How to use the Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System — Plus a little review!

How to use the Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System — Plus a little review!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, where I may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Update: The Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System ran $9.99 in 2019 — as of this writing in 2020, it’s $12.99 in the end-May ALDI ad.

So my definite best ALDI purchase of the week? This Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System, of course. But this definitely did not come with the best instructions, so I thought I’d tell you how I used mine to make the most delicious cold brew coffee — and let you know what that extra round piece in the box is for!

Note: This is NOT to be confused with ALDI’s Ambiano cold brew coffee maker, which is a much more expensive electric machine that cold brews coffee in 10 minutes.

Now, those of you who have used cold brew coffee makers in the past of course might not have been as confused as I was. For those of you who haven’t made your own cold brewed coffee before, though, here are your Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System directions.

How do you use this Crofton Cold Brew Coffee Maker?

crofton cold brew coffee system -- what's in the box

The Crofton Cold Brew Coffee Making System comes with the following:

  • Glass carafe
  • Stainless steel filter (with screw on lid)
  • Lid (with built in strainer)

And minimal directions, printed right on the side of the box.

Save by making your own cold brew coffee at home!

crofton cold brewed coffee in fridge

So, here’s how you make your own cold brew coffee using the Crofton Cold Brew Coffee Maker.

  1. Unscrew the silver lid from the top of the filter.
  2. Place the filter inside the carafe, pushing it down until it locks in place.
  3. Add 3/4 to 1 cup ground coffee to the filter (dark roast will work best).
  4. Pour water slowly into the filter over the coffee grounds until the carafe is filled.
  5. Replace the lid.
  6. Put the filled carafe in the fridge for 16-24 hours.
  7. Pull out the filter and replace it with the strainer lid.
  8. When serving, cut the cold brewed coffee about half and half (or to taste) with water or milk, since it will be concentrated. 
  9. Add ice and enjoy!

Note that the box suggests using coarse ground coffee, but I used regular ground coffee and mine still came out quite nicely. I just left the glass pitcher in the fridge overnight, and was able to enjoy a tall glass of cold brewed coffee mid-morning the next day.

Tips: If your first batch of coffee isn’t strong enough for you, try 1 cup of ground coffee instead of 3/4 cup. Don’t use a fine grind, and dark roast will produce the best results.

My review? The Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System is awesome!

cold brewed coffee in carafe

If you’ve ever purchased pre-made cold brewed coffee, you know that it’s so good, yet so expensive. This little cold brew coffee system ran just $9.99 as an ALDI Find, and I’m definitely going to be using mine all summer long.

You only get about four cups of cold brewed coffee here, but it’s concentrated. I cut mine about half and half with water here, so it will go further than you might expect by looking at the amount of finished cold brewed coffee in the carafe. The coffee came out so well, too! So smooth, rich, and concentrated, but not at all bitter. It also seems to be much less acidic than traditional brewed coffee.

Update: I’m on my third batch now, so this is definitely not a one hit wonder — cold brew coffee is dangerously addictive, and perfect for summer! 

Having trouble cleaning the filter?

If you are having trouble getting the last of the grounds of the long, skinny filter in this cold brew coffee system, here’s my best trick for dealing with it!

Missed the Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System?

ALDI’s cold brew coffee maker is a limited time special buy, and reportedly sold out in some stores within just a couple of days. If you miss it, hopefully it will roll back around again soon. If you can’t wait, though:

Now that we’re getting warmer weather here again, I’m pulling my own cold brew coffee system out for the summer!

Got a bit of leftover coffee?

chile mocha brownies ingredients

And, if you have a bit of leftover cold-brewed coffee: Use it to make this all-ALDI recipe. Chile mocha brownies are so good, and an easy way to jazz up a basic box of brownie mix.

52 thoughts on “How to use the Crofton Cold Brew Coffee System — Plus a little review!”

  • I use a couple canning jars. Three cups water to 3/4 cup coffee (yes, I use regular grounds) Keep in fridge overnight or longer. Then I filter it over a strainer lined with a coffee filter. One canning jar holds the ‘finished’ coffee and two more are in the fridge ‘brewing’ so I don’t run out. Love it…and frugal!

