Easy Iced Coffee Drink Ideas

Making superior coffee suited for iced coffee requires more than brewing and chilling it. The grinding and brewing methods – both of which you can do in a Vitamix machine – require a little tweaking to highlight the coffee's pleasant bitterness and minimize its acidity and astringency. Here are some easy iced coffee drink ideas to energize your mind at any time of day.

Coffee Selection

Any coffee variety you drink hot you can drink cold. But since most iced coffee drinks have several secondary ingredients, you don't have to use a top-shelf variety – quality Arabica beans available at the supermarket work fine. Many iced coffee recipes call for espresso powder. If it calls for espresso powder, don't substitute home-brewed coffee as the recipe depends on espresso powder's assertive flavor.

Grinding and Brewing

The goal of brewing iced coffee is to brew the minimum amount of time necessary to aromatize the grounds and release the compounds responsible for flavor and aroma – no steeping required. To coarsely grind coffee beans in a Vitamix machine, attach the dry grains container and add the coffee beans. Select Variable Speed 1 and turn the machine on slowly, increasing the speed to Variable 8. Grind the coffee beans for 10 seconds. To brew into the Vitamix machine, add the ground coffee to a regular coffeemaker filter basket lined with a coffee filter. Add ice cubes to the Vitamix machine and set the filter basket on it. Pour simmering hot water over the coffee grounds and allow it to drip through into the Vitamix machine.

Brewing Tips

  • Use double-strength coffee in iced coffee drinks.
  • As an alternative to the pour-over method of brewing, use a French press to brew double-strength coffee. After chilling the coffee, pour it through a coffee filter to remove the sediment.
  • Try coffee ice cubes for convenience. Pour room-temperature double-strength coffee in an ice cube tray and freeze it. When you want to make iced coffee, simply add the ice cubes to your Vitamix machine along with the other ingredients and blend.

Iced Coffee Variations

Now that you’ve finished brewing the iced coffee, you can simply drink it as is, or you can blend up more creative variations to make a sweet treat based on your tastes.

Start by adding equal parts iced coffee, milk and ice cubes to the Vitamix machine. Next, add a secondary flavoring ingredient to taste. Sweetened chocolate powder, coconut milk and any sweet liqueur, like amaretto or Kahlua. Blend and garnish.

With garnishes, choose an accompaniment that complements the primary flavor. If you chose creme de cacao, shave three or four paper-thin curled sheets of chocolate over it; if you have a frozen Irish coffee, top with a dollop of whipped cream.

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