Does Cold Brew Go Bad If Not Refrigerated? Find Out Now!

Cold brew coffee and iced coffee has become increasingly popular in recent years, but with its rise in popularity comes questions about how to store it. Does cold brew go bad if not refrigerated? This is an important question for any coffee lover who wants to enjoy a delicious cup of joe without worrying about the consequences.

In this blog post, we’ll answer the question: does cold brew go bad if not refrigerated? We’ll also explore alternatives to keeping your cold brew chilled and discuss whether or not unrefrigerated cold brew is safe to drink.

So sit back, relax and let’s find out what you need to know before brewing up that next batch of deliciousness!

Does Cold Brew Go Bad If Not Refrigerated

Table of Contents:

What is Cold Brew Coffee?

Cold brew coffee is a type of coffee that has become increasingly popular in recent years. It is made by steeping coarsely ground coffee beans in cold or room temperature water for an extended period of time, usually 12-24 hours. The result is a strong, smooth and full-bodied cup of coffee with less acidity than traditional hot brewed coffees.

What is Cold Brew Coffee

Definition of Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee can be defined as any type of brewed beverage made from soaking ground coffee beans in cold or room temperature water for an extended period of time.

This method produces a cold brew concentrate which can then be diluted with hot or cold water to create the desired strength and flavor profile.

Benefits of Cold Brew Coffee

The main benefit to making cold brew over other types of brewing methods is its low acidity level. Since it’s not exposed to heat during the brewing process, much fewer acids are extracted from the coffee grounds resulting in a smoother tasting cup without any bitterness or sourness often associated with regular drip brewed coffees.

Additionally, because it’s so concentrated you can make large batches at once and store them for up to two weeks before they start losing their flavor quality – perfect for those who want to enjoy their favorite drink on demand.

How To Make Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee is a delicious and refreshing beverage that can be enjoyed hot or cold. It has many benefits, but it’s important to understand how to store it properly in order to keep it fresh.

Let’s take a look at whether unrefrigerated cold brew goes bad and what you can do to extend its shelf life.

Main Takeaway: Making cold brew coffee is an easy and low-acid way to enjoy a smooth cup of joe. Here’s how: 1. Coarsely grind your beans 2. Steep in cold or room temperature water for 12-24 hours 3. Dilute with hot or cold water to desired strength 4. Enjoy up to two weeks later.

Is It Safe to Drink Unrefrigerated Cold Brew?

Potential Health Risks of Drinking Unrefrigerated Cold Brew Coffee

Unrefrigerated cold brew coffee can potentially contain harmful bacteria and other microorganisms that can cause food poisoning. This is because the process of making cold brew coffee involves steeping ground coffee beans in room temperature or warm water for an extended period of time, which provides a favorable environment for bacterial growth.

Therefore, it is important to store your cold brew properly and drink it within a reasonable amount of time to avoid any potential health risks.

Signs That Your Unrefrigerated Cold Brew Has Gone Bad

If you leave unrefrigerated cold brew out at room temperature for too long, it will start to spoil due to the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms. Signs that your unrefrigerated cold brew has gone bad include a sour smell, slimy texture, discoloration or off-flavor.

It’s best to discard any unrefrigerated cold brew if you notice these signs as they indicate that the beverage has been contaminated with harmful bacteria and could make you sick if consumed.

Although it is generally not recommended to drink unrefrigerated cold brew, there are alternatives that can help extend the shelf life of your coffee. In the next section, we will explore these alternatives in more detail.

Main Takeaway: Unrefrigerated cold brew coffee can contain harmful bacteria that could make you sick, so it’s important to store and drink it within a reasonable amount of time. Signs of spoilage include: sour smell, slimy texture, discoloration or off-flavor.

Alternatives to Refrigerating Your Cold Brew

But, if you don’t have access to a refrigerator, it can be difficult to keep your cold brew fresh for an extended period of time. Fortunately, there are several alternatives that you can use in order to store your cold brew without refrigeration.

Let’s have a look at the alternatives to refrigerating your cold brew:

Freezing Your Cold Brew as an Alternative to Refrigeration

One alternative is freezing your cold brew in ice cube trays or other containers. This will allow the liquid to stay cool and prevent bacteria from growing on it while still preserving its flavor and aroma.

To ensure optimal results, make sure that the cubes are completely frozen before storing cold brew coffee in airtight containers or bags.

Making Smaller Batches of Cold Brew as an Alternative to Refrigeration

Another option is making smaller batches of cold brew instead of one large batch at once. This will help reduce waste since any unused portions can be consumed within a few days without having to worry about spoilage due to lack of refrigeration.