  • Based on the instructions on the box, I used this system exactly as you’ve described here, but the coffee was so weak… I had it in the fridge for approximately 14 hours. I can’t imagine cutting it by 50% with water/milk. Are we sure that’s correct??

    • Mine was pretty strong. I have read that it’s better to use a darker roast coffee, so maybe make sure you’re not using a mild or decaf roast?

    • I tried in on the counter and in the fridge. Leaving the coffee on the counter to brew for 24 hours was just perfect, maybe a little strong but I add lemonade to mine and make a shandy.

    • I had this issue the first time I made it and when I made my second batch, i made sure to the fill the water up all the way to make sure the grounds werent just floating on top of the water instead of soaking in the water. it still looked a little thin, but it had all the flavor of regular cold brew.

    • These instructions are terrible. This review seems like its by someone who doesn’t understand cold brew at all. Medium to light roast is best for cold brew. And you change the strength by how much coffee you use. I cant imagine putting anything but ice and milk in my cold brew coffee. Also. Its best to brew it with room temp water and leave it out of the fridge for 6 hours. And course ground is best for cold brew. I use this crofton system and the box instructions were excellent. The filter is the best ive ever seen. Much less debri and sediment than most of the brewers ive tried. Ive tried several from online and department stores. It works perfect. And cleaning it is easy you just spray up the filter and it all slides out. Side note for cleaning it. Coffee grounds are very bad for your plumbing. Always knock the ground out into the trash and or rinse them into water for your plants. Cold brew is much less acidic and excellent for plants. I fill my carafe with water while rinsing the grounds into it and dump it out outside onto my garden. Im not tryna be mean or judgy but this whole page gives out a lot of bad info.

  • Thanks much for the instructions! I would have been lost without them! So sad! Ha! Especially replacing the lids when time to pour the coffee – oh geez!!! Yay cold brew!

  • I bought this system and am not the biggest fan. I have another easy cold brew maker so I knew how to use this one. I know with cold brew it’s best to either leave it out at room temp for 12 hrs (or 24hrs for a concentrate) or put in in the fridge for 24 hrs ( or 48hrs for a concentrate). I had no problem with the flavor but I found a lot of grounds in the coffee even with a course grind. Also, it would spill a lot from the side of the top when pouring. I mean, not terrible for the price but could be better. Byw, those glass bottles they were selling are perfect for storing already made cold brew so I could make another batch right away. I think I bought four of them!

    • I should have picked up a glass bottle, but now they are gone from my store — And, I didn’t have any grounds in the coffee or spillage with mine, so sorry that happened!

    • I just run multiple cold brew pitchers so they can continue brewing as i drink them. I don’t understand what you mean with the lid and it pouring out the side? Are you sure youre putting the lid on right and lining up the ridges on the filter?

  • How do you remove the silver cap from the filter (step 1?). Mine is not budging. Does it pull off, or screw off? Does the silicone / rubbery thing stay on the filter when the silver cap is removed?

    • The silver cap unscrews, and the rubbery part stays on — it’s just a fairly flat silver cap.

      • I also struggled with the cap and worried I would dent the filter I was gripping so hard. It is very slick and it doesn’t seem like you’re making progress. But stick with it. It will eventually come off. Just remember to not screw it back on too tight !

    • It took me about an hour of trying to unscrew the top to figure out that it does not unscrew. If you can get a thumbnail between the metal top part and the top of the silicone/rubber part, it pries/lifts right out. (A picture of the removed lid would have helped. A lot.)

      On the bottom of the lid there is a silicone/rubber gasket that looks like it has screw threads, but it doesn’t. It holds the lid tight enough to feel like it is screwed on tightly.

      • Sooo, yeah a knife I had to use to get the top off. I spent the longest time trying to figure that out. 🙄

        • I am so glad I found these specific comments! I was about to return mine (sadly) because I thought it was broken because I couldn’t unscrew the lid. The knife worked in one second and made it so easy!!!! Thank you! Can’t wait to try this!

