How to Make Iced Coffee for a Crowd

iced coffee

In three years I went from not liking coffee, to loving coffee, to becoming a coffee snob. I mean this in the sweetest way. I’ve learned that there’s coffee, and then there’s coffee. Can I help it if I prefer the coffee that makes me feel the actual love of Jesus flow over me? Well of course I can’t help this.

I blame my oldest son for my particular coffee preferences, because any time I can blame one of my children for something, I do. (I hate it when I spill something and none of my kids is around to blame. It’s very frustrating.)

Why are my coffee snob issues Asa’s fault? Because I was in my early years of drinking coffee about the time he took a mission trip to Ecuador two years ago. While he was there, I happily sipped my “coffee from a red canister that shall remain nameless” like I had done since I started my coffee drinking ways. When he came back home, he brought me a cute little Ecuador bracelet as a souvenir and a package of Ecuadorian coffee. How nice, I thought. Coffee from Ecuador. I’ll pray for the ministry there while I drink it. It will be so lovely.

Lovely didn’t even begin to describe this experience. I took my first sip and exclaimed, “Oh my goodness!! This coffee!! I’ve never had anything like it. I think this must be the most amazing thing I’ve ever tasted. I might even like this more than butter.”

From that moment on, no other cup of coffee measured up. Once you have the best, it’s hard to go back.

(Our second son, Justus, will have the delightful opportunity to go to Ecuador this summer for his first overseas mission trip. I am so excited for him to bring me back a suitcase full of coffee share the love of Jesus with people there.)

How to Cold Brew Coffee

Needless to say, I hoarded my little bag of Ecuador coffee and rationed it – saving it for the mornings I could truly savor it. I might not have shared even a drop with anyone, but I can’t remember all the details. I’ve since started buying (and yes, even sharing) these Guatemalan coffee beans online. I find the flavor to be very similar to the Ecuador beans. This coffee is so delicious!

I questioned myself. “Should I really be spending extra money on high quality coffee?” So I did the math.

I discovered that it costs between $0.50-$0.60 per pot of coffee when I use the good stuff. This is more than a pot of the cheaper coffee. But worth it? Well, is it worth it to spend more on butter instead of settling for margarine? Obviously! (I know. That’s not an apples to apples comparison because the butter/margarine thing is more about eating real food for good health, but still. I think it’s worth it to pay a little extra for good quality and taste.)

Iced Coffee for a Crowd

Well, all that to say – get yourself some good coffee and treat people to this delicious Iced Coffee I’m going to tell you about. Or just use the cheap stuff for this recipe since you’re adding sugar anyway. :)

Last week I was asked to provide drinks for a get-together. I made a gallon of Homemade Lemonade (with sugar instead of maple syrup to cut the cost). Then I decided to make a big jar of iced coffee just for fun. It was a hit, so I thought I’d better share the idea with you!

My rough calculations tell me that a half-gallon of this Homemade Iced Mocha Coffee costs about $1.00. (I priced it at the store a few days later. The cheapest one cost $2.66. Boom.)

How to Make Iced Coffee for a CrowdYum

How to Make Iced Coffee for a Crowd
  • 1 quart coffee
  • 1 tray coffee ice cubes
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup homemade chocolate fudge sauce (more or less to taste)
  1. Cold brew coffee, or hot brew as normal, then chill.
  2. Stir cold coffee, coffee ice cubes, cream, and chocolate sauce into a half-gallon jar.
  3. Shake well before serving.

Some helpful links for you:

You might also enjoy this idea:

How to set up an Iced Coffee Bar

How to Make an Iced Coffee Bar

We set up that Iced Coffee Bar for my birthday guests last year and it was so much fun! See? I’m nice and share my good coffee now. I’ve grown so much.

Are you particular about what kind of coffee you drink?


