Coffee enthusiasts rarely want to put down their favorite beverage just because the temperatures are getting warmer. Fortunately, there are many outstanding summer coffee drinks available that include a nice coffee kick with seasonal flavors. Plus, they’re designed to be enjoyed cold, making them refreshing on a hot summer day.
Here’s a look at some common questions about summer coffee drinks and some fantastic summer coffee recipes.
Common Questions About Summer Coffee Drinks
What Coffee Is Best for Summer?
Technically, the best coffee for summer is the one you’ll enjoy. However, if you’re looking for a summer coffee drink that will cool you off when the temperatures rise, it’s time for one of the many cold coffee options.
Iced coffee is a simple place to begin. You only need to brew your favorite coffee and serve it chilled and over ice. Chemex iced coffee is similar; it just makes use of a Chemex during the brewing process. If you would prefer an iced espresso, you just chill and serve a shot or two of espresso over ice instead.
Cold brew coffee is another excellent option, but it requires a bit of planning since the brew time is longer. You’ll need to steep your coffee grounds in cold water for 12 to 48 hours, depending on the type and desired strength.
An iced latte is an excellent choice for those who prefer a bit of milk with their coffee. Take some iced espresso and add a bit of frothed milk. Blended coffee is another option worth exploring. You can add milk and flavors or sweeteners, coffee or espresso, and some ice to a blender. Then, blend it until you reach your desired consistency.
If you don’t mind investing in some equipment, nitro-cold coffee is something you can make at home. Take cold brew coffee and put it in a whipped cream container that uses nitrogen gas cartridges. Then, dispense it into your glass. You can also try mini-kegs if you prefer, but those are a bigger upfront investment.
What Are Summer Coffee Flavors?
Generally speaking, summer coffee flavors are usually lighter and brighter than those you find during other seasons. Fruit and certain floral flavors are popular during the warmer months since they feel less heavy. For some, using lighter roasts also comes with the territory, though that’s largely based on personal preference.
However, if you prefer something richer and spicier during the full summer heat, let your heart and tastebuds guide the way. Ultimately, it’s always best to enjoy your coffee how you like it, so don’t feel restricted to the summer coffee flavors above.
What Is the Most Popular Coffee Drink?
Overall, the most popular type of coffee is classic drip coffee. Primarily, that’s because it’s incredibly easy to make at home, so it’s one of the most widely enjoyed.
When it comes to coffee shop drinks, the classic latte is one of the most commonly ordered. Hot or iced, it offers a simple, traditional flavor that’s right up most coffee drinkers’ alleys. Plus, adding flavors and sweeteners to adjust the taste is easy, making it a go-to starting point.
However, many other coffee drinks are also incredibly popular. Americanos, breves, café au lait, cappuccinos, cold brews, espressos, flat whites, frappes, mochas, and many others see their fair share of orders all year round.
During the summer, there’s a rise in interest in chilled or iced coffees, partially due to the rising temperatures. Additionally, some coffee drinkers may favor lighter and brighter flavors, including various fruits and florals. But that doesn’t mean sticking with the classics doesn’t happen, so feel free to enjoy your coffee any way you like, regardless of the season.
Is Iced Coffee a Summer Drink?
In some ways, iced coffee is a summer drink since it’s chilled, making it refreshing on a warm, sunny day. The same is true of any iced or blended coffee, as well as cold brews. But many people like iced coffee during every season, so don’t feel like you have to wait for the temperatures to rise to enjoy it.
Summer Coffee Drinks: Simple Summer Coffee Recipes for Warm, Sunny Days
Coffee Ice Cubes
While not technically a coffee drink, making coffee ice cubes is an excellent way to ensure your chilled summer drinks don’t end up watered down. As coffee ice cubes melt, they release coffee instead of water, adding more coffee flavor to your drink.
You can also make coffee ice cubes with add-ins like milk or sweetener such as maple syrup. Then, you can maintain a similar taste profile to coffee drinks like lattes. Just combine the coffee with your add-ins, pour it into ice cube trays, and freeze.
Iced Oat Milk Latte
An iced oat milk latte is essentially a classic latte; it just uses oat milk instead of cow’s milk. As a result, it’s a vegan-friendly alternative.
Take two shots of espresso and pour it over ice. Add about 2/3 cup of oat milk and any sweeteners you’d like to use to the glass. Finally, stir to combine.
While you can use store-bought oat milk, oat milk is also easy to make at home. See our recipe below if you want to give it a try.
German Iced Coffee
The German iced coffee drink – known as eiskaffee – is a summertime favorite that combines coffee or espresso with vanilla ice cream. You can use whatever coffee you like; just make sure you chill it before making the drink.
Put one or two scoops of high-quality vanilla ice cream into a glass. Next, pour your coffee or espresso over it until the glass is about 2/3 full. Top with whipped cream, serve with an iced tea spoon and straw, and then enjoy.
You can also add flourishes like chocolate syrup if you like. However, that’s purely optional.
Vietnamese Iced Coffee
Vietnamese iced coffees are incredibly simple to make since they only use a couple of ingredients. First, depending on your preference, you need a very strong coffee, either an extremely robust dark roast drip or espresso. Add sweetened condensed milk and pour over ice. Give it a quick stir, and you’re done.
The ratio of coffee to sweetened condensed milk is largely up to personal taste, but most people use just 1 to 2 tablespoons of condensed milk. When it comes to preparing the coffee, the pour-over method is more traditional. However, you can use whatever approach works best for you as long as the brewed coffee still ends up strong.
