this point, you may be raising your eyebrows in doubt, but hear me out. It’s actually quite an interesting concept.

This automatic cold brew system works by spinning the coffee grounds filter in room temperature or cold water to speed up the brewing process without using heat.

Heat, as you know, is what extracts the bitter and acidic flavors from coffee. So by spinning the grounds at moderate speeds, the water gets to interact with the coffee grounds to extract enough flavor and produce the characteristically sweet tasting cold brew that we all love and enjoy.

You can choose three brew strengths: mild, medium, and bold. Each brew strength increases the time to prep by 10 minutes.

Once the brew is complete, the coffee drips through one more filter to get rid of any sediment that may have been left over.

Cuisinart recommends using 13 scoops of coffee grounds for 7 cups. This is closer to the typical drip coffee ratio rather than a cold brew ratio. They probably came up with this because the mechanical spinning helps extract enough flavor anyway.

Things we like

  • Quick brewing
  • Brew from 1 to 7 cups
  • Glass carafe can go into the fridge for storage

Things we don’t like

  • Purists may find brew method to be unorthodox

Toddy Cold Brew Coffee Maker

Toddy Cold Brew System, 1 EA, white - coffee maker

Brewing system: Immersion

Capacity: 1.5 liters

The Toddy Cold Brew Coffee Maker is one of the oldest cold brew coffee makers out there. It’s the brewer of choice for many households and even cafes, where they use the larger industrial version.

Overall, the Toddy system is incredibly simple. You get a brewing chamber, a glass decanter, paper filters, and two felt filters.

The unique thing about the Toddy cold brew system is the double filtration from the paper filters and the felt filter. The result is a very clean, clear cold brew.

To brew using the Toddy system, plug the bottom of the brew chamber with the silicone stopper and place the felt filter on top of it.

Fill coffee grounds and water in the filter and place it in the brew chamber. Then let it steep for 12 to 24 hours as you would any cold brew.

Once the time has elapsed, hold the brew chamber over the decanter and remove the silicone stopper. The water will filter through the felt and into the decanter.

Overall, the Toddy system just adds a tiny bit of convenience to the time-tested method of brewing cold brew coffee. It’s nothing mind-blowing or earth-shattering, but if you’d like specialized equipment for your cold brew, it’s worth picking up.

Toddy recommends making a concentrate with the brewer, but you can just as easily make regular cold brew using a smaller coffee to water ratio.

Things we like

  • Dual filtration means very clean coffee
  • Makes brewing cold brew convenient

Things we don’t like

  • Paper and felt filters are a recurring purchase, though you can get cloth filters

OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker

OXO Good Grips 32 Ounce Cold Brew Coffee Maker

Brewing system: Immersion

Capacity: 32 ounces

The OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker is another interesting take on a cold brew system. It’s essentially the same as the Toddy in principle, but the design is a little different.

The OXO Cold Brew Coffee Maker is essentially a stand with a top chamber where you add the coffee grounds and water. A filter sits at the bottom of the brew chamber.

After you add the coffee grounds, you add the shower cap and pour water through it. The shower ensures that the coffee grounds are wet evenly.

Once all the water is in, give it a little stir and cap it shut for 12 to 24 hours.

Once the time has elapsed, place the beaker below the stand and use the lever to release the coffee from the top chamber into the bottom chamber. It’s pretty straightforward.

As you can see, most cold brew systems aim for convenience more than revolutionary brewing. There’s only so much innovation you can do on a simple immersion brew!

Things we like

  • Showerhead helps evenly wet coffee grounds from the very start
  • Filtering is quite effective and produces a clean cup of coffee
  • Brew concentrate or straight cold brew

Things we don’t like

  • There is occasional leakage

Hario Mizudashi Glass Cold Brew Coffee Pitcher

Hario Mizudashi Cold Brew Coffee Pot, 1000 ml, Brown

Brewing system: Immersion

Capacity: 600ml/1 liter

The Hario Mizudashi is different from the other cold brew systems that we’ve seen so far in that it adopts a pitcher design. The entire pitcher is made of glass, which is a huge plus point. Glass does not absorb odors like plastic does, so you could even brew a cold brew, rinse the Hario out, and immediately make some iced tea.

The Hario has a mesh filter where you add coffee grounds, then fill the pitcher and place the filter inside.