Additionally, this method also allows you more flexibility when it comes time for brewing since you won’t need as much equipment or space for storage purposes.

Using a Vacuum Sealer as an Alternative to Refrigeration

Lastly, using a vacuum sealer is another great way for keeping your cold brew fresh without needing access to a refrigerator or freezer unit. Vacuum sealing helps remove oxygen from the container which prevents bacterial growth and keeps the beverage tasting just like when it was first brewed – no matter how long it has been stored.

Plus, with vacuum sealed containers being lightweight and easy-to-transport they make ideal companions for camping trips or other outdoor activities where refrigerators may not be available nearby.

Overall, there are plenty of ways that you can store unrefrigerated cold brew safely so that you can continue enjoying its unique flavor profile anytime. Whether freezing cubes into individual servings; making smaller batches; or using vacuum sealers – all these methods provide viable solutions so that everyone can experience their favorite beverage regardless if they have access (or not) to traditional cooling appliances.

Although refrigeration is the best way to store cold brew, there are alternatives that can be used if you don’t have access to a refrigerator.

In the next section, we’ll look at how these alternatives can help keep your cold brew safe and delicious.

Main Takeaway: Cold brew can be stored without refrigeration by freezing cubes, making smaller batches, or using a vacuum sealer. These methods will help preserve its flavor and aroma while preventing bacterial growth.

FAQs in Relation to Does Cold Brew Go Bad if Not Refrigerated

How long can cold brew stay unrefrigerated?

Cold brew coffee can stay unrefrigerated for up to 12 hours. However, it is important to note that the quality of the coffee will start to deteriorate after this time period. Therefore, it is best to store cold brew in an airtight container and refrigerate it as soon as possible.

Additionally, if you plan on consuming your cold brew within 24 hours of making it, then storing at room temperature should be fine.

Can you drink cold brew left out overnight?

No, it is not recommended to drink cold brew left out overnight. Cold-brewed coffee contains higher levels of caffeine and acids than regular brewed coffee, which can make it more susceptible to spoilage if left out for too long. The optimal time frame for consuming cold brew is within 24 hours of brewing, as the flavor and quality will begin to degrade after that point.

To ensure you are getting the best cup of joe possible, always store your fresh coffee in an airtight container in a refrigerator or other cool area until ready to consume.

Is it OK if cold brew gets warm?

Yes, cold brew can get warm. Cold brew is brewed at a lower temperature than hot coffee and has a longer steep time, so it’s more susceptible to changes in temperature. If left out for too long or exposed to heat sources like direct sunlight, the cold brew will start to lose its flavor and become less enjoyable.

To keep your cold brew fresh and flavorful, store your cold brews in an airtight container in the refrigerator or use an insulated thermos when transporting it outside of the fridge.

How Long Is Cold Brew Good For?

You have to refrigerate the coffee brew straight away after preparing it. If you use hot water to brew your coffee, you will need less time to brew the coffee. While using cold water, it requires a longer time and the oxidizing process is slower than the hot water brewed coffee.

Now, the question is, How long can cold brew stay fresh exactly?

If you’re going to steep cold brew coffee on the countertop, you can expect your coffee to stay fresh for between 14 and 18 hours. It will be the best option if you store the coffee brew in the refrigerator straight away after you’ve done steeping.

Once you have stored your coffee in the refrigerator. You can expect your coffee to last between 8 to 14 days.


In conclusion, cold brew coffee is a great way to enjoy your favorite cup of joe without the hassle of brewing it hot. However, if you don’t refrigerate your cold brew, it can go bad quickly and become unsafe to drink. To ensure that your cold brew stays fresh for as long as possible, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator or consider alternative methods such as freezing or adding preservatives. Ultimately, knowing whether cold brew goes bad if not refrigerated will help you ensure you are always enjoying a safe and delicious cup of coffee!

Do you want to know if cold brew coffee can go bad if not refrigerated? If so, then is the place for you! Our website has all of the information and resources needed to answer your questions about this delicious beverage. We have detailed articles on how long cold brew stays fresh in different conditions, as well as tips and tricks for making it taste great every time. Come join us at today and learn everything there is to know about one of the world’s favorite drinks!

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Jeff Stone
Jeff is a coffee aficionado. He loves a couple cups of joe first thing in the morning. He like trying out new grounds and gear and then writes about it here. When he is not sipping java, he is usually writing it for his clients as a software engineer.

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