Try this fruity, refreshing twist on cold brew

Jazz up your iced coffee with this recipe that's sweet, bitter, and just a little spicy, thanks to the ginger beer

By Ashlie D. Stevens

Food Editor

Published August 9, 2020 5:30PM (EDT)

Blackberry Cold Brew (Ashlie Stevens)
Blackberry Cold Brew (Ashlie Stevens)

Since I started working from home last summer, I've been on a mission to make better, more interesting coffee drinks in my own kitchen. From interviewing the experts about their recommendations, to spicing up my cold brew game, it's been a journey. 

But one tip that I just couldn't wrap my taste buds around came from Ren Doughty, outreach and customer support coordinator at Batdorf & Bronson Roasters: add fruit to your cold brew. 

As he told Salon in April, "frozen and fresh fruit in iced coffee, either as ice cube substitutes or blended in, can be a fun way to add dimension to your drink. Blackberries or blueberries parallel a brew's sweetness, while more tropical fruits like mango and pineapple highlight its acidity without being overpowering." 

So, I started experimenting and, after being gifted with a pint of fresh blackberries, found a winning combination — blackberries, ginger beer, and cold brew. It's a simple drink, but these ingredients make for a really multifaceted flavor profile. It's sweet, bitter, a little spicy and, above all, refreshing. 

Recipe: Blackberry Cold Brew Fizz

Yields: 1 serving of 8 ounces

  • 4 tablespoons of fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 1 tablespoon of light brown sugar
  • ½ cup of water
  • 3 ounces of cold brew 
  • 5 ounces of ginger beer

1. In a small saucepan, combine the blackberries, brown sugar, and water. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, stirring occasionally until the fruit starts to break down and thicken — about 10 minutes. Set aside and allow it to cool. 

2. Add the blackberries to a glass over ice and top with cold brew. Stir vigorously until combined. 

3. Top off with ginger beer. 

By Ashlie D. Stevens

Ashlie D. Stevens is Salon's food editor. She is also an award-winning radio producer, editor and features writer — with a special emphasis on food, culture and subculture. Her writing has appeared in and on The Atlantic, National Geographic’s “The Plate,” Eater, VICE, Slate, Salon, The Bitter Southerner and Chicago Magazine, while her audio work has appeared on NPR’s All Things Considered and Here & Now, as well as APM’s Marketplace. She is based in Chicago.

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Blackberries Coffee Drinks Cold Brew Ginger Beer Iced Coffee Recipe