This vanilla sweet cream cold brew coffee is a simple delicious iced coffee drink that can be made at home for way cheaper than Starbucks! It's super easy to prep on Sunday afternoon so that during the week you can make your morning coffee in 30 seconds flat!
What is Cold Brew Coffee?
Cold brew coffee is coffee that is brewed with cold water instead of hot water. Because of this, it must brew for significantly longer than hot coffee (typically 12-18 hours).
Cold brewing coffee yields a smoother, mellower tasting coffee that is much less acidic.
Cold brew coffee is also perfect for meal prepping! Make a big batch at the beginning of the week, and then your coffee is already made so you can sleep in for an extra 10 minutes.
This vanilla sweet cream cold brew is similar to the Starbucks version, but how similar it tastes will be mostly based on the type of coffee you use.
You just need a couple simple ingredients to make this vanilla sweet cream cold brew coffee!
Coffee - If you want, you can just buy pre-made cold brew coffee. But if you're making it yourself, be sure to use your favorite high-quality coffee beans for the best flavor! I recommend a medium roast.
Filtered Water - For the best tasting coffee, always use filtered water! If you're lucky and have great tasting tap water, good for you I'm jealous. But for the rest of us, I highly recommend always filtering your coffee water!!
Half & Half - I like using half & half for a super rich sweet cream. But you can use regular milk (or your favorite plant based milk) instead!
Simple Syrup - I always make my own vanilla simple syrup (using just sugar and water), but you can also buy pre-made simple syrup! You could also substitute honey or maple syrup. [To make simple syrup, combine ½ cup water and ½ cup granulated sugar in a pot over medium heat and stir until completely dissolved. Let cool to room temperature then store in the fridge.]
Vanilla Bean Paste - I love using vanilla bean paste because the flavor is more concentrated than vanilla extract! But you can use regular vanilla if that's all you have.
Coffee Ice Cubes - I love making coffee ice cubes for iced coffee so that when they melt, it doesn't water down your drink! I recommend using some of your cold brew and freezing in a silicone tray!
How to Make Vanilla Sweet Cream
Place the half & half, simple syrup, and vanilla bean paste into a mason jar. Seal and shake vigorously until fully combined. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
If you want to make a vanilla sweet cream foam, use a handheld frother and froth for about 15 seconds until light and foamy!
How to Make Cold Brew
Add the coarsely ground coffee beans and to a large pitcher or bowl filled with 4 cups filtered water and stir to combine. Seal and refrigerate for 12-18 hours. [If you have a French press or cold brew maker, even better!]
Line a mesh strainer with cheesecloth or coffee filters and place over a large cup or bowl. Pour the coffee through the strainer, then discard the grounds. (If using cheesecloth, you'll need to filter 2-3 times).
Store the cold brew coffee in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 10 days.
My preferred ratio is 1 cup of cold brew to 2 tablespoons of sweet cream, but you can use as little or as much as you want!
Pour the cold brew coffee over ice, then top with the vanilla sweet cream.
If you find the vanilla sweet cream cold brew to be too strong, dilute with a little filtered water
Cold Brew FAQ's
Technically no, but you really should. Filtered water just makes coffee taste SO much better! If you have a fancy sink that filters the water, then feel free to use tap water. But for the rest of us, I highly recommend using a Brita or other water filter, or just buying water that's already filtered.
If you are using the coffee filter method, regular ground coffee works fine. But if you're using a cold brew maker, French press, or cheesecloth you want to use a coarser grind because the filter isn't as fine.
Of course! Just substitute your favorite plant based plain creamer (nut pods is a great option).
You can store it in the fridge for up to 10 days! However, I find the flavor is best for the first 5-7 days.
While they are similar, they're technically different! Cold brew refers to coffee that has been brewed with cold water over a long period of time. Whereas iced coffee is when you pour regular hot brewed coffee over ice. They're both delicious, but cold brew coffee with have a smoother, mellower, less acidic flavor that iced coffee.
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Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew
Cold Brew Coffee
- 1 cup medium roast coffee, coarsely ground
- 4 cups filtered water
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste, optional
Vanilla Sweet Cream
- 1 cup half & half
- 2 tablespoons simple syrup, substitute honey or maple syrup
- 2 tablespoon vanilla bean paste, substitute vanilla extract
Cold Brew Coffee
- Add the coarsely ground coffee beans and to a large pitcher or bowl filled with 4 cups filtered water and stir to combine. Cover loosely and refrigerate for 12-18 hours. [If you have a French press or cold brew maker, even better!]
- Line a mesh strainer with cheesecloth or coffee filters and place over a large cup or bowl. Pour the coffee through the strainer, then discard the grounds. (If using cheesecloth, you'll need to filter 2-3 times).
- Store the cold brew coffee in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 10 days.
Vanilla Sweet Cream
- Place the half & half, simple syrup, and vanilla bean paste into a mason jar. Seal and shake vigorously until fully combined.
- Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- If you want to make a vanilla sweet cream foam, use a handheld frother and froth for about 15 seconds until light and foamy!
- My preferred ratio is 1 cup of cold brew to 2 tablespoons of sweet cream, but you can use as little or as much as you want!
- If you find the cold brew to be too strong, dilute with filtered water.
- Add ½ cup water and ½ cup granulated sugar to a small saucepan over medium heat.
- Stir until sugar is completely dissolved.
- Let cool completely to room temperature, then strain into a glass jar and seal tightly with a lid.
The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.