We live in a good time. Think of just a few decades ago, when the idea of iced coffee was foreign, a frappes we’re just a glimmer in the eye of its hot-coffee parents. But as we’ve stepped into a future full of iPhones and Amazon delivery drones, thank the coffee gods we’ve got great iced drinks!
If you’re looking for a few ways to take a break from the ordinary, we’ve got your master list for a summer of caffeinated love. No matter what the occasion, there’s an iced coffee drink out there that’s right for you—and probably more than one that you’ve never even heard of!
Check out this amazing list of treats and make sure to try all your favorites. You never know how it could change your coffee habits forever.
Certainly the most popular new tradition in iced coffee, which is more broadly in the family of “cold brew” coffee. It’s so popular even Starbucks is now adopting it for their menu!
But don’t let that deter you: specialty coffee shops form LA to New York are all perfecting the cold brew, and toddy is just one great way to do it. The idea is that you let coffee sit, almost French press style, in cold water for 24 hours.
The result is an incredibly smooth, strong coffee that never has to get watered down with melty ice cubes.
For the sugar addicts in all of us, Thai coffee is a treat you may not be able to stomach in your every day coffee rotation—but it’s certainly one to add to the weekly treat list.
So as not to have a diluted flavor, Thai coffee is brewed doubly strong. It’s then cut with half and half, cardamom, and a healthy amount of sugar. It’s the kind of wake-me-up most of us need on those hot, groggy mornings.
New Orleans Iced Coffee
Speaking of hot and humid, nobody knows the struggle better than our neighbors down in N’Orleans. Thanks to our pals at Blue Bottle, you can follow a pretty simple brewing guide for another delicious cold-brewed treat.
Following a similar model to Toddy, New Orleans Iced Coffee is brewed cold. The difference is that it’s blended as a concentrate with a little home made simple syrup. It’s sweet, strong, and absolutely delicious.
Now this is one that requires some tools. Namely: a milk frother. You can find any inexpensive one on Amazon. The fun part is that you get foamy milk, but it’s still an iced drink.
As you may know, a cappuccino is a combination of espresso and milk, usually the milk is textured to be fairly “dry” or foamy. Using the frother, whip up some lightly heated milk and then pour it over a generous portion of ice. Once cooled, top it off with a perfect shot of espresso and you’re done! No sugar or syrups necessary.
Iced Dirty Chai
The dirty chai—or “chai bomb” as some may know it—is the perfect substitute when you’re not ready to drink something so strong. Taking your favorite recipe for chai latte (most likely milk and some chai concentrate), add in a shot of espresso and pour over ice.
It’s a spicy, sweet, milky drink that’s sure to give you the caffeine boost you need, while also giving you a flavor experience you won’t often get!
Iced Irish Coffee
As much as we all would like to think we’ve mastered the art of brunch, no such skill is complete without knowing the wonders of an iced Irish coffee. Assuredly, this is an adults only drink, to be enjoyed very responsibly.
When you’re getting ready to create the perfect brunch spread with all your summer buds, grab whichever iced coffee on this list you most prefer (we recommend cold brew), and sweeten it with a little Bailey’s Irish cream. Mimo-whats?
Iced Red Eye
On the opposite end of the spectrum, you may need a jolt on those particularly warm mornings that makes you ready and able to face the day of work ahead. In that case, you’re looking for an iced red eye.
A red eye is a cup of coffee with an added shot of espresso. So naturally an iced version is not so unfamiliar. For the boldest flavor, espresso pairs exceptionally well with cold brew. Just be careful: you may get the shakes.
For great espresso flavor, but without all the milk and added caffeine, an iced Americano is a dream come true. It’s just a simple shot of espresso over iced water. Paired with just a dash of cream and sugar, you’ll have amazing flavor that won’t weigh you down all day.
Iced Horchata con Espresso
If you’re looking for a drink that’s a little more festive, look no further than the Horchata con Espresso. It’s essentially an iced latte, but with a different kind of milk: horchata!
For the uninitiated, horchata is a cinnamon rice milk. So it’s great because you can get it even when you’re dairy free (though be sure to double check when ordering out), and it’s still got all the fun of its original flavors.
Finally, there’s Kyoto. While essentially another version of cold brewed coffee, it’s not one you want to miss when you see it. Made through an incredible slow drip system, Kyoto drips for about 10 hours before a small batch is produced.
The end result is a concentrate that can be likened to rocket fuel. Drink at your own risk.
No matter how you do iced coffee, there’s always a new way to broaden your horizons—and no excuse not to try something delicious. Whether you make it at home or find it at your favorite specialty shop, get out there and make the most of one of the best, most delicious parts of summer.