Cold brewed tea is a thing, and it's not just for hipsters. The premise of cold brewing is simple: you brew your tea using cold water instead of hot. This means you can make it any time, anywhere, using any type of tea that your little heart desires. So grab a glass mason jar or pitcher, your favorite loose leaf tea, and let's go!
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The cold brew method is different than making iced tea, which is made by brewing tea in hot water and pouring it over ice. I call this the standard method of making iced tea, and of course, keep doing that if you're pressed for time. But it's well worth your while to try cold brewing, at least once.
I have been making cold brewed teas every summer for several years now, and I prefer it to the brew-hot-and-chill standard method.
Here are 6 reasons why:
1. The cold brew process is idiot-proof.
You use the same measurements of tea as you would with traditionally brewed hot teas (typically a teaspoon per 6 – 8 ounce cup of water) so you don’t need to do any weighing or purchase any special measurement devices.
You can place the tea straight into a glass jar or bottle, or use your favorite strainer or infuser. (Check out your tea infuser options right here)
Fill the container with lukewarm or cool water, and allow it to infuse (the technical term for "let it sit") for several hours (or overnight) in the fridge. Lots of folks cold brew their tea overnight in the refrigerator and have a thermos full of good-to-go refreshing tea for the following day.
2. You don’t need fancy equipment.
A mason jar and a strainer are really all you need to make perfect tea. (Technically, you don't even need a strainer, if you don't mind getting the leaves stuck in your teeth.)
3. Cold brew teas are less likely to become bitter
If you accidentally over-brew hot tea, it can become undrinkable if you forget about it and let it steep too long. Hot water extracts the bitter compounds that turn so many people off of drinking tea. Those compounds take much longer to extract in cold water.
4. You're getting lots of antioxidants
The high concentration of antioxidants contained in certain teas are actually more stable when extracted in cold water. This means you get more of the stuff that helps fight disease and signs of aging.
5. You get more vitamin C in your cold brew tea
The vitamin C content of many teas is also more stable in cold brews. Vitamin C can be destroyed at high temperatures, but is retained when brewed in cool water. In the summertime, you really need to load up on vitamin C to protect your skin from sun damage. You might not care when you're 20, but you will totally kick yourself at 50 if you don't, so load up on the C.
6. Cold brewing produces some lovely flavors
The flavors in cold brew teas are more nuanced, complex, and full than with hot teas. The flavors slowly release into cool or cold water, giving you a fuller spectrum of both flavor and aroma. Cold brew enthusiasts use these words to describe the experience: "Mmmm", "yum", "fresh", and "ooooh".
Here are Loose Leaf's most popular cold brew teas:
- Blueberry Thrill - a sweet, fragrant blueberry-lavender black tea blend
- Moroccan Rose Mint - a refreshing minty green tea blend
- Cranberry Apple Tart - a bright, sweet & tangy caffeine-free tea
- I Heart Pomegranates - sweet, fruity, and popular with the whole family
- Peach Apricot - a juicy black tea with yummy notes of fresh peaches
- Tropical Vacation - refreshing white tea with orange and tropical flavors
Stay hydrated, and let us know your faves in the comments below!