  • Has anyone found that it’s difficult to clean the coffee grounds out? I don’t have a sink disposal so grounds washed down the pipes cause my sink to clog. Any tips? Do I have to scoop the grounds out of the bottom with a spoon or something?

    Otherwise, I love it and think the carafe is the perfect size for my fridge. I’m glad my sister spotted these and thought to call me.

  • Anybody catch that THIS WEEK they had cold brew bags (2 batches in a box) for sale? I bought the Guatamalan and used it with the cold brew pitcher I bought last week. Like all things Aldi though I won’t get used to it because I’m sure once they are gone they will be gone.

  • If you missed the Aldi Cold Brew System, Walmart and Target have the Bodum “Bean” Cold Brew Coffee Pot for under $10. It is basically a large french press with an extra lid.

  • And another frugal tip: Sprinkle the coffee grounds in your yard, garden, or house plants. They will decompose and feed your plants 🙂

    • They should! “At ALDI, we’re so confident in our ALDI-exclusive food items that we’ve backed them with our unbeatable Twice as Nice Guarantee. For items not covered by the Twice as Nice Guarantee (non-food ALDI Find items, alcohol*, national brands or non-quality related issues), a replacement or refund** will be offered.”

  • Thank you! I could not get the lid off the filter. Due to your excellent directions I was able to unscrew the lid, lol, and work the system. I drink decaf and this is perfect. Most decaf coffee is weak this is lovely!! Just the way I like it.

  • Thank you for this post! I spent five minutes trying to figure out what the lid with tiny filter was. Now I now! As an Aldi fiend, I am so glad to have found your site!! Never purchased anything but food, but maybe now will branch out!

  • This finally came in stock in my store and I’m SO EXCITED for this afternoon when my coffee will be ready!!

  • I am happy I found this site. I bought the last one of the cold brew systems Aldi had and I was so confused about the strainer lid. They should have had better pictures on the box to explain exactly how to use it.

  • I gave this to my kid last week as part of their 21st birthday basket and they said it’s their favorite gift of the year. While at their dad’s this weekend, I borrowed it and made a pot of chocolate mint coffee. Omg, so good. The perfect refreshment for our hot and humid Orlando summer!

  • This brews very well but even when used with a course grind there is “grit” left in the coffee. For some reason this grit is less offensive in hot coffee but it seems kinda disgusting in coffee with ice. The solution I’ve found is to just filter through a regular coffee filter into mason jars. After playing with brewing times and ratios a bit I landed on I cup per pitcher brewed for 20 hours in the fridge with a medium roast.

  • Hey 👋🏻 friends!! I Purchased this today in hopes that I could use it to make brewed iced tea ☕️ I have looked everywhere to see if it would work for this and have not found any information.
    Has anyone used it for this and if so how did it work?

    • About a week, although ours has never lasted that long. Also, it will be most flavorful for the first couple of days.

  • First of all, I love talking about coffee to coffee people. So glad you like cold brew. This system has brewed good coffee for me and I hope I am making improvements. I queried the net about these cold brew makers since I was wondering about the lack an air tight seal during brew time as well as refer storage time. on the aldi’s coffee maker. It turns out that it is important. We shall see. I have a new batch brewing and I put a baggie over the spout of the carafe to seal it. The proof will be in this pudding. None the less, this batch will be compared to the others that I have made which I have enjoyed. It was not as good as the ‘SToK’ coffee but I am working on it. That coffee IS the GOLD standard as far as I am concerned re: cold brew. Even so I am just trying to break even financially from the price of SToK and I will soon. I use dark/course/room temp brew. Still experimenting and loving it. RC.

  • I bought 1 and I LOVE it, I go thru a gallon a week. Bad part is the glass carafe was in the sink and I dropped the Dawn bottle and it knocked over the carafe and broke it
    Any idea where I can find a replacement?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *