Can you drink day-old coffee?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “Can you drink day-old coffee” with an in-depth analysis of can you drink day-old coffee. Moreover, we will have a brief discussion about the best way to drink day-old coffee as well as what happens if you leave brewed coffee out to sit.

So if you are in search of an answer to Can you drink day-old coffee, then you need not worry as we are going to answer all your questions.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

Can you drink day-old coffee?

Yes, You can drink day-old coffee. Plain black coffee can be left out at room temperature for up to 24 hours after brewing. It will still be safe to drink, but the unique flavor will be lost. 

Hot coffee with milk or creamer, on the other hand, should not be left out for longer than 1 to 2 hours. This is also true of almond milk coffee. If your latte or cappuccino has been sitting on the counter for more than 2 hours, toss it out.

In most cases, brewed black coffee can be kept in the refrigerator for up to a week. If you’re making a batch of cold brew, you should drink it within 10 to 14 days of making it.

At room temperature, freshly brewed coffee can only last for 30 minutes before losing its flavor. Apart from losing its aromatic ingredients, the coffee will develop off-flavors and an unpleasant bitter taste after a few more hours.

In any case, the extent of flavor preservation depends on the storage container you use, whether you keep your coffee at room temperature or in the fridge. 

Best way to drink day-old coffee

You shouldn’t have to drink day-old coffee very often, but if you must, there are a few things you may do to mask any sour flavors or bitterness.

Refrigerate the coffee as quickly as possible 

The faster you can cool it down, the less it will oxidize, preserving the flavor.

Pour over ice

Warming coffee causes it to degrade, even more, making it bitter and unpleasant. As a result, it’s preferable to drink it cold in the opposite direction.

Mix in additional ingredients 

After pouring the coffee over ice, add cream and sugar to make it more flavorful and mask the harshness of the day-old brew.

While it may be tempting to reheat your coffee in the microwave, doing so will cause the beverage to oxidize more quickly, resulting in a bitter and burnt flavor.

What happens if you leave brewed coffee out to sit?

If you keep your coffee out for an extended period, it will inevitably go bad. However, various people have diverse interpretations of what it means to “go bad.”

Coffee is only good for 30 minutes after brewing, according to people who are particular about the flavor quality of their caffeinated beverage. Others, on the other hand, would prepare a complete pot of drip coffee on Sunday and drink it every day for the next week without even putting it in the fridge.

You can read how to make cold coffee here.

Flavor will deteriorate

Because of a chemical phenomenon known as oxidation, coffee becomes stale. This is a fairly typical reaction in which electrons are transferred from one molecule to another.

The flavor of coffee is made up of extremely volatile aromatic chemicals that oxidize quickly when exposed to oxygen, which is how aromas fade. At higher temperatures, this reaction happens faster. This is why cold brew coffee has a longer shelf life than hot brew.

By the time your freshly made coffee has cooled down – which normally takes about 30 minutes – it has lost the majority of its flavor and aroma. Additionally, if you leave your coffee out overnight, the volatile taste compounds will evaporate into the air until they are completely gone.

In any case, if you want the best-tasting coffee, drink it right after it’s been brewed. Allowing your coffee to rest in an airtight container will slow the oxidation process and preserve the tastes in your brew for longer.

You can reduce the rate at which your coffee loses its aroma by keeping it in the fridge at a lower temperature. Just make sure the drink is kept in a properly sealed container, as coffee tends to absorb the flavors of other foods stored in the fridge.

You should keep in mind that no matter where you store your coffee or what storage container you use, its pleasant flavor will decrease over time. The oxidation would also give the bitterness a stronger, even harsher flavor. 

If you’re used to adding milk, creamer, and/or sweeteners to your coffee, this won’t be a big deal. Just make sure to add the milk or creamer shortly before you sip the coffee. If that’s the case, you don’t have to worry about the flavor of day-old coffee.


In this brief guide, we answered the question “Can you drink day-old coffee” with an in-depth analysis of can you drink day-old coffee. Moreover, we also have a brief discussion about the best way to drink day-old coffee as well as what happens if you leave brewed coffee out to sit.


Mahnoor Asghar is a Clinical Nutritionist with a bachelor's degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. She is compassionate and dedicated to playing her part in the well-being of the masses. She wants to play a fruitful role in creating nutrition and health-related awareness among the general public. Additionally, she has a keen eye for detail and loves to create content related to food, nutrition, health, and wellness.