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How does cold brew work on Ninja?

Cold brew coffee has become increasingly popular over the past few years. The smooth, low-acid coffee is made by steeping coffee grounds in cold or room temperature water for an extended period of time. This slow steeping method results in a coffee concentrate that can be served straight over ice or diluted with water or milk.

While cold brew can be made using a mason jar or French press, having a dedicated cold brew coffee maker streamlines the process. Ninja is one of the brands that makes specialized cold brew coffee makers. Ninja’s cold brewers use an immersion method to produce smooth, flavorful cold brew concentrate.

How Is Cold Brew Different From Iced Coffee?

Before getting into the specifics of how Ninja’s cold brewers work, it’s important to understand the difference between cold brew and iced coffee:

  • Cold brew is made by steeping coffee grounds in cold or room temperature water for 12-24 hours.
  • Iced coffee is made by brewing coffee using standard hot brewing methods, then pouring it over ice to chill it.

The extended steeping time used for cold brew results in lower acidity and a smoother flavor compared to iced coffee. Additionally, cold brew is less bitter than iced coffee since the cold water doesn’t extract as many bitter compounds from the coffee grounds.

Ninja Cold Brew Coffee Maker Models

Ninja currently offers two main models of cold brew coffee makers:

  • Ninja Cold & Hot Brewer
  • Ninja Coffee Bar Cold Brew System

Both Ninja cold brewers use an immersion method where coffee grounds are soaked in water. Let’s take a closer look at how each model works.

Ninja Cold & Hot Brewer

The Ninja Cold & Hot Brewer (model CF090Z) offers flexibility – it can brew both hot coffee and cold brew. Here are its main features for cold brewing:

  • Brewing vessel with handle and spout
  • Removable water reservoir
  • Adjustable brew strength
  • Drip-free tap for dispensing

To make cold brew with the Ninja Cold & Hot Brewer:

  1. Add coffee grounds into the brewing vessel. The grounds should roughly fill the mesh filter basket.
  2. Fill the water reservoir and pour water over the grounds until they are fully saturated.
  3. Let the coffee grounds steep at room temperature or in the fridge for 12-24 hours.
  4. After steeping, drain the concentrate from the tap into a serving pitcher.
  5. Dilute the concentrate with water, milk, or ice as desired.

The Ninja Cold & Hot Brewer produces a smooth concentrate that can be customized by adjusting the brew strength selector. It makes enough concentrate for 3-4 servings of cold brew.

Ninja Coffee Bar Cold Brew System

The Ninja Coffee Bar Cold Brew System (model CF085Z) is designed specifically for cold brew. It includes the following components:

  • Brewer base with control panel
  • Removable water reservoir
  • Cold brew coffee maker with handling ring
  • Flavor infusing tumbler with sip lid

To make cold brew with the Ninja Coffee Bar Cold Brew System:

  1. Fill the water reservoir and place it in the brewer base.
  2. Add coffee grounds to the brewing container. The grounds should fill the mesh filter basket.
  3. Position the brewer container in place on the brewer base.
  4. Select your desired brew size and hit “Brew.” The water will dispense from the reservoir over the grounds.
  5. Let the coffee steep for 12-24 hours.
  6. After steeping, switch the brewer to “Drain” mode to drain the concentrate into the tumbler.
  7. Customize your cold brew by adding ice, milk, or sweetener in the tumbler.

This Ninja cold brew system automates the brewing process with its control panel. It can make larger batches of cold brew, up to 6 cups of concentrate. The included tumbler makes it easy to serve and transport the finished cold brew.

Factors That Affect Cold Brew with Ninja

Several variables go into making smooth, great tasting cold brew with a Ninja system. Here are some of the key factors to keep in mind:

Coffee Beans

The type of coffee beans used will impact the flavor of the cold brew. Ninja recommends using a medium to dark roast coffee. Light roasts may result in weaker, more acidic cold brew. A smooth, robust medium or dark roast is ideal. Grind the beans to a coarse consistency similar to French press.

Coffee to Water Ratio

The ratio of coffee grounds to water will determine the strength and flavor of the concentrate. Ninja provides recommendations based on brew size:

Brew Size Coffee Grounds Water
3-4 cups 1/2 cup 4 cups
6 cups 2/3 cup 6 cups

In general, use a 1:4 to 1:6 coffee to water ratio. Adjust to taste based on your preferred cold brew strength.

Steeping Time

For cold brew, longer steeping equals more intense flavor. Ninja recommends steeping for 12-24 hours. Steeping for the full 24 hours develops richer, more robust flavor.

Dilution Ratio

Diluting the cold brew concentrate with water, milk, or ice impacts the final flavor and caffeine strength. For example:

  • Diluting 1:1 (equal parts concentrate and water) results in “full-strength” cold brew.
  • Diluting 1:3 makes a smoother, less intense drink.
  • Diluting 1:4 makes a lighter cold brew.

There’s no “correct” dilution ratio. Adjust to taste based on your desired strength and flavor. More dilution cuts the acidity for a smoother drink.


For best results, brew the coffee concentrate at room temperature or by steeping in the refrigerator. Avoid using hot water when brewing as it will make the cold brew taste bitter.

Once brewed, the cold brew concentrate can be enjoyed straight from the fridge or poured over ice. This chilling helps bring out the refreshing flavors.

Tips for Great Cold Brew with Ninja

Follow these tips to get flavorful, smooth cold brew every time with your Ninja system:

  • Use a medium-dark roast coffee with a coarse grind
  • Maintain a 1:4 to 1:6 coffee to water ratio
  • Steep for a full 24 hours
  • Experiment with different dilution ratios to tune the flavor
  • Keep grounds fully immersed during steeping
  • Store unused concentrate in the fridge for 2-3 weeks

Cleaning Your Ninja Cold Brew System

Proper cleaning after brewing keeps your Ninja cold brew maker in top condition. Here are some cleaning tips:

  • Thoroughly rinse brewing container and accessories after each use.
  • For the brewer base, wipe with soft damp cloth.
  • Never submerge the brewer base in water.
  • Use diluted vinegar to remove coffee stains.
  • Periodically descale the brewer using citric acid powder.

Check the owner’s manual for your specific Ninja cold brew model for detailed cleaning instructions. With proper maintenance, your Ninja will deliver fresh cold brew for years to come.

Troubleshooting Problems

Here are some common issues that may arise with Ninja cold brew makers and how to address them:

Cold Brew Is Weak/Watery

  • Use more coffee grounds relative to water
  • Grind beans coarser
  • Steep for full recommended time

Cold Brew Is Too Strong/Bitter

  • Use fewer coffee grounds
  • Dilute concentrate with more water or milk
  • Use a medium roast instead of dark roast

Sediment In Bottom of Brew

  • Grounds are too fine – use a coarser grind
  • Carefully pour concentrate from the top
  • Use a coffee filter when diluting

Brewer Leaking From Bottom

  • Ensure ring and container are fully seated
  • Check brewer for cracks
  • Replace any defective parts

FAQs About Ninja Cold Brew

Can I use the Ninja Hot & Cold Brewer just for cold brew?

Yes, you can use the Ninja Cold & Hot Brewer exclusively for cold brew if desired. Simply don’t use the hot brewing functions.

How long does Ninja cold brew last?

The concentrate will stay fresh in the fridge for 2-3 weeks. After diluting, drink cold brew within 7-10 days.

What is the easiest way to dilute Ninja cold brew concentrate?

The easiest method is to pour the concentrate over ice, then top up with water or milk to achieve your desired ratio and flavor.

Can you make tea with a Ninja cold brew system?

Yes, the Ninja cold brewers can also be used to make cold brew iced tea. Simply replace the coffee grounds with loose tea leaves or tea bags.

How do you descale a Ninja cold brew maker?

To remove mineral deposits, fill brewer with water and citric acid powder. Run a brew cycle. Rinse thoroughly before next use.


Ninja offers an easy way to get your daily dose of smooth, flavorful cold brew at home. The immersion style brewers produce flavorful concentrate by steeping coffee grounds in cold water. Allowing time for full extraction results in lower acidity compared to hot brewed coffee. Both the Cold & Hot Brewer and Coffee Bar System provide options to make cold brew for one or a crowd. Follow the brewing tips in this article to end up with delicious cold brew every time. The cold brew will retain optimal flavor for weeks when stored properly. With minimal cleanup, Ninja’s cold brew makers deliver tasty cold coffee with little fuss.