Iced Spanish Latte
An iced Spanish latte isn’t dissimilar to a Vietnamese iced coffee. With a Spanish iced latte, you’ll need to use espresso. Additionally, you’ll add in condensed milk and regular milk, though you can substitute another sweetener for the sweetened condensed milk if you prefer.
The bulk of the drink is a 50/50 mix of milk to espresso. Most of the time, it’s about 3 ounces of each. Then, add about 1.5 ounces of condensed milk to sweeten and stir before pouring it over ice.
Featuring a combination of cold brew coffee and tonic water – along with some simple syrup and ice – a coffee tonic is incredibly refreshing. Along with being a chilled summer coffee drink, the tonic water adds some carbonation, creating a slight tingling sensation when you drink it.
The simple syrup helps offset any bitterness created by the quinine in the tonic water, but you can also try a hint of citrus by adding an orange slice instead. Otherwise, take 8 ounces of tonic water poured over ice, and add 4 ounces of cold brew coffee and a dash of simple syrup before gently stirring to combine. Then, enjoy!
With an espresso smoothie, you can create a variety of unique coffee drinks based on your flavor preferences. Generally, you want to pick ingredients that pair well with coffee.
Banana, peanut butter, vanilla yogurt, and a dash of pure vanilla extract works incredibly well. Add them to an ice-filled blender, pour in some milk and espresso, and blend. You can also add sweeteners if you like, allowing you to adjust the flavor based on your personal taste.
Iced Strawberry Latte
An iced strawberry latte is an excellent option for a bit of summer fruit flavor. Take two shots of espresso and add 8 ounces of milk. Stir in a tablespoon of strawberry syrup, pour it all over ice, then add fresh strawberries as a garnish.
While you can use store-bought strawberry syrup, making your own is pretty simple. Check out our recipe below to see how you can make your own.
For a summer coffee drink that feels very in-season, consider coffee lemonade. You’ll combine ½ cup of lemonade with a cup of double-strength coffee. Add a dash of sparkling water and pour it all over ice.
If you prefer, you can skip store-bought lemonade and make your own version. If you’re making just one cup, combine ¼ cup of lemon juice with 1 tablespoon of simple syrup. Then, add 3 tablespoons of filtered water.
Iced Coffee Orange Juice
Another citrusy option that’s worth trying is iced coffee orange juice. Use double-strength coffee or espresso for the best result. Then, use the coffee to top off a glass of iced orange juice.
You might want to start with a ratio of about 6 ounces of orange juice to around 2 ounces of coffee. However, feel free to adjust the amounts to reach the ideal flavor based on your taste preferences.
Coffee jelly is a refreshing dessert treat. While it was once relatively common in cookbooks in America and Britain, it’s highly popular in Japan, where it’s called kohii zerii.
In the simplest sense, coffee jelly combines robust coffee that’s sweetened and gelatin. Since it’s chilled after it’s made to help it set, it’s incredible on hot summer days. Add the jelly to a martini glass with a splash of Bailey’s for a special treat!
If you want to make your own coffee jelly, you can. See our recipe below.
Cold Brew Float
A cold brew float is another one of the summer coffee drinks that combines coffee with ice cream. But, it usually takes it to the next level, adding options like chocolate or caramel sauce to make it a real dessert treat.
With this option, you will want to prepare some strong cold brew coffee in advance, ensuring it has time to chill. Pour the cold brew coffee over ice and add a bit of cream if you’d like. Then, top it with a scoop or two of vanilla ice cream and add some extra sweetness by drizzling on some chocolate or caramel syrup (or both, if you prefer).
If you want to skip the store-bought ice cream and go the homemade route, it’s actually easier than you’d expect. Check out our recipe below.
Summer Coffee Recipes
Homemade Oat Milk
1/4 cup whole rolled oats
1.5 cups of water
Optional: tiniest pinch of sea salt, a dash of pure vanilla extract, and 1 tsp of maple syrup.
Add everything to a blender and blend for no more than 30 seconds. Strain the mixture twice through a fine mesh strainer or nut bag, do not push or squeeze the mixture through. This will last a couple of days.
Homemade Ice Cream
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
14oz can of sweetened condensed milk
2 tsp of pure vanilla extract
First, whip your whipping cream to stiff peaks. Next, add your vanilla extract and sweetened and condensed milk. Stir gently until well combined. Line a freezer-safe container with plastic wrap, pour in your mixture and cover the top with another piece of plastic wrap. Add your lid and place it in the freezer for 6 to 8 hours.
1/4 cup hot water
1 packet of unflavored gelatin powder
2 cups of your favorite strong-brewed coffee
2 to 3 tbsp of sugar
Combine the gelatin and hot water together until the gelatin blooms. Combine the brewed coffee and sugar and heat to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the coffee boils, remove your pot from the heat, add your gelatin mixture and whisk until combined. I like to strain it through a cloth, but this step is optional. Pour the mixture into a baking dish (9″ or 7″ x 11″), and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight. Cut the jelly into cubes and serve.
Homemade Strawberry Syrup
1lbs of ripe strawberries, hulled and cut
1.5 cups of cold water
1 cup of sugar
Add the strawberries and water to a pot. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and let simmer gently for about 15 minutes. Then you want to strain the mixture into another pot; you do not want the strawberry pulp. Next, add back to the heat along with your sugar. Bring this to a boil on high heat, then down to medium for about 5 minutes, stirring, so it doesn’t burn. Finally, turn off the heat and let it cool. Pour into a mason jar and enjoy.