Spring and cold brew basically go hand in hand. Over here at Best Products, it should come as no surprise that we are big cold brew fans. Now, with springy weather just around the corner, prime cold-brew coffee-drinking season is upon us.
Bolder in flavor and generally much less acidic in taste than traditional iced coffee (which is just hot-brewed coffee, chilled), cold-brew coffee is beyond delicious and one of our favorite beverages to sip in warmer weather.
Best Cold Brew Coffee Makers
Most Compact: OXO Compact Cold Brew Coffee Maker
Best Automatic Model: Cuisinart Automatic Cold Brew Coffee Maker
Best Pour Spout: KitchenAid Cold Brew Coffee Maker
Sleek Pick: Hario Mizudashi Cold Brew Coffee Pot
Best Carafe-Style Model: Takeya Cold Brew Coffee Maker
Best for Fridge-Door Storage: Primula Burke Cold Brew Coffee Maker
The Eco-Friendly Pick: Trade Cold Brew Bags
Cold-brew coffee is also trending in the spirits world, from cold-brew coffee-flavored liqueurs to buzzy alcohol-infused riffs. No matter how you prefer to imbibe, this bolder style of chilled coffee delivers on both caffeine and flavor.
By making your own cold brew in the comfort of your own kitchen, you'll be able to create a custom coffee batch brewed to the unique strength, flavor, and quantity that you desire. There are plenty of basic DIY recipes to make cold brew at home, but we discovered a few easy-to-use cold-brew coffee makers that streamline the whole process.
How We Tested
For this product test, we gathered feedback from our editors who were in the market for a cold-brew coffee maker to upgrade their home coffee setup (and save some sweet, sweet cash!) We included several traditional cold-brew coffee makers that soak coffee grounds overnight in filtered water to make cold brew, plus a few automatic cold-brew coffee maker models that set a default brewing time, strength, and quantity based on the user's preferences.
Our Testing Criteria
How long did each batch of cold brew take to brew?
How easy was this model to use?
How much space did this brewer model take up?
How did the cold brew taste? Were you able to adjust brew strength?
How many servings were you able to make for the week per brew session?
Per week, was brewing your own cold brew cheaper than buying cold brew at a coffee shop? How much money did you save?
Over 75 cups of cold brew, three full weeks of testing, and 20-plus hours of research later, here are the best cold-brew coffee makers for your daily caffeine kick.
Most Compact Model
For smaller kitchens or individuals looking to make up to 16 ounces of cold-brew coffee at a time, we recommend this petite OXO Compact Cold Brew Coffee Maker. We love the simplicity of this model, as the draining starts automatically once the brewer is placed on the carafe. The lid keeps coffee covered during the draining process, which means you can safely leave this model out on your countertop or coffee table in the morning as you wait for your delicious brew to finish filtering into the carafe.
At under $30, this OXO Compact Cold Brew Model is reasonably priced if you're on a budget, it's super intuitive and easy-to-use, and has a small footprint.
Tester: Jennifer Hussein
“This cold-brew maker was very easy to use! It’s super tiny, so very little space was taken up. This device is pretty simple so there isn’t a way to adjust brew strength, but there was no need to adjust it anyway. My cold brew came out perfectly strong and slightly sweet every time, and never tasted bitter or too intense. I wish the carafe were just a tad bigger so I could make more cold brew in one session! If there were just one more cup (it makes 4), this would be perfect for me.”
Best Automatic Model
For more avid caffeine drinkers, we recommend upgrading to a larger-capacity, automatic cold-brew coffee maker. This 10-cup model from Cuisinart takes up approximately as much space as a standard drip coffee maker and takes around 35 minutes to brew 10 cups.
One feature worth pointing out about the Cuisinart DCB-10 Automatic Cold Brew Coffee Maker: It has smart built-in settings to adjust the strength of each batch. The lighter brews take less time, while the bolder brews take a bit longer. We recommend using medium-coarse coffee grounds for brewing to get the optimum flavor out of each batch. Some reviewers found this brewer to be slightly noisy in a small apartment, so we recommend this model for larger homes or apartments. The carafe and lid are also dishwasher-safe, which helps minimize cleanup time.
Tester: David Monk
“This model doesn’t take up much more space than your standard coffee maker. I have limited counter space in my kitchen, but I easily found space for it. The cold brew was excellent. I used a finer ground coffee than I would have liked (thanks to limited supply at my grocery store due to the health situation), but I was still happy with the results.”