Then it’s just a matter of letting it steep for 12 to 24 hours. Once the time has elapsed, you can remove the filter and you have a pitcher of cold brew ready to go. How cool is that(pun intended)!

The mesh filter is quite fine and if you grind your coffee beans coarse enough like you should, there should be no fines leaking into your coffee.

It’s also great to fit in the side door of a fridge once the brew is ready.

Things we like

  • Slim profile for easy storage
  • Glass construction for best flavor
  • Mesh filter is easy to clean

Things we don’t like

  • Can’t brew a concentrate

Filtron Large Cold Brew Coffee Maker

Filtron Cold Water Coffee Concentrate Brewer

Brewing system: Immersion

Capacity: 1.5 liters

The Filtron cold brew system is a large coffee maker great for making big batches of cold brew.

The system is essentially the same as the Toddy, but the Filtron is much more suited to big batches and it is also a lot more sturdy. The bottom carafe is also much stronger than the one you get with the Toddy.

You add water and coffee grounds to the top, and once the 12 to 24 hours have elapsed, you dispense the coffee through the filter into the glass carafe below.

What’s really unique about the Filtron is the 3 level filtering system. There is a paper filter, a wool filter, and also a steel filter that really helps produce a very clean cup of coffee in the end without any extra filtering.

Things we like

  • Very clean coffee
  • Great for concentrate or straight coffee
  • Contains everything you need

Things we don’t like

  • Kind of an eyesore

Nispira Cold Brew Dripper

Nispira Iced Coffee Cold Brew Drip Tower Coffee Maker Wooden, 6-8 cup

Brewing system: Drip

Capacity: Up to 7 cups

If you’re into a really retro look and want something that will be the centerpiece of your kitchen, the Nispira cold brew dripper is the choice for you.

Unlike the immersion brewers that we’ve seen so far, the Nispira is a true dripper, meaning drops of cold water will slowly fall on the coffee and percolate through, gradually extracting flavor as they go along.

The middle chamber holds the coffee grounds, the top chamber holds ice or water, and the bottom chamber holds the finished product.

A valve lets you control the speed at which the water drips onto the bed of coffee grounds below.

You can really use this dripper for any kind of infusions, not just coffee.

For what it’s worth, since this is a drip brewer, it will produce a slightly different kind of cold brew compared to the immersion brews we’re usually used to.

Things we like

  • Aesthetically beautiful
  • Makes a unique cup of cold brew

Things we don’t like

  • Difficult to assemble and clean
  • Delicate

Vinci Express Instant Cold Brew Coffee Maker

Vinci Express Cold Brew Electric Coffee Maker | Cold Brew in 5 Minutes, 4 Brew Strength Settings & Cleaning Cycle, Easy to Use & Clean, Glass Carafe, 1.1 Liter (37 Fl Ounces)

Brewing system: Instant

Capacity: 1 liter

You don’t normally hear the words cold brew and instant in the same sentence, but the Vinci Express Instant cold brew coffee maker is an attempt at cold brew coffee in a jiffy.

Instant is a bit of a misnomer, as the Vinci Express can actually brew a light strength coffee in 5 minutes, and each strength increment takes an additional 5 minutes.

In that sense, it’s quite similar to the Cuisinart electric cold brew maker we saw above, except the brewing system is a little different.

The Cuisinart brews by spinning the filter basked in the water. The Vinci Express actually circulates the water using a pump. The results are surprisingly good.

One thing to note is that these are rather unorthodox cold brew methods, and coffee purists may find the taste to be a little different that what you’d expect from regular cold brew.

Not necessarily worse, just a little different.

The main reason is that you’re changing the brew method, so even though you’re eliminating hot water, which is the main culprit for bitter and acidic flavors, you’re still agitating the coffee grounds more than you would otherwise.

Still, if you don’t mind the slightly different(again, not worse) flavor and value time over everything else, the Vinci is a good option.

Things we like

  • Multiple strength options
  • Store the brewer in the fridge and serve directly from it

Things we don’t like

  • Not necessarily “authentic” cold brew

Mason Jar Style Cold Brew Carafe and Dispenser(best for parties)

1 Gallon Cold Brew Coffee Maker with EXTRA-THICK Glass Carafe & Stainless Steel Mesh Filter - Premium Iced Coffee Maker, Cold Brew Pitcher & Tea Infuser - by Zulay Kitchen

Brewing system: Immersion

Capacity: 1 gallon

This cold brew coffee maker is excellent for hosting parties and settings where you want a lot of cold brew on the ready. With a huge 1 gallon capacity, you’ll be able to brew a giant batch of cold brew and store the entire jar in the fridge to keep it cool.