  1. says

    Yes!! Major coffee snob here. It’s so bad! But I’ve come to notice that good company makes even the plainest coffee taste better! <3


    Jennifer Reply:

    I love this insight! And I agree completely :)


    Laura Reply:

    YES! Any kind of coffee tastes good when enjoying good company. :)


  2. Becky Buhrle says

    I know you love coffee and I hate to spoil everything. But coffee causes kidney damage. It is very bad for the kidneys. Try hot chocolate or apple cider.


    Laura Reply:

    Thanks for your thoughts on this! Like anything, there are different varieties of research to show the good and bad of coffee. I’ll continue to always be careful with coffee consumption, and with making sure I always drink way more water than coffee each day!

    The sugar in hot chocolate or apple cider can also cause health trouble for people (I can’t drink either of them because my body doesn’t tolerate sugar very well!).

    I think it always just goes back to the idea of eating and drinking wisely, not overdoing, and being careful to fill our bodies with nourishment.


  3. Allecia Steckel says

    We too have been on a journey with coffee. I wasn’t a coffee drinker when we got married…then I became a coffee drinker…then we even tried roasting our own beans. (That was a fun experience, but did not always end in a delicious tasting cup of coffee.) Which brings me to last month when I went to a christian conference in Cincinnati where they were serving “coffee that matters”. I just ordered some for myself (check out Pheonix Roasters) and am confident that I am going to enjoy my coffee more knowing that, although I’ve spent a bit more, my money is supporting a company with a great vision and cause.


    Laura Reply:

    JUST YESTERDAY I bought some coffee from a friend who is selling coffee beans from Haiti to support mamas in Haiti so their children don’t have to be homeless. This makes me so happy, and the coffee is delicious!! So yes, it is very worth spending more to support a great cause like this!


  4. Jennifer says

    I have always enjoyed coffee, but in the last few years I have become a lot more intentional in my coffee buying, and even begun exploring new methods of brewing coffee and grinding it myself. As a result I have been less inclined to buy coffee from places like Starbucks, because I prefer the coffee I make at home :) So for me, spending more on coffee, has ended up saving me money.

    I know I could buy coffee in the red canister for much less, but the difference in taste really is worth the extra cost, for me. I choose to spend less in other areas, so I can spend a little more on freshly roasted coffee beans :)


    Laura Reply:

    That is a fun observation – that spending more has saved you in the long run! So true.


  5. Molly says

    Mmm, coffee. I read your blog (via email) each morning drinking my mug of delicious coffee. Earlier this week, I had whipped cream around, so I topped my coffee with it – delicious.

    Right now we drink Trader Joe’s coffee because it’s the right balance between taste and price. For Christmas, we bought a pound of locally roasted coffee, and it was so good, I could drink it without milk. SO good.

    I started a new batch of vanilla a few days ago, and I took the beans from the last batch and put them in a tub of sugar to make vanilla sugar. I’m going to add it to my iced coffee batch the next time I make it. I bet it’s delicious. :-)


  6. Micah says

    I’ve read coffee is heavily sprayed with pesticides so organic is a better choice. We’ve come to really enjoy Vitacost coffee. We buy it already ground and the Perk-Me-Up and Campfire varieties are favorites here. It’s often on sale buy one get one half-price. That’s when I stock up!!


  7. Mary-Ann says

    We call ourselves the coffee snobs as well. We only drink Kicking Horse Organic Coffee. The best!!! Not even Coffee Culture can get the same taste. We make it in an espresso maker. That makes all the difference! ??


  8. Rebecca S. says

    The BEST coffee I ever had was from Vietnam. I lived in South Korea for awhile, and some friends brought it back after visiting there. It was the smoothest, richest coffee of all the coffees I’ve tried.
    Now, I only drink decaf, and it is SO hard to find good decaf. I miss really good coffee!


  9. Hannah says

    Laura, have you ever made Magic Bullet Coffee?? It combines the two best foods (although not everyone would call coffee a food, I do- it’s a main food group) and I’m pretty sure it would make your life complete :)


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