Best Pour Spout
We love the convenience of a pour spout at Best Products, and this KitchenAid model makes fueling up with cold brew quick, efficient, and simple. With its sleek, stainless steel finish and small footprint, this spout-style brewer fits easily into any standard-sized fridge. This coffee maker makes up to 28 ounces of coffee per batch (or up to 14 servings), which means you can add your coffee grounds and water to the carafe, let them steep overnight, and have cold brew at the ready via a pour spout for the entire week.
Hot tip: This cold-brew coffee maker can also be used to brew iced tea if you're having a few guests over for brunch or bringing a carafe to a picnic.
Tester: Caitlyn Fitzpatrick
“If you’re intimidated by making your own cold-brew coffee, the KitchenAid maker will show you just how easy it is. The directions are super clear on what you have to do, and it only takes a couple minutes to put it all together before it starts brewing. You can easily make your brew before bed, and wake up to coffee.”
If you're strapped for fridge space and on a tight budget, we recommend this top-selling, under-$30 sleek Hario Mizudashi Cold Brew Coffee Maker (which happens to be on sale right now). Although the base is compact, the carafe itself stands 11 inches tall, which means it requires extra vertical space in a standard fridge. Each batch brews up to 4 cups of coffee at once, and the parts are dishwasher-safe.
Setup for this particular model could not be more intuitive. Simply fill the liner to the top with coarsely ground coffee, slowly pour water over the grounds, and lightly stir. Although some reviewers let their grounds brew up to 24 hours, our testing found that 8-12 hours was the sweet spot for optimum flavor and strength.
Tester: Melanie Yates
“This model is incredibly easy to use. The only work involved is filling the reusable filter basket with coffee and then slowly filling up the 1,000-milliliter carafe with water. This takes about 10-15 minutes to do — you can’t really rush through the process. After filling, always at night, I’d pop the brew unit in the fridge and then take out the filter and used grounds in the morning. For the next week, I’d have delicious cold brew on hand whenever I’d want it. This cold-brew coffee maker is also very easy to hand wash. It’s a narrow carafe, but not so narrow that I need to use a bottle brush — my hand fits all the way in to clean with no problem.”
Best Carafe-Style Model
Each batch produces up to four servings of cold-brew coffee. Our tester loved the compact shape and size of this particular carafe, noting how seamlessly this unit fit into her refrigerator door. This model can also be used to brew big batches of loose leaf iced tea.
Tester: Erica Murphy
“This model is super easy to use. I would say it’s much easier than a regular coffee pot. It’s similar to a French press in that all you do is load in coffee grounds and let it steep overnight. It’s about the size of a small pitcher, so I didn’t think it took up too much space. It fit in both the door handle of my fridge and on the top shelf, so it didn’t inconvenience me to store it for a few days.”
Best for Fridge-Door Storage
The most affordable cold-brew coffee maker on this list, the Primula Burke has nearly 8,000 positive reviews on Amazon and costs less than $20. Similar to the other carafe-style brewers included in our list, the design of the Primula is simple and user-friendly, and all parts are dishwasher-friendly.
We appreciate its slightly larger 6-cup capacity carafe, which can easily provide a week's worth of cold brew if you brew on a Sunday night ahead of the workweek.
Tester: Latifah Miles
“After reading the included instructions, this cold-brew coffee maker was pretty easy to use. It fit perfectly in the space on the fridge door, so it didn’t take up too much space in my fridge. Also, the flavor was not the shockingly acidic taste that I find with most coffee-shop cold brews. It was strong, but smooth and pleasant.”
The Eco-Friendly Pick
Whether your goal is to be more eco-friendly or not add to your kitchen gadget collection, these cold brew bags from Trade Coffee Co. are perfect for the minimalist. They're basically just oversized steeping bags that users fill with coffee grounds and let steep in filtered water overnight. Trade recommends using 3 ounces of ground coffee per 24 quarts of room temperature filtered water, but we found closer to 3.5 ounces of coarsely ground coffee (any roast) produced the bolder-tasting cold-brew flavor we liked the most.
Most importantly, these plastic-free, corn-based fiber bags are better for the environment and commercially compostable. They are the perfect cold-brew coffee tool for sustainable households. Each pouch contains 20 fiber bags.
Affordable, sustainable, and easy-to-use, the only drawback we found with using these bags was that we had to supply our own carafe and other scooping tools. Filling these bags to make cold-brew coffee is ridiculously simple, easy, and eco-friendly.
Tester: Danielle St. Pierre
“These cold-brew bags are definitely ideal for single-serving cold brew for one person versus bigger batches of cold brew for a crowd. I easily got 3 cups of cold brew per carafe each morning after letting the coffee grounds steep overnight, but I wish the bags were just a bit bigger so I could double the yield (even for myself).”
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