The brewer comes with a stainless steel filter basket that you add coffee grounds in, and you let it steep for 12 to 24 hours depending on your preference.

Once the brew is complete, remove the mesh filter and replace the stainless steel lid. You can now dispense cold brew from the tap and serve!

The jar is made of extra-thick glass which gives it both a really good look and increases the durability.

Things we like

  • Massive capacity
  • Built-in tap for dispensing
  • Can be used for iced tea as well

Things we don’t like

  • One gallon of coffee and a heavy jar means it will be very heavy when full

Types of cold brew coffee equipment

Now that you’ve seen our top rated cold brew coffee makers, it’s time to get into the technical details and nerd up on cold brew coffee!

Cold brew can be made using three methods, though the first of these is the “true” method and the others are improvisations.

Let’s learn about the different types of cold brew coffee makers below:

Immersion

Immersion brewing is classical cold brew. It relies on the slow, steady extraction of flavor compounds from coffee using cold water.

To ensure that the coffee is not over-extracted, immersion cold brews use very coarsely ground coffee, even more than french press. This makes sure the surface area is not too much to encourage over-extraction.

Over time, there is just enough interaction between the coffee grounds and water for a smooth, balanced cup.

Immersion brews typically take between 12 to 24 hours, and you can do immersion cold brews using cold water or room temperature water.

Automatic

Automatic cold brews are an innovation from coffee maker manufacturers trying to get in on the cold brew hypetrain. These still use cold or room temperature water, but compensate for the immersion time by utilizing movement.

Automatic brewers either circulate the water or spin the coffee grounds container to help the water interact with the grounds faster, extracting the flavor quicker.

The result is still a brew that’s comparatively smoother than hot brew, because the bitter and acidic compounds are actually extracted by heat more than anything else.

Still, the extra agitation does generate a little heat and the brew is not going to be quite as good as a true immersion brew.

Drip

Drip is also a classical brew but it leaves a lot of variables to the user and it’s a more difficult brew to master. The main variable to master in drip cold brew is the flow rate. Cold brew drippers have a little valve that lets you control how fast the water falls on the coffee grounds.

This is a critical factor and will take some experimentation to get it right.

Why cold brew coffee over iced coffee

After all this, if you’re still on the fence and thinking cold brew is just iced coffee, think again. Cold brew is much different than iced coffee!

Cold Brew Is Easy to make

Cold brew coffee is essentially set and forget. There is very little room for error when you just have to chuck some coffee grounds and water in a container and let it sit for 12 to 24 hours.

Iced coffee usually involves a drip coffee maker or making a hand poured ice coffee, where there is more technique involved.

Even then, because iced coffee is brewed hot and then cooled, the bitter and more intense flavors tend to seep through.

All you have to master with cold brew is the grind size, and if you have an electrical grinder, just use the coarsest setting to get this right.

Cold Brew Is Much smoother

Because the cold water does not extract unwanted compounds, the resulting coffee is much smoother and you can actually pick up the nuanced flavors.

In fact, a properly brewed cold brew takes like a fancy juice: you can actually pick up on the fruity and floral notes.

For best results, use a fruity/floral coffee. You can certainly use an earthy coffee as well, but cold brew tends to taste better with brighter, lighter roasts.

Easy on the stomach

Because the acidic compounds are not extracted in cold brewing, cold brew is much easier on the stomach. So if you find that hot coffee gives you heartburn, you should seriously consider switching to cold brew.

A little cheat you can do is actually make cold brew and then heat it up if you enjoy a warm drink in the morning.

Because you’re reheating an already brewed coffee, you’re not going to end up with any seepage of unwanted compounds into your coffee.

To further tame the kick, you can also add a splash of milk to your cold brew.

Related: can you heat cold brew?

Conclusion

For someone just getting started with cold brew, I recommend picking up any one of the immersion brewers that we’ve listed here. If you’re still on the fence and want something that’s tried and tested, go for the Toddy Cold Brewer. They’ve been in the business for years and really know their stuff.

Advanced cold brew experts may wish to up their game and pick up a drip brewer, and if you’re in a hurry and want a fast cold brew fix, the automatic brewers are also good options.

Last update on 2021-10-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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