Is cold brew coffee less acidic than hot brewed coffee?

Studies show that cold brew coffee may have a higher pH than hot brewed coffee. This means it could be less acidic. The beans used, how they’re processed, and their roast level affect coffee’s acidity too.

Cold brewing helps make coffee less bitter. Typically, the pH of cold brew falls between 5.10 and over 6. For comparison, espresso usually ranges from 4.9 to 6 in pH. The acidity levels can differ based on the coffee itself. Brewing coarse ground coffee in cold water over a long time lowers the drink’s perceived acidity.

Key Takeaways

  • Cold brew coffee is generally less acidic than hot brewed coffee
  • The slow steeping process used to make cold brew helps balance its acidity
  • The pH range of cold brew is typically higher than that of espresso
  • Brewing coarse ground coffee in cold water can help reduce the acidity of cold brew
  • Factors like bean type, processing, and roasting can also affect coffee acidity

Understanding Cold Brew Coffee

In recent years, cold brew coffee has become pretty popular. It’s a cool and tasty alternative to the usual hot coffee. Let’s find out what makes cold brew coffee special. We’ll look at how it’s made and what gives it its unique flavor.

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What is Cold Brew Coffee?

Cold brew coffee is basically iced coffee. You make it by steeping coarse ground coffee beans in cold or room temp water. This process takes 12 to 24 hours. The result is a coffee concentrate that’s less tangy and really smooth. It’s not like your regular hot coffee.

The Cold Brewing Process

To make cold brew coffee, you need to let it steep for a long time. Unlike hot brewing, which happens fast, this method is slow. The slow brewing keeps the coffee less bitter and acidic. It saves the good oils and sugars while brewing.

The coarse coffee beans get soaked in cold or room temp water for a while. Then, the grounds are filtered out. What’s left is a strong liquid coffee. You can mix this with more water or milk to get the flavor and strength you like.

Flavor Profile of Cold Brew Coffee

Making cold brew the slow way brings out a different taste. People say it’s smoother, more mellow, and less sour than hot coffee. This can be easier on the tummy. That’s why a lot of folks prefer it, especially if they find hot coffee too acidic.

Moreover, the cold brew concentrate has a bold, intense flavor. You can mix it with water, milk, or other stuff to make many fun drinks. Think iced coffee, nitro cold brew, and Japanese iced coffee.

cold brew coffee

Comparing Acidity Levels: Cold Brew vs. Hot Brewed Coffee

Coffee’s acidity can change based on many things. This includes where the beans come from, how they’re roasted, and how the coffee is made. Generally, beans roasted lightly and those from Latin America are more acidic.

Factors Affecting Coffee Acidity

Several things can affect how much acid is in coffee. The type of beans, where they’re grown, how they’re roasted, and the brewing method all play a part. Cold brew coffee is usually less sour than hot brewed coffee because it’s made differently.

Scientific Explanation for Lower Acidity in Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee is less sour thanks to its slow brewing process. It’s put in cold or room-temperature water for 12-24 hours. This way, it doesn’t pick up as much of the sour parts. So, it ends up smoother and softer in taste than hot brewed coffee.

Hot brewed coffee is made fast, by pouring hot water over the grounds. This quick brewing brings out more of the bean’s natural acids. That’s why it often tastes sharper and more sour.

Knowing what makes coffee acidic can guide people who love coffee. It helps them choose the best way to brew and the right beans. Whether it’s the soft taste of cold brew coffee or the strong, sour bite of hot brewed coffee.


In summary, cold brew coffee is usually less sour than its hot counterpart. Making cold brew involves a slow, cold process. This method keeps the coffee’s natural acids. So, the final drink is smoother and less harsh.

Cold brew is perfect for anyone who doesn’t like strong, sour tastes. It’s also very popular among coffee lovers. They enjoy its mild and well-balanced flavor.

The decision between cold or hot brewed coffee is up to you. Knowing how each method affects flavor and acidity helps. It lets you pick the best one based on what you enjoy.


Is cold brew coffee less acidic than hot brewed coffee?

Yes, cold brew coffee is usually less acidic. This is supported by research from Thomas Jefferson University. The study found that cold brew often has a higher pH than hot coffee. This means it’s not as acidic. Remember, the level of acidity can change based on the coffee beans, how they were processed, and how dark they were roasted.

What is the brewing process for cold brew coffee?

Making cold brew is simple. You soak coarse coffee grounds in cold water for 12 to 24 hours. This long steeping time makes a coffee concentrate. This concentrate is smoother and has a milder taste than coffee brewed with hot water.

What factors affect the acidity levels in coffee?

The acidity in coffee can change due to a few things. These include where the beans come from, how they’re roasted, and how coffee is brewed. Generally, beans from places like Latin America and lighter roasts are more acidic.
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Emily Reynolds

I am an unapologetic coffee aficionado with an insatiable passion for all things java. Pour-overs, French presses, espresso machines—each holds its own thrill, a chance to unlock new levels of taste and aroma. So let the aroma of freshly brewed coffee guide us through the world of flavor and inspiration that is coffee.

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